Safe working by contractors

  • OBUHSN-14 Issue January 2018


    The Oxford Brookes University Policy on Health and Safety, recognises the statutory duties imposed by the Health & Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and the specific arrangements that must be made and provided to cater for known and assessed risks, either of a permanent nature, or which may arise from work undertakings, so as to ensure so far as it is reasonably practicable, the Health, Safety and Welfare of all persons who may be affected by these undertakings on University premises is addressed.

    This document is intended to provide information, details, practical advice and guidance to all companies (Principal Contractors/Contractors), sole traders and providers of plant and equipment or any other services or undertakings that may be required or have been contracted for supply by any department of Oxford Brookes University.

    Its details set out specific information and instruction that Oxford Brookes University requires companies, sole traders and providers of services to address when tendering for any works/projects.

    Once any contract, service level agreement or provision of goods or services has been confirmed and awarded by Oxford Brookes University it requires that, in accordance with the award, all of the details and provisions of this document, its necessary procedures and methods, where applicable, are developed, implemented and maintained throughout the contract.

    This document may be used to set out or develop procedures, methods and guidance for contracts, services and provision of goods

    Oxford Brookes University provides the information and guidance contained in this document in accordance with their duties and obligations of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act and all other applicable statutory legislation and regulation.It will be the responsibility of the Director of Estates and Facilities Management to maintain a list of contractors approved to carry out all varieties of building work. The list will be periodically reviewed and contractors will be removed as a result of, amongst other criteria, poor health and safety performance. This will be done after suitable written warnings.

    Oxford Brookes University requires that contracted companies and providers of goods or services comply with all of their duties and responsibilities of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act and all other relevant legislation or regulations.


    University Contract Manager

    Throughout this document, the term ‘University Contract Manager’ is used to refer to the University member of staff who is the primary link to the Contractor. This is intended as a collective term to also include their deputies or relevant colleagues.


    A contractor is anyone undertaking work, such as servicing, maintenance, repairs, installation, construction, etc within Oxford Brookes University who is not a direct employee.

    The Principal Contractor is the main contractor, as defined in the Construction (Design and Management) Regulation 2015.

    Contract or Controlled Site (or Zone)

    Where construction or demolition work takes place, a Contractor Controlled Site will be set up in which the Principal Contractor or Contractor will take full control of the area and prevent uninvited access into it by others.

    University Controlled Premises

    These are any parts of the University which are not Contractor Controlled Sites (see above)

    Emergency Instructions


    Full details may be found in the University’s Fire & Evacuation Procedures

    For details of fire precautions.

    In summary;-

    On discovering a fire, immediately operate the nearest fire alarm call point, leave the building by the nearest exit as indicated by fire action notices and green fire escape signs and head for the nearest fire assembly point. When safe to do so, call the fire brigade by dialling 999 giving details of the location of the fire.

    On hearing a Fire Alarm:

    Evacuate the building immediately using the nearest available fire exit as indicated by fire action notices and green fire escape signs then report to the designated fire assembly point. The location of fire assembly points are given on fire action notices.

    Do not re-enter the building until the fire alarm has stopped sounding.

    Those unable to use the stairs

    Those who are unable to use any stairs on an escape route should go to a fire refuge point, which are usually located on staircase landings. Once at a refuge point, use the intercom system to call for help

    Other Emergencies which may require evacuation:

    In the event of other emergencies, for example, a serious chemical spillage, gas leak, or the discovery of a suspicious package, in the first instance, contact the University Contracts Manager, if they are unavailable, contact Security on 01865 483060.

    Fire Alarm Testing

    A programme of weekly fire alarm testing takes place at set times in individual buildings. The test lasts for 15-20 seconds. If the alarm sounds for longer than 30 seconds at this time, it should be treated as a real alarm, the building should be evacuated.

    Accidents and First aid

    Contractors should carry out their work in such a way as to minimise the risk of accidents occurring.

    First aiders

    In the case of work taking place in Contractor Controlled Sites, Principal Contractors or Contractors are required to provide sufficient first aiders in relation to the work being undertaken and the number of personnel on their site.

    Outside of Contractor Controlled Sites, contractors in need of first aid should call Security on 01865 483060 for assistance.

    Accident Reporting

    Any accidents resulting in injury or any near misses occurring on University premises outside of Contractor Controlled Sites, must be reported to the University Contracts Manager. The accident or incident will be investigated following the University’s Accident Reporting Procedures

    Accidents occurring within Contractor Controlled Zones will be managed by the Principal Contractor or Contractor and reported to the University Contract Manager.

    Signing in of contractors, at University Premises, for work outside contractor controlled sites

    The University requires that all Contractors working on University controlled premises register their presence on site.

    Signing in arrangements for Contractor Controlled Sites are given.

    Contractors working in non-Contractor Controlled Sites are required to sign in and out at each location they are working and sign in and out for issue of keys. Keys are not to be removed from individual sites.

    Locations for signing in and out and for collection of keys will be clarified by the contract manager

    The Principal Contractors and Contractors shall instruct their staff that all areas not identified to them as work areas are prohibited, and only areas identified to them as authorised may be entered.

    Arrangements before work commences


    All Principal Contractor and Contractor’s staff must have undergone a Site Induction, are to have been fully briefed on site hazards and risks and are to have been notified of all the University’s site rules and restrictions prior to commencement of works at the University.

    Records of Staff Site Induction Training must be maintained by the Principal Contractor or Contractor.

    Signing in and out

    Within Contractor Controlled Sites, the Principal Contractor or Contractor must have a means of knowing which personnel are present on site at any time.

    For arrangements for signing in and out for work in non-Contactor Controlled Sites

    Contractors’ Health and Safety Arrangements

    Before work commences on each contract, the appropriate University Contract Manager must be contacted to ensure that the necessary arrangements for Health and Safety have been made. This will include any relevant notifications to the Health and Safety Executive, for example, contracts as defined by the CDM Regulations 2015.

