BUILDING Safety Group the UK’s largest construction safety group, has reported a 33% decrease in manual handling injuries for its members.
Lifting and handling injuries are recognised by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) as the type of accident most likely to result in ‘over 7 day’ absences in the construction industry, accounting for over 30% of all ‘over 7 day’ injuries and costing businesses an estimated 909,000 working days in 2013 and 2014. There was also a significant reduction of 36% for injuries caused by workers hitting something fixed or stationary.
BSG’s latest figures from its Accident Reporting Index are for the three month period ending Oct 31. They follow a recent ‘HSE site inspection’ programme, which focused on ‘manual handling’ amongst other types of health and safety practices used on construction sites throughout the country. During its ‘blitz’ HSE Inspectors visited 1748 sites and found 40% to be of a ‘poor standard’, where workers were not being properly protected. Over 300 prohibition notices were subsequently issued along with 235 improvement notices.
Paul Kimpton, Managing Director at BSG commented, “HSE statistics tell us that over 18,000 ‘major’ and ‘over 7 day’ injuries are sustained through lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling loads. The average fine enforced by the MHO (Manual Handing Operations Regulations) during 2013 and 2014 was £4500 for companies convicted of a ‘Manual Handing Offence’. So we are of course very pleased that our members are following BSG’s guidance and recommendations, in this case with the objective of reducing the number of handling related accidents.”
BSG’s Accident Reporting Index is representative of its membership base made up by over 800 companies which employ approximately 21,000 people in 3,500 workplaces across the UK.