With almost 12 months elapsed since the introduction of Fee For Intervention we have heard for the first time of an individual being fined under the scheme.
The individual was employed as a scaffolder working on a Carey Housing project. The HSE Inspector was driving by the site when he noticed the scaffolder working without edge protection, or any other method that might prevent him from failing.
The Inspector spoke directly to the scaffolder and explaining what he had observed regarding the material breach which the scaffolder had made. The result was that the scaffolder was personally issued with an Enforcement Notice and fined £400.
The Project Manager was next to be interviewed and discussions took place with regard to the role of the Principle Contractor under CDM, training requirements, competency, safe systems ofwork (including review of the sub-contractor’s method statements and risk assessments).
Perhaps not surprisingly the Inspector’s opinion was that the method statement submitted needed to be made more site specific. The detail which was omitted was the method of protection the scaffolder would be using — this should not be “generic” or left entirely to the scaffolder to decide upon but specified in writing.
No action taken against Careys, as the Principal Contractor, on this occasion, as the Inspector was, in general, pleased with what he had seen at site. However, the Inspector warned that individuals are being targeted and will continue to receive fines and an Enforcement Notice from the HSE if they break the law.
Examples of material breaches could include but are not limited to; failing to wear PPE, operating plant and equipment without the relevant training, failing to adhere to the method statement and risk assessments (RAMs), or for altering scaffolds if you are not trained.
The lesson? Use your RAMS as working documents – this is how our documents have always been produced. If you need help updating your own please call us for a clear and competitive cost.
About: Roger Hart is Managing Director of Outsource Safety Ltd, a consultancy specialising in ISO9001, ISO14001 and OHSAS18001 Management Systems. The company employs 10 staff and works for hundreds of retained clients across the UK in all sectors from Defence and Aerospace to Education and Museums with a specialism in the contracting, construction and renewables sectors, www.outsource-safety.co.uk