A quarterly newsletter from Gallagher Risk Management Solutions May 2019
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Upcoming Training Dates

IOSH Managing Safely Courses

IOSH-approved Managing Safely gives your managers, supervisors and staff the skills they need to understand the risks and run effective Health & Safety programmes. Running over three days, the course covers risk assessment, risk control, hazard identification, waste and pollution protection, accident and incident investigation – plus performance measurement.

£650+VAT (per delegate)

  • Wakefield - 11th, 18th & 25th June
  • Birmingham - 2nd, 3rd & 4th July
  • Leicester - 6th, 7th & 8th August
  • London - 18th, 19th & 20th September
  • Glasgow - 24th, 25th & 26th September
  • Wakefield - 8th, 9th & 10th October
  • Leicester - 12th, 13th & 14th November
  • Manchester - 19th, 20th & 21st November
  • London - 27th, 28th & 29th November

IOSH Safety for Executives & Directors courses

The IOSH-approved Safety for Executives & Directors course is designed for individuals who hold senior positions such as business owners or Directors within any business sector. The course lasts one day, starting at approximately 10am and aiming to finish by 3:30pm. The course is based on the occupational health and safety standards which are found in the Health and Safety Executive Guidance, the Turnbull Report and the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act of 2007.

£250+VAT (per delegate)

  • London - 18th June
  • Birmingham - 26th June
  • Wakefield - 2nd July
  • Leicester - 24th September
  • Manchester - 24th October

Booking a place on our IOSH course is easy with our online booking form.

Construction industry aims to introduce a ‘Common Assessment Standard’1

In an attempt to reduce the burden of Health and Safety red tape, the Construction industry is working to introduce a “Common Assessment Standard” which would replace the need for SME suppliers to complete multiple health and safety accreditations. Due to soft launch in April 2019, it will initially be trialled by three of the largest accreditation companies, CHAS, Construction Line and Achilles. With Health and Safety requirements costing £1 billion a year, this could alleviate some of the financial pressure on smaller firms. The assessment is likely to be more challenging than those currently set by providers, with 248 questions compared to the 190 on the Government’s own site.

Driving in the EU post Brexit

The general consensus is that should we fail to secure a Brexit deal then all drivers will be required to obtain a Green Card when driving within the EU and other EU approved countries2. They may potentially also require an International Driving Permit (IDP) which is available from your local Post Office.

Your UK driving licence is all you currently need in most European countries, but venture further afield and you might have to carry an International Driving Permit (IDP) too. An IDP is basically an official, multi-language translation of your driving licence.

Recognised worldwide, it’s valid for 12 months.

As long as you carry it as well as your UK licence, it usually allows you to drive a private vehicle.

Most countries currently require what’s known as a 1949 Convention IDP, but some ask for a 1926 Convention IDP.

If a Green Card is required you will need to obtain this from your insurer. Some insurers are indicating that a month’s notice will be required. Typically, each card will only cover one trip, so if you have multiple trips planned you will need to obtain multiple cards. Furthermore, each card is vehicle specific, so those with multiple vehicles will require multiple green cards for each specific vehicle.

The Green Card needs to be a physical document, printed on green paper – so digital copies will not be accepted (at this stage anyway). While there is talk of digitised cards being made available in the future, they are not currently an option.

If you are expected to be overseas in the near future, you must obtain a Green Card before you travel. Failure to do so will constitute breaking the law and could result in the seizure of your vehicle and a fine for driving without insurance.

18th edition BS7671 IET wiring regulations is now in force

In July 2018, the 18th edition of the UK Wiring Regulations was released.3 As of 1 January 2019, there are new stricter regulations for commercial landlords and property owners. These cannot be amended retroactively so you need ensure you’re familiar with them.

During 2017/18, there were 38,321 accidental property fires in England, with half of those fires caused by electrical faults or misuse.4 These could easily have been prevented and property owners and commercial landlords are directly responsible, and legally accountable, for working to do so.

BS 7671 of the IET Wiring Regulations sets out the safety levels for new electrical installations as well as additions and changes to existing installations. This does not just apply to the UK, but numerous other countries. Following BS7671 ensures that your wiring systems meet the standard of the requirements of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989.

