HSE following through on strategy

At the beginning of the year we wrote a blog outlining the HSE’s strategy for 2017. The majority of that article focused on how the HSE were focusing on the health of employees, including Occupational Stress and Health, Musculoskeletal Disorders and Occupational Lung Disease.

We are now starting to see some serious fines being delivered to companies who fail to adhere to the HSE standards specifically when it comes to the above priorities. 

In May, Barroerock Construction Limited were fined £750,000 and ordered to pay additional costs of £14,874.68 after pleading guilty to two offences of breaching regulations when it came to the management of Asbestos substances during construction.

More recently on the 11th July an engineering firm was fined for failing to control the risk to employees using hand held power tools from Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS). The company pleaded guilty to breaching the Regulations 6(1) and 8(1) of the Control of Vibration at Work Regulations 2005.

This company was found responsible for injuries to an experienced worker and a 20 year old apprentice by failing to control the risks associated with vibration. The HSE inspector said “The Company also failed to ensure workers were looked after when symptoms did arise leading to further exposure. This was wholly inadequate, and led to two employees suffering significant health effects”. The fines for these breaches came to £120,000 and ordered to pay £7,241.

It’s also important to remember there will be additional costs on top of this due to damaged reputation, replacing injured workers and liability claims, leading to increased insurance premiums.

If you would like any more information on managing these risks or any other Health & Safety topics please contact our team on 01302 341 344.

By Ian Clayton CMIOSH – Health & Safety Manager

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