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The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) have outsourced the checking of Covid-19 risk management arrangements to two third-party organisations, with a view to increasing the number of compliance inspections. This will effectively increase the chance of a business receiving a spot check to ensure that it’s workplace is compliant.

As the economy reopens and Covid-19 restrictions ease, businesses must continue to follow the relevant government guidance on working safely and implement measures to reduce the risk of Covid-19 transmission.

Covid-19 Workplace Safety Measures

The following workplace controls remain unchanged for businesses in England:

  • social distancing
  • adequate ventilation
  • frequent cleaning
  • good hand hygiene

N.B. There are different approaches for easing restrictions in Scotland and Wales.

For the latest information on any changes related to workplace safety visit the HSE’s page on keeping workplaces safe as restrictions are eased.

For a full range of Covid-19 related information and advice visit HSE’s coronavirus pages.

HSE Inspections

HSE inspectors visit thousands of workplaces every year, often arriving on-site without warning. Whether it be a planned inspection, or a surprise visit, businesses can face serious ramifications for failing an inspection. In the event that an inspector identifies a material health and safety breach, they will issue fines by the hour. Calculated by the time spent on the inspection and the time it takes for breaches to be remedied.

The HSE’s Fee for Intervention (FFI) scheme charges an hourly rate of £154. This is payable for all costs the HSE reasonably incurs during regulatory work that associates or relates to a material breach.

Some examples of associated work charged at a rate of £154 per hour include:

– Writing notifications of contravention and reports
– Preparing and serving improvement or prohibition notices
– Follow-up work and reviewing investigations to ensure compliance
– Taking statements and gathering information
– Specialist assistance
– Assessing the findings and documenting procedures
– Recording conclusions and inspection, investigation and enforcement information
– Necessary research related to the material breach

HSE charges are not however limited to FFI, as organisations can face additional fines, prosecution costs and reputational downfall as a result of a failed inspection.

Advice and Guidance

Insurance2day policyholders are licensed to download and customise documents from our Policyholder Resource Zone, to assist in reviewing and implementing effective Health & Safety policies and procedures. With this in mind, our ‘HSE Inspection Guide’ and ‘Fee For Intervention Regulatory Update’ can provide invaluable advice and guidance to assist in preparing for a HSE visit.

If you think our Policyholder Resource Zone information, guides, templates, checklists and training materials may be of use to you, please contact us now to discuss your commercial insurance arrangements.

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We will gladly discuss and review your Covid-19 risk management requirements to ensure you have both the insurance cover and resources to ensure your financial interests are best protected.