Archive for November, 2015

Metal firm fined after worker killed by a crane

A company who specialise in metal and alloy products have been fined following the death of a worker when he was struck by a load on a moving crane.

Mr Nigel Hall was assisting in the moving of a crucible from a re-melt furnace. During the operation the crane operator noticed Mr Hall in the path of the crucible. The operator shouted to warn Mr Hall whilst stopping the cranes movement, but as the crane came to a stop the load swung forward and hit Mr Hall on the head. Mr Hall was taken to Northern General hospital where he was pronounced dead.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the company had not reviewed the risk assessments and safe systems of work for nine years. Many of their employees who operated cranes had received no refresher training in the last six years and the training programme for new starters was deemed inadequate.

HSE Inspector Carol Downes said: “This loss of life could have been entirely prevented. Employers have a duty to ensure safe systems of work are continually reviewed when there are significant changes in the way work is carried out. Working practices should be clear, safe and properly communicated to employees.”

ATI Speciality Materials Limited were fined a total of £160,000 with costs of £72,321 after pleading guilty to offences under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations SI 1999/3242.

For more information see, the:

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HSE plans to scrap new CDM ACoP rejected by Unions

The Health and Safety Executive's (HSE) plans to shelve a new Approved Code of Practice (ACOP) for the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations SI 2015/51 have been rejected by trade unions.

HSE officials tried to persuade the Construction Industry Advisory Committee that an ACoP is not necessary. The Committee, whose members include trade union and industry body representatives, were presented a paper from an informal industry consultation which indicated that there was no case for the introduction of a new ACoP.

The HSE failed to persuade trade unions Unite, the GMB and UCATT that the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations SI 2015/51 should not have an accompanying ACoP. Consequently the HSE board will be informed that no agreement can be reached. A decision as to whether a new ACoP will be developed for the Regulations will be decided by board members in January.

Initially in 2013, when the HSE were considering revisions to the Construction (Design and Management) (CDM) Regulations, it was proposed that the existing ACoP would be replaced by HSE guidance. Their argument was that an ACoP would prove to be too complex to be useful to those who need it most. Only a third of respondents agreed that the ACoP should be withdrawn.

It was then decided that if a new ACoP could be shown to ''add value'', then one should be developed. But any new ACoP would be significantly shorter than the original and direct its users to other guidance.

The paper presenting the findings of the HSE's consultation stated that respondents believed the principals of CDM are well understood across the industry and an ACoP would fail to meet the needs of small and medium-sized enterprises as the 2007 ACoP had also failed.

However the consultations findings have been widely criticised by unions. National health and safety adviser at Unite, Susan Murray, believed that the arguments made for not having an ACoP, for example courts not relying on them to determine guilt, were unsubstantiated. Concerns were also expressed by GMB's national health and safety officer, Dan Shears, as if a high hazard industry like construction did not have an ACoP then other industries may follow suit. Whilst Trade Union Unite added that the HSE's recommendation 'was not worth the paper it is written on'.

Representatives for trade association Build UK and the Construction Clients Group said that members needed to listen carefully to their trade union colleagues. Although Jason Rowley, a representative from Build UK added he didn't believe an ACoP was detrimental.

Arguments in favour of the new ACoP focused on their legal status and the ''greater certainty of compliance that it could provide''. However the HSE questioned the validity of this argument, stating that a new ACoP would be ''unlikely to bring greater certainty to compliance and the management and control of risks.'' They also added that because approval for new ACoPs and amendments to them are subject to a public consultation before then being signed off by a minister, the ACoP would not be responsive enough to changes in practice and innovation.

For more information, see the:

  • Construction (Design and Management) Regulations SI 2015/51.
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The New Scottish Sentencing Council and Environmental Offences

A new sentencing council for Scotland (SSC) has came into force which is an independent body created by the powers contained in the Criminal Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2010.

The idea of the SSC stemmed from the need for a consistent and coherent approach to sentencing practice and policy as well as to demonstrate a level of transparency to the public in sentencing procedure.

As a result, the SSC will cover sentencing of all crimes and so will include environmental offences. However, the fundamental ability of judges to decide what sentence is passed down in a courtroom is unaffected.  

The council is made up of 12 members who reflect a balance of expertise and interests across the criminal justice system, their functions include:

  • preparation of sentencing guidelines for the Scottish Courts;
  • publication of guideline judgements issued by the Scottish Courts; and
  • publication of information about sentences imposed by the Courts.

The council will be chaired by the Lord Justice Clerk, Lord Carloway, who said:

“I expect the council to take Scotland into a new era, in which we pursue a more principled approach to sentencing with improved consistency. This will be at the heart of our programme.”

