Keyboard with a construction key

Permits to work assess and manage the risk associated with a work activity, define any measures to eliminate or minimise risk and grant permission for works to be carried out

What is the purpose of a permit to work?

The purpose of a permit to work is to:

  • Specify precisely the work area (including such items of plant and equipment as appropriate) to which it applies.
  • Fully describe the work to be done.
  • Provide a clear record that all foreseeable hazards (including those introduced by the proposed work) have been identified and considered.
  • Specify the safety precautions which must be put in place before work commences and adhered to throughout the course of the work.
  • Identify who is to do the work.
  • Signal the transfer of control of relevant areas, activities, plant and equipment from the initiating department to the receiving contractor.
  • Clearly state the period of time over which it is valid.  Note: An application must be approved before work can take place in such areas.
  • The Estates Operations permit to work scheme complements the College's Laboratory Permit to Work System.

When is a permit to work required?

Work activities that are considered to be ‘hazardous’ are likely to require the issue of a permit to work. The following three categories of risk require a permit to work:

  • Business risk – work on any plant or services such as air handling units, cooling plant, steam services, water, power or fire systems which could result in business interruption.
  • Personal risk - work on any plant or services e.g. working at height, exposure to emissions, live working, noise, extremes of temperature, moving and handling or any hazard that could have a harmful effect on an individual's health.
  • Intrinsic risk - work taking place in an environment e.g. confined space, unprotected roof, CL3 / CBS Laboratory, radiation area etc that are by their nature injurious.

College staff and contractors are required to apply the above criteria in order to determine whether a permit to work will be required to enable the task to be undertaken in accordance with an agreed risk assessment and method statement (RAMS).

Request a permit to work

Please use the Estates Operations' online permit to work system.

  • Permit requests should be submitted not less than five working days prior to the permit start date.
  • A permit to work will not be granted unless a task specific risk assessment / method statement has been submitted.  The task specific risk assessment / method statement must be attached when submitting the permit request.
  • Approved permits should be collected from the permit approver on the day that the work commences. The approver will print and sign the permit. Permit (hard copy) must be returned to the permit approver once works are complete.