Introduction to Health and Safety at Work has quickly established itself, in its first six years, as the foremost text for students taking the NEBOSH National General Certificate. It is also of great value to those studying for level 3 N/SVQ, the IOSH Managing Safely Award and similar management and supervisor focused learning. It has become a significant work of reference for managers with health and safety responsibilities and it is therefore a matter of primary importance that it should be kept up-to-date, as far as is possible, with new legislation and recent developments. It has now been endorsed by NEBOSH as a recommended text book for the National General Certificate course. This fourth edition has been produced in order to update health and safety legislation, with particular regard to changes in legislation relating to corporate manslaughter and corporate homicide, the Health and Safety (Offences) Act, changes to the Health and Safety (Information for Employees) Regulations and the introduction of environmental permitting. More information has been given on the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Chemicals Regulations (REACH), the introduction of a new regime for domestic gas safety and future changes to the Control of Pesticides Regulations. Finally, the merger of the Health and Safety Commission and the Health and Safety Executive into a single unified body called the Health and Safety Executive is also covered.
The qualification is now divided into three distinct units each of which is assessed separately. This development offers the opportunity for additional and more flexible course formats and students may now study parallel courses (in, say, fire and construction) without repeating the management unit. Students who decide to take individual units will, on passing, receive a Unit Certificate. Since the first edition of this book was published, there has been a change in the style of examination questions and NEBOSH has introduced a commendably thorough system for question paper preparation to ensure that no candidates are disadvantaged by question ambiguity. NEBOSH is anxious to dispel the myths surrounding their examinations and have introduced regional meetings for course providers to introduce changes to the syllabuses and to answer any queries so that their students get the best possible preparation for the assessment tasks. The NEBOSH website is also a very useful channel of communication with course providers and students. Many questions now cover the contents of more than one chapter. It is recommended that students have sight of the published examiner’s reports, which are available from NEBOSH. These reports not only provide an excellent guide on the expected answers to the questions but also indicate areas of student misunderstanding. Since 1 September 2004, there have been changes in the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) that are relevant to the NEBOSH General Certificate. However, up to level 3 the NQF is unchanged and therefore its effect on the Certificate will be minimal. The Certificate syllabus is designed to provide the underpinning knowledge for the ‘ Health and Safety for People at Work ’ standard, an approved level 3 vocational standard developed by the Employment National Training Organisation (ENTO). The syllabus is unitized to make it as compatible as possible with short courses based on the eight units of the ENTO standard. The NEBOSH National General Certificate is accredited as a level 3 award by Ofqual. More detailed information on these eight units is available in the guide to the NEBOSH National General Certificate. The fourth edition, which continues to follow closely the eight units, will therefore be particularly useful to people involved with the ‘ Health and Safety for People at Work ’ level 3 ENTO standard. As mentioned earlier, the Certificate syllabus has been updated to include much of the new legislation. However, it is the policy of NEBOSH to examine new relevant legislation 6 months after its introduction whether it is specifically mentioned in the syllabus document or not.
Finally , one of the objectives of the book is to provide a handbook for the use of any person who has health and safety as part of his/her responsibilities. We thought that it would be useful, therefore, to add a few useful topics which are outside the syllabus. These include more on the International Labour Organization, managing occupational road safety (Chapter 9), fast-track settlement of compensation claims following the Woolfe reforms (Chapter 8) and the effects of alcohol and drugs on occupational health and safety (Chapter 15). A sample question on the effects of alcohol has also been included.
We hope that you find this new edition to be useful.