H&S consultation launched following Lofstedt report
Health & Safety update 30/11/2011
The government has announced that it is to launch a consultation
into health and safety reform, following the publication of the
independent Lofstedt report.
The report – which called for 19 changes to be made to the
current health and safety set-up in the UK – has sparked the
government to mull the abolition of some H&S rules.
The government is reportedly keen to abolish the first
regulations within the next few months, alongside creating a
'challenge panel' for those firms who are unhappy with H&S
rulings that have been made against them.
Currently, there are around 200 H&S regulations – which have
been blamed for the cancellations of school trips and other
low-risk activities. The government is said to be planning to
reduce this number by 50 per cent over the next three years, in
order to 'root out needless bureaucracy.'
The recommendations made by the Lofstedt report, which was
carried out by the director of the Centre for Risk Management at
King's College London, Professor Ragnar E Lofstedt, revealed that
the issue lay with "the way the regulations are interpreted and
applied" rather than the rules themselves.
The BBC reported that Professor Lofstedt said, "There are
instances where regulations designed to address real risks are
being extended to cover trivial ones."
Chris Grayling, employment minister, confirmed to the BBC that
the government was going to accept the Lofstedt report's
recommendations and aimed to "put common sense back at the heart of
health and safety."
Some of the recommendations contained within the report included
making self-employed people, who carry out work that poses no risk
to anyone, exempt from H&S rules.
It also suggested that the Health and Safety Executive be given
the power to direct all council-led H&S inspection and
Following this news item we will have a more in-depth analysis
of the Lofstedt report.
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