It was also said by Justice Secretary Michael Matheson that: “The creation of the Scottish Sentencing Council is extremely important for the criminal justice system in Scotland and I welcome today's official launch…while the independence of Scotland's judiciary of course remains a fundamental part of the Scottish legal system, as does judicial discretion in individual sentencing decisions, the council will help to ensure transparency and consistency in all sentencing decisions made in Scotland, as well as helping the public better understand the sentencing process.”

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Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (Commencement No. 11) Order SI 2015/504

This Order applies to England and Wales and brought various sections of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 into force on 12 March 2015.
Sections 85 to 88, and Part 4 of the Act are the relevant provisions in relation to health, safety and the environment.
This Order…

Details on this legislative text is provided by Cedrec. Please click here to see the summary.

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Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (Commencement No. 11) Order SI 2015/504

This Order applies to England and Wales and brought various sections of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 into force on 12 March 2015.
Sections 85 to 88, and Part 4 of the Act are the relevant provisions in relation to health, safety and the environment.
This Order…

Details on this legislative text is provided by Cedrec. Please click here to see the summary.

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HSE challenges small construction sites to act on workers health and safety

The Chief Inspector of Construction for the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has challenged the refurbishment industry to act now to protect their workers.

This comes after a recent inspection initiative found that 46% of sites fell below safety standards. Small refurbishment sites were inspected by the HSE over a month. They resulted in the issuing of 692 enforcement notices and 983 notifications of contravention where material health and safety breaches had been found. Inspectors observed issues with immediate risks from working at height, to sites where workers were exposed to silica dust and asbestos capable of causing serious long term health problems.

All breaches were followed up with clients and designers with the aim of reinforcing their duties under the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations SI 2015/51.

Peter Baker, HSE’s Chief Inspector of Construction said: ''It is disappointing that some small refurbishment sites are still cutting corners and not properly protecting their workers. Falls from height are the most common killer in the industry but we still found workers put at risk to save minutes on the job – believing it wouldn’t happen to them. The mis-conception that health issues cannot be controlled is simply not true and ruining people’s lives. 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. Each week 100 construction workers die from occupational disease.''

Despite concerns, inspectors did note a number of examples of good practice. Peter Baker further added:

''HSE inspectors found lots of good examples of small sites carrying out work safely, proving it can be done. Larger construction sites accepted the challenge a few years ago and have made big improvements, which all of the industry can learn from. My message to smaller businesses is don’t wait for an accident or visit from an inspector before you make the change, but act now and learn from your colleagues’ example.''

For more information, see the:

  • Construction (Design and Management) Regulations SI 2015/51.
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Deregulation Act 2015 (Commencement No.3 and Transitional and Saving Provisions) Order SI 2015/1732

This Order applies to England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and brought various provisions of the Deregulation Act 2015 into force.
The following provisions came into force on 1 October 2015:

section 1, on health and safety at work: general duty of self-employed persons;
section 15, on suppliers of fuel and fireplaces;
section 17,…

Details on this legislative text is provided by Cedrec. Please click here to see the summary.

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Deregulation Act 2015 (Commencement No.3 and Transitional and Saving Provisions) Order SI 2015/1732

This Order applies to England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and brought various provisions of the Deregulation Act 2015 into force.
The following provisions came into force on 1 October 2015:

section 1, on health and safety at work: general duty of self-employed persons;
section 15, on suppliers of fuel and fireplaces;
section 17,…

Details on this legislative text is provided by Cedrec. Please click here to see the summary.

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Our Legislation Update Roadshow is back!

Making a return to the roads of the UK in January 2016 is Cedrec's annual Legislation Update!

We're bringing all the information environment and safety professionals need to know to a city near you.

Cedrec's Environment Update will take place in the morning, followed by an afternoon of Safety legislation. We'll even provide lunch in the middle, so hang around after, or come along early. We're really quite friendly!

Sign up for £25 per person, per session, come along to the venue of choice and meet with people working in your area of expertise. Cedrec will also provide a few experts of our own for you to speak to, whether it's a question you have or thoughts on the topics covered, we'd love to hear from you.

Our goal is to leave you feeling informed, prepared and ready to tackle the legislation of 2016!

To find out more and to book your place, go to cedrec.com/events

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Regulation (EU) 1982/2015 (OJ:L289/13/2015) approving hexaflumuron as an existing active substance for use in biocidal products for product-type 18

This Regulation approves Hexaflumuron as an active substance for use in biocidal products for product-type 18, subject to the specifications and conditions set out in this Regulation.
It is made in accordance with the opinion of the Standing Committee on Biocidal Products and Regulation (EU) 528/2012, on the making available on…

Details on this legislative text is provided by Cedrec. Please click here to see the summary.

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