To consider the report of the Director of Service Delivery (copy enclosed).
The Committee considered the report of the Director of Service Delivery that provided an update on corporate health and safety activity from 1 January to 31 March 2020 (Quarter 4) together with appendix 1 the Health & Safety action plan 2019/20 and appendix 2 Health & Safety action plan 2020/21.
The Chairman introduced the report and deferred to the Director of Service Delivery to take the Committee through the report.
The Director of Service Delivery highlighted the incident/ accidents that had taken place. There were five accidents reported during the quarter and four incidents of unacceptable behaviour by members of the public. The areas effected were within customer services and two referrals from other agencies (1 from Police and 1 from the Department of Work and Pensions)
He advised Members that all recommendations following the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) visit to Promenade Park had been completed and following a revisit by HSE all work had been signed-off by the Inspector.
In response to questions raised by Members he responded as follows:-
Ø That the ‘material breaches in the law’ referred to in appendix 1 were to do with the layout of the depot in Promenade Park. They were serious issues that have now been overcome by changing the layout and including clear pathway markings for staff. The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) had revisited and signed off on all the recommendations implemented.
Ø That the reference to ‘other outmoded practices’ in appendix 2 had also been addressed as the visit by the HSE had triggered an internal review of H&S procedures. An external advisor had been brought in and staff training undertaken to certify staff, alongside embedding robust procedures and regular risk assessments.
Ø That unacceptable behaviour would not be countenanced by the Council demonstrated by the stringent action taken, following physical and verbal abuse on a contractor, in the suspension of services to the resident in question and informing the police.
Ø That details of the intervention fee paid to the HSE would be circulated to Committee Members.
Ø That the Service Delivery Directorate would provide copies of recent risk assessments on parks and toilet facilities to Burnham Town Council (BTC) to share knowledge and best practice.
Following the questions, the Chairman referred the Director of Service Delivery to the final recommendation on the report namely that the ‘health and safety action plan 2020/21 be approved’. She queried whether this was feasible at this point in time given the continuing risk of infection and fluid nature of the current situation. The Director of Service Delivery acknowledged that the situation remained fluid and said it would be best to defer approval for now. It was agreed that the final recommendation be amended to read ‘health and safety action plan 2020/21 will be updated and brought back to committee for approval’.
Councillor Stamp, referring to the current difficult situation, asked that the Committee express thanks to Mr Holmes, Director of Service Delivery and his team for their hard work in maintaining the parks, toilets and refuse collections. The Chairman and Committee members agreed that staff had been outstanding during this pandemic.
The Chairman then moved the recommendations in the report and they were seconded by Councillor Heard. The Chairman put the recommendations to the Committee and they were unanimously agreed.
RESOLVED that the following was noted:-
(i) accident and incident statistics for the quarter;
(ii) progress with the health and safety action plan 2019/20;
(iii) information pertaining to corporate health and safety matters; and the
(iv) health and safety action plan 2020-21 will be updated and brought back to committee for approval.