Diesel
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  • HSE urges Blackburn businesses to take five steps to become COVID-secure
    The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is out and about talking to businesses in Blackburn and the surrounding areas to ensure they are COVID-secure to help tackle the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.To support the understanding of any patterns in the confirmed coronavirus cases in the area, HSE is working alongside Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council in the regulation of workplace health and safety and alongside local public health authorities. Inspectors are out visiting businesses across Blackburn and surrounding areas, putting employers on the spot and checking that they are complying with the latest guidance.To be COVID-secure means businesses need to put in place workplace adjustments, keep up to date with the latest guidance and put measures in place to manage the risk and protect workers and others. There are five practical steps that businesses can take to do that:
    • Step 1. carry out a COVID-19 risk assessment
    • Step 2. develop increased cleaning, hand washing and hygiene procedures
    • Step 3. take all reasonable steps to help people work from home
    • Step 4. maintain 2m social distancing where possible
    • Step 5. where people cannot be 2m apart, manage transmission risk
    Francine Cheney, HSE construction head of operations said: “The number of confirmed cases of the disease are currently high in the area. We are talking to local businesses and inspecting sites in and around Blackburn to understand how they are managing risks in line with their specific business activity.“Becoming COVID-secure needs to be the priority for all businesses to tackle the rise in the number of cases in the area. It is a legal duty for employers to protect their workers and others from harm and this includes taking reasonable steps to control the risk and protect people from coronavirus. This means making workplace adjustments to become COVID-secure. We advise employers to work with their employees when implementing changes, to help increase confidence with workers, customers and the local community.”As inspections across the country are ongoing, HSE has been utilising a number of different ways to gather intelligence and reach out to businesses across Blackburn with a combination of site visits, phone calls and through the collection of supporting visual evidence such as photos and video footage.HSE and local authority inspectors are finding some common issues across a range of sectors that include: failing to provide arrangements for monitoring, supervising and maintaining social distancing, failing to introduce an adequate cleaning regime – particularly at busy times of the day – and providing access to welfare facilities to allow employees to frequently wash their hands with warm water and soap.To support businesses, HSE are providing advice and guidance to manage risk and protect workers. Where some employers are not managing the risk, HSE will take action which can range from the provision of specific advice, issuing enforcement notices, stopping certain work practices until they are made safe and, where businesses fail to comply, this could lead to prosecution.Sally Nicholson, HSE head of operations in Lancashire said: “All businesses are in scope for inspections, that means any size business in any sector can receive an unannounced inspection to ensure they are COVID-secure. By making sure that businesses have measures in place to manage the risks, we can benefit the health of the local community as well as support the UK economy.”For the latest information and relevant Safer Workplaces guidance, see www.gov.uk

    FROM: 
    https://press.hse.gov.uk/2020/07/27/hse-urges-blackburn-businesses-to-take-five-steps-to-become-covi...
  • Safety breaches lead to fine for automotive firm and occupational health provide...
    A vehicle sales company and an occupational health & safety consultant have been fined for a breach of HAVS regulations.auto-repair-300x200.jpg

    Perrys Motor Sales Ltd (PMS) and S & Ash Ltd (previously known as Sound Advice Safety and Health Ltd.), have both been sentenced for safety breaches, after a worker developed Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS).
    An employee working as a small to medium area repair technology (SMART) repairer at the PMS site in Doncaster, who regularly used handheld power tools to undertake small scale vehicle body work repairs, when he was diagnosed with HAVS in 2013, Sheffield Crown Court was told.The HSE’s investigation discovered that that PMS had failed to adequately assess and control the foreseeable risk to SMART repairers. Following the diagnosis, PMS took no action to protect the employee from further damage to his health and his condition was not reported to the authorities in line with legal requirements.At the time, the firm now going by the name of S & Ash Ltd was engaged by PMS to provide HAVS health surveillance for employees. The investigation also found that following the health surveillance, S & Ash Ltd failed to provide suitable and accurate advice to the employer (PMS) or to inform the employee of the results of his health surveillance, even when specifically requested to do so by him.Perrys Motor Sales Ltd of Pavilion Drive, Northampton Business Park, Brackmills Northampton pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health & Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and Regulation 8 of The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 2013. The company has been fined £140,000 and ordered to pay £7,658.67 in costs.S & Ash Ltd of Charles House, Albert Street, Eccles, Manchester pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health & Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The company has been fined £4,000 and was ordered to pay £8,716.17 in costs.After the hearing, HSE Inspector Heather Cunnington commented: “Vibration can cause long-term painful damage to hands and fingers.“The motor vehicle repair trade must understand the importance of suitable risk assessments and having a robust occupational health and safety management system. Employers should ensure that the results of health surveillance are acted upon and employees are protected from the risks from HAV when working with handheld power tools.“Occupational health providers are in a unique position in safeguarding the health of employees and must provide accurate reports to employers following HAV health surveillance. Employers must act on these reports.”

