Campaign tackles accident-prone waste industry

Local authorities are being offered practical advice on how to reduce the risk of death and injury amongst their contractors working in the waste and recycling industry.

The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) is providing new guidance when it comes to procuring and managing waste and recycling services, in a bid to help reduce death and injury.

The recycling industry has nine times more fatal accidents than the national average and four times as many workers suffer injuries.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) identified that a contributing factor may be that some local authorities are unclear what their legal duties are and mistakenly believe that putting a service out to contract relieves them of all health and safety responsibilities.

The new online guidance gives practical information on how to make health and safety an integral part of the procurement and contract management process.

Judith Hackitt, HSE chair said: “Waste and recycling is a sector which is experiencing considerable growth as we all strive to do more to respond to environmental challenges.

“This makes it doubly important that we take action to respond to the fact that the number of accidents in this sector continues to be high, despite recent improvements, One of the keys to further progress is getting the client/contractor relationships working well.

“The guidance will help local authorities understand the full extent of their role when managing waste and recycling contractors.

“HSE wants to see occupational health and safety become an integral but common sense part of the specification, procurement and management of waste and recycling contracts.”

The new guidance and more details about procuring and managing contracts is available at

Sam Bond

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