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Consumer Dangers: Are your customers at risk?

27th Jul 2016
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During the everyday running of your business, there are a number of potential hazards that could affect your customers. The safety of a customer is paramount, not only for their wellbeing, but also to protect your business from any liability that may result from an injury or damages. Below are some of the most common dangers consumers face in Britain today.

Trips and Falls

A slip, trip or fall can happen at any time, and injuries are common. Most trips are not fatal, but they can lead to a costly law suit, so precautions are necessary to protect both customers and your staff. There are a number of injuries commonly associated with falls, including back, head and neck injuries, as well as strains, sprains and broken/fractured bones. There are countless contributors to falls and slips, ranging from wet floors to cluttered aisles.

Regardless of whether customers come to your place of business or you go them, it is important to reduce the risk of falls and trips. Always ensure walkways are clear, dry and free from clutter, including tools, stock and equipment. The correct use of signage is also important in warning a consumer of potential trip or slip hazards they may face whilst interacting with your business.

Asbestos Exposure

Asbestos is one of the leading causes of occupation fatalities in the UK. Exposure to the harmful fibres can be extremely damaging to your health, and is linked to a number of diseases. As asbestos was still used up until 1999, any commercial building constructed before this time may contain asbestos.

Asbestos was used in more than 3,500 different products and materials, most of which were used in the construction industry. More than 50% of British homes still contain asbestos, and it is the responsibility of building contractors to protect customers when working on their property.

Throughout the UK, more than 5,000 people die each year from asbestos related diseases, which is more than double the number of road fatalities. In non-domestic buildings, the manager or building owner has a duty of care to protect all occupants from exposure to hazardous asbestos fibres.


Cybercrime can involve the theft or interception of any personal information during via a website or electronic transmission. It does not only relate to credit cards and online payments, but also includes personal details, such as names, contact details, passwords and much more.

This is a 21st century problem that many SMEs have not had to deal with in the past. A majority of businesses have a website, and almost all collect information in some form or another, whether you operate an online shop with payment facilities or blog with a newsletter sign up page. If you collect data from customers, you have a legal obligation to protect their information and privacy.

Electrical Incidents

Some of the most common types of workplace injuries involve electrical incidents. Electricity can harm us in a number of different ways, from burns to arrhythmias, so it is important that electrical equipment that is used near customers is well maintained and regularly tested.

To help protect customers, portable appliance testing (PAT) can be used for electrical products that plug into a mains power supply. These tests involve an external inspection, as well as electrical testing, to ensure the product is safe. All electrical items should be inspected by a trained and competent professional to ensure they are safe.

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