Categories
Advice Compliance

Accidents on the rise and they cost

… in pain and misery for those who are injured and to businesses and the economy. 

There was a decrease in the number of workers killed at work – down to 111 for 2019/2020 – but worryingly this figure has climbed again to 142 for the 12 months ending in March of this year. It is quite possible that due to the focus on Covid-19 arrangements and some time away on furlough that day-to-day safety practices may have lapsed.

On a brighter note, the UK still has the lowest rates of fatal work -related injuries in Europe. 

In monetary terms the annual cost of all this work-related injury and ill heath was £16,200,000,000 about the cost of five new aircraft carriers. 

Given these figures it must make sense for every business to make a modest financial investment into the health and safety of their employees.

Funding sensible and proportionate measures to keep workers and others affected by your work safe will produce dividends in the form of reduced incident rates, healthier workers and compliance with the law. 

Don’t be complacent when it comes to your workplace health and safety.  Contact us if you would like straight-talking pragmatic safety advice.

Take a look at the summary of the 2020 statistics from the HSE.  See their PDF here. We will update with 2021 figures when they are available.

Categories
Advice coronavirus Events

Phase I Trials – Events

We were reading the Events Research Programme’s Phase I findings that were published last week – 25 June 2021.  We found it interesting to note – especially if you watched it on television – that face coverings were apparently mandatory for the crowd at the FA Cup events – both at the semi and the final. 

The report stated that there was 92% compliance (at the observed locations) while seated outdoors. We find this hard to believe having seen some of the TV coverage and it is unlikely that the program’s producer particularly wanted to focus on fans who removed coverings as they are more photogenic.

In defence of the organisers we can imagine how incredibly hard it must be to ask for compliance from large crowds when people will have strong opinions about the risk (fresh air everywhere), they are excited about the occasion, are with friends and have possibly consumed some alcohol.

Also, the report notes as outdoor occupancy levels rise compliance falls. Mob rule perhaps, feel free to discuss. In particular compliance with face coverings in hospitality areas was very, very low. 

Indoor events seem to fare much better for compliance where observed possibly being as high as 98%. 

There are clearly some significant challenges for mass gatherings if face coverings are going to continue to be a control measure for organisers to apply later in the year.

You can read the full report here.  

Contact us if you have an event that requires health and safety advice and support.

Categories
Advice Compliance coronavirus

Downgrading restrictions

Good news

“Following advice from the Joint Biosecurity Centre and in the light of the most recent data, the UK Chief Medical Officers and NHS England National Medical Director agree that the UK alert level should move from level 4 to level 3.”

UK Chief Medical Officers and NHS England

This is terrific news and if we wish to continue enjoying the increased freedoms it allows, requires us to keep complying with the guidance and the remaining ‘light touch’ restrictions that are still in place.

Health and safety advice in the workplace is very similar in that there is a requirement on employers to comply with the current legislation. If you do this you can carry on without interference from the authorities and maintain a safe workplace, undertaking activities that do not put staff or others at undue risk. When workers, contractors or management try to cut corners (to beat a clock, or a budget, or a clause, or A DUTY) they put us all at risk of severe consequences.

Step four in the road map is more than a month away so keep up the compliance and do not get complacent – rather like attitudes to health and safety matters in the workplace.

Update 15 June:

The delay to the Roadmap’s Step 4 easing is now postponed to 19 July. So current restrictions are to stay in place for a further four weeks while the Delta variant is further understood and the vaccine roll out is further ramped up.

Categories
Advice coronavirus

Roadmap from ‘Lockdown’

The government has started to ease the restrictions and to allow the country, step by step to start opening up.

Care still needs to be applied to all work activities – whether you are preparing to re-open a place of work or to alter or extend the business services which have been offered in line with the eased restrictions.

The economy will be opening up but the coronavirus is still present and a threat to health.

If you need some practical and pragmatic Health and Safety advice to ensure your Covid-19 Secure Arrangements stay relevant and valid then contact us for an informal chat.

Stay safe.

Categories
Advice Compliance coronavirus

R-value, new restrictions and complete compliance

The number of coronavirus cases in the UK is increasing. 

It is too early to say that the rise of cases is because ‘we’ have become too complacent, more rebellious or just de-sensitised to the pandemic but the fact is the R value has risen and it affects us all.

regional spread of R number

There are arguments raging across the political sectors but one thing that virtually every scientist agrees on is the continued need for social distancing, good hand hygiene and the wearing of masks where social distancing can’t be achieved.

Businesses also recognise that national restrictions and closures just can’t go on. Perhaps therefore the time has come to fully recognise that every business has to play its part and give “complete” compliance a real chance. Not just acting “almost” within the restrictions but  doing everything we can to stop any spread of the infection within our workplaces and communities.

