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Contractors reminded to keep sites safe from children

Following the death of a two year-old boy at a construction site in Leicester this week, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has issued a reminder to contractors that it is their responsibility to keep children off sites and to store materials and plant safely.

In the last five years 530 children have been killed or injured on construction sites in Great Britain.

Mike Cosman, head of HSE’s Construction Sector said: 'The tragic death of the two year-old boy this week should serve as a sobering reminder to all of us that construction sites are dangerous places for children. With school holidays already commenced in Scotland and about to start in the remainder of Britain, extra care needs to be taken to ensure that sites are secure and that materials and plant are stored safely.'

Protecting the public – your next move, published by HSE, provides guidance to assist contractors in identifying the main risks and provides advice on how to eliminate the hazards and control the risks.

HSE has also published Stay Safe Building Site Safety, which is aimed at children and contains, games, cartoons and puzzles to encourage children to think about the hazards on and around construction sites, and how to avoid them. HSE distributed thousands of copies of Stay Safe publications to schools for Child Safety Week, 23 – 29 June 2003.

Notes to editors


1. A two year-old child died on 7 July 2003 outside a construction site on the corner of Ranworth Walk and Halifax Drive, Leicester. It is believed that the child was crushed by concrete retaining wall slabs. The HSE is investigating the incident in conjunction with local police.

2. HS(G)151 Protecting the public – your next move price £7.95, ISBN 0 7176 1148 5 is available for purchase from HSE Books, PO Box 1999, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 2WA, tel: 01787 881 165 or fax: 01787 313 995.

3. Stay Safe Building Site Safety stock code misc 447 is a free leaflet and is available from HSE Books, PO Box 1999, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 2WA, tel: 01787 881 165 or fax: 01787 313 995 and is also available on the HSE website at: www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/misc447.pdf

4. Injuries to non-employed children (aged 1 to 15) in the Construction sector, as reported to HSE (see Annex 1 of Request Supplement) during the period 1997/98 to 2001/02.





YEAR


FATAL


NON FATAL


TOTAL


1997/98


1


119


120


1998/99




111


111


1999/2000


3


122


125


2000/01


1


81


82


2001/02


1


91


92


TOTAL


6


524


530