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Health & Safety procedures must extend beyond being just a piece of paper

In a recent case a Glasgow-based company was fined £133,000 for failing to rectify unsafe work practices prior to an incident where a worker suffered fatal head injuries.

The HSE’s investigation found that the company had failed to carry out a detailed risk assessment, which would have highlighted the dangers.

HSE inspector Lesley Hammond said: "This is a tragic incident that need never have happened". Adding: "In this case, supervision throughout the company failed to act. This contributed to a working environment which had safety procedures in place on paper, but permitted them to be disregarded in practice."

Commenting Janet Cox, Client Services Director from leading health and safety consultancy, Perry Scott Nash said: "First and foremost health and safety is about saving lives and sadly it takes cases like this to really bring it home that it extends beyond being a piece of paper. Companies whose sentiment towards health and safety is one that focuses on due diligence alone should act now. Look at health and safety in terms of protecting your workforce rather than avoiding prosecution. Health and safety policies and procedures are no good stuck away in cupboards waiting for someone to get hurt, or worse."

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