Case 257 – Employees banned from using own hand wash


Enquirer has been told that due to COSHH they cannot leave hand wash they have purchased themselves in the toilets and they cannot use any of their own cleaning materials e.g. furniture polish. They are not clear how hand wash and cleaning products purchased from high street shops can fall under COSHH regulations

Panel decision

It is commendable that the company is considering possible risks their employees could be exposed to at work but this is a risk averse and somewhat misguided interpretation of COSHH requirements. Products like hand wash are very unlikely to contain substances which are hazardous to health and so fall outside of the scope of COSHH. Furniture polish and other cleaning products purchased from retail outlets will be clearly marked with instructions for use, so provided the cleaning materials are in properly labelled containers there is no reason to stop their use.

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