European Agency for Safety and Health at Work launch new safety campaign

A new Healthy Workplaces Campaign for 2010/11 has been launched by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA).

The campaign promotes safe maintenance across Europe, as up to 20 per cent of all workplace accidents and over half of all accidents in a number of sectors are connected with maintenance.

According to the Health and Safety Executive, early analysis of the most recent two years’ data indicates that over the 25-30 per cent of fatal accidents in the manufacturing industries are caused by maintenance activities.

Maintenance is essential to prevent workplace risks, but it is itself a high risk activity for the workers that carry it out. It is estimated that in Europe 10-15 per cent of fatal accidents at work can be attributed to maintenance operations.

Poorly managed maintenance activities and procedures raise the risks of workplace accidents, including fatal accidents, involving workers at all levels across a wide range of industries.

Judith Hackitt, HSE’s Chair, said: "Everyone, whether you are a manager or a worker, has a role to play in ensuring that we reduce accidents and ill health at work arising from maintenance activities. This campaign provides materials to help make this happen."

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