Guide to First-Aid Kits for your Workplace

In every workplace there are first-aid signs and a specified first-aider with access to a first-aid kit. If a minor injury takes place within the workspace, there is someone to take care of the situation using the correct equipment provided.

But what are the responsibilities of an employer to provide first-aid equipment?

Assess the First-Aid Situation

Not every workplace will need a fully trained first-aider. A first-aid needs assessment is required, this will indicate to an employer the level of responsibility the appointed person has over the first-aid. The minimum requirement is for someone to look after the equipment and first-aid kit, and being responsible for the upkeep of a record and calling the emergency services when required.

An appointed first-aider does not legally have to undertake first-aid training, though these are available for your company to take up should you consider it an important step to take for the safety of your workforce.

There is no mandatory list of contents for first-aid boxes. So what you decide to include should be based on an assessment of your first-aid needs for your workplace.

There is no mandatory list of contents for first-aid boxes. So what you decide to include should be based on an assessment of your first-aid needs for your workplace.

The First-Aid Box

For the work first aid kit there is no specific set of equipment that you should have within a first-aid kit on the premises of a workplace where low risk activities take place. However, here is a suggested guide of contents you should consider (as offered by the HSE):

  • Leaflet offering general first-aid guidance
  • 20 individually wrapped sterile plasters, of various sizes and appropriate to your work situation
  • 2 sterile eye pads
  • 2 individually wrapped triangular bandages
  • 6 safety pins
  • 2 large sterile, individually wrapped unmedicated dressings for wounds
  • 6 medium-sized, individually wrapped unmedicated dressing for wounds
  • 3 pairs of disposable gloves

Many sterile items will have an expiry date attached to them, so always be aware of reviewing the contents of the first-aid box, ensuring all items are up to date and safe to use. Should you conduct a regular safety review of your first-aid procedures, you may wish to update your first-aid kit to reflect the changing nature of the workplace.

It is highly recommended that you do not keep any tablets or medication in the workplace first-aid kit.

Be it a restaurant kitchen, an office, factory floor or a company van, wherever your work find a first aid kit suitable for your needs.

Be it a restaurant kitchen, an office, factory floor or a company van, wherever your work find a first aid kit suitable for your needs.

Wray Bros Provides the Means to Treat an Injury or Illness in the Workplace

Every workplace needs a first-aid box and a first-aider trained in using that box. Whether a packed office full of people, or a smaller company, there is always the need for first-aid knowledge and understanding. At Wray Bros we appreciate this and have a wide range of first-aid equipment, including boxes and signage, for larger organisation or lone workers or long range drivers.

For a few ideas why not take a look at what may be useful to you, where you work:

Take a look at our first aid range of products and if you have any questions please feel free to contact our friendly customer service team, who will be happy to advise and guide you. Call 0151 709 2271 or visit the Wray Bros website today.

Further reading: Guide to First Aid & Workplace Safety Signs

Tread carefully, here’s some tips to buying safety footwear,

It isn’t surprising the number of visitors to the Wray Bros trade counter that pick-up a pair of work boots and have a good look before buying. Some will look at the branding, some will look at the styling, whilst some will ask about the footwear’s protective qualities and all the visitors will try them on to see if they fit and more so how comfortable they are.

Buying safety footwear? Do you look at the branding, the styling, the protective qualities or how comfortable they are? But, do you ever check the tread?

Buying safety footwear? Do you look at the branding, the styling, the protective qualities or how comfortable they are? But, do you ever check the tread?

What is surprising is how few actually look at the tread

Though to be fair, it is a natural assumption that a new pair of safety work boots will provide a ‘good-grip’. As a tip from Wray Bros, always consider the conditions of your workplace and the suitability of the tread for that environment. Another tip would be to ask your supplier for advice and their recommendations on footwear suitable for the job.

Your supplier will seek to determine what your job is, i.e. indoor or outdoor, what surfaces you work upon and what possible contaminants could possibly be found on the floor. For instance, footwear suitable for outdoor use will feature a tread that is more open that copes better with solid contaminants. Whereas, working indoors suits a tighter filled tread that also suits wet contaminants.

