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Sun November 01 2020

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New agreement to improve health and safety on construction sites

6 Oct 10 The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has signed an agreement with the Building Control Alliance (BCA), in a bid to work more closely to improve health and safety standards in the construction industry.

The agreement sets out how HSE and building control professionals will cooperate to help and support each other, for example in providing health and safety advice to the construction industry, but clearly distinguishes their separate regulatory roles and responsibilities.

The BCA represents those Building Control professionals responsible for ensuring compliance with Building Regulations, whether in local authorities or the private sector, and the professional bodies that accredit them. Building Control professionals regularly visit sites and are in an excellent position to promote good health and safety practice to duty holders.

Philip White, HSE’s Chief Inspector of Construction, signing on behalf of HSE said: “This agreement clearly sets out how HSE and BCA members can work more closely together. It is a further example of how everyone involved in the construction industry can spread the health and safety message, especially to the hard to reach small sites where the majority of fatal accidents take place. 

“Today’s agreement does not change a duty holder’s responsibility to protect workers’ health and safety but has created another opportunity to get potentially life-saving advice to those responsible for health and safety standards on construction sites.”

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Diane Marshall, Group Head of Building Control at NHBC who signed the agreement as Chair of BCA said:

“Building Control professionals are ideally placed to raise awareness of health & safety issues on construction sites during the course of their inspections. This agreement creates a mechanism for Building Control professionals to discharge their professional duty of care in a simple and straightforward manner by working closely with our HSE colleagues.”

Construction is one of Britain’s most dangerous industries. Over the last 25 years, 2800 construction workers have died. Despite a welcome reduction in construction fatal accidents in recent years, a large number of construction workers still die or suffer major injury or serious ill health as a result of their work.  

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