Sentencing Changes: Two Years On

February 2, 2018 marked the second anniversary of health and safety sentencing changes. Since 2016, fines have been based on business turnover, the level of culpability and the likelihood of harm within a scenario. Actual injury or fatality does not need to have occurred. So, what’s been the impact and how could it see the wheels fall off your business?

Following the introduction of the new guidelines, fines imposed rose by more than £30m (2016-17), to £69.9m. The average fine per case more than doubled, to a level of £126,000.  

For transport operators often operating with little financial leeway, that’s a big risk.  And, the bigger the breach the severer the punishment, with custodial sentences for health and safety breaches now a real threat.

The guidelines’ principle is to ensure fines are ‘sufficiently substantial to have a real economic impact, which will bring home to both management and shareholders the need to comply with health and safety legislation.”

With logistics and transport two of the most frequently fined sectors, fleet operators must put their house in order. Conduct regular risk assessments, check your method statements and look deeper. Check out our easy-to-use, at-desk Gauntlet e-learning tools and remember refresher training is as important as first-time training.  Then take an extra step towards peace of mind with our FIDO – Fleet insurance Diagnostic Opportunity –  a top-to-toe review of your fleet’s risks.

Don’t be caught out, or put your business in jeopardy. Act today, to prevent being the firm punished tomorrow. Call 0113 244 8686 and talk to our health and safety team.

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