    Principal Designers, Principal Contractors and Contractors are responsible for informing the University Contract Manager, prior to commencing any operation which may involve special hazards e.g. application of heat or flame, demolition works, excavations, the use of dangerous equipment, articles or substances. Risk Assessments and Method Statements must ensure adequate precautions have been developed and are taken. Where operations may need to be especially coordinated with those of the University to ensure safety, the work may need to be governed by means of a formal Permit to Work system. The conditions of each Permit to Work must be agreed with the Contract Manager before work commences.

    Principal Designers, Principal Contractors/Contractors must acquaint themselves, via the University Contract Manager, with procedures relating to accidents/incidents, fire and/or fire alarms on University controlled sites. The Principal Contractor or Contractor will be responsible for ensuring that all personnel on site under their control have been inducted and are familiar with the Emergency Instructions.

    Within Contractor Controlled Sites, Principal Designers, Principal Contractors, Contractors and Subcontractors are responsible for the provision of suitable and sufficient first aid provision, firefighting equipment, storage facilities or any other provisions or areas necessary to conduct their works safely.

    Principal Designers, Principal Contractor/Contractors, Sub-Contractors are responsible for providing their employees with such protective equipment and clothing as may be required for the type of work to be undertaken and maintained in good order. All this equipment must conform to the standards as detailed in the Personal Protective Equipment Regulations and Guidance Notes


    Contractors shall be responsible for the maintaining of a clean, tidy and safe site throughout their undertakings and shall ensure their workplaces are monitored so that standards are maintained.

    On completion of all works the Contractor shall carry out a complete clean of the work site to the satisfaction of the University Contract Manager.


    At tender stage and prior to commencement of work undertakings the Principal Designers, Principal Contractor or Contractor will provide copies, where appropriate, of the following Insurance Documents:

    • Employer’s Liability Insurance
    • Public Liability Insurance,
    • Professional Indemnity Insurance

    Within Contractor Controlled Sites, copies of appropriate insurance certificates are required to be available and should either be displayed on an appropriate notice board on site or form part of the Health and Safety File.

    Competency and Training

    The University requires that all Principal Designers, Principal Contractors, Contractors and all of their employees, subcontractors and their employees are competent to carry out their roles and responsibilities as defined by the detail of the Project/Works Contract/Specification and that there is evidence of such competence and training.

    Proof of this competency may be in the form of in date certificates or identity cards for, e.g. PASMA for tower scaffold erection or IPAF for operation of mobile elevating work platforms.

    Construction design and management (CDM) regulations

    This refers to work for which the The Construction, Design and Management Regulations 2015 apply.

    Definition of Construction

    “Construction work” means the carrying out of any building, civil engineering or engineering construction work and includes;

    • the construction, alteration, conversion, fitting out, commissioning, renovation, repair, upkeep, redecoration or other maintenance (including cleaning which involves the use of water or an abrasive at high pressure, or the use of corrosive or toxic substances), de-commissioning, demolition or dismantling of a structure;
    • the preparation for an intended structure, including site clearance, exploration, investigation (but not site survey) and excavation (but not pre-construction archaeological investigations), and the clearance or preparation of the site or structure for use or occupation at its conclusion;
    • the assembly on site of prefabricated elements to form a structure or the disassembly on site of the prefabricated elements which, immediately before such disassembly, formed a structure;
    • the removal of a structure, or of any product or waste resulting from demolition or dismantling of a structure, or from disassembly of prefabricated elements which immediately before such disassembly formed such a structure;
    • the installation, commissioning, maintenance, repair or removal of mechanical, electrical, gas, compressed air, hydraulic, telecommunications, computer or similar services which are normally fixed within or to a structure

    The Construction, Design and Management Regulations 2015 (CDM Regs) apply to all construction works carried out by or on behalf of Oxford Brookes University. Where construction works are likely to require more than one Contractor, as required by Regulation 5 of the CDM Regs, the University will appoint in writing, a Principal Designer and Principal Contractor.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor shall be responsible for ensuring compliance with and application of the Health and Safety Information Pack, provided by the Principal Designers, at commencement of the works and that throughout the works the Health and Safety Plan is developed and maintained. The Health and Safety Plan should include the activities of their appointed sub-contractors or temporary employees.

    Principal Designers, Principal Contractor or Contractors shall make available, where applicable the following to the University Contract Manager prior to project / works commencement:

    • Health and Safety Policy
    • General Health and Safety Procedure Documents
    • Construction Phase Plan
    • Risk Assessments and Method Statements
    • Any other document, policy, procedure, assessment or statement as deemed necessary for the implementation of the Project/Works

    The Health and Safety Policy must define and set out the objectives of the Principal Designers, Principal Contractor and Contractors to the application and administration of Health and Safety. It should also be signed and dated by the appropriate Company Manager responsible for Health and Safety.

    The Health and Safety Policy should describe the organisational arrangements established to achieve the declared objective. It should also identify and define the duties and responsibilities of persons who will manage or be involved with the project.

    The outline Health and Safety Plan must have sufficient detail to be used as a working reference and include all information necessary for the University and or its appointed Principal Designers, to make an informed decision on the appropriateness of the plan for project/works undertakings.

    The appointed Principal Contractor shall report and include as an agenda item at each progress meeting:

    • Comments with regard to method statements and any high risk activities in the last period;
    • Comments on any incidents/reports of risk in the last period together with recommendations;
    • Any accidents/incidents/near misses including corrective action and any updated procedures;
    • List of forthcoming activities/method statements to be reviewed and identify any activities which may affect adjacent/high risk activities which will require further review by the project Principal Designer;
    • Provide inspection reports carried out by the HSE or internal site inspections;
    • Confirm the Construction Health and Safety Plan continues to be updated, reviewed, revised and refined in accordance with the CDM Regulations 2015;
    • and Confirm the progress of the Health and Safety File/Building Manual.

