Health and Safety Executive investigation judgement

We have worked co-operatively with the Health and Safety Executive regarding four health and safety offences, which relate to the period 1 April 2010 to 31 January 2016.

The historical offences relate to the adequacy of our policies and practices which manage the risk to Council employees from vibrating equipment. We identified this shortfall ourselves and proactively put in place effective procedures to prevent recurrence of the risk. In following this course, the HSE was prompted to investigate the period in question. 

In sentencing, the Judge commented: “Dacorum Borough Council is a concerned employer, interested in the safety of its employees."

He was satisfied that whilst this particular case was an instance of the Council failing “to put in place a system of monitoring”, the offences should be balanced against the fact that this is a "discrete failure" for an organisation with an otherwise “good health and safety record”.

The Judge also recognised that we have now “put in place effective procedures to prevent recurrence”.

He also commented that we had self-reported the incident, been co-operative with the Health and Safety Executive throughout the investigation and full credit was given for a guilty plea at the earliest possible opportunity.

It is important to stress that Dacorum Borough Council has a good health and safety record, and continues to ensure the safety of all its staff.

Sentencing details: £100,000 fine (lowest possible sentence for this category of offence) and prosecution legal costs of £28,672.62.