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Health and Safety (Safety Signs and Signals) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996

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Part VIIIMinimum requirements for verbal communication

Intrinsic features

1.1.  Verbal communication between a speaker or emitter and one or more hearers is to take the form of (sometimes coded) short texts, phrases, groups of words and/or individual words.

1.2.  Spoken messages are to be as short, simple and clear as possible; the verbal skills of the speaker and the hearing abilities of the hearer(s) must be such as to ensure reliable verbal communication.

1.3.  Verbal communication is direct (by means of the human voice) or indirect (by means of a human or artificial voice which is broadcast by whatever means is appropriate).

Specific rules governing use

2.1.  The persons involved must have a good knowledge of the language used so that they are able to pronounce and understand the spoken message correctly and consequently behave in a way which is appropriate to health and/or safety.

2.2.  If verbal communication is used instead of, or together with, gestures, code words should be used such as:

— startto indicate the start of a command.
— stopto interrupt or end a movement.
— endto stop the operation.
— raiseto have a load raised.
— lowerto have a load lowered.
— forwards} to be co-ordinated with the corresponding hand signals.
— backwards
— right
— left
— dangerfor an emergency stop.
— quicklyto speed up a movement for safety reasons.

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