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COURT OF APPEAL (CIVIL DIVISION) RULING ON PUWER DUTY

Guidance on approach to be followed in considering if employer has complied

Solicitors Kennedys has produced a useful summary of the case Whitehead v Trustees of the Chatsworth Settlement 08.03.12.

The Court of Appeal dismissed a claim under Regulation 12 Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 that the defendant failed to protect the claimant from hazards arising from use of shotgun.  

The case summary states that the case:

  • provides an analysis of the approach to be taken when considering whether or not an employer has complied with its statutory duty to protect employees from certain specified hazards, as identified in regulation 12 Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER) 1998. Merely identifying some further steps which could have been taken will not necessarily indicate breach.
  • highlights a distinction between the duty under regulation 7(1) Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002, which requires an employer to “ensure” that exposure to risk is prevented, with the duty under regulation 12 of PUWER, which requires the employer to “take measures to ensure…”.

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