Britain must tackle OH to keep on top of H&S issues

first_imgThe UK is now one of the world leaders when it comes to workplace health andsafety, but still needs to do more on OH issues, the Health and SafetyCommission (HSC) has warned. In its annual report, HSC chairman Bill Callaghan said the commission hadmade good progress in compliance activities and in major hazard sectors butneeded help in tackling occupational health, with employers needing to do more.”With 3.7 million enterprises and a workforce of more than 28 million,OH and safety cannot be the business of the HSC/E alone,” Callaghanstressed. It was now developing its strategy to take the health and safety system to2010 and beyond. “Our aim is to position health and safety as a cornerstone of acivilised society,” he added. “But there is still much to be done, particularly on occupationalhealth, if Britain is to keep its position among world leaders in workplacehealth and safety.” Highlighting the problems it faces, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)has warned that dangerous employers are repeatedly putting their workers’ livesat risk because the financial penalties imposed by the courts are too low. Most firms prosecuted for health and safety offences were repeat offenders,seemingly undeterred by fines. There are no set levels for health and safety fines, meaning it is up to thejudge to decide on the financial penalty. The average fine has fallen in the past 12 months, to £8,828 from £11,141,although this was partly because there were fewer larger fines. HSE director general Timothy Walker said: “There has been nosubstantial change to reflect the seriousness of health and safety cases sincethe Court of Appeal said in 1998 that fines for health and safety were toolow.” The executive issued a much larger number of improvement and prohibitionnotices in agriculture and construction this year, two priority areas becauseof their previously poor records. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Britain must tackle OH to keep on top of H&S issuesOn 1 Dec 2003 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more