Buying Safety Footwear – Get a Grip

Similar to a car tyre, the shape and design of the tread plays a role in gripping on wet floor surfaces.   The purpose of the tread is create a tunnel in which to disperse the liquid and offer its slip resistance effect. The depth as well as the shape of the tread helps with the liquid dispersal and traction.

Don’t forget to ask your supplier about the ‘slip-resistance’ specifications the footwear has been tested to. The European test standards to look out for are EN ISO 20344:2004 (A1: 2007). Footwear which has passed the EN test for slip resistance will be marked with one of the following codes, SRA, SRB or SRC.

The codes confirm the footwear has met the specified requirements for the following:

  •    SRA – tested on ceramic tile wetted with dilute soap solution;
  •    SRB – tested on smooth steel with glycerol;
  •    SRC – tested under both the above conditions.
Wray Bros will help you choose the right Safety Shoe for the right environment. Call today on 0151 709 2271

Wray Bros will help you choose the right Safety Shoe for the right environment. Call today on 0151 709 2271

As can be seen, the test surfaces do not reflect all possible surfaces your work environment may feature. Why not talk to your safety footwear supplier to ensure you buy footwear which will do the job for you.

Finally, don’t forget to look after your safety footwear. Clean the tread when necessary and replace the footwear when the tread depth shows signs of wearing down. For more information on finding the footwear suitable for you and your workplace please contact Steven at Wray Bros on 0151 709 2271.

Taking the Right Steps to Selecting Safety Footwear for Work. Part 2

In the earlier post ‘Taking the Right Steps to Selecting Safety Footwear for Work. Part 1’ covered some of the considerations on how to select safety footwear to ensure you and your colleagues are kept safe from potential workplace hazards. Choosing the appropriate protective footwear to meet the hazards of your job can help prevent injury and keep you comfortable during your work hours. Below is brief overview of the features and functions of safety footwear attributes:

Discover more regarding the features and function of your Safety Footwear

Discover more regarding the features and function of your Safety Footwear

  • Toecap: Safety footwear doesn’t necessarily start and end with the toecap but it is a good place to begin a review of the different footwear features. Toecap footwear can be split into two main groups – metal and non-metallic, i.e. composite, regardless of material both versions are designed to meet EN standards. The composite materials tend to be plastic which makes the boots or shoes lighter and being non-metallic they do not retail the cold.
  • Tread: Slip resistant footwear protects workers from workplace slips which can lead to bruising, sprains and possible back problems. The nature of slips can differ depending upon the environment and the cause of the slip, e.g. grease on the floor, over polished floors and spills etc.
  • Consider the Tread: When looking at slip resistant footwear consider the tread pattern, especially if to be used, on wet surfaces. The sole should offer maximum contact to the floor surface and allow the user a feel for the conditions underfoot.
  • External Warnings: A well run business will have procedure in place to warn and minimise the risk of slips and trips with wet-floor-signs, floor cleaning products and entrance matting etc as well as slip resistant shoes.

Purchasing safety footwear for the workplace can become a cumbersome task if you let it become one. There are quite a few elements to consider, from the task the user will need them for, how comfortable should they be, satisfying a number of different specialists in the workplace and obviously ensuring that above all else they are completely safe to use. It’s no good buying basic footwear if your workers will be in extreme conditions with extra risks.

We hope this and the previous article has helped you if you are looking to purchase Steelite Safety Boots for your workplace. If you have a specific requirement and you’re still not 100% sure on what you should be buying, give our friendly customer service team a call Wray Bros today on 0151 709 2271. They are always happy to help and will be able to fully advise you on which direction your next steps should take.

Taking the Right Steps to Selecting Safety Footwear for Work. Part 1

Walking in the wet, climbing irregular surfaces, handling heavy machinery, falling objects, and slippery floor surfaces, exposure to electricity or even sharp objects on the floor are just a flavour of some of the hazards our feet have to contend with depending upon your workplace and daily responsibilities.

