Olympic health and safety practices could cut construction industry deaths

New research has suggested that if construction companies followed the health and safety methods used to build the Olympic park for London 2012, it could drastically cut the fatality rate within the industry.

The study, which was conducted for the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), highlighted five key action points:

1. Competent supervisors need to be developed, involving intensive health and safety training
2. A positive and open safety culture should be fostered, so that employees get involved with the health and safety process
3. Companies should lead from the top, with management setting standards and visibly engaging with their workforces
4. Good, safe behaviour should be rewarded
5. Problems and practices should be constantly reviewed, so as to learn from past mistakes

Commenting on the benefits of copying the health and safety practices involved in building the Olympic park, a project which had zero construction fatalities, the IOSH’s director of policy Luise Vassie said:

“The ODA’s exemplary health and safety record speaks for itself. The techniques used were often low cost and had cross-company impact, showing that a good health and safety record isn’t out of any company’s grasp.”

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