Key changes

There are a number of important changes to the legislation, including the following:

Protection against overvoltage: The new regulations make clear surge protection must be provided where a surge could result in serious injury or loss of life, interruption to public services or industrial and commercial activities, damage to cultural heritage, or a large number of individuals at the same location being affected.

RCD protection: RCDs are now required on lighting circuits and on all sockets outlets with ratings up to and including 32A. They must also be manually tested every six months.

Arc fault detection devices: These devices should be installed as they are designed to trip the system in the event of an electrical fault.

Euroclass cable ratings: all cables used in buildings must have a Euroclass rating.

Wiring support: all wiring systems must be supported to prevent collapse if a fire occurs. Previously this only applied to fire escapes.

Embedded electric heating: these areas, including heated floors, should have protection in place to prevent them from overheating.

HSE safety alert issued for mild steel welding fumes5

New evidence from the International Agency for Research on Cancer has shown that a mild steel welding fume can cause lung and kidney cancer, so with immediate effect the World Health Organisation has reclassified it as a human carcinogen.

As a result of these findings, HSE have increased their enforcement expectation for all welding fumes as ventilation is no longer a strong enough means of control. Instead, extraction will be required for all indoor welding activities as this controls exposure to manganese – a chemical which causes neurological effects similar to Parkinson’s disease. Ventilation should be teamed with respiratory protective equipment (RPE) to protect against any lingering fumes.

The Fire Protection Association has stated that the recent Ocado warehouse fire should not deter businesses from using sprinklers. Dr James L D Glocking, Technical Director of the Fire Protection Association stated that:

The Ocado warehouse fire is a stark reminder of the instantaneous impact that fire can have on a major business, its operations, and share price. Automated warehousing facilities present significant fire protection challenges as a result of very high storage densities, limited access, electronic conveyancing systems, high racking, and cold storage requirements. With (unconfirmed) information emerging that the Ocado warehouse was sprinkler protected, this sad event will no doubt prompt a thorough investigation as to the circumstances that might have led to the protection system being overwhelmed. Sprinkler system failures are very rare events, they are specifically designed to offer levels of resilience far in excess of any other suppression technology and millions are spent every year around the world ensuring that installation and design rules keep abreast with modern day challenges and storage methods.

Although the majority of sprinkler operations result in a fire being extinguished, their design remit is to stop the development of a fire, hold it at a manageable size, and support fire and rescue service intervention (ensuring structural integrity of the building and supporting tenable conditions) for a predefined period of time until it is manually extinguished by them. With the increasing size of buildings, complexity of internal structures limiting access within the building, and the potential for fire seats (where the fire starts) to be at some height, there may need to be a need to review just how effective fire and rescue services can be expected to be within the sprinkler system design time frame.

That said, the design of any sprinkler system needs to be accompanied by strict control of the environment it is designed to protect. Any holistic design requires a passive envelop to work within and control over key parameters that might act to form sustained ignition sources or spread fire, requiring isolation of power, heat, energy systems, and conveyancing systems to name but a few. Failure of any one of these supporting systems could contribute to creating conditions that the sprinkler system was never designed to cope with.

It is the Fire Protection Association’s belief that this isolated event should not detract from the unrivalled reputation sprinkler systems have for performance and for the enormous contribution they make to the protection of the UK’s business economy, and that we learn from whatever this teaches us to make future systems better still. The UK has the laxest mandated requirements for the protection of the commercial estate from fire in Europe – allowing enormous unprotected compartment sizes. Subject to the findings of any investigation, perhaps now might be the time to review this so that the Fire and rescue Service response and installed protection systems can be designed with knowledge of an upper limit by the constraining of building proportions and compartment size to a level that assures protection performance and FRS response can work in harmony as design demands. Might it be that we are finding the limit of what can be reasonably protected?"

Recent prosecutions

Topshop fined £450,000 after 10-year old fractures skull8

The owner of Topshop has been fined £450,000 after a 10-year old girl was injured by an incorrectly installed queue barrier in a store. She had been swinging on the barrier causing it to topple due to it not being correctly attached to the floor.

