Tougher fines for health and safety offences – Is your business compliant?

Tougher fines for health and safety offences – Is your business compliant?

Workplace health and safety hazards can be costly, not only to the well being of your employees but also your bottom line.

With new sentencing guidelines coming into force from February 2016, suggested fines could reach £20 million for corporate manslaughter offences and £10 million for the most serious health and safety offences. The new guideline is intended to ensure a consistent approach to the sentencing of individuals and organisations convicted of health and safety, corporate manslaughter and food safety and hygiene offences.

An offending firm’s turnover will be used as a starting point to determine the size of its fine.

Health and Safety made simple

As part of managing health and safety within your business, you must control the risks within your workplace.

To do this, you need to think about what may cause harm to employees, visitors or the general public and decide whether you are taking reasonable steps to prevent it happening. A simple risk assessment will ensure all potential threats are covered and help identify what needs to be done to control the risk and satisfy the law.

HSE recommends a five-step approach to risk assessment, and slip and trip risks should be among the risks examined.

Avoid Corporate Manslaughter

Companies and organisations can be found guilty of corporate manslaughter as a result of serious management failures resulting in a gross breach of a duty of care.

Corporate manslaughter will continue to be an extremely serious offence, reserved for the very worst cases of corporate mismanagement leading to death.

The Sentencing Council is concerned with the way in which an organisation’s activities were managed, or organised, and looks at management systems and practices across the organisation and whether an adequate standard of care was applied.

Reduce work related accidents

As a business, to avoid a significant fine or possible prosecution, you should have a robust health and safety management system in place that protects your employees, visitors or the general public.

A robust health and safety policy should be a fundamental part of your business. Click here to view the Top 10 Workplace Health & Safety Checklist.

Whatever the size of your business, we can help you manage your health and safety; from our WorkplaceTeam experts, through to a fully stocked range of compliant products. We can ease the pressures that come with health and safety regulations. 

For more information or to view our product range, click here to view our Workplace catalogues.

Source: http://www.hse.gov.uk