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ISO 45001 standard published

The long-awaited ISO 45001 standard has been published on the ISO site and is available for purchase.

The publishing of the standard marks the beginning of the migration period from OH SAS 18001 to the ISO replacement. Organisations that hold OHSAS 18001 have three years to comply with the new standard.

According to the ISO website, the “intended outcomes of an OH&S management system include:

  • continual improvement of OH&S performance;
  • fulfilment of legal requirements and other requirements;
  • achievement of OH&S objectives.”

David Smith, Chair of project committee ISO/PC 283 that developed ISO 45001, stated: “It is hoped that ISO 45001 will lead to a major transformation in workplace practices and reduce the tragic toll of work-related accidents and illnesses across the globe.” The new standard will help organisations provide a safe and healthy work environment for workers and visitors by requiring continual improvement of OH and S performance.

Smith added: “World standards writers have come together to provide a framework for a safer workplace for all, whatever sector you work in and wherever you work in the world.”

More than 70 countries were directly involved in the creation of this important document, developed by ISO/PC 283, Occupational health and safety management systems, with the British Standards Institution (BSI) serving as the committee secretariat.

The International Labour Organisation calculated that there are approximately 2.78 million fatal accidents in the workplace every year. This is in addition to the 374 million non-fatal accidents and illnesses occurring from the workplace or work-related activities. Such statistics only serve as a strong reminder as to why health and safety at work is so important, and why it should be considered an integral part of any organisation.

To purchase the ISO 45001 document, visit the ISO store.

Cedrec ISO 45001 event

If you’d like to know more about the new standard, Cedrec are hosting a series of events across the country in April:

Gateshead – Thought Foundation – 23 April 2018

London – The Law Society – 24 April 2018

Birmingham – Fazeley Studios – 25 April 2018

Manchester – Mechanics Institute – 26 April 2018

We’ll look at the key changes, requirements and legal compliance, and we’ll also have BSI on hand to talk about how they plan to audit ISO 45001.

To find out more, and to book your place, click here.

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Acetylene Safety Regulations 2014 Post Implementation Review

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are conducting a Post Implementation Review of the Acetylene Safety (England and Wales and Scotland) Regulations SI 2014/1639 and are inviting comments from stakeholders.

The Acetylene Safety (England and Wales and Scotland) Regulations SI 2014/1639 came into force on 1 October 2014, and aimed to consolidate existing legislation for activities relating to acetylene and regulate the manufacture, importation, sale, use and transportation of liquid, solid and compressed acetylene gas as well as the compression of that gas and the filling of cylinders by means of a series of defined duties, safety and licensing requirements.

There is a clause in the Regulations that require them to be reviewed at least every 5 years in order to assess the extent to which they are achieving their intended aim, this is known as a Post Implementation Review (PIR).

As part of that review the HSE welcome the views of stakeholders in order to allow them to gauge the effectiveness of the current Regulations. In order to do this they have launched an online survey, which is available here.

Responses are invited from Wednesday 21 February until Wednesday 21 March 2018.

In conducting their PIR the HSE will also consider research already gathered as part of the recent fundamental review of acetylene.

For more information see the:

  • Acetylene Safety (England and Wales and Scotland) Regulations SI 2014/1639.
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Explosives Regulations 2014 Post Implementation Review

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are conducting a Post Implementation Review of the Explosives Regulations SI 2014/1638 and are inviting comments from stakeholders.

The Explosives Regulations SI 2014/1638 came into force on 1 October 2014, and aimed to simplify the explosives legislation framework through consolidating and revoking existing explosives legislation. They regulate the manufacture, storage and acquisition of explosives by means of a series of defined duties, granting of approvals and a system of licensing.

There is a clause in the Regulations that require them to be reviewed at least every 5 years in order to assess the extent to which they are achieving their intended aim, this is known as a Post Implementation Review (PIR).

As part of that review the HSE welcome the views of stakeholders in order to allow them to gauge the effectiveness of the current Regulations. In order to do this they have launched an online survey, which is available here.

Responses are invited from Wednesday 21 February until Wednesday 18 April 2018.

In conducting their PIR, the HSE will also consider research already gathered as part of the recent fundamental review of explosives licensing.