    Risk assessments and method statements (RAMS)

    Before the commencement of any work on the University’s sites the Principal Contractor or Contractor shall nominate competent persons to be responsible for the undertaking of suitable and sufficient Risk Assessments of all operations where risk is foreseeable and ensure that appropriate control measures are developed and incorporated into a Method Statement.

    All method statements shall be developed in reasonable time to allow coordination of hazardous works to take place between the University Contract Manager and Principal Contractor/Contractor, and for liaison with appropriate University staff and advisors including where necessary the Principal Designer.

    The objectives of Risk Assessments are to highlight project related hazards and ensure that these undertakings do not present uncontrolled risks to the University, students, staff, visitors and Principal Contractor or Contractor’s staff alike.

    All risk assessments shall be in writing, they will follow the requirements detailed in the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulationsand the five step guidance outlined in HSE INDG163 and shall be incorporated into the project Health and Safety Plan.

    All risk assessments shall be reviewed regularly and revised by the Contractors as necessary to accommodate any changes in methods of working or circumstance.

    Auditing and monitoring

    The University may throughout any project or work carry out auditing or monitoring to ensure compliance by the Principal Contractor or Contractor of all applicable University Policies and Procedures. It may further audit and monitor the Principal Contractor or Contractor’s Project or Work and the Health and Safety Plan for compliance to all appropriate Health and Safety regulatory requirements. Audits and monitoring will be carried out by the University Contract Manager.

    The University requires that the Principal Contractor or Contractor, undertake regular monitoring of their projects or works. Monitoring must be recorded and their results and details made available on request by the University Contract Manager or Principal Designer and be available within the Health and Safety Plan.

    Any failure, faults or non-compliance of both any University Policies and Procedures or Health and Safety Regulatory requirement, found, highlighted or identified, must be addressed and rectified by the Principal Contractor or Contractor within an appropriate time scale. Details of the addressing of and rectification of those failures, faults and noncompliance must also be entered by the Principal Contractor or Contractor in site/project records.

    Specified hazardous work activities

    Permits to work

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor shall ensure that all work carried out within University controlled sites has been authorised and that when necessary an appropriate Permit to Work is obtained from the University Contract Manager for the type of work being carried out. This will only be issued after the development of an appropriate risk assessment and method statement.

    Permits to Work are required for the following activities on University controlled premises;

    • Hot Work
    • Working at Height
    • Work in Confined Spaces
    • Excavations and ground work
    • Work on electrical systems

    Issued permits to work must be available for inspection at the designated works areas at all times.

    Any Contractor found to be working without an appropriate permit to work will be required to stop operations immediately. Further steps may be taken by the University Contract Manager if findings indicate a breach of this Safety Code of Practice for Contractors.

    The University’s permits to work must be incorporated in all Health and Safety Plans.

    Hot work

    All works that will involve the presence or production of any form of heat/ignition source that could produce combustion or a naked flame including the production of sparks from cutting or grinding operations can only be carried following the issue of a Hot Work Permit.

    All Hot Works must have been risk assessed and an appropriate Method Statement developed and shared with the University Contact Manager before a Hot Work Permit is issued and work commences.

    Working with height

    When any task requires the Principal Contractor or Contractors to work at height they must carry out these tasks from a safe working platform, with a safe means of access/egress. Reference should be made to the guidance and requirements detailed in the Work at Heights Regulation 2005, the Working at Height guidance note issued by the Health and Safety Executive, and the University Working at Height Safety Notice.

    Whenever possible, working at height should be avoided, alternative methods, such as working at ground levels, should be sought.

    Working at height shall include any operations carried out on roofs, including fragile roofs, walls, escarpments or areas where there is a likelihood of a fall off or from anything that may be used to access the height, such as scaffolding or mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs).

    Any works outside of Contractor Controlled Sites requiring access to any roof, or being carried out off or utilising any roof, must be carried out under the Working at Heights Permit, issued by the University Contract Manager.

    When work is needed to be carried out at heights, consideration must be made as to where the work will be done. This should include safe access to the area and that there is a safe working place to carry out the task, which is able to support the weight of the persons using it, together with the materials and equipment that will be used.

    Adequate containment measures, such as the use of lanyards, shall be included to ensure that tools or materials cannot fall.

    Where required, the Principal Contractor or Contractor shall develop method statements, including, if necessary, recovery plans, that have been agreed with the University Contract Manager prior to the task being undertaken. When developing the risk assessment, climatic conditions that may affect the works must also be taken into consideration along with anything else that may have an effect on the work or those carrying out the work.

    Where it is not safe to work from an existing structure, an extra working platform must be used.

    Where a countermeasure for a risk assessment is a Fall Arrest / Restraint System/s, it shall be provided and used by the Contractor and will be maintained, inspected and certified as safe for all tasks deemed to require the use of such equipment. All Contractor staff that use Fall Arrest / Restraint Systems must have been trained in its use by an appropriate trainer or organisation.

    No existing fixed restraining systems shall be utilised without prior verification of current test certificates.


    A Method Statement for the assembly of any scaffolding should be submitted to the University Contract Manager prior to its construction.

    All scaffolding and platforms must be properly constructed to provide adequate working space and comply with all regulatory requirements. Scaffold must be erected, modified or dismantled by experienced and competent persons. The competent person must have appropriate practical and theoretical skills and attended a recognised training course.

    All scaffold constructions must be properly maintained and inspected by a competent person, at a minimum of seven day intervals or immediately after adverse weather conditions, to check all parts are serviceable and secured to prevent displacement or collapse. The scaffold register must be available for inspection at all times on site.

    No scaffold shall be left partly erected or dismantled unless adequate notices and precautions have been taken to make it safe and prevent unauthorised access.


