Building sites targeted in new health and safety crackdown

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has revealed that building and construction sites are to be the main target of its latest health and safety clampdown.

Starting almost immediately, HSE officers will be sent to carry out unannounced inspections of health and safety training and standards at sites up and down the country.

The watchdog is focusing on sites where repair or refurbishment works are being carried out, especially those where working at height and exposure to harmful dusts are particular risks to construction workers. The HSE wants to make sure that these risks are being properly managed and that workers are not in danger of injury, ill health or death.

Commenting on the new campaign, which was launched following statistics showing that around 70,000 builders are currently suffering from ill health due to work, was the HSE’s chief inspector of construction Heather Bryant. She said:

“Often we find it is smaller companies working on refurbishment and repair work who are failing to protect their workers through a lack of awareness and poor control of risks.
“This initiative provides a chance to engage with these firms to help them understand what they need to do, so they can put in place the practical measures needed to keep people safe.”