IELTS General Test – Passage 09: Health and safety in small businesses reading with answers explanation, location and pdf. This reading paragraph has been taken from our huge collection of Academic & General Training (GT) Reading practice test PDF’s.
Health and safety in small businesses
The rate of accidents at work is almost 75% higher in small businesses than in larger companies. One possible reason is chat many managers of small businesses have an inadequate knowledge of health and safety issues.
Many managers of small businesses claim their situation is made worse by bureaucracy, arguing that the huge number of regulations – not just on health and safety but also on tax, the minimum wage, and much, much more – makes their work diﬃcult.
Many managers are simply not aware of their responsibilities. They are too busy running their companies to read manuals, employ consultants or go to seminars. Moreover, the average business person doesn’t know where and how to get information.
The Federation of Small Businesses argues that the special nature of small businesses should be recognised by health and safety inspectors, with an emphasis on education and how to comply with the law, rather than simply on enforcement. For instance, inspectors could make employers aware of what they really need to know, rather than swamping them with mountains of leaﬂets which may not be relevant.
Improvements are being made, however. The Health and Safety Executive has issued a free guide to the most important health and safety laws for employers. All employers must have their own health and safety policy statement and, for businesses with more than ﬁve employees, this must be in writing. It should be speciﬁc to the business and clear about the arrangements for and organisation of health and safety at work.
We should state a strategy, detail how it will be implemented and by whom, and say when it will be reviewed and updated. It is advisable to involve employees in this process, as they have direct experience.
Assessing and identifying risks is the starting point. But to comply with the law, businesses must train their employees about health and safety, and provide information to others who need to know, such as the contractors working for them. These are often smaller companies that carry out most of the dangerous work. Helping them to get into good safety habits makes it easier for them to tender for work from big companies.
Other advice from the Health and Safety Executive for small businesses tackles speciﬁc issues, such as helping small companies to deal with work-related stress.
Complete the notes below.
Choose ONE WORD ONLY from the text for each answer.
Write your answers in boxes 21-27 on your reading answer sheet.
- One cause of health and safety problems in small businesses is that managers do not have enough relevant ________
- Managers complain they have too many _________ to deal with.
- Managers may not fully understand their _________
- Businesses sometimes feel that inspectors give them far too many
- Businesses above a certain size must produce a written ___________ of their health and safety policy.
- A company’s health and safety policy is relevant to both its employees and its_________
- The Health and Safety Executive can advise small businesses on problems of _____________ among their employees.
Answers with Explanation
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