Police forces to conduct biggest ever health and safety survey

Thousands of police force employees will next month be asked to take part in what is believed to be the largest ever health and safety survey undertaken by the service, in a bid to reduce the numbers of officers killed while driving.

Between 15,000 and 20,000 police officers, community support officers and police staff will be questioned on issues such as work-life balance, driving while tired and shift patterns, reports Police Review.

The surveys will be sent out to six or seven forces, as yet unspecified, asking officers about shifts, lifestyle, support mechanisms, their experience of collisions on the road, and time taken travelling to and from work.

The answers will be analysed by Strathclyde University and inform a report written by academics and Raymond Pratt, health and safety lead at the Scottish Police Federation. The report, due to be completed by autumn, will inform chief officers on practice and policy, Pratt said.

“It is a very in-depth questionnaire which will tease out all the issues in relation to travelling as well as other issues in relation to work-life balance and lifestyle,” he told Police Review. “It is the first time I am aware that such a questionnaire has been done.”

Research published last year estimated that fatal collisions involving people who drive as part of their jobs cost the UK more than £1.6bn in 2007.

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