Category : News
When testing for alcohol; especially in the workplace, there are several aspects that need to be covered in order to protect all parties involved. Phil Green Security has built the processes and expertise to ensure that testing for alcohol in the workplace is carried out fairly and professionally.
In order to address the best approach, we need to segment the overall process into 4 separate areas:
Policy Baseline – the first step is to ensure that all company and site policies have the inclusion of alcohol testing. Within these policies, there should be a cover of terms such as who, when and how testing will be carried out. Also, post event testing should be included within the policies to ensure the business is safeguarded against the potential risks that may arise.
Selection Procedure – this is when the actual testing process begins. Selection should be carried out inline with the policies and must be random and without prejudice. However, there is also an exception to this, when testing for alcohol following an event or incident. When carrying out the random selection, the best way is with the use of a random search selector. These are electronic devices that are set with a percentage and will automatically ensure that selection is of a random nature. Please be aware that any subject has the right to refuse, this should be dealt with in line with company policies.
Testing & Documentation – the act of carrying out a test is very simple and is just the same as carrying a breathalyser test for the police. However as we are acting within the private sector, we must ensure that the documentation is watertight. From signing a consent form, through to ensure an accurate chain of custody is put in place; ensure there is a clear paper trail is the utmost import part to focus on during any testing for alcohol.
Results, Conclusion & Follow–ups – as noted in the last point; we need to remember that we are working within the private sector and as such, we need to ensure we take all precautions to ensure that our actions are lawful. With this in mind, all results showing a positive reading should be checked with a second test to ensure that error margins are reduced to an acceptable level. We also need to be mindful that a positive result does not always mean that dismissing the member of staff would be the logical outcome. As responsible employers, we need t be able to offer support and guidance to those who, any be suffering from alcohol abuse or dependence. The responsive actions should also be covered by the business policies. In order to service our clients from start to finish; Phil Green Security can offer dependant laboratory services and even tribunal attendance.
Testing for Alcohol – The Laws
- Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 – section 2 – place a duty on an employer to ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of their employees.
- Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 – places a duty on an employer to assess the risks to the health and safety of employees. This means an employer can be prosecuted if they knowingly allow an employee to continue working while under the influence of alcohol or drugs and their behaviour places the employee themselves or others at risk.
Although not applicable to all workplaces, these two Acts also put obligations on employers and workers:
- Road Traffic Act 1988 – states that any person who, when driving or attempting to drive a motor vehicle on a road or other public place, is unfit to drive through drink or drugs shall be guilty of an offence.
- Transport and Works Act 1992 – makes it a criminal offence for certain workers to be unfit through drugs and/or drink while working on railways, tramways and other guided transport systems.
[panel panel_heading=”Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003″ panel_text=”In addition, the Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003 states that in the UK on-premises or land related to Railway, Maritime or Aviation activity (and on aircraft or ships outside UK territorial waters but registered in the UK) an employee in the Airline, Railway or Maritime industry commits a criminal offence if they are at work at a time when the proportion of alcohol in their breath, blood or urine exceeds the prescribed limit* or their ability to perform the function or activity is impaired by drink.
Railways and Transport Safety Act Prescribed limits
9 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of Breath
or 20 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of Blood
or 27 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of Urine
Note: The above limits are also implied to be proof of no ingested alcohol in the bloodstream” panel_color=”enigma_panel-blue”/]
What can Phil Green Security provide?
Random Test Programme
We can attend to carry out testing on employees, contractors, drivers or any other person who falls under the businesses health & safety policies. This process is great for making an impact on none tested persons and often acts as a deterrent.
Post Incident Testing
Following many HR and H&S incidents; companies find them selfs in need to rule out alcohol as a possible factor when carrying out investigations. Phil Green Security understands that time is often of the essence and as such we offer a24 hour call out service. We are able to give results within minutes of arrival to the site.
[button style=”enigma_btn_blue” size=”enigma_btn_large” btn_disable=”0″ url=”https://philgreensecurity.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/HS.ALC_.01.docx” ]Alcohol Test Policy[/button]
As industry leaders, we are always here to assist our clients. We provide this template as an assistant and will always ensure that our clients are legally protected prior to any testing activity.
[button style=”enigma_btn_blue” size=”enigma_btn_large” btn_disable=”0″ url=”https://philgreensecurity.com/workplace-testing-for-alcohol/” ]View our Alcohol Screening Services[/button]
Want to know more? Get in touch today!