For more information see the:

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Unsafe worker to pay fines for dangerous scaffolding

On 30 June 2017, 28 year old scaffolder Mr Terrance Murray was witnessed by a concerned member of the public unsafely erecting a scaffold in Quay Street, Manchester. Photographs were taken of him whilst he did so, and it shows him between 13-18 metres up without suitable safety measures such as a edge protection or a safety harness. Accompanied at the time by a junior scaffolder, he was also setting a bad example to the untrained worker, and a fall for either of them at this height for either of them would have resulted in many dangerous and possibly fatal injuries.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) discovered that Murray had received all the relevant training and experience and was given the correct equipment – he acted alone in his choice to work this way against his own better judgement. Pleading guilty to breaching the Health and Safety Work etc. Act 1974 and was sentenced to 26 weeks in prison, suspended for one year and 100 hours of community service. On top of this he was ordered to pay costs £500 and a victim surcharge of £115.

Speaking after the hearing HSE inspector Seve Gomez-Aspron stated that: “This case highlights the importance of following industry guidance in order to erect scaffolding in a safe manner, which does not cause risk to members of the public and workers using the scaffold. It also serves to remind employees that they have a duty to look after themselves.” 

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Both the company and sub-contractor fined following workers fall from height

Advanced Industrial Roofing and Cladding Solutions Limited (AIRCSL) and Stephen Bell have been fined after a worker fell through the fragile skylight as he was in the process of installing a new industrial roof over the existing asbestos-cement roof. At Brunswick Industrial Estate, New Southgate, when he stepped backwards onto a neighboring unit and fell through a fragile roof light, suffering serious injuries.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that AIRCSL failed to take suitable measures to prevent workers from falling from a height and pleaded guilty to breaching the Work at Height Regulations 2005 – they were fined £8,000 and ordered to pay costs of £4,278; Stephen Bell (the sub-contractor) had failed to manage, plan and monitor the works carried out by workers under his control and pleaded guilty to breaching the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 and was fined £1,500 and ordered to pay £2,000.

The HSE Inspector Jack Wilby has said: “This is sadly another incident involving someone falling through a fragile roof and it is lucky that the injuries were not more severe. This incident highlights the importance of planning work at height and putting in place suitable control measures, including those preventing or managing access to fragile roofs.”

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Worker with life changing injury; packaging company fined

A W.K.West Limited driving employee had finished his shift and was asked to work in the factory on the day of the incident. The only training and guidance he received, was a demonstration of the operation of the machinery and his job outline (to push stacked cardboard sheets through the saw to pre-determined sizes). Using no push stick or jig when demonstrating, the supervisor then left the worker unsupervised. As he went to push the cardboard through the blade by hand as the supervisor had, it twisted and pulled his right hand into the blade.

Severe injuries to his hand meant that sections of his index and ring finger had to be amputated, and his middle finger was badly damaged. An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the company, found that W.K.West Limited hadn't provided suitable and sufficient training, assessment of the risks and supervision that were necessary to operate a circular saw safely. The company pleaded guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and was fined with £120,000 and £849.54 in costs. 

Following the hearing, HSE Inspector Anuja Mistry-Raval spoke. “Circular saws have a well-known accident history of severe hand injuries,” and said: “Employers should make sure they properly assess and apply effective control measures to minimise the risk of personal injury from dangerous parts of machinery.”

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500k fine for Birmingham contractor

MV Kelly Ltd of Tyseley, Birmingham has pleaded guilty to breaching the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations SI 2015/51, after a worker was struck by tipper truck.

The worker was on the development site of over 370 houses at Burntwood Business Park, and was walking along a haul road in order to attract the attention of a vehicle in another area of the site, when he was struck and run over by one of the many tipper trucks delivering material to the site.

The worker suffered several broken bones in both feet and legs, and severe damage to blood vessels as well. 12 months after the incident his right leg was amputated to the knee.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that there was not enough protected walkways across the site and no control over the access to the site; they also found that there was an accepted practice of walking along haul roads and no up-to-date traffic management plan.

