21.03.2003

Financial Benefits of Managing Construction Safety

A workshop in Northern Ireland discussed the topic "Managing Risk - A Key
Investment for Construction Companies". The main conclusion is that financial
gains are waiting to be collected from better health and safety performance.

Kevin Toner, HSE Northern Ireland (HSENI) Deputy Chief Executive pointed to
spiralling costs of escalating insurance premiums for those operating in the
building sector as an immediate financial motivation to redouble efforts to
manage health and safety risks. By doing so they will reduce claims, avoid
delays and save money.

Managing risk will save rather than cost money
Mr Toner further illustrated his message citing a recent study, carried out by
KPMG Consulting in association with the University of Ulster, that the cost to
the local economy of work-related injuries, ill health and near misses is
approaching £500m.

Mr Toner continued: "The overall message of the workshops is a positive one,
underlining the fact that businesses themselves can reduce the losses
associated with injuries and ill health through the effective management of
health and safety. Companies need to recognise that managing risk will save
rather than cost money."

Delegates attending the workshop heard how a successful construction company,
the Harvey Group Limited, has tackled the issue of managing risk. Delegates
also received a detailed insight into how the insurance industry views health
and safety risk management within Northern Ireland.

For individual companies, the costs of injuries and ill health can also be
significant. The full extent of the magnitude of losses is not always
appreciated, there being no recognition that many of the costs are 'hidden'
such as down time, lost contracts and finding replacement staff - costs which
are not recoverable through a company's employers liability insurance.

Further Information


AplusA-online.de - Source: British Safety Council (BSC)