First aid

What are the first aid requirements for sites?

A. The Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981 require all construction sites to have:

  • a first aid box with enough equipment to cope with the number of workers on site
  • an appointed person to take charge of first-aid arrangements
  • information telling workers the name of the appointed person or first aider and where to find them. A notice in the site hut is a good way of doing this

What is an appointed person?

A. The appointed person includes looks after first-aid equipment and facilities and calls the emergency services when required. They can also provide emergency cover where a first-aider is unexpectedly absent (annual leave does not count). Appointed persons do not need first-aid training.

What is a first-aider?

A. A first-aider is someone who has undertaken training and has a qualification that HSE approves. This means that they must hold a valid certificate of competence in either:

  • first aid at work (FAW), issued by a training organisation approved by HSE
  • emergency first aid at work (EFAW), issued by a training organisation approved by HSE or a recognised Awarding Body of Ofqual/Scottish Qualifications Authority

How many first-aiders do we need on site?

Number of employees

Fewer than 5   

At least one appointed person


At least one first-aider trained in EFAW or FAW, depending on the type of injuries that may occur

More than 50   

At least one first-aider trained in FAW for every 50 people employed (or part of 50)

Find out more about first aid on HSE's First Aid at Work site.

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Updated 2022-08-10