The Arcadia Group Ltd which owns Topshop admitted breaking health and safety laws and pled guilty to breaking Sections 3(1) and Section 33(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Distribution company fined after worker sustained life changing injuries9

A Warrington-based delivery company has been fined after a new employee fell backwards from a raised tail lift and was hit by several kegs of beer. The worker suffered a traumatic brain injury and facial fractures requiring metal plates. An investigation revealed that the worker had no previous experience of using the type of pallet truck or tail lift involved in the incident and not had been given any training to do so.

H & M Distribution Limited of Newton Le Willows, Warrington pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 3(1) of the Health & Safety at Work Regulation 1974 and was been fined £60,000 and ordered to pay costs of £7,203.14.

Renault prosecuted for safety breach

Car manufacturer Renault has been fined for a serious safety breach after they failed to properly maintain lifting equipment, putting employees at risk. Employees were forced to repeatedly use the faulty lifts, which could have resulted into a serious incident.

Renault pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 5 (1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER) and Regulation 10 (3) (a) of the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) 1998 and were fined £200,000 and ordered to pay costs of £17,217.84.

The risks of distracted driving10

Employers have a duty of care to ensure that any of their employees who drive are giving the road their full attention at the same time. Failure to do so can result in a prosecution under the Road Traffic Act 1988 including imprisonment for death by dangerous driving which can result in a sentence of up to 14 years and a disqualification from driving. The lesser sentence of death by careless driving can result in five years’ imprisonment and disqualification.

Dangerous driving convictions which do not result in death are still punishable by two years in prison, while careless driving convictions rarely result in a custodial sentence and are more likely to result in fines and penalty points.

Case study

Daryl Perara, was found guilty of causing serious injury by dangerous driving after he drove onto a crossroads ignoring a give-way sign and markings, colliding with another car which was speeding but had right of way. It transpired that he had worked two twelve hour shifts in two days. He received two years’ in prison and a five-year driving ban to start when he released. This was later reduced to two years.

This case is a reminder that it is important to ensure that drivers are capable of driving at all times. Not only is mobile phone use an issue, but fatigue, sat nav use, eating and drinking at the wheel, and adjusting the stereo can all result in distracted driving.

Increased penalties

The Government, in response to public concern about light sentencing for dangerous drivers, is currently consulting on creating a new offence for causing serious injury by careless driving. They are also looking into increasing the maximum penalty for causing death by dangerous driving and careless driving under the influence of drink or drugs from 14 years’ to life.

The likelihood of a tougher sentence reinforces how important it is for your organisation to vet prospective drivers, and provide the correct training and instruction to them.

Sources:

  1. www.healthandsafetyatwork.com/news-and-prosecution/construction-in-drive-tocut- 1bn-cost-of-safety-accreditation-blue-tape
  2. www.gov.uk/guidance/prepare-to-drive-in-the-eu-after-brexit
  3. www.theiet.org/media/press-releases/press-releases-2018/02-july-2018-iet-andbsi- publish-the-18th-edition-iet-wiring-regulations/? “
  4. www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/fire-statistics-data-tables
  5. www.hse.gov.uk/safetybulletins/mild-steel-welding-fume.htm#utm_source=hse. gov.uk&utm_medium=refferal&utm_campaign=welding-alert&utm_ content=home-page-news
  6. www.thefpa.co.uk//index.cfm?originalUrl=about/news/news_detail.theocado- warehouse-fire-should-not-detract-from-the-unrivalled-reputationof- sprinkler-systems.html
  7. www.ioshmagazine.com/article/amnesty-s-management-culture-contributed-totoxic- environment-report-finds
  8. www.shponline.co.uk/in-court/topshop-fine-450k-after-girls-skull-fracture/?elq_ mid=1143&elq_cid=39014
  9. www.ipesearch.co.uk/page_1063679.asp
  10. www.ioshmagazine.com/article/driven-to-distraction

This newsletter is not intended to give legal advice, and, accordingly, it should not be relied upon. It should not be regarded as a comprehensive statement of the law and/or market practice in this area. In preparing this newsletter we have relied on information sourced from third parties and we make no claims as to the completeness or accuracy of the information contained. You should not act upon (or should refrain from acting upon) information in this newsletter without first seeking specific legal and/or specialist advice. Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance Brokers or any member of the Arthur J. Gallagher & co accept no liability for any inaccuracy, omission or mistake in this bulletin, nor will we be responsible for any loss which may be suffered as a result of any person relying on the information contained herein.