Under new regulations the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) plan to recover millions from businesses who are breaking health and safety laws.
Liverpool workplace health organisation, Health@Work, warns businesses to get on top of their health and safety issues or face huge bills.
James Dunningham, Operations Director for Health@Work said: “The HSE has lost more than £40 million in government funding and is aiming to recoup some of this from the “Fee for Intervention” scheme. This is a cost recovery scheme where firms which break health and safety law will be charged for the HSE’s time spent on inspecting and investigating the matter.”
The Fee for Intervention (FFI) scheme came into force in October last year, but is now starting to be used on a nationwide scale. Under the scheme those who break health and safety laws are liable for the recovery of the HSE’s costs. So the HSE can charge firms for their time spent on inspection, investigate and enforcement.
James Dunningham said: “All businesses are vulnerable to this new initiative. Your health and safety executive inspector can visit your workplace at any time, so it is vital to ensure that you are fully compliant with all health and safety policy procedures.
“The fee for intervention has already recovered thousands of pounds from organisations who are breaking health and safety laws, so if you are unsure about correct procedures it is important to seek advice.”
The HSE has reported that the total sum invoiced from October and November 2012 was £727,644.81. This arose from 1418 Fee for Intervention invoices.
James added: “The government believe FFI will encourage businesses to comply in the first place with procedures or put matters right quickly. It will also discourage businesses who think that they can undercut their competitors by not complying with the law and putting people at risk.”