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    HSE INITIATIVE NETS OVER £1MILLION IN FEES

    hselogo1Refurbishment projects pay price for poor risk management

    HSE Chief Inspector of Construction is challenging the refurbishment industry to act now and protect their workers, after 46 per cent of sites fell below standards during a recent inspection initiative.

    The regulator targeted small refurbishment sites during a month long drive and 692 enforcement notices and 983 notifications of contravention were served where there was a material breach of health and/or safety.

    The HSE enforcement notices and notifications of contravention attract a Fee for Intervention (FFI). Data on the HSE website show that the average cost of a single FFI invoice in 2015 is £689 suggesting that this initiative will have generated over £1,000,000 in fees.

    Inspectors dealt with immediate risks e.g work at height, and sites where workers were being exposed to silica dust and asbestos.

    Clients and designers involved

    HSE state that breaches were followed up with clients and designers, thereby “reinforcing their duties” under the CDM Regulations 2015 and “helping them understand their responsibilities”.

    An HSE spokeswoman told Construction Manager that the enforcement campaign was the first that sought to “track back” responsibility for safety breaches to clients and design teams. However, HSE has not released figures on how many clients and designers received an enforcement notice or letter of contravention.

    Despite the high rate of enforcement action, the inspectors found a number of examples of good practice. Peter Baker, the HSE Chief Inspector of Construction said:

    “It is disappointing that some small refurbishment sites are still cutting corners and not properly protecting their workers. Falls from height are the most common killer in the industry but we still found workers put at risk to save minutes on the job – believing it wouldn’t happen to them.

    The mis-conception that health issues cannot be controlled is simply not true and ruining people’s lives. Harmful dust, whether silica or wood, is a serious issue and can be managed effectively with the right design, equipment and training. Health effects may not be immediate but the ultimate impact on workers and their families can be devastating.

    HSE inspectors found lots of good examples of small sites carrying out work safely, proving it can be done. Larger construction sites accepted the challenge a few years ago and have made big improvements, which all of the industry can learn from.

    My message to smaller businesses is don’t wait for an accident or visit from an inspector before you make the change, but act now and learn from your colleagues’ example.”

    CDM 2015 Information and Templates

    We have published a great deal of further information and templates designed to support Clients, Designers, Principal Designers/Contractors and Contractors in meeting their duties under CDM Regulations 2015.

    CLICK HERE to view the full range of FREE information available. We have also prepared a CDM 2015 Five Minute Online Survey. Click on image below to take the survey.

     

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