The Employers Responsibility – A Few Simple Steps for the Right Work Boots

Step 1 – Choose a Good Supplier: When you go to a supplier to purchase footwear for work purposes they should be able to help you. A reputable supplier will review suitable footwear to narrow down the options based upon your job requirements. The supplier should provide guidance on what safety footwear suits different work environments. So if you’re in engineering you’ll have vastly different requirements to someone working in food or manufacturing.

Whether your role requires the use of non-metallic footwear, i.e. for airport use, or need comfort for outdoor duties or durable footwear for industrial work etc there are a few considerations to choosing the right safety footwear

Whether your role requires the use of non-metallic footwear, i.e. for airport use, or need dry, comfortable footwear for outdoor duties or durable footwear for industrial work etc there are a few considerations to choosing the right safety footwear

Step 2 – Assess the Tasks at Hand (or feet): Ultimately, a risk assessment of the workplace and the job in-hand is where the process should begin. By understanding the level of protection required and the potential hazards the job role entails will help select the right safety footwear. The type of material used underfoot can make a difference, for instance footwear with shock absorbing qualities are ideal for workers who are on their feet for much of the day. Other soles can protect from heat, puncture and cuts.

Step 3 – Satisfy all Relevant Staff: Within a typical organisation the selection of safety footwear will collectively involve different people that each needs to be satisfied. For instance, the Health & Safety Officer will want to review the suitability of the footwear, the purchaser will ask about price and availability and obviously the user will want to make sure the footwear is comfortable and fits correctly.

Step 4 – Comfort is Important: It is important to note that new safety footwear should not be uncomfortable, neither should you adopt the thinking they get more comfortable once they get ‘worn-in’. A comfortable person will automatically perform their job with greater ease, flexibility and happiness. So pick your work boots based on safety first but with a nod to comfort and the long term benefits that brings with it. Another aspect often overlooked and that is breathability. Many users often look for waterproof footwear but always appreciate the fact feet produce a lot of moisture of their own accord. Footwear that offers good breathability helps with foot hygiene, comfort and stops feet getting wet.

Look out for part 2 of the ‘Taking the Right Steps to Selecting Safety Footwear for Work’ article. In the meantime for more information on how to find suitable industrial safety shoes for you and your colleagues please feel free to contact Wray Bros. Our customer service team will be more than happy to offer advice and guidance, either over the phone on 0151 709 2271 or face-to-face at our Merseyside Trade Counter.

How to Get the Best from your Corporate Wear Supplier

In a previous article: ‘You & Your Corporate Wear Supplier – How to Find the Perfect Fit’ the role of corporate clothing supplier and how that ties in with your workwear policy, staff comfort and brand awareness was discussed. The next step is to fully consider every potential option before heading to your corporate wear supplier.

The fuller the brief and intended aims, the closer you can get to your desired corporate outlook, reflecting your business in the way you see fit saves time and money. It’s better to work out the quirks and nuances at this stage, matching up what could be initially perceived as wildly different options, such a professional outlook with an intention of engaging with a younger/older audience.

ladies corporate clothing includes machine washable jackets, trousers, skirts, plain and patterned blouses

ladies corporate clothing includes machine washable jackets, trousers, skirts, plain and patterned blouses

So what should you be considering before heading to the brief writing stage?

  • Define the corporate image and identity you want to portray – professional, friendly etc.
  • Understand the needs of each section of your staff and which garments are better suited for each area in terms of design, safety and comfort.
  • Match up colours and fabric where possible with the company branded colours.
  • Discuss logo and branding and whether embroidered company logos will work for you.

The Detail

Once you have a favoured design and look it’s time to think about the processes for the future. It is important to consider the size of the garments you are ordering and the comfort levels for each staff member. Where possible, staff should be able to try the workwear before purchasing for their size, especially where branding and print or embroidery are part of the finished uniform.

In terms of budget and timing, consider whether bulk buying in a wide variety of sizes works for your business, or whether regular, individual orders can be made within cost and on time.

