Firms working in the waste and recycling markets have been advised they must focus more fully on safety in the months and years ahead, after a series of poor results in terms of accidents and fatalities were reported.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has issued the warning in the aftermath of a spate of deaths in the industry. It has subsequently called on businesses working in these areas to renew their efforts to provide a safe and secure place for people to work.
In total, nine lives were lost in a trio of incidents between June and September. The fact so many people were lost in just 12 weeks has alerted the HSE and forced it to issue a stern warning.
"These fatal accidents should be a stark reminder for all employers in this sector to check their controls on use of vehicles and equipment, and to make sure that staff are properly trained and supervised," explained HSE operations director and lead of the waste and recycling strategy Heather Bryant.
"We will not hesitate to take action if we find evidence that lives are being put at risk."
She went on to state there is "no room for complacency" in this sector and that bosses must remain fully aware of all the threats. They should also provide adequate equipment such as skip vehicles and compactors when necessary.
Companies could take further precautions by splashing out on new safety equipment, which might turn out to be the difference between life or death for their staff should they get into trouble at work.
The HSE has confirmed it will attend the RWM 2012 Exhibition this September in a bid to provide people working and managing in the waste and recycling industry with advice and information on the potential causes of serious accidents.