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Health and safety inspections in your commercial property

By Greg Bell

When you own a piece of commercial property, the health and safety of your customers needs to be top of mind at all times. Every operation from restaurants to clothing boutiques to toy stores has a standard that it should live up to immaculate standards of cleanliness to keep customers (and employees, for that matter) safe. Ensuring that the health and safety of your property is up to code is the law in Queensland and failure to comply will likely result in penalties or prosecution. 

According to the most recent statistics from Safe Work Australia, the total of serious claims of injury in the workplace made in just one year was 117,815. Naturally, you want to avoid the people under your supervision from becoming a part of this statistic. Before you open the door to any more customers, make sure your establishment is good to go with these tips.

Understand what legislation covers

Ideally before you get your business started you will want to review the Work and Safety Act 2011 so you are aware of how you can run your business safely. In the meantime, we will provide you a brief summary of what to expect so you can be proactive about maintaining a good business. Here's the gist from Business Queensland:

  • Acknowledging safe systems of work
  • Proper handling of goods and substances
  • Supply information, instruction, training and supervision to workers
  • Identify risks and take appropriate action to control them
  • Report incidents to Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ)

Get your property inspected 

WHSQ are in charge of monitoring the standard of businesses across the state by enforcing a code of practice with agency inspectors. Essentially, these codes give business owners guidance on how to identify and manage risks is the workplace. They vary from industry to industry, so it will be your duty to know these standards before opening shop.

If you're still in the market for the perfect piece of commercial property to grow your business in, you should get it inspected before purchasing. However, if you already own and operate commercial property then it is your obligation to take part in routine safety inspections to ensure your building and equipment are up to standard. This is what we will discuss in our next section.

Daily tips for keeping your property up to date

Obviously you want to be proactive about preventing workplace injuries, so there are couple of things you can do day to day in order to keep your place up to code. To begin, every new hire needs to be trained on the proper protocol for you industry standards. But after this, there are some general tips that apply generally across commercial property. Here's a checklist of what you should be keeping an eye on throughout your establishment:

  • Clearly mark slippery surfaces or provide nonslip carpeting to avoid unnecessary falls.
  • Give warning to any uneven surfaces that could cause people to trip.
  • Minimise clutter in walkways to prevent tripping. 
  • Keep the store well let both in and out of the store for extra vision around you. 
  • Clean the space every day to prevent dirt or mould buildup.
  • Test the strength of fixtures that could topple over if not secure enough.

As long as you are routinely inspecting your space for potential risk that could harm your employees or customers, you will be good to go.

What stage of the property buying process are you in? Buy, sell, manage or anything in between, your team here at Ray White Surfers Paradise wants to help you through it all. Contact our team and let's get started today!

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