Slips, trips and falls – one of the hazards in the nursery was the possibility of slips, trips and falls. If an individual was to slip on something, trip up over something or fall over then they could obtain an injury such as a broken bone. An example could be that someone may trip up over some toys that have been left out on the floor by the children which could cause them to bang a body part on something causing a bruise or a broken bone. The people at risk from this hazard in a nursery are the children, staff members and any visitors to the nursery, such as family members, people on work experience, or even inspectors. All of these people are at risk because they could be walking through any area of the nursery setting. There could potentially be a bigger risk to children if they are running around, however everyone is at risk from this hazard. The overall risk factor has been rated at a 9 which could be classed as medium risk, this is because it is a risk to everyone in the setting and could have a severe impact if it happened.
Cleaning products – another hazard in a nursery is cleaning products. If a service users was to mistake cleaning products for a drink they can be in serious heal condition especially if it’s something strong as bleach. An example could be service users finding a bottle of clear liquid which may make them think its water and they may drink it, this can cause them to suffer from allergy reactions or burns. The people mostly in risk of this happening to are the children in a nursery, because they are vulnerable and immature. Their understanding hasn’t fully developed so they won’t be able to distinguish between cleaning products and water that is why it is a bigger risk for them. Professionals, visitors and other people who may be at the nursery will most definitely know what it is but they may struggle if it doesn’t have clear labels on them. The overall risk factor has been rated as 10, thus being classed as a medium risk, this is because the severity is very high, it may even lead to death.
Faulty electrical equipment – this is one of the most dangerous hazard in a nursery as it can lead to death. This hazard can be a socket that is broken, an example of how it can affect people is; if someone put a plug into it they can be electrocuted. In the nursery the staff, visitors, inspectors, people doing placement and final the children can be harmed by this hazard. Depending on what kind of electrical fault it is the people who are at risk of it most varies. If it’s a socket then the children may try putting their fingers in it and can get an electric shock similar if a professional tries to plug something into it they can harm themselves. This may all cause the full buildings power to go down. People who use the electrical equipment may be at the risk the most. The overall risk factors has been rated at a 12, this is because it is a risk to everyone in the setting. This is classed as a medium risk.
Open windows – a risk in a nursery is open windows. An example could be If someone was to leave the window open on the ground floor children may have an opportunity to leave or they may fall by this they may obtain injuries such as a broken bone as children’s body haven’t full developed. The people at risk from this are the children as they can severely get injured, the staff will not be at risk but they will be in trouble for not ensuring the safeguarding of vulnerable people. The overall risk for this hazard is rated 9 but the risk can vary for example if the second floor window is open and it doesn’t have a window jammer or a bar around then a service users may fall out of the window leading to death.
Wires – tripping and falling could be caused by this hazard. This hazard is when wires are left lying around on the floor or walkway. An example of this hazard is if the nursery is using extension wires and they don’t place a cord cover or something over it then someone can trip over and get hurt really badly. The people at risk from this hazard in a nursery are the children, staff members and any visitors to the nursery, such as family members, people on work experience, or even inspectors. It may be a bigger risk for anyone who is running around the nursery as their fall will be harder thus their injury may be more serious. The overall risk for this hazard is 9 and it is classed as a medium risk because of the severity of the hazard.
Weather/ room temp – this can be a hazard when the weather is cold outside and the nursery doesn’t have working heater, this could affect and be a risk to everyone in that setting including children, staff members and any visitors to the nursery, such as family members, people on work experience, or even inspectors as they may suffer from hypothermia. The children are more in risk from this hazard as their immune system are weaker and their body hasn’t fully developed. The overall risk is rated out of 6, being classed as a low risk because the nursery should be a safe environment for children anyways.
One of the hazards in the nursery is wires. To minimise the risk of children tripping over wires, wires should be tidied away out of the areas where the children are to prevent them from tripping up over them. Also, cable management systems such as cord covers could be used to cover the wires which make it less likely that the children could trip over them. The Healthy Working Lives website advises to ‘try to place equipment to avoid cables crossing pedestrian routes and use cable guards to cover cables where required’ (Healthy Working Lives, 2013).