Mens corporate wear includes the 'tailored fit' Malham Jacket, Trousers & Waistcoat in Black, Charcoal, Grey & Navy

Mens corporate wear includes the ‘tailored fit’ Malham Jacket, Trousers & Waistcoat in Black, Charcoal, Grey & Navy

One other consideration that is becoming ever more important is ethical trading and responsible workwear suppliers should provide you with all the information you need as to where their goods are sourced and to demonstrate that their clothing is ethically manufactured to ensure the ethical and social impacts of their actions are accounted for, that they have adopted internationally recognised guidelines such as Fairtrade, Rainforest and Oeko Tex Standard 100 etc.

If you would like to speak to a member of the Wray Bros team we would be more than happy to help your team look good, feel comfortable and look the part in terms of your corporate branding and messaging coming across to customers. Whether its ladies corporate clothing or mens corporate clothing we can help you plan and budget your outfits that will become an integral part of your staff management and marketing strategy. Give Wray Bros a call today on 0151 709 2271 for expert advice and guidance.

You & Your Corporate Wear Supplier – How to Find the Perfect Fit

Considerations for corporate workwear used to be all about cost and the safety aspects for the staff members using it. After that you’d think about comfort. In recent years there has been a change in focus to include corporate workwear that speaks for your brand name and reputation and companies now think about not only the safety aspects, which are still vitally important, but also whether the supplier fits in with their ethical and corporate clothing policy, comfort levels for staff, brand recognition and of course the budget.

If you believe first impressions leave a lasting impression then you will no doubt appreciate the role corporate wear plays to enhance your image to create a brand

If you believe first impressions leave a lasting impression then you will no doubt appreciate the role corporate wear plays to enhance your brand

Consider the Design and Impact of your Company Clothing

The impact of corporate workwear should never be underestimated. As long as you meet the legal obligations and requirements in terms of what your employees wear you can then start to think about wider aims and visions.

When at the planning stage of a new corporate workwear policy there are a few points to consider in full, new potential aims that can be shaped by you from the outset and have an intended outcome in the eyes of staff, customers, potential customers and suppliers.

This could be:

  • Brand Awareness: a new work clothing range could become an integral part of re-branding your business, linking in with other aspects of the marketing of your company.
  • Re-Moulding Internal Structures: A new clothing range for staff may be considered a great way to re-shape internal hierarchies within the staff pyramid, break down barriers and get everyone on the same page, working together in one direction.
  • Improve Perception from Outside: This could be the most important part of the strategy. When done in the right way, new branded workwear conveys a certain, positive message to the outside world and to potential customers and suppliers. This can be that you’re a professional team, a hardworking and friendly team or whatever image you want to portray.

Ladies Corporate Wear available to you from Wray Bros include:

Look out for part 2 of this blog that covers what should you consider to achieve your desired corporate outlook, that reflects your business in the way you see fit

If you would like to speak to a member of the Wray Bros team we would be more than happy to help your team look good, feel comfortable and look the part in terms of your corporate branding and messaging coming across to customers. For more information call Wray Bros on 0151 709 2271 or visit our Liverpool uniform trade counter.

Employer and Employee Responsibilities to PPE & Workwear

If you work in an occupation that requires you to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) it can sometimes be confusing as to who holds what responsibilities to ensure that you are kept safe at all times.

Many different industries require employees to wear specific clothing or personal protective equipment (PPE). There are different types, that you can find right here at Wray Bros, each with a different intended use. Ensuring that you are wearing the right protective clothing and industrial workwear can make a huge difference to your safety on a day to day basis.

What is down to the employer and what is the responsibility of the employee?

PPE & Workwear for Employer & Employee responsibilities

Learn more about the responsibilities we each have when it comes to PPE and staff workwear

Employer Responsibility

Legally, the employers must ensure that there is suitable work-wear and protective equipment provided should the tasks involved in the job expose the employee to health and safety risks. As well as provided PPE, employers also have a duty to ensure that all staff are fully trained, prepared and supervised. In the event of a hazard risk, or dangerous substances, employees should have all the knowledge, skills and equipment with which to deal with them, provided by their employers.

Any protective equipment or clothing must include clear instructions on how to use them, close at hand and in a simple manner.

All equipment and clothing provided by an employer must also take into consideration comfort of wear. An employee can refuse to wear PPE if they consider themselves to be in danger due to an item of clothing not fitting correctly, for instance.

