This Young Worker Risk Assessment Form should be used before employing a
young worker and/or when reviewing a risk assessment where there are young
workers in the workplace. A young person is defined as someone who is below
18 years of age and above the minimum school leaving age i.e. someone aged
16 or 17.
Under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, an
employer must not employ a young person unless they have carried out a risk
assessment in relation to risks to the health and safety of young people.
There is no need to carry out a new risk assessment every time a young
person is employed provided that the current risk assessment takes account
of the characteristics of young people and activities that present
significant risks to their health and safety.
The particular factors that employers must take account of in carrying out
a young worker risk assessment are as follows:
· the inexperience, lack of awareness of risks and immaturity of young
· the fitting-out and layout of the workplace and workstation;
· the nature of any physical, biological and chemical agents to which they
will be exposed, and how long and to what extent they will be exposed;
· what type of work equipment will be used and the way in which it will be
· how work processes and activities are organised; and
· the extent of the health and safety training provided to young persons.
If applicable, employers must also take account of the risks from physical,
biological and chemical agents, processes and work listed in the annex to
the Directive on the Protection of Young People at Work.
The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 requires that
the employer ensure that young persons they employ are protected at work
from any risks to their health or safety that arise from their lack of
experience, awareness of existing or potential risks, or their lack of
maturity. The Regulations state that young persons must not be employed for
any work that:
· is beyond their physical or psychological capacity;
· involves harmful exposure to toxic or carcinogenic agents, or those which
cause heritable genetic damage or harm to the unborn child, or which in any
other way chronically affect human health;
· involves harmful exposure to radiation;
· involves the risk of accidents which it may reasonably be assumed cannot
be recognised or avoided by young persons due to their insufficient
attention to safety, or lack of experience or training; or
· creates a risk to health from extreme cold or heat, noise or vibration.
In deciding whether or not the work involves any of these risks or harm,
the employer must take account of the results of the risk assessment.
The Health and Safety Executive advises that employers must tell all
employees, including young workers, about the risks to their health and
safety identified by the assessment, the measures put in place to control
them and about the procedures to be followed in the event of serious and
In addition to the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations
1999, there are other regulations which must be taken into account:
1. Working Time Regulations 1998
The Working Time Regulations set out particular limits on the hours worked
by young workers and the breaks to which they are entitled:
· the working time of young workers are limited to eight hours per day and
40 hours per week
· employers must ensure that no young worker works between the hours of
10pm and 6am, unless they are contracted to work after 10pm, in which case
they should not work between 11pm and 7am
· employers must not assign young workers to work between 10pm and 6am
unless they have had the opportunity of a free health assessment before
taking up the assignment, or such a health assessment had previously been
done and the employer believes it to still be valid
· young workers are entitled to at least 12 consecutive hours’ rest in each
· young persons are entitled to a rest period of at least 48 hours in each
· young people are also entitled to a rest break of at least 30 minutes,
where the daily working time is more than four-and-a-half hours.
2. Control of Lead at Work Regulations 2002
The Control of Lead at Work Regulations 2002 require employers to ensure
that the exposure of young people to lead and its compounds is adequately
controlled. Additionally, exposure levels specified in the Regulations are
lower for young people than for older workers.
3. Ionising Radiations Regulations 2017
The Ionising Radiations Regulations 2017 require employers to give special
consideration to the employment of young people working with ionising
radiation. Young people under the age of 18 cannot be employed to work with
ionising radiation where they would need to be designated as classified
person (i.e. a person likely to receive an effective dose greater than the
limit set under reg.21 of the Regulations).
Small businesses can probably conduct the risk assessment themselves;
however, larger businesses may want to seek the advice of a health and
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