    The use of ladders and steps should not be undertaken without first carrying out a risk assessment. The alternate use of podium steps or zip up scaffolds must be assessed and this detail must be recorded on the risk assessment and method statement.

    Ladders must be of either Class 1 or EN1312 type. The use of ladders and steps must only be used for up to 30 minutes unless they have been fixed and secured to prevent slippage, fall or collapse.

    Cranes and lifting equipment

    The use of any cranes, lifting equipment or mobile site equipment may only be undertaken after a risk assessment has been carried out, along with the development of a Safe System of Work. It is the responsibility of the Principal Contractor or Contractor to ensure that this is carried out in conjunction with the University Contact Manager and Principal Designer if applicable. Care should be taken to minimise disruption to the running of the University.

    The overflying by cranes of University buildings is not allowed under normal circumstances. If there is a need for a crane to overfly University buildings this can only be undertaken after a Safe System of Work has been developed and submitted to the University Contract Manager and authorisation given.

    The use of all lifting plant and equipment on University premises, must comply fully with the requirements of the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) 1998

    Confined spaces

    A confined space is defined as any place which is substantially, though not necessarily entirely, enclosed, for which there is a reasonably foreseeable risk of injury due to hazardous substances or conditions. Confined spaces include ducts, sewers, chambers, tanks, vats, silos, pits, trenches, pipes, flues, wells and unventilated or poorly ventilated rooms or similar spaces.

    Entry into Confined Spaces within the University are restricted and entry is only permitted in accordance with the University Confined Spaces Policy and Procedure. and with The Confined Space Regulations

    All Contract personnel needing entry into a confined space within the University controlled areas must have read and understood the University Confined Spaces Policy and Procedurebefore entry will be allowed.

    The Contractor shall undertake a full risk assessment of the work to be carried out in the confined space and develop a Safe System of Work, including recovery plans.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor must liaise with the University Contract Manager to ensure that any works requiring access to a confined space on University controlled premises, is carried out under the Confined Space Entry Permit procedure.

    Principal Contractor or Contractors are responsible for the supply of all safety equipment, including all portable gas detection equipment, breathing apparatus, harnesses and other escape and safety equipment.

    Contractor staff that enter into a confined space must be formally trained and hold up to date certificates which will be available for inspection. They will be made fully aware of the risk assessment and method statement for the confined space in which they will be working.

    In order to allow for inspection, the University Contract Manager must be notified before any such spaces have entry hatches replaced.

    Excavations and groundworks

    Where a Principal Contractor or Contractor has cause to develop an excavation, opening or ground works, these shall be carried out in accordance with a Risk Assessment and Safe System of Work that has been agreed with the University Contract Manager.

    Work will be carried out in compliance with HSG 47, Avoiding Danger from Underground Services. Prior to undertaking any ground breaking or excavation activities the Contractor shall obtain all relevant information as to buried services or additional hazards within the vicinity and carry out C.A.T. & Genny scanning in order to ensure that these are addressed in the safe system of work. Information of any known hazards will be given to those carrying out the task. Care will be taken to avoid damage to any tree roots.

    A Permit to Work will be required for any ground breaking activities which takes place in non-Contractor Controlled Sites within University Premises. The permit will be issued by the University’s Contract Manager.

    All excavations, openings and ground works shall be maintained in compliance with Section 22 of the Construction Health Safety and Welfare Regulations, and will include adequate structural support, access and egress with the provision of fences and handrails.

    The excavations, openings and ground works will be secured at night or at such times when they will be left unattended to prevent unauthorised entry.

    Isolation of and connection to services


    There is a considerable network of services within the University premises and grounds. Great care is required to avoid possible damage, interruption or contamination of these. Services may be underground, overhead or building fitted installations, which include, but are not limited to:

    • Electrical power lines
    • Mains gas lines
    • Water supplies, pipes and tanks
    • Telephone lines/computer lines
    • Data cables
    • Fire alarms
    • Internal and mains drainage
    • Low and Medium Pressure heating systems

    All work carried out in the vicinity of or on these services that could result in their failure or interruption must be notified to the University Contracts Manager and a Safe System of Work developed and agreed before commencement of work.

    In the event of damage to any of the services the Contractor shall immediately make the area safe and notify the University Contract Manager.

    Contractors must not connect to, disconnect from, interfere with any services within the University without the permission of the appropriate Managers (Electrical, Mechanical or Systems). This permission should be obtained via the University Contract Manager and may need to be granted in writing in the form of a permit, transfer note or impairment form.

    Sufficient notice should be given for a request for interruption of supply of services in order that suitable arrangements can be made, including notification to members of the University community. Arrangements for this will be made by the University Contracts Manager.

    Mechanical/water systems and equipment

    The University has an extensive water supply and disposal system throughout its many buildings and estates. It is the requirement of the University that these systems are maintained in an appropriate, efficient and safe manner. Any works carried out on these systems by a Principal Contractor or Contractor must be undertaken to an appropriate standard that will ensure compliance of all appropriate regulatory requirements and building standards/guidance.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor will draw up risk assessments and method statements (RAMS) prior to carrying out work on mechanical systems. The RAMS will be inspected by the University Contract Manager.

    Any temporary connections to the water main, e.g. to provide a supply to welfare facilities, will be fitted with a non-return valve. When the temporary supply is no longer required, the Contractor will ensure that the branch off the water main is removed and that dead-legs will not be left in place.

    Legionella controls

    The University requires Legionella Controls to be adopted by the Principal Contractor or Contractor as a proactive approach to the management of building services which could harbour legionella, with the aim of evaluating and controlling risk.

