The construction industry is a high risk industry. For those working in construction I’m sure it will come as no surprise that although the industry accounts for only 5 per cent of workers in Britain, statistically the construction industry accounts for 22 per cent of fatal accidents and 10 per cent of accidents involving serious injury.
The Health and Safety Executive recently carried out a month long initiative relating to construction sites where it inspected thousands of sites and spoke to thousands of contractors.
Sadly, despite the reputation the construction industry has for poor health and safety and injuries, almost one in five of the construction sites visited by the Health and Safety Executive were subject to an enforcement order.
Some sites were given enforcement orders for poor practices that could put workers at risk of injury. Work on other sites was ordered to stop immediately because it posed such a high risk of injury to workers. Work on these sites was not allowed to start again until the identified issues had been resolved.
To put things in perspective figures show that during 2011/2012 tragically 49 people lost their lives whilst working in the construction industry in Britain. During the same period 2,884 people reported major injuries as a result of working in the construction industry.
Any initiative that could reduce the number of construction site accidents should in my view be welcomed. Knowing how many construction site accidents there are and knowing how life shattering the effects of those accidents can be I would however question whether enough is being done by the industry to improve health and safety.