Leeds seminar will get businesses up to speed with new Health and Safety legislation

Health and safety legislation


A seminar in Leeds next week will give businesses in the city key points on complying with three pieces of health and safety legislation, helping them lower the risk of prosecution and unlimited payouts.

Sarah Cleary, head of national law firm Irwin Mitchell's northern regulations and investigations group, will chair the breakfast seminar on November 1, at its offices in Queen Street, Leeds. It will feature presentations on the Corporate Manslaughter Act, EU Working Time Regulations and Regulatory Fire Reform Order.

Due to come into force next year, the Corporate Manslaughter Act brings radical changes to company liabilities and responsibilities for deaths in the workplace.

Health and safety expert

Ms Cleary said: "There are still far too many deaths at work in this country and the most important duty of an employer is obviously to ensure that fatalities don't occur. There can be few things more painful for a family than to wave goodbye to a healthy breadwinner in the morning and for them never to come home again.

"The government is tightening up the law where deaths do happen at work and were predicting an increase in the number of companies prosecuted as a result. It's therefore vital that businesses get up to speed with the new provisions and this is what our seminar will help them do.

"Delegates will also hear about the dangers of staff working excessive hours, which do not comply with the Working Time Regulations.

Health and safety regulations

"These regulations state most workers cannot be forced to put in more than 48 hours a week, averaged over a year, unless they voluntarily opt-out by signing agreements with their employers to work longer than this, with no upper limit applying.

"Allowing staff to work long hours, even if they request this, can lead to serious consequences for businesses, including expensive fines and compensation claims, if they have an accident as a result."

The Regulatory Fire Reform Order became law on October 1 and overhauled all previous fire safety legislation. It shifts the emphasis of prevention and reducing risk away from authorities and onto employers, increasing their accountability if they fail to carry out their duties.

Ms Cleary said: "We've devised this seminar to arm businesses in Leeds with a thorough understanding of the implications of these new pieces of legislation. They have been introduced to make working environments safer and it's important bosses are aware of their responsibilities and the dangers they, their staff and their businesses face, if they fail to comply."

To book a place at this free event, which runs from 8.30amĀ - 10am, please ring Sarah Little on 0113 2206239.