The HSA this week published its 2015 Programme of Work. This defines its’ key goals and priorities for the upcoming year.
The HSA intends on carrying out 11,995 safety inspections in 2015. This represents a marginal (3.7%) increase on the target for 2014 (11520 safety inspections).
Minister for Business and Employment, Mr. Gerald Nash TD has welcomed this increase in planned safety inspections by the HSA and said that securing the health and safety of workers is a key priority for him.
Though the investigations will cover many sectors, Construction and agriculture will receive the most safety inspections with 3150 and 2300 respectively. 1755 inspections will also be carried out on Chemical Safety.
CEO of the Health and Safety Authority, Mr. Martin O’Halloran, said that the sectors that need the most support will be a priority.
“We have to use our resources in a targeted manner and promote accident prevention rather than having an over-reliance on inspections and enforcement. However, it is sometimes necessary to tailor our approach depending on the willingness of particular sectors to take the preventative route.”
Mr. O’Halloran spoke about the types of available resources:
“As part of our policy to provide support to small businesses in the high-risk sectors this year, we will add more online tools designed specifically for the Construction and Agriculture sectors.”
Other key areas for the HSA this year will be, safe management of chemicals, with continued development of legislation and codes of practice and representing Irish interests at EU level along with, continued focus on the education programme which is designed to encourage all learners, to be aware of the health and safety aspects of work.
Other Issues that will be addressed in 2015 are those affecting all sectors such as;
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- Occupational hygiene
- Work-related stress
- Vehicle safety
- Slips, trips and falls
- Market surveillance
- Support for small business