As always we are here to support the business community and promote a swift reduction in the case numbers and an equally swift end to the restrictions.  

Stay safe – if you need guidance on your current Covid-19 Secure arrangements please contact us.

    Categories
    Advice Audit Compliance

    Don’t overlook your usual reviews

    COVID-19 arrangements working well?

    Great – but DON’T overlook your usual Health and Safety Review

    Every organisation must have Health and Safety arrangements and, if you employ more than 5 people, they must be written down.

    Most businesses have arrangements in place, but often slip up when it comes to reviewing those arrangements. Reviews show that you comply with your Health and Safety policy, highlight potential dangers and often give valuable insights which help avoid financial losses.

    COVID-19 forced every business to look at some aspects of working but it is vital that ALL working procedures are reviewed to ensure that risks are mitigated and employees work as safely as possible.

    So Pro Safety offers an effective audit procedure which gives you fast results and practical solutions to address any safety issues that arise. It also gives business leaders a score to measure progress and improvements during the year, encouraging compliance and success.

    If you wish to discuss a review of your arrangements contact us now.

    Categories
    Advice Compliance

    Re-opening a Village Hall

    … your support and advice has been invaluable and I can’t thank you enough. Thanks to you the hall was able to reopen yesterday. I am sure we will be back soon for more help.

    Secretary, Wallington Village Community Association

    The Village Hall in Wallington serves a community of approx 650 households who together with a significant number of commercial groups use the facilities for meetings and social gatherings.

    So Pro Safety was asked to assist the Wallington Village Community Association with the COVID-19 Secure arrangements for the re-opening of the Wallington Village Hall.

    A deluge of advice and guidance was available and we were able to steer the Association’s working group through the paper mountain to produce a concise COVID-19 Risk Assessment, guidance for users and practical advice on space usage.

    The Association also took the opportunity to review its Health and Safety arrangements and we conducted a full Health and Safety Audit, producing an up to date Risk Assessment and Fire Risk Assessment for the attention of the Executive committee.

    It is always a pleasure to work with committed local volunteers to guide them through a challenging time and to provide the professional support to allow their valuable community asset to be preserved and thrive.

    Categories
    Advice Events

    French confusion

    At first glance the recent reports of the relaxing of social distancing measures for large indoor events in France seems at odds with the uptick in their reported number of cases of Covid-19. However, look more closely and you find it does not apply to the “red zones”.

    It seems every country is keen to return to public events but is picking its way carefully.

    As the UK move towards the holding of events indoors we continue to provide advice and assistance with Covid-19 Secure working across many sectors including the events world. Happy to help you…

    Today’s COVID cases and an item from today’s Access All Areas news summary

    Categories
    Advice

    2m is still the right thing to do

    Update following the government guidance for further easing on 4 July

    Just because the phrase “further easing of social distancing to 1m+” has been introduced doesn’t mean the 2m social distancing rule has been abandoned.  2m distancing is still required in businesses except where it is not viable, then it can be 1m+ and the plus mean further risk mitigation. 

    Mitigation arrangements could include increased handwashing, surface and equipment cleaning, screens to separate specific activity/working areas, consistent pairing, reduction in the time spent in proximity, avoidance of the face-to-face in preference to side-by-side, staggering of timed activities (shifts, appointments, break times etc), reducing congestion and increased ventilation.

    If you are intending to amend your arrangements don’t forget to update your COVID Secure Risk Assessment. 

    If you need a written risk assessment, an update to you current arrangements or further advice on any aspects of health and safety etc, SoPro Safety is ready and available to assist you.

    Categories
    Advice

    Up and Running

    COVID-19 Secure Workplace Risk Assessments

    For one of our Bridal client hearts are a clever way to remind customers to social distance

    We are delighted that some of our clients are now back in business. It’s been a long time coming with much hard work and thought being put in to ensure that businesses are COVID-19 Secure workplaces, ready and safe to receive customers.

    For us it’s been a fascinating time, ploughing through government, PHE and HSE guidance to find the best route for our clients and to give maximum assistance in drafting the important COVID-19 Secure workplace risk assessments.  As always, we advise our clients to involve all staff members in the drafting and  implementing of work arrangements and some of our video calls have been pretty lively…

    We also advise that the process must be ongoing – we hate a dusty H&S file sitting on a shelf. We suggest pithy, short guidelines for staff with regular follow ups.

    We are also providing our clients with our new “check-in” service, a vital reminder for our clients to keep monitoring their arrangements to check they are working and being actioned. We don’t like to call it nagging more of a gentle nudge.  Our clients tell us this is a service they really value as often time is limited and health and safety matters can start to slip. In a world of pandemic this can’t afford to happen.