The HSE is working with businesses to ensure that companies within the logistics sector are adhering to COVID safe guidelines.
Online shopping demand has increased exponentially and is set to increase in the build up to Christmas, increasing demand and putting strain on haulage and logistics companies alike.
Inspectors are visiting distribution centres and logistical headquarters to ensure workplaces are remaining safe and following COVID-secure guidelines considering the increased stress on the supply chain.
Businesses will need to ensure that they ensure that social distancing is in place and is being followed along side heightened cleaning procedures and making sure that there are suitable facilities for all workers and sub-contractors.
HSE will also be checking standard Health and Safety standards are adhered to during the same visit.
Feedback will be shared by the HSE to ensure good practice is followed and promoted during the combined challenges of CVOID and the seasonal surge in demand.
The HSE provides a range of advice and guidance to support businesses during this time, this includes:
Head of HSE’s Transport and Public Services Unit, Harvey Wild said: “The logistics and distribution industry overall has seen a significant increase in business activity over the past few months and, with shops and retail centres closed, there will be a surge in online shopping in the run up to the festive period.
“As a result of this, we will see an increase in the number of agency and temporary workers in the transport and logistics sector to meet the demand. It’s important that all workers and also customers feel confident that measures are being taken to protect them from Covid-19.
“Employers have a legal duty to protect workers and others from harm and this includes taking reasonable steps to control the risk and protect people from coronavirus. We encourage businesses to consult with their workers on the changes they put in place to become COVID-secure. This is to provide reassurance for workers and to also increase confidence in customers and the local community.
“Becoming COVID-secure not only benefits the health of our communities and vital businesses, it also good for the health of the UK economy.”
The HSE are looking to work with employers but where they find they are not managing the risk appropriately, HSE and local authority officers will take action.
This can range from the provision of specific advice, issuing enforcement notices and stopping certain work practices until they are made safe. Where businesses fail to comply, this could lead to prosecution.