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Introduction to this document

Risk assessment - drinking water dispenser

If you have a water cooler that’s fed with a large plastic container, then you’ll need to make sure that the risks are assessed and controlled.

The risks

The biggest risk associated with water cooler systems is the manual handling involved. Anyone who’s struggled to get the bottle onto a cooler will probably agree.

Formal record

To help you identify the hazards associated with water coolers and the appropriate ways of controlling them, use our example Risk Assessment - Drinking Water Dispenser. It identifies the significant risks associated with their use and how to reduce them to an acceptable level.

Make your instructions clear

Don’t include activities in your document that simply don’t need to be there. Work to the principle that if there is any chance of your staff being unaware of the safe way of doing something, then you will need to make it clear in your document. Always ensure that you examine the risks which are applicable to your workplace. Finally, check that any control measures you identify and follow are decided upon the principle of “so far as is reasonably practicable”.