Health and Safety Annual Report
Claire Cotter (Head of Health, Safety and Wellbeing Assurance) and Kim Brown (Service Director for Human Resources and Organisational Development) presented this item to the Committee.
The Health, Safety and Wellbeing Annual report for 2018-19 was presented to the Audit and Governance Committee as an important aspect of the Health, Safety and Wellbeing governance arrangements for the Council. The report identified the actions that had been taken in 2018-19 to improve our management arrangements for health, safety and wellbeing and what Plymouth City Council was planning to do in 2019-20.
The report included insights into the incidents and accidents which had occurred compared to previous years.
Statistical data showed that overall there had been an increase in the number of incidents reported from an accident and incident rate of 189 to 243 per 1,000 employees (rounded) with a particular increase in incidents of violence and aggression towards staff (39 to 56 per 1,000 employees) Caution should be exercised in concluding that more incidents are actually happening, rather that there continues to be a focus on embedding a positive reporting and learning culture.
Local steps were taken to investigate incidents at the appropriate level and to review risk assessments to ensure suitable and sufficient controls were in place. Near miss reporting was gradually improving, although more could be done to promote this. We would expect that our Business Plan for 2019-20 would have a positive effect on raising awareness further and encouraging people to report.
There was a continued upward trend of Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations reportable incidents from four in 2015-16 to twenty six in 2018-19. In part this was due to the work on vibration and employees coming forward with diagnosis of Hand Aram Vibration Syndrome or Carpel Tunnel. There had also been a spike in over seven day absences attributed to a work related incident.
For the first time Plymouth City Council had been able to report lost time incidents, which also showed an increasing trend – work was ongoing to understand the data and was informing local actions in respect of addressing root causes.
The report provided detail about the top five incident types which were:
1. Unintentional violence
2. Verbal Violence
3. Road Traffic Accidents
5. Slips trips and falls
In the light of the Health and Safety Executive Improvement Notice served in December 2017, Gleeds Ltd was commissioned to undertake an external review of The Council’s Health, Safety and Wellbeing management arrangements. The overall purpose was to provide assurance in regards to our compliance with the Health and Safety at Work Act etc. 1974 and Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 with four specific areas of focus:
· The Strategic framework for Health, Safety and Wellbeing
· Street Services
· Safety Representatives engagement
The Reviewer was complimentary about the attitudes and approach of the people he met and the evidence he found
Members questioned –
If the level of engagement with the Trade Unions on the hand-arm vibration issues and their level of satisfaction with the actions undertaken. It was confirmed that the union representatives had been fully involved in discussions and had raised no concerns about the work undertaken.
The rise in RIDDOR rates and what were the causes for this. This was due to the work on vibration and employees coming forward with diagnosis of Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome or Carpel Tunnel. There had also been a spike in over seven day absences attributed to a work related incidents.
What was being done to reduce the high level of sickness rates in departments such as Street Services? In 2018-19 we estimated that 28% of our staff would have received a flu vaccination. This included Staff who worked in our Street Services Teams who attended an on-site clinic for vaccination.
The Audit and Governance Committee noted the report.
- HSW Annual Report 2018-19 Committee Template 23 Sept 2019, item 43. PDF 119 KB
- HSW Annual Report 2018-19_FINAL, item 43. PDF 2 MB