    The control requirements are detailed in a number of pieces of Health and Safety Legislation which include: The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 supported by the Legionnaires’ Disease Approved Code of Practice and Guidance and the Control of Legionella Bacteria in Water Systems: as well as the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health 2002 Regulations

    This applies to all hot and cold water systems, storage vessels, wet heating systems, ventilation and air conditioning systems or any other system that would give rise to harbouring the legionella bacteria.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor will control the risk of legionella by ensuring the use of correct and industry accepted installation procedures and processes for all water systems. Unless consented by the University Contract Manager, plastic piping, flexible hoses, push-fit or speedfit fittings must not be used for either domestic hot and cold water systems or heating systems.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor must recognise that it is important to ensure full and proper controls are in place to ensure the management of legionella and operate a control policy to ensure this. The policy must take into consideration all maintenance issues and the health safety and welfare of University staff, students, visitors and any other persons that may have cause to use the systems or building in which the systems are located.

    Any works carried out by the Principal Contractor or Contractor on Domestic Hot Water Systems (DHWS) must incorporate a secondary return or trace heating option. At the earliest opportunity the Principal Contractor or Contractor must establish that flow exists in the supply and return pipes and carry out rectifications if flow cannot be established.

    Isolation valves and drain points must be installed within the system, these installations must enable appropriate water samples to be taken from the system, without the use of specialist equipment.

    The installed supply/return system and connections must be flushed and inspected for clarity and odour, the water should be odourless.

    All pipe works and temporary fittings/connections, modifications to existing or installed systems must have all dead legs removed and be sterilised using a chlorination technique in accordance with the Water Regulation requirements as applicable.

    All test outcomes should be reported to the Estates Mechanical Manager at the earliest opportunity.

    Pressure systems

    A pressure system is defined as

    • a system, containing a relevant fluid, comprising one or more pressure vessels of rigid construction, any associated pipework and protective devices
    • the pipework with its protective devices to which a transportable pressure receptacle is, or is intended to be, connected
    • a pipeline and its protective devices

    The relevant fluid within the system is:

    • steam at any pressure or
    • any fluid or mixture of fluids which is at a pressure >0.5 bar above atmospheric

    Hydraulic oils are not included as relevant fluids

    All work on Pressure Systems will be carried out in compliance with the Pressure Systems Regulations 2000 and will follow the HSE guidance Approved Code of Practice

    Gas systems

    All work on gas systems must be carried out by Gas Safe engineers with qualifications relevant for the type of work being undertaken. Copies of company Gas Safe registration and individual certification cards are to be presented to the University Contract Manager prior to commencement of work.

    All work will be carried out in compliance with the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulation 1998and will follow the guidelines of the HSW Approved Code of Practice

    The Contractor will carry out Risk Assessments and draw up Methods Statements in relation to the proposed work, these will be shared with and approved by the University Contract Manager before commencement of the work.

    Electrical systems

    The University Contract Manager will arrange for the Contractor to consult with the Electrical Services Manager or their deputy prior to any work being carried out on any electrical systems.

    Prior to carrying out electrical work, contractors will be evaluated and if successful will be appointed as an ‘Approved Contractor’ as defined in the Oxford Brookes University Electrical Safety Code of Practice.

    Contractors will undertake their work according to the Code of Practice.

    Where it is necessary to do so, the Electrical Services Manager, or their deputy, will issue a Transfer of System Control Certificate, to give the contractor control of individual distribution board(s).

    As required, the Electrical Services Manager, or their deputy, will issue a Permit to Work on equipment which has been electrically disconnected and made safe.

    Isolation of fire detection equipment

    The need to isolate any fire detection equipment must be supported by a full risk assessment and an appropriate safe system of work, providing details and all appropriate arrangements to be taken during isolation. Isolation may be by way of covers or remote isolation, whichever is most appropriate.

    No fire detection equipment may be disconnected, unplugged or covered to prevent actuation without written consent by way of an Impairment Notice by the University Contract Manager.

    Under no circumstance may Fire Detection Equipment needing isolation due to the risk of generation of dust or similar activating materials be left live or operational and unprotected during such works. Notification should always be made to the University Contracts Manager in the event of non-isolation.


    Oxford Brookes University has asbestos containing materials (ACM) in various forms located in buildings throughout the University Estates. The Management and Control of Asbestos Policysets out how the Directorate of Estates and Facilities Management complies with the Control of Asbestos Regulations

    In the event of an asbestos incident, such as an accidental release of asbestos, the Emergency Asbestos Incident Procedure in section 3.12 of the Management and Control of Asbestos Policyshall be followed.

    The University’s asbestos register consists of Management surveys of all buildings (with occasional Refurbishment and Demolition surveys which have been undertaken to facilitate building works). The information is therefore a general guide as the survey does not indicate the presence of inaccessible materials.

    The information in this register is available for use by any Principal Contractor or Contractor who has been asked to tender or has been contracted by the University to undertake works on its behalf.

    Before commencing works, the Contractor will be advised by the University Contract Manager of the proximity of any known Asbestos Containing Materials (ACMs) utilising the University’s Asbestos Register.

    All contractors and operatives who are likely to work in environments with ACMs must have attended an Asbestos Awareness training course. If the Contractor, in the course of their work, locates any suspicious materials, work must cease immediately and the University Contract Manager informed. Work will not be allowed to commence again until a Licenced Contractor has positively identified the material, and the area made safe as needs be.

    It is the responsibility of Contractors undertaking work or activity that may disturb the fabric of the building or the services installed within any part of the University’s Estate to ensure that information on possible asbestos presence is obtained, and that appropriate and sufficient risk assessments are carried out in all work areas. The Principal Contractor or Contractor, together with the University Contract Manager must decide if any additional asbestos surveys are required for a particular project or task. A Licensed Asbestos Contractor will carry out surveys in line with HSG 264 Asbestos The Survey Guide, these will be shared with The University Contract Manager.

    Only accredited or licensed asbestos operators shall carry out the undertaking of any works that requires the removal, analysis, or encapsulation of asbestos.

