We receive details of the Health & Safety Executive prosecutions and have become somewhat alarmed at the fines being imposed for even a small breach of regulations, since the basis of fines changed in 2016.
A company worth only £56,000 (according to Companies House), was fined £120,000 when an employee fell through a roof and was injured. Another company worth only £1,200 was fined £47,000 for a breach and another with a value of £10,000 was fined a massive £250,000. We have also seen large companies such as G4S Cash Solutions fined £1.8m for not managing its water supply adequately and Tata Steel fined £1.8m for injuries sustained from an unguarded machine.
This is because the sentencing guidelines for breaches of Health & Safety Regulations is now based on turnover and we know that turnover doesn’t necessarily reflect either profit or value of the company. The other major problem is that HSE aren’t quick in prosecuting! Usually even ‘simple’ cases can take 2 years to get to court and more complex ones up to 5 years. Having a prosecution hanging over a company’s head for so long is a constant worry as with a large fine, the organisation could quickly fail.
In order to make sure that your Health & Safety system is compliant, we are offering an Audit which will cover all aspects of your arrangements. Please contact us on 01206 363712 to find out more.