Docstoc

maintenance

Document Sample
maintenance Powered By Docstoc
					                                                   <Service name>

                              Maintenance of Buildings and Equipment Policy

Services have a responsibility to protect the health and safety of each individual at all times.
A service’s health and safety policies and practices affect an individual’s physical and
psychological health and safety.

The Maintenance of Buildings and Equipment Policy is important not only for children, families
and educators, but relates to every person who enters the service’s premises or uses the
service’s equipment.

Federal, state and territory governments have their own Occupational Health and Safety
(OHS) legislation and regulations, which govern the standards of health and safety in the
workplace. Therefore, services must comply with the relevant OHS legislation.

Services should regularly review policies in collaboration with educators, families, and if
appropriate, children; and seek recommendations from recognised authorities. The date the
policy is reviewed should be clearly documented on the policy.

Policy Number                          <number>

Link to CCQA Principles                Family Day Care Quality Assurance (FDCQA)
                                       Quality Practices Guide (2004) – Principles 2.3, 4.1, 5.4 /
                                       Outside School Hours Care Quality Assurance (OSHCQA)
                                       Quality Practices Guide (2003) – Principles 7.2, 7.3, 8.1 /
                                       Quality Improvement and Accreditation System (QIAS) Quality
                                       Practices Guide (2005) – Principles 5.4, 5.5

Policy statement

        <Service name> has a duty of care to provide all persons1 with a safe and healthy
         environment.

        The service defines ‘buildings’ as <definition of buildings>.
         The term buildings is specific to each service; they can be purpose built, operate from
         more than one site, mobile vans, private homes, church halls and high rise. Services
         should state:
            o How it defines a ‘building’. For example, is the building exclusively the main
                 structure or does it include open or enclosed verandas, pergolas, outside
                 sheds, garages, car parks, other carer’s homes or shared facilities, such as
                 school toilets or amenities in a park? Are the outdoor grounds, fences, gates,
                 sandpits and other external areas considered part of the building?
            o The location, street or postal address of the buildings or areas utilised. For
                 example, the service’s car park may be located away from the main building.
                 In family day care, there could be more than one coordination unit location.
                 In vacation care, the location of the building may change for each vacation
                 care period.




1For the purpose of this policy, 'persons' include <children, families, educators, carers' family, management,
coordination unit staff, ancillary staff (administrative staff, kitchen staff, cleaners, maintenance personnel), students,
volunteers, visitors, local community, school community, licensee, sponsor and/or service owner>.


     Current as at August 2010                                                                                Page 1 of 7
        The service defines ‘equipment’ as <definition of equipment>.
         The term equipment is specific to each service and can include children’s toys,
         outdoor swings and slides, computers, photocopiers, tables, chairs and shelves.

        It is understood that there is a shared legal responsibility and accountability between,
         and a commitment by, all persons to implement the service’s Maintenance of
         Buildings and Equipment Policy, procedures and practices.

        The service also complies with <OHS National Standards, codes of practice, Australian
         Standards> and best practice recommendations from recognised authorities.

Rationale

The rationale represents a statement of reasons that detail why the policy and/or procedures
have been developed and are important to the service.

Please refer to:
     <title of federal/state/territory legislation and regulations2>
        Please refer to the relevant federal, state or territory OHS legislation and worksafe
        management agency3.

        The service also complies with the <title of state/territory children’s services licensing
         regulations or national standards> which reflect additional health and safety
         requirements.

        Standards Australia – www.standards.org.au
         There are several Australian Standards relating to the construction and installation of
         fixed and temporary outdoor play equipment. This includes the type of materials and
         installation requirements used for outdoor surfaces. There are numerous building
         standards, and in some states and territories, children’s service regulations relate
         specifically to buildings and equipment. For example, the height of door handles,
         perimeter fence requirements, power sockets, key locked cupboards and storerooms
         or the temperature of hot water used in dishwashers.

        The strategies, procedures and practices documented in the Maintenance of
         Buildings and Equipment Policy reflect the service’s OHS Policy.

Responsibilities of different stakeholders

        Services can link this section by stating:
         Please refer to the service’s OHS Policy.

Important: Some services use facilities that are managed by external organisations or bodies
such as schools or local councils. While the managing body may employ OHS representatives
or ‘maintenance personnel’ to conduct safety checks, services are required to
independently conduct and document safety checks of their buildings and equipment.




2 There are legislative Acts and regulations for each state and territory that address the issue of Occupational Health
and Safety. Services are advised to seek information that is relevant to their jurisdiction.
3 Services should contact their federal, state or territory worksafe management agency to clarify their OHS

obligations and seek further information and advice.


     Current as at August 2010                                                                             Page 2 of 7
Strategies and practices

These are examples. Services are encouraged to develop and adapt the following strategies
and practices as required to meet their individual circumstances and daily best practices.

Risk management strategies
     Services can link this section by stating:
       Please refer to the service’s OHS Policy.