The company was fined £500,000 and ordered to pay costs of £30,000 and a victim surcharge of £120. After the hearing the HSE Inspector Katherine Blunt said: “This incident resulted in a worker sustaining life-changing injuries and should serve as a reminder to principal contractors of the need to properly organise construction sites to keep workers and members of the public safe.”

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15,000 pound fine for fractured arm

On 5 April 2016, at around 7:15 am, a junior employee of John Paul Horgan's joinery business (Unit 6) was involved in an accident which resulted in many minor fractures to his arm. The circumstances following the fall are unknown, but it is known that it occurred when he and another worker went to install an insulation, whilst working on an outbuilding in the defendants home in St Peter.

The 18-year-old apprentice was described as being “relatively immature and lacked work experience generally” and that this had not been taken into account by Horgan; even recently he had suffered an injury to his hand, and was just returning back to work following recuperation from this incident. On top of this, he had not taken the necessary steps to keep his employees safe, for example including a tower scaffold or a protective barrier in the stairwell. Because of the company's failure to provide adequate training and take into account the apprentices lack of training, the young man suffered an injury.

As a result of his mistakes, Horgan was fined £15,000 and forced to pay £2,500 towards costs for the victim. Advocate, Adam Harrison, defending Horgan has said he felt this was too severe a punishment and that he thought it was “not as serious as the Crown suggests.”

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Scaffolding company fined after falling clip injures passing pedestrian

On the 20 March 2017, a pedestrian walking underneath a section of scaffolding on Upper street in Islington (London) was hit by a falling scaffolding clip and was very badly injured. The clip in question, fell around 20 metres (or near to 66ft) and caused large amounts of damage to the victim.

Sustaining many cuts to his head and face, a severely bruised skull and a broken nose; The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted the firm over the accident. The company in question, Alandale Plant & Scaffolding Ltd of Beckenham, Kent was fined £160,000 and ordered to pay costs of £7,059.08 and a victim surcharge of £170 after pleading guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

The HSE Inspector Sarah Robinson spoke after the hearing, stating: “This incident could so easily have been avoided by simply carrying out correct control measures and safe working practices.” She then went on to say: “On this occasion the company did not follow their own risk assessments or method statements.”

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Proposals to amend the Control of Asbestos Regulations dropped

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have dropped plans to reduce the frequency of medical checks for licensed asbestos workers.

Proposals put forward for consultation in October 2017 would have amended the Control of Asbestos Regulations SI 2012/632 to align medical checks for workers dealing with licensed and non-licensed work for asbestos to every 3 years.

These proposals were rejected by 61% of respondents to the consultation, with Unions claiming that a reduction in the frequency of medical checks for those undertaking licensed work was a reduction in the protection offered to workers.

The HSE had argued that the current regulatory system was well-functioning and protected the health of workers, consequently medical checks every 2 years were not necessary, and reducing the frequency to 3 years would not lead to an increase in cases of asbestosis.

Responses to the consultation showed that 23 of 34 respondents strongly disagreed or disagreed with the plan to reduce frequency of medical checks. As a result the HSE have decided not to pursure the proposed amendments.

The HSE released a statement on the matter: “The HSE values the opinions of its stakeholders and in light of the responses we’ve received on this consultation, has decided not to proceed with the proposed amendment at this time. Licensed workers will continue to be examined by an HSE-appointed doctor every two years and those undertaking notifiable non-licensed work will continue to be examined every three years. The proposed amendment would have had no negative impacts on workers’ health or altered the prognosis of those whose previous exposures may have resulted in asbestos-related disease. CAR 2012 puts in place a robust regulatory framework of management through risk assessment and control of exposure to asbestos in the workplace; it is and will continue to be a key plank in preventing asbestos-related disease.”

Deputy general secretary of the Prospect union, Garry Graham, said: “Asbestos is a silent killer of thousands of workers every year. Frequent medical checks for those engaged in the dangerous removal of asbestos from old buildings is vital to pick up any symptoms as early as possible. We welcome the HSE seeing sense on this issue.”

There was some support for the proposed changes in the construction industry, where some seen 3 yearly checks as a better fit with many of their existing health assessment programmes, and believed alignment of health checks for workers carrying out licensed and non-licensed work would reduce confusion.

For more information, see the:

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