The STOP technique is a procedure to follow for stopping work because of imminent danger within a workplace.
Employees are required to stop working when they notice an unsafe condition, behaviour, or hazard that could cause serious injury.
Following a STOP work procedure
The procedure for stopping work due to imminent danger is straightforward and is something that all employees will be able to follow.
Of course, all companies can create their own procedure for stopping work if issues are noticed and how this is relayed between workers and supervisors.
However, we have outlined how easy the process can be below which you can tweak to suit your needs:
- If any worker feels that they are in imminent danger they must stop work immediately and find a supervisor.
- If they see that any of their workmates may be in immediate danger then they should get them to stop working and then report immediately to their supervisor.
- When contacted, the supervisor should assess the situation, producing risk assessments and method statements where required to provide information about appropriate control measures.
- Should they feel they need one, the worker should be able to take a colleague, safety representative or union representative along to talk to the supervisor.
- If the worker feels his/her concerns have not been properly addressed then it should be reported to the site safety adviser, project manager or another senior manager.
- If the worker still feels that his/her concerns have not been properly addressed, the Health and Safety Executive should be involved but only when all other avenues have been exhausted.
A STOP procedure is highly effective for minimising workplace incidents and can help to set a precedent for reporting issues of all sizes.
For it to be fully effective all new workers, including sub-contractors, should get a copy of the procedure for stopping work before entering the site on which they will be working. The SLAM technique is another method that is useful for getting employees to consider and evaluate their own safety within a workplace.