    Waste Management

    Contractors will ensure that their work areas are kept clean and tidy and will manage any waste produced as a result of their activities. For construction work, the Principal Contractor or Contractor will develop a Site Waste Management Plan at the design stage of the project. These plans must be available on site for inspection and must form part of the completed Health and Safety Plan for the project. The University has a waste target to recycle 90% of all demolition, refurbishment and construction waste. Contractors will be expected to be able to deliver these targets and waste figures will be reported on to the University’s Contract Manager, throughout the project’s lifetime.

    Contractors are expected to meet the requirements of the following procedures and work instructions

    • EN103OP - Management of Waste
    • EN103W1 - Non-hazardous waste management
    • EN103W2 - Hazardous and WEEE waste management
    • EN104OP - Management of materials and resources.

    These can be found on the University’s sustainability website

    See the section for Environmental Management System and Work Instructions.

    Contractors shall not deposit any waste, wastewater, chemicals or any other substance into the University’s drains. The disposal of all waste, etc. arising from the works shall be by prior agreement with the University Contract Manager. Contractors must store and dispose of all of their waste products responsibly, ensuring waste is only handled or dealt with by authorised waste carriers and keep records (waste transfer notes/waste consignment notes) of all waste that have been transferred by the licensed carrier. Whenever waste materials are removed from site, the University Sustainability Team must be copied with the waste transfer notes and a copy of the waste carrier's licence by emailing

    When the Contractor's work requires the use of a skip or similar container for the disposal of waste, prior agreement must be sought from the University Contract Manager for its positioning and for the arrangements for its delivery and removal from site. Preferably skips will be covered and lockable and will be secured at the end of each working day to prevent unauthorized use. Any Non-Lockable Skips are to be protected by a HERAS Fence, or similar, compound.

    It is not permitted to make use of waste skips belonging to the University or to other contractors for disposal of waste.

    For non-construction type work, limited quantities of non-hazardous waste, such as paper, small cardboard boxes etc may be disposed of in the University's waste bins, recycling or landfill, as appropriate.

    The University is registered as a Recolight collection centre. With the agreement of the Electrical Services Manager, spent lamps from University premises may be disposed of using the Recolight facilities at Clive Booth Student Village or Harcourt Hill campus.

    Spills of hazardous materials, such as oil, petrol, paints etc must be dealt with immediately and reported to the University Contract Manager. Care should be taken to ensure that spilled materials do not enter drains. The University's procedures for dealing with spills, or equivalent, should be followed. Such spills will be reported using the Report of an Incident, Accident, Dangerous Occurrence or Near Miss Form.

    Cleaning and refuelling of contractors' vehicles is prohibited on University sites.

    Safety, Signs and Notices

    All appropriate safety signs and notices must be displayed where necessary and shall be maintained in good order throughout the works or project.

    Reference should be made to the Health and Safety (Signs and Signals) Regulations and Guidance Notesproduced by the Health and Safety Executive. It is required of the Principal Contractor or Contractor that all signs, notices and signals used and displayed conform to these regulations and guidance.

    All roadworks must have warning signs, clearly visible to all road users and pedestrians. All such signs must conform to Chapter Eight of the Traffic Signs Manual in size, colour and positioning.

    Contractors must not rely upon the Safety Signs and Notices that have been put in place or installed by the University if they are not sufficient for their work being undertaken. Where a need is identified for safety signs and signals, the Principal Contractor or Contractor must provide signs, notices and signals of the regulatory standard which should remain clear and unobstructed throughout the works being undertaking.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor must not substitute a Safety Sign, Notice or Signal for a physical barrier unless a physical barrier can be installed which would eliminate or control the risks more appropriately.

    Lone working

    If lone working by contractors is to be undertaken, a suitable and sufficient risk assessment must be carried out by the Principal Contractor or Contractor and a Safe System of Work developed.

    If the risk assessment deems it a need, a notification of lone working activities will be given to the University Contract Manager, accompanied by a copy of the Safe System of Work.

    Arrangements may include the Principal Contractor or Contractor either communicating with or arranging for inspections to be undertaken of the lone worker at regular intervals throughout the works. These details must also be recorded in the developed Safe System of Works.

    Fences, hoardings and barriers

    For Contractor Controlled Sites, the Principal Contractor or Contractor shall provide and maintain the site fencing/hoarding or barriers around all work areas. If and as site boundaries are modified during the progress of works, all fencing, hoarding or barriers must be reinstated before work recommences. There is to be no over-spill of contractors or construction work or materials outside the designed and designated work areas.

    Where worksites interface with vehicle routes, or were vehicles will be manoeuvring on site, the fencing, hoarding or barriers are to be protected from vehicle damage or displacement.

    The standard of fencing, hoarding or barriers on construction site must be adequate to prevent access by children.

    Fully detailed plans of the proposed site boundaries, type of fencing/hoarding etc, location of access/egress points, vehicles and emergency access points must be submitted to and agreed by the University Contract Manager and be recorded in the Construction Phase H&S Plan prior to commencement of any works.

    All fences, hoardings and barriers must be erected or installed in accordance with the HSE Guidance, Barriers and Fencing HSG151or any other guidance issued by the Health and Safety Executive or other professional or authoritative body where applicable.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor is required to undertake and record a daily inspection of any fences, hoardings or barriers erected by them. Copies of the daily inspection records must be available for inspection by the University Project Manager and the appointed Principal Designer where applicable.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor will carry out an assessment for the need of any and install, as necessary, additional lighting to ensure that any fencing, hoarding or barriers are clearly visible during periods of darkness.


    The Principal Contractor or Contractor will, during any works, control noise levels where practicable to do so. The controls must be of such sufficient means to reduce the noise to acceptable levels. These means should include, wherever possible the isolating of noise within the defined works area or from specific undertakings by using sound deadening materials and or partitions. If isolation and or sound deadening cannot be achieved the developing of an acceptable method and time scale or period must be discussed with the University Contract Manager and the agreed methods built into the Health and Safety Plan for the works.

