Drop in surprise safety visits by the HSE

Grant Prior 8 years ago

The number of surprise site safety visits by the Health and Safety Executive fell again last year.

Figures obtained by Ucatt show there were a total of 9,219 inspections in 2015/16 compared to 9,656 in 2014/15 – a decrease of 4%.

The number of construction inspections has been falling steadily in recent years.

In 2012/13 the HSE undertook 10,577 inspections the latest figures reveal that in three years the number of inspections has declined by 13%.

The majority of regions in the UK saw a decline in inspections in 2015/16.

The greatest drop was in the South East where inspections fell by 26% which comes on top of a 19.6% reduction in the previous two years.

Other regions to record declines in 2015/16 were: Wales 18%, Eastern 13%, Yorkshire 13%, North East 10%, West Midlands 7% and London 5%.

Brian Rye, Acting General Secretary, of construction union UCATT, said: “These statistics are far from meaningless. They paint a serious picture of how a resource starved HSE is increasingly unable to do its job.

“Inspections save lives and prevent accidents. The reduction in inspections is endangering the lives, health and wellbeing of construction workers.”