Employee Responsibility

It’s not just the employer who has the responsibility to provide you with personal protective equipment and safe clothing. You can refuse to work if you believe you have been supplied substandard equipment that leaves you in danger, but you also have responsibilities as an employee too.

  • Remember to look out for yourself first and foremost. If you keep a high standard of awareness and care in terms of your personal space and clothing, others around you will follow suit.
  • Never wear loose fitting clothing, or leave jewellery or hair exposed if you use machinery of any kind in the workplace.
  • Treat your provided PPE with care – do not interfere with it in anyway, potentially compromising its safety and yours.
  • Fully engage with any training provided that instructs you how to properly wear and use personal protective equipment that your employer provides you.

There is always responsibility on both sides when it comes to clothing in the workplace. Safety has to be the most important issue to consider when purchasing PPE. Wray Bros provides a wide selection of workwear, from staff tunics, industrial boiler suits to high visibility clothing including hi vis vests. Our concern is always with safety first. Our personalised print service can add a quality final touch that adds to your brand by adding your logo, but it should never be your main priority.

Take your time to choose your PPE industrial supplies & work clothing that is right for your company, and we can add the final touches once you have decided.

Further reading

Does it fit Like a Glove? How to Choose the Right Industrial Safety Gloves

It is easy to understand the need to wear protective gloves in certain workplace environments. Keeping your hands free from possible injury is an important aspect of many industrial settings. What is a little bit more difficult however, is how to choose the right gloves for the right job. We’ve put together a guide to help you spend your budget wisely and purchase industrial safety gloves that are the right fit for you and your requirements.

How to Begin Looking for the Right Protective Glove

As a common-sense approach the intention will be to identify the hazards and the protection required, which may fall into one of the following, for instance:

  • Protection from heat, flame and cold temperatures
  • Protection from tearing, cuts, punctures and abrasions
  • Protection from chemicals
  • Protection from vibration and shock

The best way to protect hands is to choose a glove that conforms to relevant European Standards. A reputable safety glove supplier will be able to provide data sheets that detail how well their gloves perform.

Industrial Work Gloves and how to choose the protective glove right for you

Whatever your industry and your specific job needs choosing a glove that protects and fits comfortably makes perfect sense. So where to start to find the right glove?

What do you need the Work Gloves For?

Before buying grip gloves, heat or cut-resistant gloves it is worth considering a few other factors that could affect your final choice that revolve around the task to be performed, the frequency and duration of the task, for instance:

  • Will gloves be worn for a short or long periods? As comfort becomes an increasingly important factor the longer the glove is worn. Hands can sweat inside gloves making them uncomfortable to wear so ensuring staff remove gloves to help air their hands to minimise the issue of hot and sweaty hands. To help, some suppliers provide liner gloves to wear under the safety gloves to help absorb sweat.
  • The thicker the glove the greater the protection – whereas thinner gloves offer better dexterity
  • The texture of the glove will affect handling – gloves with a rough or textured surface offer a good grip.
  • Gloves should fit comfortably. Hands can feel tired and lose their grip if gloves are too tight. Furthermore, gloves that are too big for your hands can be uncomfortable and the extra folds of material could affect ability to work effectively.
  • When working within environments that operate outside of typical room temperatures a suitable glove will be required. Whilst leather gloves offer some protection from the cold they are not so effective when wet. Specific cold weather gloves and cold grip gloves are a better choice for working in wet and cold temperatures whilst breathable gloves suit warmer conditions.

Coming to a Decision

Once you have considered all the factors mentioned in this article you’ll have a better picture of which safety gloves are more suited to your industry and your specific requirements. Making an informed decision at this stage and purchasing the correct gloves will save you time and money in the long run. It will also ensure that staff members wearing the gloves are completely safe performing the tasks at hand and remain as comfortable as possible throughout.

For further help and guidance about industrial safety gloves or other ppe supply queries, the Wray Bros customer service team is always happy to help. We’ve got the knowledge, expertise and the quality products to help you in any given situation you may be facing.

