With the New Year beginning, it’s a reason to step back and look where you are heading. Where do you want to go? What do you want to do? What needs to be improved in order to get to where you want to be? The same old questions you get constantly asked by family, friends and colleagues, each and every single year!
It’s always the same with New Year’s resolutions. I’m going to improve my fitness, eat healthy every day and study hard all the time! The truth is, the sad reality of New Year’s resolutions is that the majority of people abandon their goals, but why is this?
Creating goals and resolutions is easier said than done. Not only do you want to create goals in your main interests, but it has to be something that you either genuinely want to do or need to do. Secondly, you need to make your goals realistic. What is possible to do, and in what time frame can you complete it? Sit back and think: what is the reason I have set these targets, and how will it benefit me?
Health and safety statistics
One of those resolutions should be your safety. Whether you’re an employee or look after a business it’s important to have a look at the safety regulations? According to the World Health Organisation, almost 2 million people die around the world from work-related causes each year. This doesn’t include the 1.7 million working people suffering from work-related illnesses.
Health and safety deaths around the world
A large proportion of this number could have been prevented with the correct health and safety regulations implemented in the work place. This number was created by a variety of work place situations, including exposure to air pollution, asthmagens, carcinogens, noise and ergonomic risk factors.
However, the World Health Organisation pointed out that the main risk was working excruciatingly long hours, which was later linked to a whopping 750,000 deaths annually. Workplace exposure to toxic air pollution was the second worst risk factor, being responsible for over 450,000 deaths. Even in the UK alone, over 5000 workers die annually in the UK from asbestos exposure.
These work-related illnesses, injuries and deaths are only the ones that get reported. There are countless cases just like this that are unfortunately not being reported, and are being ignored by multiple businesses and companies around the world.
Work related illnesses
According to the HSE (Health and Safety Executive)’s key figures for Great Britain 2020/2021, there were a reported 1.7 million working people suffering from a work-related illness this past year. This included workers suffering from work-related poor mental wellbeing, workers suffering from work-related musculoskeletal disorders, and workers suffering from COVID-19 due to be exposed to it at work. Work related illnesses usually come from situations that could have been prevented, but which were never investigated.
How can these be prevented?
By making a record of accidents and illnesses, you will be able to understand where these accidents are occurring, and therefore understand what to do and how to prevent them from happening in the future – as well as preventing further expenses in the future.
Regular training is very important to stop accidents happening in the future. Regular training can happen on an annual basis, or as much as every 3 to 5 years, depending on the qualification. For example, if you’re in the construction industry, that may mean you are at risk of asbestos exposure.
When exposed to asbestos you are at risk at developing incurable cancer(s) and respiratory problems. This can all be avoided by having the correct PPE and awareness of what it can do it – something you can learn from annual Asbestos Awareness training.
Why people may not have health and safety
The lack of knowledge in this field doesn’t just increase your risk of fines, but also jeopardises the safety of your employees, and the reputation of your business. A health & safety inspector can legally investigate a business’s health and safety at any time, especially if they are given a reason to do so. Our job is to make people understand the importance of health and safety, and that by making it one of the top priorities of the business, you are creating a safer and happier working environment for yourself and your staff.
HSE inspectors can come at any time. If you’re not sure what to expect, you should look up the industry-specific health and safety regulations that your business needs to follow in order to have a safe working environment.
All staff should be given training and guidance if needed when it comes to their safety. These courses can be done in classroom or remotely. This can, for example, include awareness and training for manual handling, correct PPE and even mental health awareness.
HSE inspectors can be asked for advice, as can local health and safety advisors – we are always on call for any questions. You can either call us, email us, or better yet use the live chat box on our website, where you can talk to a health and safety advisor instantly. SAMS also offers risk assessments, site inspections and fire risk assessments for all your safety needs – just make use of them before an HSE inspector comes to investigate.