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Health and safety in decline

first_imgUK workers are being put at risk because of a serious decline in workplacehealth and safety, warns UnisonA study has found that there has been a 41 per cent drop in inspections by theHSE in the past five years – a total of 48,300 – the Centre for CorporateAccountability and union Unison have warned. On top of this, 80 per cent of major injuries to workers reported to the HSEand 70 per cent of “dangerous occurrences” were not investigated. The study suggested that enforcement by the HSE was minimal and haphazard.Despite having detailed policies in place, the levels of inspections,investigations and prosecutions were all very low and varied enormouslyaccording to region and industrial sector. David Bergman, director of the Centre for Corporate Accountability, said:”The failure to investigate such a large number of major injuries anddangerous occurrences – and to prosecute in such a small number of cases – hasserious implications both for prevention in the future and also for ensuringproper accountability of those companies and individuals who have committedcriminal offences.” On average, a registered premises received an inspection once every 20years. Just one in 10 construction sites were inspected last year, despite ahigh-profile campaign by the HSE on construction industry health and safety. A total of 3 per cent of worker deaths went uninvestigated in 2000/01 aswell as 10 per cent of deaths and 93 per cent of major injuries to the public. Similarly, 55 per cent of industrial diseases were not probed, with only 11per cent of investigated major injuries resulting in a prosecution. In the five-year period, 82 per cent of major injuries to trainees and thoseon work experience were not investigated, with 935 not investigated out of atotal of 1,144. An HSE spokesperson said the HSE rejected the CCA/Unison argument, arguingthat inspection was only one part of a larger picture. “In order to use our resources to maximum effect, we are constantlytrying new approaches to get the balance right between education, inspectionand enforcement activity,” it said. www.corporateaccounability.org/HSEReport/Press.htm Comments are closed. Health and safety in declineOn 1 Dec 2002 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more