Spiers PUWER Checklist - Short Guide for the PUWER Assessor

Posted By: Warren Spiers avatar

Published to PUWER98 on Jan 02, 2015

Spiers PUWER Checklist - Short Guide

PUWER Inspection of Machinery and Industrial Plant for the PUWER assessor Introduction This is a short PUWER inspection guide for the person actually tasked with doing the PUWER inspections and resulting risk assessment (PUWER Assessor). We have stripped out the jargon and legal bumph leaving only what is relevant to you as you look at the machine/work equipment. We have included examples, photos and even example PUWER risk assessments.

Some aspects of the safe system of work (SSoW) which must be considered under PUWER have been removed as they are not applicable/practical to apply at the point of inspection. Some other arrangments should be made for these.

No messing around, straight in to the meat of it. Typical Spiers Engineering Safety style.

We hope you like it and keep us in mind if you need any help in the future.

Warren Spiers

Managing Director

PUWER Checklist Short Guide

Summary of Regulations PUWER Regs.


Nutshell for PUWER assessor

Regulation 1

Citation and commencement

IGNORE Regulation 2


Avoiding the long version. If you have been tasked with doing a PUWER inspection on it then continue. IGNORE

Regulation 3


IGNORE Regulation 4

Suitability of work equipment

Issues to put here include:

Using something not as intended by original design Poor modifications Poor original design Poor ergonomics (repetitive tasks) Regulation 5


State of repair must be good all round special attention to safety critical parts such as interlocks, brakes, some seals and so on. Regulation 6


IGNORE Regulation 7

Specific Risk

There is always residual risk. This is why the SSoW restricts use ‘authorised’ people.

Decide if it is an acceptable/fair risk. If not then add a risk assessment elsewhere. You need a good knowledge of best practice for that machine/equipment type to do this.

If it is acceptable then IGNORE

Regulations 8

  • Information and instructions

including SOPs, handbook, technical schematics and other info for fault diagnosis and PMs, should be nearby or accessible with ease. in English and other as appropriate simple as appropriate to task Regulation 9


IGNORE Regulation 10

Conformity with community requirements

Instruction handbook must be suitable and representative Identify obvious faults (including design faults). Knowledge of machine safety best practice and CE requirements is required. Regulation 11

Dangerous parts of machinery

No access to moving parts where feasible is permitted. Check that preference been given, in descending order, so far as feasible by design to:


F – Fixed guards

I- Interlocking guards, trip devices, etc.

P – Protective appliances (non-interlocked physical measures other than guards)

S – Safe Systems of work

Regulation 12

Protection against specified hazards

Check for the possibility of parts/objects/fluids/materials and so on used or stored in the machine falling, or being ejected or exploding due to rupture or disintegration. Check for catching fire or overheating in the process or parts of the machines due to incorrect specification/modification/ maintenance practices. Where not feasible to design out, check suitable PPE is specified Regulation 13

  • High or very low temperature

Check touch surfaces, fluids etc above/below a tolerable temperature. Typically above 65C and below -20C cause injury potential.

Regulation 14

Controls for starting or making a significant change in operating conditions

Unless risk is negligible, check there is a start command that avoids accidental start. It must not start auto unless safe to do so (by guarding) and any change of mode/speed parameter that increases risk requires an operator intervention.

Regulation 15

Stop controls

Check there is a stop control, that is stops safely, that is has priority over the start control and that stored energy is dissipated where required for safety.

Regulation 16

Emergency stop controls

In most cases, by risk, there must be an Estop. It must be easily accessible from task areas and not be used other than testing and in an emergency and have priority over all start commands.

Regulation 17


All controls must be clear and unambiguously identified in a manner appropriate to the environment. Their location must not be in a danger zone where feasible unless suitable additional measures for suspension of safeguards are taken (e.g. safe limited speed with hold to run) .

Regulation 18

Control systems

Check the original design is suitable (see Reg. 10). Functional checks to verify continued performance as specified by instruction handbook (assuming the handbook is available, full and complete… it often is not)

Regulation 19

Isolation from sources of energy

Check that switches, valves and vents are provided, suitable and lockable in the off position. Information and marking should be clear as to purpose and affect.

Regulation 20


Check for bolted to the floor if appropriate. Portable equipment needs means to restrain. Structural stability should not be compromised by the condition, environment or modification.

Regulation 21


Work equipment should be suitably and

sufficiently lit by ambient lighting. However, detailed work may require additional lighting. Check it is identified and available.

Regulation 22

Maintenance operations

The machine should designed or adapted so that maintenance tasks don’t expose anyone to any risk. Suitable measures need to be taken where this is not achieved.

Regulation 23


Controls and other facets of the machine should be correctly and appropriately marked in a clear and consistent way.

Regulation 24


Warning notices and warning devices will make the user aware of hazards in order that they can avoid them during foreseeable tasks.