In a QUICK FACTS article ROSPA summaries the responsibilities.
An organisation functions under the direction of its directors and senior managers. As a result, directors and senior managers have particular responsibility for the health and safety performance of that organisation.
Directors and senior managers provide the planning and policies that determine the actions of an organisation. As a result, they are considered the guiding minds of the organisation and must take responsibility for their decisions in the way the organisation runs.
Direct sanctions against individuals who commit health and safety offences are provided for in s.37 of the Health and Safety at Work, etc Act 1974, and also in article 32 of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005. These include a personal criminal conviction, along with possible fines and imprisonment, and personal civil liability.
The key points necessary to assure an adequate safety system are the establishment of an organisational safety culture, effective health and safety policy procedures and a safety management system that provides the means to monitor and control the health and safety risks to an organisation.
To adequately ensure that the risks to directors and senior managers are controlled, it is also necessary to have, and be able to demonstrate, a satisfactory health and safety management system.
Note different legislation applies in NI but the principles are the same.