Week Commencing 04/11/2019 – In The News

Farming Partnership Fined After Member of the Public Killed

A blue tractor on a green field with a tree against a cloudy blue sky.The Farming Partnership B A L Ackroyd has been fined £18,000 with costs of £10,690 after a member of the public was killed. On 22 February 2017, the deceased was struck by a telescopic loader being driven by farmer Anthony Ackroyd. Mr Ackroyd was driving a telescopic loader carrying three bales of hay on the front, severely restricting forward visibility. He could not see the deceased and drove over him, killing him instantly. After a HSE investigation was carried out, it was found that the deceased had been previously employed on the farm before his retirement, and lived in a cottage adjacent to the farm. He was a regular visitor to the farm, carrying out work such as gardening. In addition, Mr Ackroyd was carrying an employee of the farm who was standing on the mounting step of the vehicle in such a way that had he slipped off the step, he would have fallen directly under the wheels of the machine. As a result, the company pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) and Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974  and was fined. Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector Julian Franklin commented: “This was a tragic and wholly avoidable incident. Drivers should ensure that they can always see in front of them or take equally effective precautions.”

Read more from SHPOnline HERE.

Key annual figures for 2018/19 Published by the HSE

HSE statistics for 2018/2019.The key annual Health and Safety figures for 2018/2019 have been published. They include, most notably:

  •  1.4 million working people suffering from a work-related illness
  • 2,526 mesothelioma deaths due to past asbestos exposures (2017)
  •  147 workers killed at work (2018/19)
  • 581,000 injuries occurred at work according to the Labour Force Survey
  • 69,208 injuries to employees reported under RIDDOR
  • 28.2 million working days lost due to work-related illness and workplace injury
  • Stress, depression or anxiety accounting for 44% of work-related ill health in 2018/19.
  • £15 billion estimated cost of injuries and ill health from current working conditions (2017/18)

To read more of the statistics, visit the HSE Website.

‘Emergency First Aid at Work’ Course Available

An illustration of a pink first aid kit next to a sitting person wearing a white headband with a red cross on.This month, we can reveal that our next ‘Emergency First Aid at Work’ course will take place in February 2020. This is a 1-day course that has been expertly designed to give professionals a comprehensive overview of all the Health and Safety basics, meaning you can respond quickly and effectively to First Aid concerns. The course costs £125 or £115 if 3 or more employees from the same company book onto the course.

Whether you are an employer looking to refresh your knowledge, or someone seeking to get peace of mind for the future, you can contact WA Management HERE for more information.

A Year On From GDPR In Numbers

Sequences of green computer code against a black background.

18 months after GDPR came into regulation, data protection has been transformed. Statistics show that the stricter guidelines have caused a large amount of complaints and fines but also an increased trust in companies’ handling of sensitive data.

By GDPR’s first anniversary in May 2019, across the EU there had been:

  • 144,000+ individual complaints;
  • 89,000+ breach notifications;
  • 440+ cross-border cases; and
  • €56,000,000+ in fines.

The most common types of complaint concerned telemarketing activities, promotional emails and video surveillance, or CCTV. By far the largest fine, of €50,000,000, was imposed by the French data protection authorities on Google over its collection of data for personalized adverts. Despite these breaches, research carried out in the UK for the ICO (Information Commissioner’s Office) in 2019 reported that 34% of people had high trust in companies’ storage of their dataup from 21% the previous year. 64% of data protection officers saw an increase in customers exercising their personal information rights since GDPR was implemented.

Read more on the effects of GDPR and the next steps for it from the British Standards Institution (BSI).

University Of Edinburgh Put Animal Research Workers At Risk

Numerous chemical test tubes of which some were empty and some with yelllow-coloured liquid in it.Two research workers joined the University of Edinburgh in 2003. Both declared that they were already allergic to rodents around the time of taking up these positions. Over the years, both continued to work with rats and were exposed to various levels of Laboratory Animal Allergens (LAA) – a respiratory sensitiser and a substance hazardous to health. The HSE’s investigation found that the University of Edinburgh failed to carry out suitable and sufficient risk assessments of the exposure to LAA, particularly when it was known that the research workers were already sensitised to LAA. They also failed to ensure suitable health surveillance was carried out at regular intervals (not more than 12 months apart) and that sufficient information, instruction, supervision and training were provided to the research workers. As a result, the University of Edinburgh pleaded guilty to these breaches and was fined £10,000. After the hearing, HSE Inspector Susan Donnelly said: “This was a case of the University completely failing to grasp the importance of risk-based health surveillance. “If the University had implemented a system of risk-based health surveillance, it would have ensured that an Occupational Health Management system was in place which would monitor worker’s fitness for work. Such systems can prevent an employee’s health condition becoming severe and life altering.’’

Read more on the case from SHPOnline.