Safety and Security Roundup – January 2019

Each month we round up some of the biggest stories concerning safety and security. Here are some of the biggest stories from January.

Retail Safety Failure

The owners of high street chain, Topshop, were fined £450,000 this month over an incident where a barrier fell and hit a girl. A queue barrier fell and hit a ten-year-old girl, causing serious head injuries. An investigation found that the barrier wasn’t secured correctly.

Alistair Duncan, head of the health and safety division at the Crown Office, said: “This was a foreseeable and avoidable accident which resulted in the severe injury and permanent disfigurement of a young girl.”

Read the full story here.image shows a safety sign that warns of a slip hazard

An Avoidable Workplace Tragedy

This month, a London construction firm was fined £300,000 after the death of an employee. The unnamed man was using a concrete breaker when he slipped and fell down a stairwell sustaining fatal head injuries. The company were found to be at fault after an investigation showed that the work hadn’t been planned and no safety measures were in place at all. This is despite the well-documented dangers of working at height.

HSE have the full detail here.

A Right Royal Accident

Perhaps the biggest safety-related story this month is The Duke of Edinburgh’s car accident. The media seem to have gone wild with the story, with some questioning the Dukes ability to drive safely or abide by the driving rules.

The Duke crashed into a Kia near the Queens Sandringham estate; he overturned his own vehicle but was unharmed. Luckily, the victims in the other car were taken to hospital but were also unharmed. The Duke issued an apology but the debate about his driving skills shows no sign of slowing down.

Farming Safety

The first part of this year has seen a spotlight on farming safety that will continue through to the spring. A major new safety campaign was launched at the start of the year with the aim to halve the number of people killed on UK farms within four years. Due to run throughout 2019, the campaign is being coordinated by the Farm Safety Partnership.

That’s not all – the Health and Safety Executive also announced at the start of January that they would have a renewed focus on the farming industry with a series of inspections planned for the first part of this year. Agriculture has the worst safety record of any industry in the UK; latest figures show that 33 people were killed in farming in 2017/18. That’s about 18 times higher than the all-industry fatal injury rate. Lone working is also common in farming – we actually posted a guide earlier this month with tips on staying safe in the agriculture industry.

image shows a man stood next to a field

Lone Working News

One of the biggest pieces of news this month in the lone working world was the statistics on the lone worker solutions market. Analyst firm, Berg Insight, predicted that the lone worker protection market will double by 2022. You can read our article on the report here.

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