UK & Europe
Insurance & Reinsurance
“We will continue to target our inspections and enforcement to secure effective management and control of risks……However, to improve health and safety in the industry, the whole industry needs to take ownership of these challenges, work together and demonstrate leadership on implementing solutions.”
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is warning those working in the waste and recycling sector that they must pay closer attention to how they manage workplace risk –or face potential enforcement action. With the waste and recycling industry continuing to have one of the poorest health and safety records, the HSE’s programme of proactive inspections will review standards in businesses across the country, with inspections due to start in October 2019.
What will the inspections cover?
Waste and recycling remains a priority sector for the HSE. The industry has an injury rate 17 times as high as the average across all industries respectively, when looking at the number of fatalities per 100,000 workers employed.
The HSE's Business Plan for 2019/20 sets out its priorities, building on the previous year's plan and drawing on the sector plans and Helping Great Britain Work Well strategy. The waste and recycling industry again features prominently on the HSE's agenda; there will be a programme of inspections to approximately a third of premises where intelligence received from other regulators indicates known poor performance.
The Plan confirms that the programme of inspections will focus specifically on the management of maintenance activities and safe isolation practices to prevent fatal and serious incidents within this industry. The HSE will also inspect selected premises to assess how effectively the health risks associated with exposure to bioaerosols are being managed.
What are the potential consequences?
In previous programmes, the HSE has taken action to deal with risk in around half of the workplaces inspected. Therefore, any inspection carried out could potentially have serious consequences:
Prepare, prepare, prepare!
So, how can your business prepare?
Should you require further advice, then do not hesitate to contact a member of our team.
Authors: Rod Hunt, Partner, and Luisa Lister, Professional Support Lawyer
 HSE quote following 2018 waste safety campaign