Generic Robotics Lab risk assessment

An outline of the potential hazards of working in the robotics lab.

Title of activity: Working in Robotics Laboratories
Location(s) of work: Informatics Forum, Appleton Tower
Brief Description of work:   Working with robots and other lab equipment.


HAZARD IDENTIFICATION: Identify all the hazards; evaluate the risks (low / medium / high); describe all existing control measures and identify any further measures required. Specific hazards should be assessed on a separate risk assessment form and cross-referenced with this document. Specific assessments are available for hazardous substances, biological agents, display screen equipment, manual handling operations and fieldwork. 

See for details.


HAZARD(s) RISK L / M / H CONTROL MEASURES (i.e.alternative work methods/mechanical aids/engineering controls, etc.)
Trapping, Impact / Crushing M
  1. Only authorised persons may work with robots.
  2. Robot users must read the Safe Code of Working Practice for each robot type where applicable.
  3. Where appropriate the working area should be sufficiently guarded and signed to prevent unauthorised entry.
Slips and trips L
  1. Work areas should be kept clear of obstructions. 
  2. Any spillages should be cleaned up immediately.
  3. All areas well lit.
  4. Any hazards such as torn carpets, trailing cables, defects to floor coverings, faulty lighting etc. should be reported immediately to the Admin Office or H&S Manager.
Soldering M
  1. When soldering fume extraction must be used. Every user must be familiar and adhere to the soldering risk assessment and safe code of working practice.
Electrical equipment (electric shocks or burns from using faulty electrical equipment) L
  1. All portable electrical equipment must be tested for electrical safety at correct intervals and labelled with the date of the test.
  2. Electrical cables and plugs should be regularly visually inspected by the user for damage.  
  3. Any defective equipment should be reported immediately to the Admin Office or H&S Manager, then suitably labelled and taken out of use until the repair has been effected.
  4. Electrical equipment must always be operated in accordance with manufacturers' instructions.
Manual handling of heavy/bulky objects (back injuries) L
  1. A risk assessment must be completed for lifting heavy and bulky loads that present a risk of injury.
  2. A trolley should be used to transport boxes of paper or other heavy items. 
  3. High shelves for light items only.
  4. Training in lifting techniques should be provided for anyone who undertakes the lifting of heavy loads.
Fire L
  1. The storage of empty cardboard boxes should be kept to an absolute minimum.
  2. Equipment should be switched off when not in use for long periods.
  3. All portable electrical equipment must be tested for electrical safety at appropriate intervals.
  4. The fire alarm system is installed, maintained and tested.
  5. Everyone must be acquainted with the Fire Routine Procedure for their area.
  6. Fire Stewards must be appointed to cover robotics labs.
Working at height L
  1. Chairs or desks must not be used for reaching heights, step stools should be used instead.
  2. If a stepladder is used, staff/students should read an appropriate risk assessment and be shown how to use it safely.
Hazardous Substances L
  1. If any hazardous substances are used a COSHH risk assessment must be completed and a safe system of work issued to the users.
Lone / Out of Hours (LOOH) Working L
  1. LOOH working in the robotic labs is prohibited unless permission is given by the Lab Supervisor and a specific lone working risk assessment is carried out.


Persons at Risk: Identify all those who may be at risk.

Academic staff X Technical staff X Postgraduate students X Undergraduate students X
Maintenance staff   Office staff   Cleaning staff   Emergency personnel  
Contractors   Visitors X Others      


Additional Information: Identify any additional relevant information to the activity, including supervision, training requirements, special emergency procedures, requirement for health surveillance, etc.

Staff members and Postgraduate Students working in the robotics labs should be familiar with the Safety Rules for Robotics Labs.



Assessment carried out by:
Name: David Hamilton Date: 22/10/2021 Review Date:  22/10/2022