Torridge advice on use of sunbeds

THE Health and Safety Team at Torridge District Council is to begin offering guidance and advice to sunbed operators on the safe operation and supervision of tanning equipment. The Team s aim is to ensure business owners and their staff have the informat

THE Health and Safety Team at Torridge District Council is to begin offering guidance and advice to sunbed operators on the safe operation and supervision of tanning equipment.

The Team's aim is to ensure business owners and their staff have the information necessary to minimise the associated risks of using ultraviolet (UV) tanning equipment - risks such as skin cancer, cataracts, premature ageing or sunburnt skin, dryness and itching, bumpy rashes, and eye irritation or conjunctivitis.

Advice given will follow the recently revised published guidance from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) on how to safely operate ultraviolet tanning equipment, including advice about potential hazards and risk assessments.

This will include the two new key recommendations - that under 18s do not use sunbeds at all and that all coin-operated salons are supervised by trained staff.


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The HSE also says you should not use UV tanning equipment if you:

* have fair, sensitive skin that burns easily or tans slowly or poorly;

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* have a history of sunburn, particularly in childhood;

* have a large number of freckles and/or red hair;

* have a large number of moles;

* are taking medicines or using creams that sensitise the skin to sunlight;

* have a medical condition that is worsened by sunlight;

* or anyone in your family has had skin cancer in the past;

* already have extensive skin damage due to sunlight.

Torridge's Lead Member for Health, Councillor Adam Symons, said: "Although the fashion at the moment is for the 'highly tanned' look, there is ongoing evidence which suggests that the use of sunbeds can have a serious impact on people's health.

"Torridge has a responsibility to ensure that all tanning premises in the area stick to basic safety guidelines. Young skin is especially vulnerable to the effects of UV radiation, and the misuse of sunbeds can cause serious burns in the short-term and cancer in the long-term."

For further information on the use of UV tanning equipment please look at the HSE website http://www.hse.gov.uk/ or salons can also order copies of their leaflet 'Reducing health risks from the use of UV tanning' free by calling HSE's bookline on 01787 881165.

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