Construction safety blitz hits Scotland and the North

A week-long construction safety
blitz across Scotland and the North of England resulted in action being taken
at more than half of the sites visited.

The HSE was forced to act at
258 of the 444 sites visited, stopping dangerous work where serious risks to
employees’ health and safety were identified.

Fifty-four inspectors were
involved and concentrated on falls from height, welfare and transport. Eventually,
206 prohibition notices to stop unsafe working practices were served and a
further 53 improvement notices were issued, mostly for inadequate transport
arrangements.

Pam Waldron, head of
operations, said: "The clear message is that the industry must tackle
those things which are killing and injuring people, and making them ill at
work.

"Sadly, the blitz
indicates there is a common pattern across construction sites in Great Britain
of relaxed attitudes to health, safety and welfare," she said.

"As in the London blitz
last month, we found standards on many of the sites to be well below what we
expect. I personally witnessed many examples of poor site management and lack
of control of sub-contractors allowing unsafe working practices. I also saw
individual workers putting themselves at risk by ignoring site rules and taking
shortcuts."

The action was the second in a
rolling programme of blitzes to be held across Great Britain over the next 12
months.

www.hse.org.uk

By Ross Wigham

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