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International

Safe Track Associates Limited is extremely proud of its strong links and prestigious status working with European and International companies. With over fifteen years of experience and knowledge in this field, Safe Track Associates Limited are experts in supporting European and Internationally designed construction and engineering projects in the United Kingdom (UK).

We have worked on a diverse range of projects, from sustainable buildings (e.g. Timber Frame and Cross Laminated Timber [CLT] construction), to waste management, heavy engineering, and aircraft engineering.

With a thorough understanding that different countries take different approaches to ensuring occupational safety and health, Safe Track Associates Limited will ensure that international construction and engineering projects that are carried out in the UK are completed with safety and health as a top priority, and are fully compliant with UK health and safety legislation.

What do European and international companies need to know about health and safety in the UK?

The foundation of the current health and safety system in Great Britain, the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, clearly places responsibility on those who create risk to manage it.  This applies whether the risk maker is an employer, self-employed or a manufacturer or supplier of articles or substances for use at work.  All risks do not have to be removed, but the law requires dutyholders to do everything ‘reasonably practicable’ to protect people from harm.  This simple, but enduring principle has led to the UK having one of the best health and safety records in the world.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) enforces the law in Great Britain.  Their inspectors have significant powers, including the right of entry to any site or workplace.  Their role is to:

  • investigate whether people are at risk (e.g. when accidents have happened or a complaint is made);
  • require you to control risks adequately if you are not already complying with the law;
  • take appropriate enforcement action in relation to any non-compliance, ranging from advice on stopping dangerous work activities to potentially taking prosecutions where people are put at serious risk;
  • and provide advice and guidance to help you comply with the law and avoid injuries and ill health at work.

HSE intervention can cause significant unexpected loss to a project, including a considerable amount of time, effort and money.  This could be due to delays to the project timeline to fix a non-compliant issue, the HSE’s Fee for Intervention cost recovery scheme, and the hiring of equipment / persons to take appropriate action etc.

To avoid unexpected costs due to poorly managed or inappropriate health and safety activities on your UK project, call us now on 0117 908 3860.

How does UK legislation differ to European and international health and safety requirements?

If you run a business anywhere in Europe, you will be used to complying with health and safety rules and regulations set by the European Health and Safety Framework Directive – the key piece of health and safety legislation in the EU that harmonises legislation throughout the member states.

However, it is important to note that while laws for health and safety measures are the same throughout Europe, the rules have to be altered to fit into the national law of member states.  This means that health and safety law can differ between EU nations.  It is important to find out the current laws and guidance for any EU country in which you work.

International health and safety legislation and culture can differ significantly from country to country. For example, in countries like India without any kind of formal training in occupational health and safety, the overall awareness levels of employers and employees can be very low. Whereas countries like Australia are very similar to the UK and recognise the importance of managing health and safety beyond minimum compliance levels.

One of the biggest differences in regards to UK health and safety in comparison to European and International legislation are the fines based on the turnover of the company, and custodial sentences and / or imprisonment given to directors of negligent companies. This has been seen as a game changer since the new sentencing guidelines came into play in 2016, setting a new standard of construction health and safety in the UK.

If you would like to understand the requirements for your European or international company working in the UK, please contact us on +44 (0) 117 908 3860.

Brexit

It is important to note when the UK leaves the EU, any changes to health and safety legislation are likely to be slow.  Any updates will be published on our website here.

Do European and international companies need a UK health and safety representative?

It is a legal requirement for employers to appoint one or more ‘competent persons’ to help them meet the requirements of health and safety law. This is someone who has sufficient skills, knowledge, training and experience to adequately assist the employer to achieve compliance with UK health and safety law. The level of competence required will depend on the complexity of the situation and the particular help the employer needs.

A UK health and safety representative is not a legal requirement, but it is recommended that any organisation that does not have internal access to someone competent to carry out a project under UK health and safety law, they should seek the advice and support of a UK health and safety consultancy that can provide adequate resource and guidance on complying with UK legislation.

Call us now to discuss how Safe Track Associates Limited can get involved on your UK project on +44 (0) 117 908 3860.

How do European and International companies access UK health and safety?

Whilst the HSE website can be a good starting place for understanding your roles and responsibilities under UK legislation, European and International companies completing projects in the UK should seek access to competent health and safety advice from chartered consultants with experience relevant to your industry and a proven track record of supporting European and international organisations to undertake work in compliance with UK legislation.

We can confirm that Safe Track Associates Limited can provide the service you need to deliver your project in the UK with safety and health as a top priority.  Call us on +44 (0) 117 908 3860 to discuss your project.

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