Archive for March, 2019

Posted on: March 29th, 2019 by admin No Comments

Why your business needs to know about the Corporate Manslaughter Act

What is it?
The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007 is a landmark in law. This legislation means that, for the first time, companies can be found guilty of corporate manslaughter if they have committed a duty of care breach.

The Act came into official force on 6th April 2008 and stated the liabilities of companies where serious health and safety failures have resulted in a fatality.

Before the Act came into action, it was necessary for a senior individual to embody the company and be found guilty of the offence. Now, a company or a group of management can be proven guilty instead of just one individual.

Proving an Offence
The following elements must be proven:
1.    The defendant must satisfy the classification for an organisation
2.    Proof that the organisation is responsible for the death of a person
3.    Proof that the organisation had a duty of care to the victim
4.    Proof that the organisation breached that duty of care

Why do you need to be aware of it?
The legislation does not apply to Armed Forces operations but means that all other organisations must be aware of this Act. Out of the remaining organisations, there will be some companies that are more at risk than others in terms of the probability of an accident occurring at work.

As an employer, it is essential to understand the laws surround this topic and how these changes may involve you making changes in the running of the company, in order to ensure the safety of your employees.

If your workplace has a warehouse which includes operating machinery, heavy equipment, high racking, etc then these places need to be checked securely and regularly as they will be deemed more high risk than other workplaces such as small offices.

Penalties can include fines and remedial orders. Large companies can expect to pay up to £10million, medium sized £4million and small businesses up to £1.6million. These all depend on the seriousness of the offence and the risk of harm the company created.

What can you do to help protect employees?
-    Evaluate all the health and safety risks
-    Always keep health and safety management systems under review
-    Ensure communication regarding health and safety is filtered down through the company
-    Know how to identify and manage health and safety risks
-    Provide high quality training
-    Need to make health and safety an integral part of the company’s culture
-    Carry our regular risk assessments. After identifying hazards, rectify them by:

  • Ensuring any damage is repaired. For warehouses with significant storage ensure all racking is secure and undamaged.
  • Ensuring any shelving does not exceed the recommend weight
  • Ensuring your workplace has floor markings where necessary
  • Ensuring your workplace has the correct signage
  • Making sure your workplace has easy access and location of emergency exits
  • Ensuring all equipment is stored away correctly and nothing left on the floor or in the wrong place which could cause harm.

Logical Storage is highly skilled in spotting the often hard-to-find signs of racking damage. We carry out regular reviews for a number of businesses helping them to keep their systems in good working order and to maintain their legal obligations under the Health & Safety Act. To find out more please call us on 0845 689 1300.