Safety inspectors to carry our 1,000 spot checks on sites across the country

The HSE has launched a blitz on repair and refurbishment sites.

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It aims to carry out 1,000 spot checks on sites across the country, and said contractors should expect “strong enforcement action”.

Inspectors will check people are working safely at height, have correctly installed equipment and have kept working areas clear.

Stephen Williams, the HSE’s chief inspector of construction, said: “It is totally unacceptable that so many lives have been lost and continue to be put at risk on construction sites, particularly within the refurbishment sector.

“We will continue to take firm action against rogue elements who ignore safety precautions. Sites where health and safety is taken seriously have nothing to fear, but we will root out those that put lives at risk.”

Last year more than half of workers deaths on site occurred in the refurbishment sector and the number rose by 61% on the previous year.

Enforcement notices were issued at one in three sites during last summer’s blitz.