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  • Directors face fast track penalties for health and safety breaches

    first_imgA new Bill to increase the penalties for health and safety violations andmake it easier for the court to imprison offenders has been introduced in theHouse of Commons. The Health & Safety at Work (Offences) Bill was due to be reviewed on 4April 2003. Its main purpose is to raise the maximum penalties for health andsafety offences under the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974, and increasethe penalties for not having Employers Liability Insurance. The Bill makes the following amendments to the 1974 Act: – Raises the maximum fine the lower courts can impose to £20,000 for mosthealth and safety offences – Makes imprisonment an option for more health and safety offences – Makes certain offences that are currently triable only in the lowercourts, triable in either court. “The Bill presents a further problem for many firms, because of thespiralling cost of insurance and many small firms have found it difficult toobtain any insurance at all,” said Ron Reid, partner at Shoosmithssolicitors. “The health and safety agenda must remain a top priority as itis directors and senior management who will be in the firing line and likely toface the possibility of personal prosecution.” The Bill is thought to be a response the Government’s failure to introducein the Queens Speech the long anticipated legislation regarding corporatemanslaughter offences. “If the Government does adopt it, it will dovetail quite nicely withits revitalising health & safety’ strategy [launched in June 2000] whichpromised fines linked to turnover rather than profit,” Reid added. Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Directors face fast track penalties for health and safety breachesOn 1 Apr 2003 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more