Live issues

HSE works closely with employers, employees, trade associations, trade unions and other key stakeholders in the chemicals manufacturing and storage industries to progress health and safety initiatives.

Safety alert

Review of the Seveso II Directive

The European Commission has launched the second study in its review of the Seveso II Directive (96/82/EC), implemented in Great Britain through the Control of Major Accident Hazards Regulations 1999.

The new study, being run by Environmental Resources Management, is looking at the effectiveness of the main requirements on public authorities, focussing particularly on:

  • land-use planning
  • inspection systems
  • the role of the safety report
  • external emergency plans,
  • the provision of information to the public, and
  • accident reporting.

All local, regional and national public authorities are invited to take part in the study by completing a web-based questionnaire.  This will be accessible until 31st May 2009 (No longer available).  Some responses may be followed up with interviews.  The results of the study are expected by the end of this summer.

The report of the first study, which looked at the main duties on operators, is available on the European Commission website.

Revitalising Health & Safety

The Government and the Health and Safety Commission (HSC) are committed to improving standards and reducing injuries and ill health arising from work activities.

In February 2004 the HSC published its strategy to the year 2010.

This strategy aims to achieve a number of challenging targets by 2010 including:

  • Reduction in the number of working days lost due to accidents and ill health by 30%
  • working days lost due to accidents and ill health by 30%
  • Reduction in the incidence of ill health by 20%
  • Reduction in the number of accidents by 10%

The HSC has identified a number of priority topics for action. These are:

  • Musculoskeletal disorders (eg back injuries from carrying heavy/awkward objects)
  • Slips and trips ( eg on uneven/slippery floors; failure to promptly clean up oil/water spills
  • Falls from heights (eg from ladders, raised storage areas, tops of commercial vehicles, or into vehicle inspection pits)
  • Workplace transport (eg, movement of vehicles inside/outside/around premises; parking of vehicles unbraked/unchocked)

In addition, field inspection teams working with the Chemicals manufacture and storage sectors will also take a particular interest in the following four themes:

  • Loss of containment
  • Human performance/human error issues affecting containment
  • Emergency response
  • Ageing and technology issues - a longer term look at

Loss of Containment Initiative

A program to collect causation information against RIDDOR reportable loss of containment dangerous occurrences was implemented in April 2004. This is a voluntary scheme were companies can provide HSE with information with the aim to analyse causation data to detect common failings and subsequently develop programmes and initiatives to tackle areas of concern. The first 12 months findings can be found in this report: Findings From Voluntary Reporting of Loss of Containment Incidents 2004/05

Process Safety Performance Measurement Programme

Following the publication of the BP Grangemouth Report, HSE worked with three CIA member company sites in Scotland, to look the development of performance indicators for process safety. The benefits gained by both parties led to a widening of the initiative.

A web site has been created for companies interested in this topic; to register please e-mail [email protected].

The International Tank Container Organisation (ITCO) Safety Protocol

The International Tank Container Organisation (ITCO) has published a safety protocol aimed at minimising the risks associated with working at height on the top of ISO tank containers. Prevention of Falls From ISO Tank Containers has been developed in cooperation with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and supports an overall HSE programme seeking to reduce working at height risks across a range of industries.

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Updated 2022-11-03