    from: 
    https://www.shponline.co.uk/in-court/perrys-motor-sales-ltd-and-sound-advice-safety-and-health-ltd-f...
  • Council fined following fatality after a tree branch struck a moving vehicle
    Wirral Borough Council has been fined after a branch from a tree fell and struck the vehicle of a pregnant mother while she was driving with her two children, resulting in injuries to the mother and the loss of her prematurely born baby.Elizabeth Stear (39), who was 36 weeks pregnant, had been carrying out the daily school run. She was driving along the A551 Arrowe Park Road with her 13-year-old daughter and six-year-old son when her moving vehicle was struck by a large branch falling from a mature horse chestnut tree. The branch broke through the windscreen and front driver window and struck the right side of Elizabeth’s stomach. She was taken to hospital with suspected major trauma and her baby girl, Lucia Jayne Stear, was delivered by an emergency caesarean, living for 15 hours before sadly passing away.The incident happened on the morning of 10 November 2016.An HSE investigation uncovered that the large branch which fell had a crack on its upper edge where it was joined to the main trunk. It had begun to separate from the main trunk for at least one growing season before the failure. The tree, located within the boundary of Arrowe Park, adjacent to the highway, had not been inspected for at least 13 years.HAS said that Wirral Borough Council failed to:
    • Identify and manage the risks from falling trees and branches;
    • Implement a robust system of inspection of trees in its remit despite a similar incident occurring on Arrowe Park Road in January 2015.
    Wirral Borough Council of Town Hall, Brighton Street, Wallasey, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. The Local Authority was fined £100,000 and ordered to pay costs of £49,363.Elizabeth Stear said “Usually when you think of your children, you remember things like holidays, achievements, sports days, family days out, their favourite foods etc. We don’t have those memories for Lucia. We would like to thank our family and friends, Aintree Hospital, Liverpool Women’s Hospital neonatal team, the midwives, Honeysuckle team, the Police and Claire House who are still supporting me.”After the hearing, HSE Inspector Rohan Lye said: “There are no winners in this sad case. Councils have a duty to proactively assess and control risks to members of the public. This tragedy could so easily have been avoided if the risk had been identified, warnings had been heeded and an adequate tree management system had been implemented.“Tragically, due to these systemic failures, Elizabeth and Alex, together with their two children have been left without Lucia and have had to restructure their lives from the devastating impact they have each individually experienced.”

    from: 
    https://www.shponline.co.uk/in-court/council-fined-following-fatality-after-a-tree-branch-struck-a-m...
  • Report published into fatal injuries in agriculture, forestry and fishing in Bri...
    The HSE has issued a report that shows agriculture has the one of the worst rates of worker fatal injury in Great Britain. Last year, 21 people were killed in agriculture, one was a child.tractor-385681_1920-300x225.jpgThe report, Fatal injuries in agriculture, forestry and fishing in Great Britain 2019/20, was published to coincide with the start of Farm Safety Week (20 – 24 July). Led by the Farm Safety Foundation charity, the week shines a light on safety and wellbeing in the sector. The HSE statistics highlight that agriculture continues to have one of the worst rates of worker fatal injury; eighteen times higher than the average rate across all industries.Transport-related incidents, such as overturning vehicles or being struck by moving vehicles, were responsible for more deaths than any other cause last year. Around half of the workers killed were aged 55 years or older, with older workers being disproportionately most at risk of fatal injuries on farms. The youngest person killed last year was a 4-year old child.HSE’s Head of Agriculture, Adrian Hodkinson, said: “Agriculture is a vitally important part of our economy and has played an essential role during the coronavirus outbreak. However, agriculture still has the poorest safety record of any occupation in GB. Despite the very welcome reduction in numbers of deaths – 18 less than the previous year – much more remains to be done in this sector.“Each individual death is a huge and devasting loss to their family, friends and the wider community. It is not acceptable that agriculture and forestry continue to have such high rates of people being killed, and we will continue to push for a wholesale change of attitude and behaviours toward safety within the sectors.“Farm Safety Week is a timely reminder for the agriculture community to manage and control risk and not become complacent on farms. Death, injuries and cases of ill-health, including poor mental health, are not an inevitable part of farming. The safety and wellbeing of people working and living on farms must be treated seriously and things must be done the right way every day, not just this week.“The recent coronavirus outbreak at a farm shows how important it is for everyone in agriculture to take effective steps to control the risk of transmission and protect people from the virus. Inspectors are carrying out spot checks in workplaces to make sure they are COVID-secure and complying with the law and government guidance on social distancing, hygiene practices and supervision.”

