Because of the government's spending cuts, the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), which is the primary enforcement authority for health and safety is having to change the way it operates. The good news is that because it's had to make significant cutbacks, there are fewer inspectors. However, there's some bad news too.
In the past, if you were found to be non-compliant with the law, you could expect an enforcement notice, or a letter from an inspector. Either of which would state that you had to take action to rectify the situation. Then if you did what's required of you, that would be the end of the matter.
But, from 2012, things are changing. Inspectors will still be serving notices etc; however, in addition, those on the receiving end will also receive a bill to cover the inspector's time. And, it won't be a small one. Current estimates are that inspectors time will be charged at £133 an hour!
So, what to do? The simple answer is not to leave things to chance. If you feel that you might not be ticking all of the appropriate legal boxes, now is the time to get competent advice. Yes, a qualified health and safety consultant will charge for their time, but their costs should be significantly less than those you could incur if an inspector were to start picking holes in your business.
If you're located in the Dover and Deal area, a Health and Safety consultant such as HSE Advisor Ltd can provide you with all of the advice and support you need, to ensure that your business is fully compliant. And, more importantly, safe for all those who may work or visit your premises.