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Health and Safety News

Occupational health and safety news and guidance

Blog posts : "health and safety"

On the lookout for occupational asthma

11-04-2017

Photo shows an inhaler

People who develop asthma because of the type of work they do have what's known as occupational asthma. It's actually referred to as adult-onset asthma and accounts for up to 15% of asthma cases in adults. What's more, it's believed that in certain industries, as many as 10% of workers develop occupational asthma.

That's a lot of people being struck down by a condition that can be distressing and debilitating for them, and costly for their employers. Already, the UK has one of the worst instances of worker absence in the world due to illness. A study by accountancy firm PwC found that employees in the UK take as much as four times more absence annually because of sickness, compared to other countries. That’s an average absence of 9.1 days and it costs companies £29 billion a year.

Clearly, employers are not only legally and duty bound to provide a safe working environment for their personnel, but they also want to reduce the possibility of any kind of illness that may lead to days off and loss of productivity. With occupational asthma, some sectors are inherently more hazardous than others, such as the chemical and paint industries, where workers are exposed to dangero…

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11 ways to boost your health and safety culture

08-03-2017

Photo shows happy people talking in an office 

Promoting a strong health and safety (H&S) culture is not rocket science, but it takes time, effort and resources!

The overall culture in a company has a tremendous effect on the health and safety performance of employees. Culture is a notoriously tricky concept to pin down and fully understand. In slightly vague terms, the H&S culture of an organisation is the summation of groups values, attitudes, perceptions, competencies and behavioural patterns (Health and Safety Executive). These together determine the commitment to, and the style of, H&S management.

Here are some warning signs you need to be careful off, some signs that you’re on the right track, and some solid advice for boosting your health and safety culture.

Warning signs of a poor health and safety culture

  • There is little demonstrated commitment to H&S from senior management.
  • There’s a natural tendency to rationalise shortcuts when under pressure, especially when nothing bad happens.
  • The risk assessment was just another ‘job to be done’ and therefore lacks proper risk conceptualisation.
  • Employees are not aware of, or don’t understand, the organisation's safety policy.
  • Accidents are…

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Are you taking safety seriously or do you continue to gamble with your employees' lives?

15-11-2016

Photo shows a reach truck in a warehouse

Unfortunately, there are still a high percentage of employers who don't take safety seriously enough and are yet to embrace and appreciate the importance of occupational safety.

There is also by some a belief that providing a safe working environment is too expensive, they cannot justify the …

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What employers need to know about workplace temperature

10-11-2016

Photo shows a worker exposed to high temperatures

Now that the nights are drawing in and we’re all starting to think about turning the central heating on, the subject of workplace temperature becomes ever more important.

The relevant laws that govern indoor workplace temperature are set out by the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Reg…

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Dos and don’ts for working at height

23-03-2016

Photo shows a painter standing on a stepladderWorkplace injuries can pose very real dangers in our daily jobs, particularly when the task involves working high up on a building or other structure. Safety statistics make for grim reading, with accidents on building sites responsible for more than their proportionate share of all fatal injuries a…

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How does H&S legislation compare across Europe?

03-03-2016

Despite the European Union having a solid framework covering health and safety regulations at work, actual legislation and how it is enforced varies significantly between European countries.

Various bodies and people are held accountable differently in different countries, and some might appear t…

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How to focus on completing your NEBOSH National General Certificate

01-02-2016

Photo shows a group of adults in a training sessionAchieving the appropriate qualifications for your job is challenging. You may have to study and train, while you’re working. Finding the time to balance both can leave you stressed out and, in general, tired.

But it is worth the investment, especially when your job requires health and safety kn…

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Addition to the Jobs page

01-12-2015

Photo shows a health and safety job interviewA new link has been added to the Health and Safety Jobs page of the site; SafetyJobsOnline.com is linked to HealthandSafetyforBeginners.

SafetyJobsOnline offers jobseekers the opportunity to tap into a very different service from others you will find. As a jobseeker you can register on the site a…

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Chessington fined £150,000 for four-year-old girl's injuries

13-01-2015

Photo shows the gap in a fence where the four-year-old girl fellChessington World of Adventures has been sentenced for safety failings that led to a four-year-old girl suffering life-changing head injuries when she fell from a raised walkway while queuing for a ride.

The youngster, from Kent, fell nearly four metres while waiting in line for the Tomb Blaster ri…

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The 7 most visited pages

13-11-2014

Over the last 30 days, the seven most visited pages on HealthSafetyNews.co.uk were:

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What are employers' fire safety duties?

17-12-2013

photo shows a building on fireEmployers, building owners and other people responsible for commercial buildings have a duty to put necessary fire safety precautions in place to all reasonable and practicable extents. This is seen in health law under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, which applies to all non-domestic…

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CSCS tests: Why construction site health and safety is important

10-10-2012

CSCS cardsBetween April 2010 and March 2011, 50 workers were killed on UK construction sites. The construction industry accounts for just 5% of employees in Britain, but 27% of fatal injuries happen on construction sites.

When you look at the figures, it’s clear that construction sites are some of the most d…

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How to protect staff at risk of an electric shock

03-10-2012

high voltage warning signIf you are an employer, you have responsibilities under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 to protect your staff and the public from hazards.

Electric shocks can result in injury or even instant death which means it’s in your interest to take the necessary precautions to minimise the …

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Devon firm fined for worker's fall from forklift

03-05-2012

A North Devon farming business has been prosecuted for safety failings after a worker fractured his skull falling from the prong of a forklift truck at an animal feed mill.

Richard Robinson, 64, from Pyworthy, near Holsworthy, was attempting to crush recycled material when the fall occurred a…

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Case Law page updated

27-03-2012

The HealthSafetyNews.co.uk Case Law page has been updated with additional legal precedent.

The page now covers the following topics:

  • Duty of Care
  • 'Reasonably Practicable'
  • Due Diligence
  • Occupiers' Liability to Trespassers
  • Personal Liability of Executives
  • Stress
  • Suitability of Flooring

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Most popular health and safety news articles and pages

13-03-2012

EU-OSHA announces winners of 2011 photo competition

07-12-2011

The three best photographs have been selected by the international jury. Krzysztof Maksymowicz of Poland was awarded the first prize for his photograph 'dress maker'. The competition called for entries on the theme of 'safety and health in the workplace', with a special focus on risk prevention. To …

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Free health and safety guidance

01-08-2011

Don't forget to check out the free guidance available on the Health and Safety News home page.

There is a section in the right-hand column containing many useful guidance documents which can be downloaded free of charge.

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The Fun Police

29-05-2011

I’ve just left the BBC Television Centre where I watched the filming of the pilot episode of Matt Morgan’s “The Fun Police” – a Channel 4 sitcom based in the Health and Safety Department of Brightsea Borough Council. The show stars Flight of The Concords’ Rhys Darby along with Jack Doolan (Cemetery …

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High Wycombe landlord prosecuted for putting tenants' lives at risk

25-05-2011

A landlord has been fined after an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found he failed to ensure gas fittings, including a wall mounted boiler, at a property he rented out, were safe.

The HSE reports that Mr Asif Azam of Whitelands Road, High Wycombe, plead guilty at Aylesbury …

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20 Blog Posts