MORE THAN half of over 1,000 unannounced spot checks carried out by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) on construction sites in September discovered material breaches of the law. Yet the HSE will have had its budget cut by more than a third by the end of this parliament. Unite points out that at the moment the HSE can only inspect a tiny proportion of building sites and needs more resources not fewer.
Elsewhere Network Rail is to cut 750 management jobs, some 15 per cent of the total, many of them responsible for safety – while the Commons Transport Select Committee is looking at level crossing safety. In the past 18 months three people have died on level crossings, with a number of serious injuries, for which Network Rail has been fined a total of £195 million. ■