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HSE conviction rate

Conviction for HSE offences is a near certainty

Recent statistics reveal that if your business is prosecuted for a health and safety offence, you’re much more likely to be convicted than for another criminal case. And the resulting fine could be crippling.

For cases prosecuted in 2020/2021 the HSE obtained a conviction rate of 94%. That compares with 83.6% for general convictions.

At the same time, you are likely to face a greater fine than ever before. Since the introduction of the Health and Safety Guidelines in 2016 the average fine has more than doubled… with the aim of delivering real economic impact on the businesses concerned.

The average fine has increased from £107,000 in year ending 2020 to £145,000 in 2021 — an increase of 35% with seven companies receiving fines of £1 million or more.

The stakes have never been higher in human, financial and reputational terms. That’s why it’s so important to review your health and safety procedures – starting with your materials handling equipment.

Is it safe and fit for purpose?

Now’s the time to ensure you are carrying out daily/pre-use checks and underpin those with Thorough Examinations that cover not only the lifting components (as required under LOLER regulations) but also the brakes, steering and other safety-related parts (covered by PUWER).

The incentives for employers to ensure they are fully H&S compliant have never been greater. If an accident results in a prosecution, conviction is a near certainty.

If you need help, any of our 750+ CFTS-accredited depots can advise what should be inspected in a Thorough Examination and the intervals when it must be conducted.

This article was first published by CFTS