A new safety campaign in London suggests that not enough is being done to prevent work accidents which occur in basements.
Over a third of domestic basement projects across three boroughs in the capital failed unannounced safety checks.
The Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) inspection campaign took place from November 20-21. Its inspectors examined 107 sites in Hammersmith and Fulham, Kensington and Chelsea, and Westminster.
They took enforcement action in 36 (34%) of these. The officials served 41 Prohibition Notices requiring risky practices to stop immediately.
They also served 21 Improvement Notices served requiring safety upgrades to be introduced.
Most Prohibition Notices pertained to unsafe work at height, with dangerous excavations also among their worries. Three in four Improvement Notices concerned inadequate welfare provision.
Work accident ‘risk lessons learned’
Andrew Beal, HSE’s lead inspector for the campaign, believes some progress is being made in the fight to prevent work accidents in basements.
The initiative found that contractors who have previously been advised by the HSE have made improvements.
The worst standards were mainly found among businesses who were previously unknown to visiting inspectors.
Mr Beal, Principal Inspector for HSE’s Construction Division in the City and South West London, said the inspections unearthed generally better standards at sites managed by firms who are known to HSE.
Mr Beal added: “It illustrates that lessons have been learned, and we hope the latest failings that required action will have a similar impact.”
Accident Advice Helpline can help
Accident Advice Helpline is a respected national law company which is renowned for offering a 100% no-win, no-fee solution with friendly, helpful staff and a 24/7 free legal advice helpline on 0800 689 0500.
So if you’ve suffered a work accident, visit Accident Advice Helpline’s website, which also offers an informative blog.