HSE launches latest month-long safety blitz on refurb sites

A nationwide campaign will run until March 15th with inspectors making unannounced visits to construction sites. Philip White, HSE (Health and Safety Executive) Chief Inspector of Construction, said: “Death and injury continue to result from avoidable incidents and it is largely those engaged in refurbishment and repair work who are failing to step up to the mark.”

“Poor management of risks and a lack of awareness of responsibilities is unacceptable. In many cases simple changes to working practices can make all the difference, and can even save lives. Therefore if we find evidence that workers are being unnecessarily put at risk we will take strong action. We are determined to drive the message home that site safety and worker welfare cannot be compromised.”

Inspectors will be targeting high risk activities, such as working at height and the removal of asbestos.  They will also check for general good order on site, assess welfare facilities and check whether suitable Personal Protective Equipment (such as head protection) is being worn.

  • Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of fatalities and major injuries in the construction industry, with more than five incidents every day.
  • 54% of the workers who have died in construction over the last few years were doing refurbishment, repair and maintenance jobs.

HSE will not hesitate to take action if they find poor practice that is putting the lives of workers and the public at risk.

During inspections, it will be considered whether:

  • Jobs that involve working at height have been identified and properly planned to ensure that appropriate precautions are in place.
  • Equipment is correctly installed / assembled, inspected, maintained and used properly
  • Sites are well organised to avoid trips and falls
  • Walkways and stairs are free from obstructions
  • Work areas are clear of unnecessary materials and waste
  • That suitable Personal Protective Equipment, including head protection, is provided and worn at all times

Many incidents are completely avoidable by taking simple common sense precautions. Find out what you can do to improve health and safety on your site before an inspector calls:

February 22, 2013 | Categories: News |
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