From September – HSE site inspections across Great Britain to focus on moving and handling materials

Starting in early September 2023, HSE will be undertaking construction site inspections, focusing on moving and handling construction materials.  The inspections will be checking employers and workers know the risks, plan their work and are using sensible control measures to protect workers from injuries and aches, as well as pain and discomfort in joints, muscles and bones known as musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

These injuries can have a serious impact on workers’ ability to perform tasks; their quality of life; and in some cases, their ability to stay in work and earn a living.

This latest health inspection initiative is supported by the ‘Work Right Construction: Your Health Your Future’ campaign to improve the long-term health of those working in construction.

Find out more about the campaign by visiting:

The supporting resources from HSE includes a range of posters and site signage and guidance in the form of:

Commenting on this campaign FIS CEO Iain McIlwee stated:

“The concept of Occupational Health is an area that there has been growing understanding of in recent times.  We have a responsiblity, not just in terms of safety, but looking after the long term health of our workers and limiting the potential damage that can result from lifting heavy items.  There is more work to be done here to support a more inclusive workforce too as well as helping to extend careers in the sector and ensure that we optmise productivity and attack the labour shortage from all angles.”

Specialist advice is available from FIS to support activities including a free helpline and Health and Safety Working Group that convenes to review accidents and exchange best practice where necessary, latest guidance includes:

FIS Manual Handling Guide: Safe handling of plasterboard (which is relevant for all moving board type material) and Recommendations for the safe ingress of plasterboard (which looks at how material should be moved through the site).  Members also have access to AWCI: Safe Work Practices for Wall and Ceiling Industry Construction Workers, a guide developed for the US market, but has been made available to FIS members through our partnership with AWCI).

The FIS Health and Safety Toolkit is available here