    from: 
    https://www.shponline.co.uk/news/report-published-into-fatal-injuries-in-agriculture-forestry-and-fi...
  • New public health plans introduced to ensure pubs, restaurants and cafes offer b...
    People using pubs, restaurants and cafes will soon have greater freedom to choose non-smoking outdoor areas following a Parliamentary amendment to legislation. The Government says a balance has been struck between protecting public health and not imposing additional red tape on businesses.smoking-397599_640-300x200.jpgUnder the Business and Planning Bill, the Government had already set out a range of measures to help these vital businesses safely reopen and get staff back to work by making it quicker, easier and cheaper to operate outside.The Government will not ban outdoor smoking. Since the existing ban was introduced, businesses have invested heavily in their outdoor areas and banning outdoor smoking would lead to significant closures and job losses. However, this amendment will ensure that customers are given more choice by ensuring premises offer separate seating for smokers and non-smokers outside.Laws already exist making it illegal to smoke in enclosed areas and business owners can already make their own non-smoking policies in places where food is served.Planning Minister Rt Hon Christopher Pincher MP said: “We are supporting our pubs, cafes and restaurants to safely reopen and securing jobs by making it quicker, easier and cheaper to set up outdoor seating and stalls to serve food and drink, whilst protecting public health against the transmission of COVID.“These changes will allow everyone to enjoy outdoor eating and drinking whether they smoke or not, with appropriate provisions made for non-smokers and smokers.”The changes in the amendment aim to strike the right balance between protecting public health and not imposing additional red tape on businesses at a time when they need as much support as possible. The Government will not ban outdoor smoking in pubs, cafes or restaurants.Businesses can already make their own non-smoking policies for outside space without the need for regulations. This guidance will reinforce this point, making it clear that the licence-holder has to make reasonable provision for smoke-free seating.It includes:
    • Clear ‘no smoking’ signage displayed in designated areas;
    • No ash trays or similar receptacles to be provided or permitted to be left on furniture where a smoke-free seating is identified;
    • Licence holders should aim for a minimum 2 metre distance between non-smoking and smoking areas, wherever possible.
    The announcement also builds on measures to help businesses get back on their feet, including:
    • Simpler licensing process for outdoor seating for pubs, restaurants and cafes;
    • Councils encouraged to reduce red-tape and create more outdoor markets;
    • Part of comprehensive plan to revive high streets, support the hospitality industry and help get people back to work;
    • Helping councils and businesses transition from crisis response and lockdown, towards economic recovery.
    from: https://www.shponline.co.uk/leisure-and-entertainment/new-public-health-plans-introduced-to-ensure-p...
  • Does motorway roadworks speed limit increase put roadworkers at added risk?
    Speed limits through most major roadworks in England will be increased to 60mph, Highways England has announced.Roadworks-300x199.jpgHighways England says the move to increase the speed limit from 50mph has been taken in order to ‘increase traffic flow’ and ‘ease driver frustrations’.It follows a trial, which looked at different ‘scenarios’ within roadworks on England’s strategic road network of motorways and major A roads.The move has been welcomed by many, despite many unions previously stating that any increase would put the lives of road workers at risk.In 2019, SHP reported that more than half of road users have admitted driving in ways that put themselves or roadworkers at risk, with 74% admitting to exceeding speed limits.This followed video footage, released by Highways England, which highlighted the danger reckless motorists can cause to road workers.The increase will only apply to certain sets of roadworks, depending on the road layout and the type of work being carried out.The AA has said that the increase will reduce journey times and help reduce tailgating by motorists.Safer Highways CEO, Kevin Robinson, has welcomed the increase, but urges caution, saying it must be followed with greater enforcement on law breakers.Speaking about the announcement, Highways England Chief Executive Jim O’Sullivan said: “All of our research shows that road users benefit from 60mph limits in roadworks. They have shorter journey times and feel safe.“Road users understand that roadworks are necessary, but they are frustrated by them. So, testing 60mph has been about challenging the norm while ensuring the safety of our people working out there and those using our roads.”

    from: https://www.shponline.co.uk/road-safety/does-motorway-roadworks-speed-limit-increase-put-roadworkers...