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 Overhaul of guidance to help 10 million working at height

Overhaul of guidance to help 10 million working at height

5 February 2014 Email this article

An overhaul of guidance on working at height is being launched as part of the government’s plan to abolish or improve outdated, burdensome or over-complicated regulations which waste businesses’ time and money.

It is estimated that more than a million British businesses and 10 million workers are estimated to carry out jobs involving some form of work at height every year, and falls are still one of the biggest causes of death and serious injury at work.

Now the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has overhauled its guidance for such activity, setting out in clear, simple terms what to do and what not to do – and debunking common myths that can confuse and mislead employers.

Altogether, more than 3,000 regulations have been identified for scrapping or improving through the Red Tape Challenge – which asks businesses and the public themselves to identify the rules that hold them back

The new guidance is being backed by business and was produced with the support of the British Retail Consortium, Small Business Trade Association Forum and various trade unions. Key changes include providing clear ‘dos and don’ts’ for working at height and providing targeted advice to business in different sectors manage serious risks sensibly and proportionately

Judith Hackitt, Chair of the Health and Safety Executive, commented: “It’s important to get working at height right. Falls remain one of the biggest causes of serious workplace injury – with more than 40 people killed and 4,000 suffering major injuries every year.

“We have a sensible set of regulations and have been working with business to improve our guidance – making it simpler and clearer and dispelling some of the persistent myths about what the law requires.

“The result is advice that employers can count on to help them manage their businesses sensibly and proportionately.”