Register of buildings and equipment
    This may be titled the ‘Maintenance Register’.
    A register can track the maintenance of buildings and equipment and can be a
       useful tool to monitor the effectiveness of safety checks.
    Registers can also document the lifespan of equipment, which may assist services to
       identify risks or the value of investing in certain pieces of equipment.

Identified Risks
    The following list are examples of identifiable risks relating to buildings and equipment:
             o Falling and tripping
             o Fires
             o Electrocution
             o Flooding
             o Choking
             o Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
             o Bleeding through cutting, piercing or stabbing
             o Burns
             o Illness and infection
             o Poisoning from chemicals, animal bite or plant
             o Traffic accident involving the service’s vehicle.
    Services can link the maintenance of buildings and equipment relating to fire
         prevention, evacuations in an emergency and first aid by stating:
         Please refer to the service’s Emergency Policy.
         Please refer to the service’s First Aid Policy.
         Please refer to the service’s Rest and Sleep Policy.

Register and risk assessment of new equipment
    The service can state how it assesses the risks relating to purchasing new equipment.
    This can assist services to make informed decisions when deciding to purchase
       equipment and is more objective than simply choosing the cheapest product, which
       may not be the safest.
    Services should consider the following reflective questions, which may also be useful
       for equipment safety checklists:
           o Does the equipment meet Australian Standards?
           o What is the age appropriateness of the equipment? Are there any risks for
                older or younger children using the equipment? Does the equipment have a
                ‘suitable ages’ label?
           o What is the quality of design and manufacture of the equipment? Does it
                meet the needs of the service?
           o Is the equipment flammable or combustible?
           o Is there a risk of choking, strangling, piercing, cutting, jamming or burning?
           o What is the condition of surfaces?
           o Can the equipment be cleaned and hygienically maintained?
           o Are there special cleaning considerations or maintenance requirements that
                the service currently does not practice?
           o Does the equipment contain lead?


    Current as at August 2010                                                        Page 3 of 7
           o   If second hand, are the safety features in working order and if electrical, has
               the cord been safety checked, tagged and labelled safe?

      Please note: Second hand equipment poses a risk if current Australian Standards
       supersede the safety of older equipment, such as a second hand cot and mattress or
       painted surfaces that may contain lead. Services should assess the risks with second
       hand equipment and carefully consider current Standards before purchasing.

Register and risk assessment of damaged and repaired equipment
    Services should consider the following reflective questions:
           o How does the service assess the risk of damaged equipment?
           o What are the factors that determine if equipment is worth repairing?
           o How does the service assess the repair value of equipment?
           o Does the service maintain a list of equipment that has been disposed of?

Register and risk assessment of buildings
    Services should consider the following reflective questions:
           o What type of risk assessment can the service register? For example, are there
                periodic inspections of the building’s structure, foundations, power supply,
                drains, sewage facilities and pest control?
           o Does the service plan for long term strategies based on major works to
                buildings and grounds?

Controlling risks: safety checks
    Safety checks can assist services to maintain the health and safety of persons using
       buildings and equipment.
    Services should consider the following reflective questions:
            o How are safety checks conducted and documented?
            o Who conducts, and how frequently are safety checks implemented?
    The frequency between safety checks and the person who conducts them may vary
       depending on what is being checked; therefore, services can identify specific
       practices when documenting each safety check.
    For example, the OHS representative may conduct all the safety checks except for
       the kitchen safety checklist, which may be the responsibility of the person who
       regularly handles and prepares food.

Safety checklists
    Safety checklists are records of the service’s safety checks.
    Safety checklists should be titled to identify the building or equipment being
       inspected, such as ‘Perimeter Fence Checklist’ or ‘Baby Nursery Furniture Checklist’.
    Services should consider the following reflective questions:
           o How are safety checklists utilised in risk management strategies?
           o Where are safety checklists stored and maintained?
           o How are safety checklists analysed to identify trends or potential risks?
           o How are the results of safety checklists communicated to educators?

Documenting procedures and practices
    The primary documentation relating to this policy are safety checklists and risk
     management plans.
    The service can state who is responsible for, and where records relating to safety
     checks are located, maintained and stored.
    Services can link this section by stating:
     Please refer to the service’s OHS Policy.




    Current as at August 2010                                                         Page 4 of 7
Maintaining safe environments
Equipment: safety checks
    Services can state how equipment is categorised, which assists in developing risk
       management strategies and corresponding safety checklists.
    Services can develop safety checks that categorise the intent and use of the
       equipment. For example:
           o Art and craft – trolleys, easels, brushes, paint pots, scissors
           o Gross motor – balls, trucks, planks, A-frames, tricycles, bats
           o Cleaning – buckets, mops, brooms, dustpans
           o Food safety – dishwasher, fridge, oven, freezer, sinks
           o Management – photocopier, computer, desks, chairs, fax, files
           o Environment – air conditioner, heaters, fans
           o Electrical equipment including cords and cables
    Alternatively, services can categorise the equipment in relation to where it is located.
       For example:
           o Kitchen – dishwasher, fridge, oven, freezer, sinks
           o Office – photocopier, computer, desks, chairs, fax, files
           o Outdoors – sandpits, slides, swings, climbing forts
           o Storeroom – hazardous chemicals, vacuum, hardware tools
           o Laundry – washing machine, dryer, buckets, mops, brooms, dustpans
           o Outdoor shed - balls, trucks, planks, A-frames, tricycles, bats

