O’Rourke defends safety policy from union attack

Grant Prior 3 years ago
Share

Laing O’Rourke has been left reeling by an attack on its new safety policy by construction union Ucatt.

Health and Safety Director John Green is leading the new approach

The firm’s “safety differently” policy focuses on preventing fatalities rather than all accidents however minor.

Ucatt believes the policy could “erode the very foundations of the UK’s health and safety culture.”

UCATT Midlands Regional Secretary, Shaun Lee, said: “Small injuries are not small concerns for workers.

“By neglecting basic safety, we put workers’ health and futures at risk.

“Small injuries can mean significant loss of pay and significant psychological stress for the worker and their family.

“If we don’t have zero tolerance in the work place, then standards will slip and the number of injuries will increase.”

An O’Rourke spokesperson said: “UCATT has not approached us with any concerns regarding “safety differently” and today’s press release is the first time we’ve heard of them.”

Safety differently is being driven by Group’s Health and Safety Director John Green who has seen the success it enjoyed in Australia.

The spokesperson said: “There’s a focus at many organisations on low-consequence events, like twisted ankles, in the belief that they prevented high-consequence events.

“In other words, the prevention of all harm means the prevention of serious harm. We do not believe that is true.

“There is no correlation between the number of times people twist their ankle and whether or not someone’s going to get killed by falling from height, for example.”

Former Vinci health and safety director Andy Sneddon is joining O’Rourke next month to head up safety across Europe.

The spokesperson added: “There’s also a new emphasis on seeing Laing O’Rourke’s own people as the solution to health and safety challenges by involving them in deciding how hazardous work should be approached.

“Instead of being all paperwork and process, we want health and safety to be at the very core of what we do – and how we do it. In other words, safety is an ethical responsibility not a bureaucratic activity.

“It’s not a question of saying everything we’ve done in the past was wrong – it absolutely isn’t. We wouldn’t be where we are now without it.

“It’s about building on that foundation with a new approach that will take us in the direction we want to go.”

 

Latest news

Lakehouse subbies plan showdown with Sureserve bosses

Suppliers owed millions to demand answers at company AGM
12 hours ago

Interserve subcontractors told it’s business as usual

Outsourcers circle Interserve support services division
18 hours ago

Morgan Sindall wins 20-year Sellafield civils deal

Four teams named for Sellafield decommissioning project partnership
19 hours ago

Hunt for quartet to deliver £700m Birmingham Uni pipeline

University is preparing to deliver phase two of its estate masterplan
20 hours ago

Stepnell wins £14m Northampton Vulcan works redevelopment

Historic factory to be refurbished for business start-ups
19 hours ago

Hunt starts for developer on £200m South Shields scheme

South Tyneside Council looking for housing partner and remediation specialist
19 hours ago

Revamp plans for Birmingham Moor Street station unveiled

Transfer deck across the top of station will connect to all platforms
19 hours ago

Boost your online presence – join the Enquirer Directory

New site for suppliers and buyers showcases products, services and latest stories
11 months ago

Interserve workers told to report for work as usual

Interserve subsidiaries to trade solvently as PLC business pre-packed
3 days ago

Interserve to file for administration as rescue rejected

Shareholders vote down rescue plan
4 days ago

Dawnus Group goes into administration

Grant Thornton now in charge of contractor which employed 700 staff
4 days ago

Bricklayer killed by collapsing wall

Court hands out £900,000 fine but contractor went into administration six months after tragedy
4 days ago

Dawnus collapse a “Welsh Carillion”

Subcontractors braced for huge losses as administrators poised to take control
4 days ago

Taylor Woodrow losses halve Vinci UK profits

Building operations trade profitably but Taylor Woodrow suffers fifth year in the red
4 days ago

Plans in for £70m Edinburgh botanic garden revamp

New glasshouse features in major overhaul plan
4 days ago

Mace to steer £350m Stevenage town centre revamp

Work set to begin on site next year
4 days ago

Plan for £250m new Tees Crossing

Tees Valley Combined Authority hopes work could start by 2023
5 days ago

Rail safety warning over runaway machine on tracks

Accident investigators highlight problems with safety management systems
4 days ago

Subbies braced for worst if Interserve loses crunch vote

Interserve to fall into administration if shareholders reject rescue plan
4 days ago

Dawnus heading for administration

Dawnus Construction Holdings on brink of collapse
6 days ago

11 firms win £5.2bn Southern Construction Framework

McLaren and McAlpine join new line up as Bouygues and Balfour drop out
5 days ago

Lakehouse Contracts ceases trading

£71m turnover business goes bust seven months after being sold by Sureserve
5 days ago

Torsion to build £65m twin towers in Leeds

Court Collaboration and Torsion Developments put in plans for build to rent scheme
5 days ago

Balfour Beatty bags £1.5bn central railway alliance

Network Rail names winner of last of three new track alliance deals
5 days ago

Brunel Uni starts race for £40m teaching block

Seven-storey facility will replace the 1968 John Crank building at Uxbridge campus
5 days ago

27 years in jail for “industrial scale” skills card forgers

Police smash forgery gang who were flooding the market with fake CSCS cards
5 days ago

£250m mixed-use scheme unveiled for Wolverhampton

Work planned to start next year creating 1,000 construction jobs
5 days ago

Holly Price becomes new head of the NFDC

Keltbray director becomes new leader of the demolition industry
6 days ago

Housing boosted in Spring Statement

£717m released for 37,000 homes at Old Oak Common in London, the Oxford-Cambridge Arc and Cheshire.
6 days ago

Balfour Beatty hits 2.4% construction margin

Leo Quinn puts group on strong footing after four-year turnaround
6 days ago

Contractor services