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RoSPA and HSE focus on safer workplace transport

Tackling one of the biggest causes of deaths in the workplace is the aim of a series of events hosted by RoSPA and the Health and Safety Executive.

Bookings are being taken for a Managing Workplace Transport Risks conference, which is being held on Wednesday, May 14, 2008. The full-day event at the NEC in Birmingham will run alongside the annual Safety & Health Expo and RoSPA's Occupational Health and Safety Awards ceremonies.

Two half-day workplace transport briefings, taking place on Monday (December 3) at RoSPA's Birmingham headquarters, have already sold out.

Vehicles are the second largest cause of fatal accidents in UK workplaces, leading to 70 deaths in 2004/05. In the same year, they also accounted for 2,021 major injuries to workers and members of the public, and 3,482 injuries to workers that required more than three days off work.

The main causes of such accidents are: people being struck by moving vehicles; people falling from vehicles; loads falling from vehicles; and vehicles overturning. (Road accidents involving people driving for work are not included in the workplace transport figures).

All three events will give details of the HSE's injuries reduction programme and what an inspector looks for in terms of workplace transport safety. They will also include case studies and an introduction to the HSE's recently-published online Route Map, which brings together details of legislation, guidance and good practice that are relevant in managing the use of vehicles at work.

Roger Bibbings, RoSPA Occupational Safety Adviser, said: “We know that accidents involving vehicles in the workplace cause many lives to be tragically changed or cut short each year. Thousands of working days are also lost.

“Close interactions between moving vehicles and pedestrians, and the unloading of cargo, can be considered hazardous in any setting. In work environments, the culture of tight deadlines and the need for swift turnarounds adds an additional element of risk.

“Employers should work with their staff to address this important aspect of accident prevention, and we hope the joint RoSPA and HSE events will be a useful starting point for those wanting advice on the management of issues including site layout, vehicle selection and driver competence.”

December's briefings are sponsored by Tesco.com. More information about the conference in May can be found by visiting www.rospa.com/workplacetransport/nec/ , calling 0121 248 2120 or emailing events@rospa.com

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