Turner Access Higher Safety Total Access
Total Access Ethentic Chipmunk Data
Chipmunk Data Turner Access Ethentic

SAFETY IS DEAD … LONG LIVE HEALTH AT WORK

Simple and realistic framework to help unify thinking about H&S

The credibility of ‘health and safety’ at work has been seriously undermined over the last 30 years and is now associated by many with negativity, risk aversion, bureaucracy and the stifling of innovation.

Mention of the subject is often met with expressions of exasperation and comments such as “Oh no not Elf and Safety again” or “Let’s all stay in bed and be completely safe”

The management of of health and safety and resultant procedures and rules are often perceived as external and separate from the daily business in which workers, supervisors and managers get the job done.

It is therefore hardly surprising that incident investigations frequently reveal that procedures are routinely not followed and bear little resemblance to how people actually work.

The irony is that despite this frequent mismatch between rules and reality construction teams do work safely most of the time.

So, how might we move forward in creating a more positive approach to securing the well-being of those working in construction or affected by that work?

The framework at Figure 1 below seeks to simplify how we think about ‘health and safety’ and provide a structure to guide the thinking of all from the boardroom to the individual at work.

Minimising Harm or Maximising Safety

UK workplace legislation requires that employers ensure the health, safety and welfare at work of employees and others affected by their undertaking.

This duty is not absolute but is qualified by the term “reasonably practicable” which involves deciding upon precautions through a process of balancing cost and risk.

The law is therefore is rooted in the idea that work can cause harm and that there are limits to what employers are required to do to eliminate or mitigate that harm.

Zero harm or complete safety are not required by law yet public understanding of this limited legal protection is far from perfect.

Our framework therefore starts from the more realistic aim of “maximising our success in minimising harm”.

Protecting Health or Securing Safety

Do we need to constantly refer to both health and safety?

Safety is defined as the condition of being “protected from injury”. Health is the condition of being “free from illness or injury”. Both terms effectively mean same i.e. people are protected from harm.

What we currently badge as action on workplace ‘health and safety’ at work could therefore more simply be described as action on ‘health’ at work.

Our framework therefore describes a “Health at Work Programme” which includes both the traumatic injury caused by one-off incidents and the longer term harm caused by substances or the way work is organised etc.

Hazards Analysis + Risk Management

A simple, realistic and easily understood framework is needed to structure the positive actions required to “maximise success in minimising harm”.

Our H.A.R.M Assessment process provides one way forward which can be used by both large and smaller businesses and from the Boardroom to project Work Teams to ensure that everyone is speaking the same realistic language. The framework can be used equally at both project design and construction phases.

Ongoing hazard analysis and risk management all levels is the key to success rather than a one off and often fossilised risk assessment. Our framework provides a quick aide memoir.

Trusting People or Securing Compliance

The conventional wisdom dictates that success is achieved by setting out health and safety standards and procedures which are rigorously enforced to secure compliance.

Risk management in the construction sector is based upon the production of Safety Method Statements which are often prepared by those who may have a little understanding of how work is carried out.

An alternative approach is to put greater trust in those trained and experienced to carry out the work safely without copious volumes of paperwork which is often only read by the writer.

Way forward

All those involved in construction project ‘health and safety’ are effectively aiming to maximise success in minimising harm to all who work on construction projects.

The framework below is designed to take forward this objective in a way which is seen simple and more positive by all those involved.

FIGURE 1

Latest Construction Health and Safety News

SCAFFOLD INSPECTORS ISSUED FALSIFIED CERTIFICATES

Prosecution for two after workman fell from illegitimately signed off scaffold

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 25th September 2017

REVERSING EXCAVATOR CRUSHED WORKMAN

Lack of management system to segregate pedestrians and vehicles

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 21st September 2017

CLIENT FINED £2.5 MILLION AFTER CONTRACTOR DEATH

Fatal fall through roof leaves client responsible for massive fine

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 21st September 2017

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 20th SEPT 2017

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 20th September 2017

NEW EDGE PROTECTION INSTALLATION TRAINING

Trade body launches CSCS backed edge protection installer qualification

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 18th September 2017

GOVERNMENT CALLS FOR ACTION ON ILL-HEALTH

Business leaders accept charge of inaction on work-related ill-health

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 18th September 2017

FIRM FAILED TO ENFORCE FORK LIFT SEAT BELT USE

Operator suffered fatal crush injuries after FLT overturned

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 18th September 2017

DIRECTOR AND FOREMAN JAILED OVER FATAL FALL

Failure to act on HSE advice ended in gross negligence manslaughter

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 18th September 2017

PRISON SENTENCE FOR ROOFING CONTRACTOR

Council H&S officers reported dangerous roof work to HSE

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 14th September 2017

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 14th SEPT 2017

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 14th September 2017

LADDER STANDARDS MOVE UP A RUNG OR TWO

Ladder Association guide to fundamental changes in ladder standard

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 12th September 2017

SILICA (RCS) DUST LIMIT – THE ONLY WAY IS DOWN?

US regulator cuts RCS exposure standard to half UK limit

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 12th September 2017

SAFE2TORCH – REDUCING FLAT ROOF FIRE RISK

Industry body seeks to reduce ‘torch’ triggered fires at design stage

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 8th September 2017

FIRM AND DIRECTOR SENTENCED OVER GAS RISK

Poorly planned extension prevented effective gas venting

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 7th September 2017

£1 MILLION CLIENT FINE FOLLOWS FATAL FALL

Electrician died after fall from step ladder provided by client

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 7th September 2017

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 6th SEPT 2017

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 7th September 2017

HAVS HEALTH CHECK PROMPTS HSE PROSECUTION

Assessment of vibration exposure and control measures found wanting

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 7th September 2017

HSE LUNG DISEASE SUMMIT TARGETS SILICA DUST (RCS)

Regulator starts major initiative on lung disease in construction

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 1st September 2017

HSE COST RECOVERY NOW “FULLY INDEPENDENT”

hselogo1New Fee for Intervention disputes procedure now in place

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 1st September 2017

CLIENT FINED AS CDM 2015 PRINCIPAL CONTRACTOR

Failure by client to appoint attracts PC duties by default

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 30th August 2017

JOINER PARALYSED AFTER FALL THROUGH JOISTS

Fall prevention and risk minimisation measures not taken

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 30th August 2017

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 30th AUG 2017

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 30th August 2017

COMPLAINT COSTS CONTRACTOR £145,000 IN FINES

HSE prosecute CDM 2015 Principal Contractor over risk without injury

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 29th August 2017

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 23rd AUG 2017

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 23rd August 2017

HSE CONSTRUCTION FATALITY RECORDS: Q1 2017/18

Latest HSE fatality records reveal four (4) deaths in first three months

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 23rd August 2017
Turner Access Chipmunk Data
Total Access Ethentic
Higher Safety Turner Access