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The main requirements of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations


If you or any of your employees operate machinery within a working environment, you should be aware of the requirements of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER).

PUWER was implemented in 1998 and is designed to tighten laws governing the use of equipment at work.

The regulations cover a diverse mix of machinery, ranging from drilling machines and circular saws to lifting equipment and photocopiers.

If you are an employer or self-employed and provide equipment for use at work, then PUWER will apply to you.

Take a look at some of the most important points any business that operates machinery should be aware of in order to comply with the Regulations.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the body responsible for the regulation, enforcement and encouragement of workplace health, safety and welfare in the UK, maps out that any risks to worker’s health and safety arising from the use of equipment at work are controlled or prevented by:

.               Selecting the right equipment and machinery for the job

.               Making sure that work equipment is used safely by people adequately trained

.               Ensuring that all equipment and machinery is adequately inspected and maintained so it remains safe


Whether it’s a faulty Heynau gearbox, a Kumera clutch that has seen better days or Jaure couplings that have become eroded, faulty and eroding internal components can quickly lead to machinery operating unsafely.

By potentially putting workers’ safety at risk, inadequately operating equipment can mean businesses are not compliant with the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations.

As HSE informs, inspection procedures will differ, depending on the type of equipment and the circumstances of its failure. Inspections should therefore be determined through risk assessment.

“It is important that inspections concentrate on the safety-critical features, checking for general signs of damage and deterioration which could lead to significant personal injury,” writes HSE.

A maintenance log

Whilst there is currently no law that requires businesses to keep a maintenance log, it is recommended that firms keep a record of maintenance for high-risk equipment. What it required by law, is that if a maintenance log of machinery does exist, it should be kept up to date.

For example, if you have had an Enemac clutch repaired, a Pujol muntala gearbox inspected or any type of industrial component and machinery maintained, you should ideally include the date, details and outcome of the inspection/maintenance in the maintenance log book.

Asides keeping a log book, the type of maintenance work you carry out on industrial equipment will be greatly determined on what the piece of machinery or component is. The required maintenance will also be influenced by what industry you work in.

For example, as we wrote in a blog about keeping agricultural equipment in good working order, it is important that agricultural equipment is maintained on a day-to-day basis. The regular maintenance of agriculture equipment should ideally include oil and filter changes, as well as battery charging and replacement.

Operating any specialist equipment can be potentially hazardous and as the HSE specifies, adequate maintenance of all types of machinery and equipment should be carried out to help ensure business are compliant with the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations.

If you require the inspection of an industrial gearbox, simply send us your gearbox and YB Components will give it a full inspection and report. Repairs can also be carried out under strict control.  

Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at