Week Commencing 02/10/2023 – In The News

Explosion at Oxfordshire recycling plant after lightning strike

A lightning strike has caused a huge gas explosion at a food waste recycling plant in Oxfordshire.

Witnesses reported seeing a fireball light up the night sky after the blast at the Severn Trent Green Power Plant at Cassington, north of Oxford.

The company said the strike caused one of its biogas tanks to explode at about 19:20 BST.

It said nobody had been injured and staff were working with emergency services to secure the site.

Six fire engines, 40 firefighters, police and at least four ambulances have been deployed to the plant, which processes food waste turning into biogas.

South Central Ambulance Service confirmed paramedics were at the scene, but that they were there on standby to assist police and the fire service.

Read more on the BBC website.

Respiratory risks in construction: early findings from HSE’s latest Dust Kills health campaign

A snapshot of good and bad practices of how workers’ exposure to dust is being managed and controlled on construction sites across Great Britain has been revealed.

As part of its Business Plan, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) carried out more than 1,000 inspections between May and July, focusing on what businesses and workers were doing to prevent or adequately control the risks from construction dust.

HSE’s Dust Kills campaign supported the site inspections, which raised awareness of the inspections, provide helpful advice, information, and links to guidance, for employers and workers. Almost two million connections were made to the campaign via the social media channels alongside extensive stakeholder and press coverage.

For more on the campaign’s initial findings, visit the HSE website.

Ryder Cup: Fire breaks out at Marco Simone golf club, venue for the tournament last weekend

Firefighters in Italy have brought a fire under control in the grandstand of the golf club that hosted the Ryder Cup last weekend.

The large fire began near the 18th green and first fairway at the Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome, at around 5pm on Thursday, Sky Italy said.

Huge pillars of smoke could be seen rising from the site, in the city’s northeastern suburb of Guidonia.

At one point authorities considered evacuating homes in the area, but that wasn’t necessary once the fire was tamed.

The three-storey stand was engulfed in flames, but it did not spread beyond the hospitality structure, the city’s fire services said. There were no reports of injuries and the cause of the fire is still unclear.

Learn more on the Sky News website.

‘More supportive working cultures are needed’ to reduce employee absence – which is at the highest rate in more than a decade

Calls have been made for more supportive working cultures to reduce employee absence – which is at the highest rate in more than a decade.

Research by the Chartered Institute of Personal Development (CIPD) has found UK employees were absent an average of 7.8 days over the past year, compared to the pre-pandemic rate of 5.8 days.

Minor illness was the top cause of short-term absence and mental ill health was the top cause of long-term absence – while 76% of reported stress-related absence in their organisation in the past year.

The CIPD now wants a more open and supportive culture in workplaces. Rachel Suff, Senior Employee Wellbeing Adviser at the CIPD, said: “We need a more systematic and preventative approach to workplace health. This means managing the risks to people’s health to prevent stress, as well as early intervention to prevent health issues from escalating where possible.”

The organisation is calling on businesses to build a workplace where people can speak to line managers about health issues and access support and adjustments, such as flexible working options and health services.

Visit the SHP website to read more.

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