The health and safety (display screen equipment) regulations of 1992 cover the use of PC’s, laptop and smartphone devices. The legislation aims to protect workers who sit in front of display screens for lengthy periods of time.
Requirements on employers
The regulations identify that a DSE user is anyone who regularly uses display screen equipment for more than an hour each day. Employers who have DSE users working for them, have a number of duties that they must adhere to. These include:
Make a suitable and sufficient analysis of workstations and assess the health and safety risks.
Reduce the risks identified.Regulation 2 – Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations, 1992
Ensure that workstations meet the standards laid down.Regulation 3 – Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations, 1992
Plan activities so that DSE work is interrupted by breaks or changes in activity which reduce the DSE workload.Regulation 4 – Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations, 1992
Provide employees with an eye and eyesight test and corrective glasses, if required.Regulation 5 – Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations, 1992
Provide health and safety training.Regulation 6 – Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations, 1992
Provide health and safety information.Regulation 7 – Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations, 1992
Employers must assess risks to health, including:
- Musculoskeletal problems
- Postural problems
- Visual problems
- Mental stress
Controlling the risks
Carry out a risk assessment. The HSE have a specific DSE risk assessment template you can use. It’s in the form of a checklist and you can find it here.
The checklist focuses on the users workstation and covers the following key topics:
- Mouse & trackballs etc
- Display screens
DSE User Training
DSE user training should include the following:
- The identified risks associated with DSE work and the controls you have put in place.
- How to correctly adjust and position furniture.
- Organising the workstation to avoid frequent, repetitive stretching movements.
- How to clean the screen, mouse and other equipment in use.
- Who to contact for help and to report problems or symptoms.
- How to use the display screen equipment (DSE) workstation checklist (if users are going to make their own assessment).
Users will need retraining, and documentation updating if significant changes are made to a users workstation.
Cenheard DSE eLearning…
Display Screen Equipment: Introduction
(Toolbox Talk) Using Display Screen Equipment: The Issues You Control
Organisations that have a number of DSE users have found managing DSE easier when they appointing someone competent to act as an assessor.
The appointed DSE assessor can help to identify which employees is covered by the regulations, as well as conduct the risk assessment and put control measures in place.
DSE assessors can also provide training to users of display screen equipment. So what training should we provide DSE assesorsd with?
Assessors will require more training than DSE users. This is important because assessors will need to be able to do the following:
- Review user assessments or checklists in order to identify any additional controls that need to be put in place.
- Be able to tackle problems the user is unable to solve themselves.
- Decide when additional information and/or help is needed, and where to go to get it.
- How to record significant findings.