Further Reading

Safety Gloves, Safety Footwear & Workwear Data Sheets

Safety Footwear, Price, Brand and Your Expectations

An earlier article ‘Behind Branded, Good Value and Cheap Workwear’ highlighted the fact that once branding is taken out of the equation you get what you pay for when choosing safety workwear. Especially if the workwear meets your requirements and lasts long enough to provide real value-for-money then job is done. The same observations can also be levelled at workplace footwear.

Heavily branded safety footwear isn't always an indicator of quality. Discover the other considerations that will help make an informed purchasing decision!

Heavily branded safety footwear isn’t always an indicator of quality. Discover the other considerations that will help make an informed purchasing decision!

Obviously, the power of branding has a say on an items ticket price. For example, looking at safety footwear, there is always that question do buyers associate a recognised, fashion brand coupled with price as an indicator of product quality? If you are cost-conscious perhaps you should consider four points towards making an informed purchase:

  1. Price
  2. Product specification
  3. The EN standards the footwear meets
  4. The job the item is required to do

Ultimately, fashion-brand prices aside, you do get what you pay for. Wray Bros has noticed a recent change in attitudes to price.  There was a time when cheaper the better was the request. As budgets get tighter the thinking has changed to consider the frequency of replenishing stock.  The initial outlay may be more but some buyers have found it better value to look at the lifespan of their workwear purchases by buying quality, rugged items fit-for-purpose rather than on price alone.

One aspect the buyer should consider are the EN standards a garment or safety boot meets is an indication of the standard the product is manufactured to meet and is not an indication of the durability of the item.  There is a duty of care of the user to look after their workwear. A high vis jacket fresh out of the pack will state that it is fully certified and tested to standards such as EN ISO 20471/EN471 & EN343 etc. but if the jacket is mistreated daily, left covered in dirt, grime and everyday soilage then obviously those visibility standards would be compromised.  The same is true of safety boots, safety shoes, safety wellington boots and safety trainers.

For a common sense approach to value-for-money safety footwear we are on-hand with advice and wholesale prices to help make you look good. For more information and prices on safety footwear visit the Wray Bros website or why not pop-in to the trade counter to see the protective clothing and safety footwear range?

Further reading

Behind Branded, Good Value and Cheap Workwear

We all wear clothes at home and at work, well hopefully most of the time we do! Whilst we are not all experts in industrial workwear and personal protective equipment (PPE), we do all have a fair idea of what looks good on us and what feels comfortable for us to wear.

Balancing these factors is a careful consideration to make, so how do you know what you are getting for your money when purchasing workwear? You get what you pay for in most instances and if you buy from a reputable workwear manufacturer, such as Beeswift for safety footwear, Portwest for outdoor workwear and Premier for hospitality uniforms, you can be assured that you are buying quality, robust fabrics that offer real value-for-money.

We have noticed customers move from purchasing the cheapest workwear items to look for product quality and something that will last them longer

We have noticed customers move from purchasing the cheapest workwear items to look for product quality and something that will last them longer

Sometimes it isn’t that simple however. There are different price points within a work clothing range and the scope of pricing might not be that easy to deduce whether the product itself uses raw materials which are ‘good, better and best’. The prices might instead reflect the different features for each product within the range, so for instance some work trousers may include zipped side pockets or pockets in the kneepads, whilst others do not.

So how should you choose your workwear?

You do get what you pay for in the end – and if it fits your specific requirements and lasts, the job is done.

Wray Bros provides a wide range of safety workwear for your requirements as an individual or an organisation. Our team understands that what you wear must meet specific safety requirements for your specific tasks at hand. We also appreciate that you must also be comfortable to be able to perform your duties correctly, and with a smile on your face.

For more information on how to find value in your staff uniforms and work clothes please feel free to contact our customer service team who will be more than happy to offer advice and guidance, either over the phone or face-to-face at our workwear trade counter in Liverpool.

Further Reading

How to Stay Safe and Look Good with Work Tunics
Choosing Chef Wear: Surviving the Heat of the Kitchen with a Nod to Brand Integrity
The Benefits of Personalised Workwear