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I am a journalist with 13 years of experience on trade publications covering construction, local government, property, pubs, and transport.

As the editor of Safety and Health Practitioner, I am always eager to talk with health and safety professionals about exciting stories from the sector.

Please do drop me an email on james.evison@ubm.com if you have a story to tell.

October 2, 2017

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HSE launches second phase of construction inspection campaign

Construction projects urged to ensure health and safety of workers as the second phase of a targeted inspection initiative gets underway today (2 October, 2017)

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) says 43 workers were fatally injured in 2015/16, and an estimated ten times that number died from construction related ill-health, with a further 65,000 self-reported non-fatal injuries.

HSE is now asking every construction contractor, client and designer to ensure they are not adding to this unacceptable toll of harm by failing to manage well-known risks.

Focus on control of harmful dusts

In addition to things such as falls from height, the campaign will focus on control of harmful dusts including respirable silica from concrete, brick and stone, asbestos and wood dust, as well as work at height, structural safety, materials handling, good order and welfare provision.

HSE points to the mis-conception that health issues cannot be controlled in construction. It says harmful dust, whether silica or wood, is a serious issue and can be managed effectively with the right design, equipment and training. Health effects may not be immediate, but the ultimate impact on workers and their families can be devastating.

HSE carried out over 2000 inspections during the first phase of the initiative earlier this year with action being taken to address these issues in almost half of visits.

Good examples of small sites

HSE chief inspector of construction and director of construction division, Peter Baker, said: “In phase 1 of this campaign HSE’s inspectors found lots of good examples of small sites working safely and protecting workers health from exposure to harmful dusts, proving it can be done. My message to smaller businesses is don’t wait for an accident or a visit from an HSE inspector – learn from the success of others and act now.

“Nearly half of construction fatal accidents and injuries reported to HSE involved refurbishment work.

“Some small refurbishment sites continue to cut corners and not properly protect their workers resulting in an unacceptable number of deaths and injuries each year.”

Free download: the Accident Investigation Guide

In partnership with Southalls this guide is designed to help guide you through the accident investigation process from start to finish. Whether you have years of experience in accident investigation, or you have never experienced the process before, this guide outlines the most fundamental parts of the investigation process, and encourages you to ask questions that you may not have previously considered.

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