Safety Bill announced

Proposals will increase penalties for health and safety offences

New powers to make transport operators and employers more responsible for
the safety of their workers and the travelling public were announced last month
in the Queen’s speech.

The proposed Safety Bill is aimed at making travel by rail, air, sea and on
the roads safer and will include proposals for revitalising health and safety
at work. It will increase penalties for health and safety offences and remove
Crown immunity from statutory enforcement.

The Safety Bill is likely to:

– Implement some of the recommendations from Lord Cullen’s wide-ranging
review of rail safety

– Tackle alcohol and drug use by safety-critical personnel in civil aviation
and shipping

– Raise port and maritime safety standards

– Set a framework for delivery of Government commitments on road safety
strategy and the meeting of new road safety targets

– Improve standards of health and safety in the workplace.

Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott said, "There have been a number of
disturbing safety issues raised in recent years, both among the travelling
public and in the workplace.

"We are determined to do something about this. My whole working life
has been dedicated to improving safety. This Bill should go a long way to
making life safer for both workers and travellers."

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