Slips/ Trips and fall is another hazard in a nursery and to minimise it so that service users are not at risk you can make sure that such hazards are put onto a side where it is not in the way of children. For e.g. if toys are in the walkway then tidy them away to a side. The Safety and Health website says that to prevent slips trips and falls you should ‘clean up spills immediately. If a spill can’t be cleaned up right away, place “wet floor” warning signs for workers. Keeps walkways and hallways free of debris, clutter and obstacles. Keep filing cabinets and desk drawers shut when not in use. Cover cables or cords in walkways. Replace burnt-out light bulbs promptly. Consider installing abrasive floor mats or replacing worn flooring. Encourage workers to wear comfortable, properly fitted shoes’. (Safety and Health, 2016)
Another hazard in a nursery Weather/ Room temperature. To minimise the risk of children professionals and other in the setting suffering from hyper/hypothermia the nursery should ensure that the setting is suitable for service users to be in. This can be done by nursery staff making sure that the setting has an appropriate temperature for e.g. if its cold outside then they should ensure that the nursery is nice and warm for the service users’ and other who work or may be visiting the nursery. If the temperature outside is too hot then The Nursery World advises to ‘avoid physical activities on very hot days to minimise the risks of heat stress, heat exhaustion and heatstroke.’ (Nursery World, 2015)
Hazardous substances – cleaning products, beach etc. is one of the major hazards in a nursery as the harms and severity are very critical. In order to minimise the risk of this hazard substances and cleaning products should be placed out of children’s reach or placed in a locked cleaning cupboard. The Health and Safety Executive website advises to ‘Use good work techniques that avoid or minimise contact with harmful substances and minimise leaks and spills. Store cleaning products safely.’ (The Health and Safety Executive, No Date)
In a nursery Doors/ stairs is also another hazard. In order to ensure that no service users are harmed by this hazard and the risk of potentially being harmed to be reduced the nursery should place some control measure to prevent them and they could be things such as door-slam stoppers or jammer. The Safe Kid website advises to fit hinges with protection strips ‘these devices cover the hinge where the door is joined to the wall. They are a long strip of plastic, easily fitted, that bend with the door when it opens, preventing children from slotting their fingers in.’ (Safe Kids, 2015)
Open windows can be hazardous for service users as well as other people in the setting. The risk can also be very severe for this the nursery should try to minimise the risk of children being harmed. This can be done by placing some barriers such as gates around the window so children can jump out, this can also help safeguarding as no intruders will be able to enter. The Baby Centre website advises to ‘fit locks to prevent your child from opening them from the bottom. Fix low windows so that they don’t open more than 12.5cm.’ (Baby Centre, 2017)
Faulty electrical equipment’s are another hazard in a nursery. This hazards has an overall rating of 12 but it can severely affect service users, professionals and others in the setting. In order to minimise this risk all electrical equipment’s should be regularly tested, any electric’s that are broken or can be hazardous to people should be disposed of or put out of use. This is supported by The Nursery World website that says ‘All electrical and gas equipment to be maintained and subject to annual inspections. The service histories of appliances should be recorded in a log book.’ (Nursery World, 2017)
Medication or drugs lying around in the nursery is another hazard. To minimise professionals should keep an eye on service users to ensure that they don’t do anything that could place them in harm. This can be done by professionals making sure that the setting is safe for the children. Any medication that are in the premises should be authorised by the nursery nurse or it should be a prescribed by doctors. These medication should be kept by professionals and given to service users as prescribed. The Kids Health website advises to ‘Store all medicines, prescription and non-prescription, out of sight and out of reach of children, preferably in a locked cabinet. Even items that seem harmless, such as mouthwash, can be extremely dangerous if ingested in large quantities by children. Just because cabinets are up high doesn’t mean kids can’t get their hands on what’s in them, they’ll climb up (using the toilet and countertops) to get to items in the medicine cabinet.’ (The kids Health, 2017)
Climbing frames/ broken toys can also be hazard in a nursery as service users can be harmed during playtime or when doing activities. To minimise this risk the nursery should make sure that all their equipment’s have a risk assessment done, make sure that the toys in the nursery aren’t harmful to the children, broken toys can be a hazard as service users may fall of them and gets hurt or it may drop on them depending on what toy it is. When children are playing on the climbing frames a professional should keep an eye on them or help them on this activity as they may fall from it and get injured. Toys with sharp edges should be avoided and the nursery should have age appropriate toys. The safe Kids website says that ‘Useful points to consider include what to look for when buying toys, understanding safety marks and labelling, ensure that the right safety checks have been carried out, and considerations when giving and receiving used toys.’ (Safe Kids, 2011)
Another potential hazard in a nursery is the event of a fire. If the nursery have control measures in place then the likelihood of a fire can be reduced. Control measure could be equipment’s that may cause a fire being checked and tested regularly, cookers and gas check should also be up to date and recorded on a logbook. The Kids Health website supports this by saying that making sure all electrical appliances are tested, making sure that wires are in good condition and sockets are safe to use. Fire alarms, fire doors etc. should be installed in the case of a fire and the Safety website says that the three P’s are recommended, they are:
• ‘PREPARE – Reduce the risk of fires by eliminating hazards.
• PRACTICE – Practice a fire evacuation plan and general fire safety practices.
• PREVENT – The Unthinkable’