    Works carried out by the Principal Contractor or Contractor, that produce intrusive levels of noise that have not been isolated, sound deadened, or for which acceptable control measures have not been agreed with the University, will be stopped until suitable sound deadening solutions are found.

    Portable electrical equipment

    All electrical equipment used by or on the behalf of the Principal Contractor or Contractor will have been appropriately tested and certified as safe to use on University premises and where applicable the equipment will bear a label of test date and tester’s signature.

    Under no circumstances must equipment that has not been appropriately tested be used on University premises.

    Copies of Test certificates if available should be held in the Health and Safety

    Plan or on site and made available for inspection.

    The Contractor shall produce an electrical safety plan and ensure that only equipment designed for operating at the supply voltage is used on the University premises. All portable equipment should be either 110 volt or battery operated, however if there is a specific requirement that can only be met by equipment of a higher voltage a request and full method statement must be submitted to the University Contract Manager for approval. Any supplies or leads in excess of 110 volts must be protected by a residual current device.

    The Contractor shall ensure that all tools and distribution equipment, including cables, plugs etc. are complete and examined for signs of wear or damage prior to use.

    Trailing cables across operational or public areas are not permitted.

    All distribution equipment and cables, including lighting festoons (110 volt or less only), must be routed and adequately supported to avoid creating a hazard on site or damage to the equipment.

    Traffic management, delivery and storage of materials

    The movement and management of Contractor Transport and Traffic on site will be the responsibility of the Principal Contractor or Contractor and must be controlled at all times.

    The maximum speed limit on all University sites is 10 mph

    Parking on all University sites is very limited. Arrangements must be made with the Contract Manager prior to bringing vehicles on site.

    Where applicable, the submission of a Transport and Traffic Management Plan must be made to the University Contract Manager, prior to project commencement. No project transport or traffic must enter the University campus until verification and acceptance of the plan has been given by the University Contract Manager.

    All site transport and traffic is required to be controlled at all times and movement of large vehicles should only be undertaken with the use of banksmen or traffic marshals. Whilst manoeuvring, the vehicle’s hazard warning and revolving lights, if fitted, are to be lit.

    All materials to be used on works or projects must be delivered in an appropriate manner, its packaging will be such that it does not produce a secondary risk to the University students, staff or visitors.

    No materials will be allowed to be stored that presents a risk of fire or explosion without adequate countermeasures and the agreement of the University Contract Manager.

    All delivered materials are stored on the University premises at the risk of the Principal Contractor or Contractor and the University will not be held accountable for its safety and security.

    Hazardous substances and materials

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor shall ensure that risk assessments have been undertaken by a competent person for all products intended for use during the work or for materials evolved during the work undertakings and that a written procedure for the handling, application, storage and disposal of hazardous products have been prepared.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor must be aware that there are risks that need to be identified within (and including waste pipes from) laboratories that contain ionising radiation. Access to these rooms is controlled by appointed laboratory staff.

    The risk assessment for products used or for materials evolved must be carried out in accordance with the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health 2002 Regulations and be recorded and contained in the contract plan of work.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor must coordinate all such assessments and make them available, together with safety data sheets, to the University Contract Manager for agreement prior to any work undertaking.

    The University Contract Manager must be informed in writing of all substances intended for use on University controlled sites which are classified as toxic, very toxic, corrosive, flammable, highly flammable or explosive. This will not relieve the Principal Contractor or Contractor of their duties under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor will make arrangements for storage of hazardous materials in appropriate cabinets, as required. The storage, transportation and use of hazardous substances must be detailed in an appropriate Safe System of Work.

    If the Principal Contractor or Contractor discovers any hazardous substance they must immediately notify the University Contract Manager. If the substance is identified or suspected of being an immediate danger, all work must stop until an appropriate safe system of removal or containment can be developed to address the circumstance.

    Bottled gas shall not be used within the University premises without the authorisation of the University Contract Manager. It will require the Principal Contractor or Contractor to develop an appropriate Safe System of Work which may require the issuing of other Permits.

    LPG and other bottled flammable gases stored within the University site boundaries shall be stored in compliance with the, Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002 and HSE Guidance note Storage of Flammable Liquids in Containers HSG51.

    No LPG or bottled gas is to be left unattended by contractors, or on site outside working hours without agreed notification to the University Contract Manager.

    PPE & RPE (Personal/Respiratory Protective Equipment)

    It is the responsibility of the Principal Contractor or Contractor to provide all appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and where appropriate Personal Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) for their personnel.

    The minimum requirement for PPE where construction work is being undertaken is hard hat, safety footwear, gloves and high visibility vest.

    The University requires that as part of all tender submissions made by the Principal Contractor or Contractor inclusion is made and detailed for PPE/RPE. All PPE/RPE used and supplied to Contractor work force must comply to appropriate safety standards as defined by the Personal Protective Equipment Regulations. Details of this will be required in the Health and Safety Plan for contract undertakings.

    Any member of contracted staff found not to be wearing the appropriate (Health and Safety Plan detailed) PPE/RPE will be stopped from working until such times as PPE/RPE is provided and worn.

    Continuous disregard or violation of PPE/RPE requirements detailed in the Principal Contractor or Contractor’s Health and Safety Plan or task Risk Assessments will result in immediate removal from site of the individual and potentially the contracted company.

    Fire precautions and procedures

    Contractors must conform with the University’s Fire & Evacuation Procedures. On hearing a fire alarm evacuate the building immediately using the nearest available fire exit as indicated by the green fire escape signs, report to the designated fire assembly point the locations of which given on fire action notices.

