With a horrifying average of three deaths a year in the grounds maintenance industry, Lantra Sector Skills Council and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have today (28 July) united with industry representatives to tackle the issue.The workshop, held at Stoneleigh Park, Coventry, focused on health and safety issues such as mowing on slopes, exposure to noise and vibration and safe use of pesticides. Specialist consultants, advisors, training providers and trade organisations in attendance used their industry experience to discuss the health and safety issues facing the industry.Lantra’s Industry Partnership Manager, David Winn, said: “With an estimated workforce of 172,000 the fatal incident rate is on par with the construction industry. Clearly we need to address the dangers people working in the industry face in their day to day jobs.”Research carried out by the HSE reports that there were almost 10,000 injuries between 2001 and 2008. Alan Plom, Head of Safety for the Agriculture and Food Sector at the HSE, said: “Grounds-keeping is not ‘just mowing the lawn.’ Health and safety is a serious issue that’s been overlooked by industry for far too long. Lantra should be commended for organising this event to emphasise the importance of health and safety in the workplace.”David added: “This workshop was a great opportunity to highlight the life-threatening and life-changing dangers of cost-cutting on health, safety. This will help us to work together to develop key recommendations and reduce the risk of accidents in the workplace.”For more information about health and safety in the workplace visit www.hse.gov.uk or call 0845 345 0055.
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