HSE COVID-19 Inspections & Being Covid-Secure

Now that works can commence again its vital we are all following the guidelines given to us from the government to protect ourselves, others around us and our workplace to be as COVID-secure as we can be. This means that businesses must make adjustments to manage the risk and protect workers and others from the virus.

The article below will tell you about the latest information on the HSE’s current site inspections, how they are doing this and what the common issue’s raised are as well as where you can find further information and support on this topic. We also give a small insight into the upcoming new chair of the HSE, Sarah Newton.

The below information has been taken from the HSE, the Government & Health & Safety Matters website.

HSE Site Visits

Currently the HSE are working closely with Greater Manchester Combined Authority and local public health authorities after a spike in Corona-virus cases. But Inspections are not only taking place in city’s with high Corona-virus cases they are happening everywhere!

Inspectors are at every opportunity conducting workplace checks to make sure businesses are complying with the COVID-secure guidance. Being COVID-secure means being adaptable to the current guidelines and so the HSE’s inspection approach will adapt as workplaces in different sectors get to grips with managing the Corona-virus risks that apply to their business.

 The HSE have been using several ways to gather information and reach out to different businesses across the UK to make sure businesses have the correct adjustments in place and are being COVID-secure.

They are doing this by a combination of:
-Site visits
-Phone calls
-Collecting supporting visual evidence including photos and video footage.

They are putting duty holders and employers on the spot and businesses are being asked to provide evidence of the measures that they have put in place as well as ensuring that they are following the latest guidelines for making the workplace safer.

Common Issues Raised During Site Visits

The common issues the HSE and local authority inspectors are coming across include:

 -Failing to provide arrangements for monitoring supervising and maintaining social distancing-Failing to introduce an adequate cleaning regime – particularly during busy times
-Providing access to welfare facilities to allow employees to frequently wash their hands with warm water and soap.

If employers do not manage the risk the HSE will take action. This can range from specific advice, issuing enforcement notices and stopping certain work practices until they are made safe. Where businesses still fail to comply with this it could lead to prosecution.

NEW Chair Of The HSE: Sarah Newton

Sarah Newton has been announced as the new chair of the HSE to replace Martin Temple. Martin took on the role almost 5 years ago and with his strong knowledge of the CDM regulations adopted  a no-nonsense approach and challenged CDM duty holders making sure that they were aware of and complied with their responsibilities.

Sarah Newton has served as an MP and been very involved in the Modern Slavery Act within her career. This could well be one of her key focuses in the near future when chairing the HSE. We look forward to hearing an early statement from Sarah soon.

Further Information & Support

The HSE are providing advice and guidance to help manage the risk and protect workers. As well as the information provided above, further information and guidance can be found on the
Government website: www.gov.uk & The HSE Website https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/working-safely/index.htm

Bernard Sims Associates have several services which could support and assist you by making you, your employee’s & workplace COVID-secure.

Check out our NEW COVID-19 Assistance page by clicking the link: https://www.bernardsimsassociates.co.uk/covid-19-assistance/

For more information or to instruct us to undertake one of our COVID-19 assistance services email bsims@bsims.co.uk or call us on 01483 467270 today!

Keep Well & Safe 
Bernard Sims Associates