    For Contractor Controlled Sites, a fire risk assessment and emergency procedure(s) shall be developed applicable to the task being undertaken and shall be agreed with the University Contract Manager prior to commencement of work. The Contractor shall coordinate and prepare the fire safety arrangements in the form of a Fire Safety Plan.

    The Contractor shall ensure that all their operatives are familiar with the risk assessment and the fire safety arrangements.

    Contractors shall not block access to emergency services and will keep corridors and access to fire escapes clear. Where the Contractors’ tasks involve working on or near access or escape routes, risk assessments will be undertaken and arrangements to deal with fire evacuation will be agreed with the University Contract Manager.

    All operations involving "Hot Work" (cutting, welding, grinding etc.) or use of open flames (blow lamps, gas appliances, heated tar-pots etc) to be carried out within, or adjacent to the University premises will require a Hot Work Permit to be obtained from the University Contract Manager.

    Contractors are responsible for the safe storage, handling and use of all compressed gas cylinders, or containers delivered to them, or used by them and must at all times comply with the provisions of relevant Health and Safety Regulations and Guidance Notes.

    Highly Flammable Liquids must not be stored or decanted within buildings and effective control of any potential source of ignition shall be carried out by the Contractor, including prohibition of smoking within or adjacent to storage areas and points of use.

    Contractors shall ensure that large quantities of combustible materials are not stored on University premises. Combustible materials or waste must not accumulate and must be removed as soon as possible.

    For requirements regarding Electrical Systems. Temporary wiring must conform to the relevant regulatory requirements and be fitted with residual current devices. Temporary wiring must not be run in areas that there is a likelihood of chaffing or damage and be fixed in a manner that would prevent accidental damage or pulling.

    In all cases, first consideration must be given to maintaining a safe means of egress for occupants of any building. Where temporary alternative arrangements are approved and implemented, the facilities must be accompanied by suitable directional and exit signs and temporary lighting to comply with all regulatory requirements and appropriate guidance notes.

    Agreement with the University Contact Manager must be made prior to any works to isolate any fire detector units.

    Fire Compartmentalisation

    Prior to any works starting, the contractor is to ascertain if any work will breach a fire line wall. If this is the case appropriate plans are to be formulated to ensure that the fire line is maintained as required during the works. On completion of any service passing through a fire line the contractor is to ensure that all the necessary fire stopping is undertaken using the appropriate intumescent materials, fire dampers or building materials as specified to maintain the fire integrity of the fire line.

    Standards of behaviour on university premises

    Etiquette and language

    The University’s Sites and Buildings are used by a large number of students, visitors and staff of a wide and varying background and ethnicity.

    Whilst working in University sites and premises the Principal Contractor or Contractor’s staff are required to conduct themselves in an appropriate manner at all times, and not cause any offence or distress by any actions or language that they may use.

    The use of foul and abusive language or actions will not be tolerated. In particular it is unacceptable for the contractor’s employees to make comments, calls or signs of any kind to members of the University community that are sexist, racist, pass comment on a person’s disability, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity or age.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor is required to inform staff that will be working on University sites of the need to conform to an acceptable standard of etiquette and language at all times and that any form of etiquette or language that causes distress or offence, will result in the removal from site of the offending member of staff.

    Under no circumstances will the University tolerate wolf whistling of students, staff, or visitors whilst on University premises by Contractor staff.

    Dress code - suitable attire

    Whilst working on or in University site/premises the Principal

    Contractor or Contractor’s staff are required to dress appropriately at all times.

    Any form of dress that would cause offence or distress is not acceptable, this includes

    • Offensive slogans on clothing
    • Working without a shirt or top
    • Wearing shorts
    • Wearing clothing that could cause injury or harm to the wearer or others

    Radios/music/mobile phones

    The playing of radios or music within any of the University’s buildings or on its premises is not permitted at any time.

    The use of mobile phones is permitted in all unrestricted areas.

    Smoking policy

    The University Smoking Policy prohibits smoking or the use of vapour e-cigarettes within all University buildings and any areas within 5 meters of building entrances or windows. Those wishing to smoke are requested to use the designated smoking shelters located at Headington and Harcourt Hill, whilst on those sites.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor is required to notify all their staff of these requirements

    Alcohol/substance use

    The University has a legal obligation to protect the health, safety and welfare of students, staff, and visitors to its site.

    Due to the nature of the undertakings that Contractors will be engaged in, the use of alcohol or illegal or non-prescribed mind affecting substances will not be permitted within the University buildings or sites.

    If any Contractor is found to be consuming alcohol, illegal or non-prescribed mind affecting substances or is suspected to be under the influence of these they will be required to leave the site

    Welfare Facilities

    On Contractor Controlled Sites, the Principal Contractor or Contractor shall provide and maintain, as required, such adequate accommodation for eating food, toilets, drying clothes etc and allow full use of such accommodation to all persons employed by them.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor shall place site accommodation and offices in accordance with University directives, and ensure that the accommodation does not present a fire risk to the University.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor must at all times keep the site accommodation clean of debris likely to cause an infestation and dispose of food waste in an approved manner.

    University welfare facilities must not be used unless authorised by the University Contract Manager. If University site facilities are used by Contractor staff, they must remove overalls if dirty and ensure that footwear is free from mud or debris that may leave marks on floor surfaces.

    University equipment

    A Contractor must not use any University plant or equipment without prior permission in writing of the University Contract Manager.

    Only a trained and competent person may carry out the use or operation of any loaned University plant and equipment.

    Data protection

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor may, through works undertaken, be party to or have access to, or sight of, data held by the University.

    The Principal Contractor or Contractor is reminded of their duties, obligations and responsibilities under the Data Protection Regulations 1998 and is required to comply with all of the requirements of those regulations where applicable.

    A breach of the regulations may result in immediate termination of the contract and appropriate actions being taken by the University, which could also include notification to appropriate enforcing authorities.

    Appendix 1 Information for Contractors