Following the recent fatal accident in a retail store in Reading, where a 10-year-old boy died from severe head injuries following an incident involving a piece of furniture, we’ve considered the possible hazards in jewellery stores and what can be done to mitigate any associated risks, ensuring a safe environment for shoppers and staff alike.
Whilst we know that children do not frequent jewellers, it’s never too soon to be careful and considerate to our customers and the store team. Rehearsing even a few basic housekeeping rules could save the team injury and save hours of time with legalities later.
We’ve noted six areas that would merit your attention. The personal safety of employees should be of vital concern to business owners, especially those who operate retail stores. Teaching employees’ awareness and implementing a few workplace rules can protect the team.
Cabinet Doors: Keep Them Closed
Cabinetry in jewellery departments has improved over the years with sliding glass doors, but many retailers still have hinged doors. Hinged glass is not easily visible, and can be a hazard, cabinet doors should be shut immediately after use.
Cabinets: Fix To Floors or Ceilings
Modern stores are normally fitted professionally with fixtures and furniture safely installed, however you may have re configured to increase retail space or added extra furniture. Take a walkabout your store, to ensure that free standing display cases are carefully fitted and avoid the temptation to overfill.
Has your stockroom grown with your business without increasing in size, to the point that it could be dangerous? The stock room is often behind closed doors and can, with time, be neglected. Check these areas are safe, reduce clutter, and re-organise to maximise the space available for staff to move about.
Check your shelves are securely fixed to walls, or within cabinets. Take care to store heavy items low down, and make sure that stock is well supported. Could some of your stock items be reduced and held by your suppliers, for just in time delivery?
Up-To-Date Health & Safety Risk Assessments
There are important health and safety regulations for all retail stores, and it pays to be up-to-date. To find out more – Click here
Signage for Steps, Split Floor Levels and Low Ceilings
Many retailers in the UK have been in their existing property for decades, in historic old buildings providing a rewarding retail experience. However, be aware that customers will not often be familiar with your store layout and the trip hazards. If your store has split level floors and low ceilings, be sure to remind customers of all the instore hazards.
This advice is by no means complete, and any definitive list of risks would be related to your particular store. Neither is it confined to Jewellery stores. Indeed all retail managers have a duty of care to create safe retail environments. This is simply a few reminders that could help store managers to avoid accidents, such as the one that led to 10-year-old Kaden Reddick dying tragically. Let’s take this as an opportunity to remind Store Managers of the importance of creating safe and relaxing retail environments where people love to buy.