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What Do You Know About Workplace Safety? Quiz

By: Kevin Watson MSc - Updated: 15 Feb 2014 | comments*Discuss
Safety Workplace Health And Safety

Your safety is an important issue no matter where you work. How much do you know, however, about basic safety rules and practices? Use this questionnaire to test the level of your knowledge.

Can You Answer these Questions?

  1. What is responsible for more work-related deaths in the UK than anything else in the past three decades?
  2. What are the maximum average number of hours you should work per week?
  3. What are the regulations that govern the maximum working hours?
  4. What workers have special working hours rules?
  5. What is the average working hours limit in a 24 hour period for people who work at night?
  6. Name two items in a workplace that may cause carbon monoxide poisoning.
  7. Name two symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning.
  8. How do you identify the fire risks at work?
  9. What is the main right of a health and safety inspector?
  10. If a company or individual has seriously breached health and safety law, what main legal power does a health and safety inspector have?
  11. Name two dangerous substances you may find in the workplace.
  12. Health and safety regulations cover VDU's (visual display units) and computers: name three of an employer’s obligations to staff who regularly use VDU's and computers.
  13. How do musculoskeletal problems arise in the workplace?
  14. Name three safety signs you’d expect to see in a workplace.
  15. Name two of the four most common causes of workplace accidents.


1. Asbestos - The fatal illnesses associated with asbestos include lung cancer, asbestosis, mesothelioma, and pleural plaques. The estimated number of UK deaths over the past 30 years is 50,000.

2. 48 hours. This is in accordance with UK law. You can choose to work longer than 48 hours per week, or you may work in an industry with its own rules (the transport industry, for example).

3. The Working Time Regulations.

4. Young workers (under 18 and over the school leaving age); trainee doctors; transport industry mobile workers.

5. The average is eight hours in any twenty four hour period over seventeen weeks. It is not possible to choose to work longer than this unless the whole of the workforce agrees, although in some industries, the seventeen week period is twenty six. Night workers who regularly endure mental or physical strain, or who work in hazardous environments, cannot exceed eight hours in any twenty four hour period: averaging does not apply in these circumstances.

6. Central heating system; cooking equipment; a portable generator; a water heater; an engine running in a badly ventilated area; a blocked chimney.

7. Sickness; headache; dizziness; sore throat; a cough; stomach pain; abdominal pain.

8. You should conduct, or arrange for a trained person to conduct, a fire safety risk assessment.

9. A health and safety inspector can enter a workplace at any time to carry out an inspection or investigate a health and safety incident.

10. A health and safety inspector can prosecute the company or individual without warning.

11. LPG (liquefied petroleum gas); fuel such as petrol; cleaning chemicals; solvents; decorating materials such as paint; adhesives.

12. Assess workstations and limit risks; ensure staff have adjustable seating and appropriate lighting; allow staff to take breaks away from the VDU's and computers; arrange for eye tests and special glasses if requested; give suitable information and training about VDU and computer health and safety.

13. Muscles problems relate to damaged joints and muscles. Poor workplace conditions and working practices can be the cause. Most commonly, muscles problems occur to people who use computer keyboards every day, and to staff who lift heavy items without following safety instructions.

14. Fire exit; first aid room/cupboard; fire extinguisher; fire alarm point; no smoking; toxic or flammable material; signs that tell staff to wear protective clothing, helmets, or eye protection.

15. Slips and trips; manual handling (lifting, carrying, and holding); traffic accidents (warehouses and depots); electric shocks and burns.

What Your Safety Score Means

Award yourself one point for each of your correct answers.

14 or 15 points: your understanding of workplace safety is excellent. This is the score that everyone in the workplace should have.

12 or 13 points: this isn't a bad score, but take a look at your wrong answers, and ensure you know the correct answers for the future.

Fewer than 12 points: study the correct answers to the questions you failed on. Ensure you understand the answers, and after a few days, take the test again. You should aim to score full marks.

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