Buildings: safety checks
     Services can state how the building is categorised, which assists in developing risk
        management strategies and corresponding safety checklists. For example:
            o Utilities – water, gas, electricity
            o Environmental controls – air conditioners, heaters, fans
            o Indoor surfaces – floor, walls, ceilings, windows, doors
            o Indoor space – bathrooms, staff room, offices, laundry, kitchen, toilets
            o Outdoor surfaces – ground, walls, fences
            o Outdoor spaces – car park, gardens, playgrounds
            o Poisons – plants and animals, such as spiders, snakes, bees, wasps

Vehicle and traffic: safety checks4
    Services should consider the following reflective questions:
          o Is the vehicle registered and licensed with the state or territory roads and
               traffic authority5?
          o How does the vehicle support the service’s health and safety policies?
          o How does the vehicle meet Australian Standards for seat belts, booster seats or
               baby capsules?
          o Who is authorised to drive the vehicle? Do they have a valid driver’s licence?
               Is the driver’s license appropriate for the vehicle? Has the driver had any
               criminal convictions relating to driving? Does the service allow learning or
               provisional licensed persons to drive the vehicle?
          o How often is the vehicle inspected and by whom?
          o Is the vehicle fully insured?
          o What number of children and adults will be transported in the vehicle at any
               one time? Is this the legal limit for the vehicle?
          o Where is the vehicle parked when not in use?

4 For the purpose of this policy, ’vehicle’ is defined as any car, mini bus or bus that the service utilises to transport
children and adults. Family day care and outside school hours care services may use vehicles daily to transport
children; in long day care services, this may only occur during an excursion. Regardless of frequency, vehicle and
traffic safety is a high priority and as such, services may decide to document the recommended safety procedures
and practices in a separate policy.
5 Services should contact their state or territory road and traffic authorities for further information and advice.




     Current as at August 2010                                                                               Page 5 of 7
            o   What is the security status of the vehicle? Does the vehicle have an alarm? Is
                the vehicle locked when not in use?
            o   Does the service have a spare set of keys for the vehicle? Where is the spare
                set of keys located? This may be important if children are locked in the car.
            o   Does the service act to ensure that children are never left unsupervised in a
                vehicle?
            o   If a person who is not employed by the service is driving the vehicle, how does
                the service ensure the safety and protection of children? Is a bus driver
                required to complete a ‘working with children check’ before joining an
                excursion?
            o   How does the service ensure the safety of children when dealing with traffic?
                For example, does the service endorse traffic and road safety strategies, such
                as looking both ways before crossing the street, using cross walks or plotting
                the safest walking route?

Monitoring tools

The service may further specify tools that assist in measuring the effectiveness of the policy.
The following is a list of possible safety checklists that the service can develop:
     Daily environment safety checklist: indoors
     Daily environment safety checklist: outdoors
     Hazardous chemicals and substances safety checklist
     Security checklist
     First Aid Kit checklist
     Fire equipment and alarm checklist
     Fire drills and evacuations checklist
     Electrical cords safety checklist
     Equipment safety checklist
     Children’s toys safety checklist
     Storage of equipment and toys safety checklist
     Car park safety checklist
     Vehicle safety checklist

Links to other policies

The following are a list of examples:
    Child protection
    Dangerous products
    Emergency
    Employment of educators
    First aid
    Food safety
    Hygiene and infection control
    Illness
    Immunisation and health related exclusion
    Medication
    Occupational health and safety
    Rest and sleep
    Smoke free environments
    Supervision
    The role of carers’ families in family day care




    Current as at August 2010                                                          Page 6 of 7
Sources

      Kidsafe. (2000). Kidsafe: Child safety resource manual. Victoria: Kidsafe Victoria.
      Kidsafe. (2007). Kidsafe: Playspace resource kit. SA: Kidsafe SA Incorporated.

Further reading

      Tarrant, S. (2002). Managing OHS in children’s services: A model for implementing an
       Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) management system in your children’s
       service. NSW: Lady Gowrie Child Centre.

Useful websites

      Kids and traffic – www.kidsandtraffic.mq.edu.au

Useful NCAC resources

      McLeod, P. (2005). Health and safety information on the internet. Putting Children First,
       15, 12-13.
      OSHCQA Factsheet #3 – Safety in children’s services.
      QIAS Factsheet #2 – Safety in children’s services.

Policy created date             <date>

Policy review date              <date>

Signatures                      <signatures>




    Current as at August 2010                                                         Page 7 of 7

				
DOCUMENT INFO