AEO relaunches rules on health and safety

The Association of Exhibition Organisers’ health and safety committee has relaunched its guidelines on-line and made them free to the industry.

The Association of Exhibition Organisers’ health and safety committee has relaunched its guidelines on-line and made them free to the industry. The Guide to Managing Health & Safety at Exhibitions and Events, or the Red Book as it is better known, was launched as an online guide on 1 February. AEO deputy director Austen Hawkins said: “By making it free and available via our website it will make what is effectively a movable feast easy to update and widely available.” The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and local government lent support to the first guidelines when they were published in 1999. Hawkins is confident of support for the revised version. “We are talking to the HSE and the local authorities so we can move forward together. They will get behind us, but the ideal is for one set of regulations, set by one lead body, that all the local authorities will follow. That is not going to happen overnight,” he said. The committee behind the guidelines includes BECA chairman Lynn Felton, EVA chairman Bill Ross, and Premises Management Services (PMS) managing director John Revington. Emap Trenton technical director Joanne Smith headed the meetings. “From an organiser’s perspective we were dealing with an issue we didn’t fully understand. The guidelines are all about prevention and we need the industry to respond and discuss their merits,” she said. Information updated from the first edition includes the lifting regulations and fire risk assessment rules. “Fire services are enforcing the need for a fire risk assessment of every workplace. Exhibition stands are considered workplaces and all must be assessed,” said PMS’s Revington. “We all have a duty of care.”

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