Refurbishment Contractors Targeted in HSE Safety Blitz
The HSE’s recent safety blitz of small refurbishment sites found that 46 per cent of them fell below standards. As a result the HSE’s Chief Inspector of Construction, Peter Baker, has challenged the industry to act and protect their workers.
A total of 692 enforcement notices and 983 notifications of contravention had to be served where there was a material breach of health and/or safety. Work at height was a common issue found on sites which posed an immediate risk to workers.
Commenting on the initiative, Peter Baker 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.”
There were some positives during the initiative, HSE inspectors also found lots of good examples of small sites carrying out work safely which proves it can be come. “Larger construction sites accepted the challenge a few years ago and have made big improvements, which all the industry can learn from,” concluded Mr Baker. “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.”