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Offshore Wind Safety Breaches 'Up By A Third'

Posted: 16/08/2016

Health and safety breaches in the offshore wind sector in the UK climbed by approximately one-third last year compared with 2014, while European figures were broadly the same for the same time period.

This is according to the latest report from the G9 Offshore Wind Health and Safety Association, revealing that UK wind farms registered a 31 per cent hike in the total recordable injury rate (TRIR) and a 34 per cent rise in lost time injury frequency (LTIF), ReNews reports.

In 2015, the sector saw 790 incidents take place, with 28 work days lost. In Europe, by contrast, 983 incidents were seen, with 41 days lost. Although the LTIF rate in the UK was 2.96 and the TRIR was 7.95, there were no fatalities throughout the entirety of 2015.

Jonathan Cole, chairman of the safety association, said: "These reports provide the indsutry with a valuable insight into safety performance. Although the TRIR and the LTIF do not show the whole story, it is important to understand the changes in these numbers and I will be working closely with my G9 colleagues and other industry stakeholders to ensure measures are put into place to instigate the necessary performance improvement."

The G9 has published two good practice guidelines to help businesses working in this particular industry, bringing them out in November 2014. They provide recommendations for working at height in the offshore wind sector, as well as the management of small service vessels.

The Health and Safety Executive, meanwhile, runs a regulatory programme for the offshore industry that seeks to make sure that major personal and hazard risks are managed correctly and comply with the relevant legislative requirements. The organisation will take formal enforcement action in order to successfully prevent harm, with its main regulatory activities including assessing safety cases, investigating incidents, inspecting installations, identifying issues of non-compliance and taking formal enforcement action like issuing notices and even prosecution in the most serious of cases.

Safety and positive workforce engagement go hand in hand, particularly for industries like the offshore wind sector. All businesses have a duty to work with their employees in order to make sure that the entire workforce complies with the duties imposed by health and safety law - which means that everyone who has a contribution to make where health and safety is concerned will have to co-operate.

As an employer, you have to work with the owner or operator of the installation, as well as all those involved in the health and safety of those on board said installation. You need to carry out a risk assessment that you could potentially be exposed to at work and introduce appropriate control measures. Employees must also be provided with the appropriate health and safety training required during their working time - free of charge. It may be necessary to arrange training outside typical working hours and if this is the case, it should be treated as an extension of time at work.

For GWO training, help and assistance, get in touch with us at HFR Solutions CIC today.