HEALTH & SAFETY

Safety is paramount when using lasers at an event.

New legislation came into force in the UK that relates to how lasers and other potentially hazardous light sources are used in the workplace. The new regulations are known as the Control of Artificial Optical Radiation at Work Regulations 2010 , became active from the 27th April 2010. They are derived from the EU Artificial Optical Radiation Directive (AORD), which is intended to set a minimum level of health and safety for workers across all EU member states.

Along with AORD, venue and operator/installer have legal duties to assess the risks the laser presents and ensure the safety of the people present, under the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 and Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999.

The supplier of the laser equipment should be able to perform a full risk assessment at the planning stage of the display. This should be documented along with sketch plans specific to the venue. The Local Authority or other relevant enforcement agency will almost certainly want to a see a copy of the Risk Assessment. It is useful to keep the document for audit purposes.