Working safely

 

We are committed to maintaining the highest standards of health and safety at our buildings, complying with legislation as a minimum standard, while reducing the risk of accidents and incidents to our employees and on-site at our buildings.

Keeping our working environment and properties safe

In any working environment there is always the potential for an accident to occur. We work hard to reduce this risk, through proactive health and safety management.

Reporting directly to the Finance Director, the Head of Sustainability retains responsibility for health and safety and oversees all statutory health and safety compliance matters for the Group.

Our facilities management team and building managers are responsible for the day-to-day health and safety at our properties. We also maintain a health and safety management system, which enables us to monitor and report on compliance across the portfolio.

We undertake regular risk assessments at our properties including:

  • Health and safety
  • Fire safety
  • Water safety
  • Asbestos
  • Air quality

We bring these assessments to the attention of our occupiers and ensure that where actions are identified these are dealt with promptly. Oversight of outstanding actions is provided by our Regional Building Managers and then by our quarterly Health and Safety Working Group, chaired by our Finance Director.

On-site health and safety

For our development projects we carry out competency reviews of our consultants and Principal Contractors on appointment. Health and safety also features on the agenda at all project management meetings and Principal Contractors are required to present monthly health and safety statistics.

We work with our Principal Designers and Principal Contractors to ensure proactive health and safety management throughout the design process into construction. Independent health and safety reviews of our development sites are periodically commissioned to monitor site health and safety standards.

We meet independently with our contractors at senior management level to discuss health and safety trends across the industry. We also work with our contractors, to ensure that they have occupational health provision on site for the benefit of site employees. 

Upon completion of developments and prior to handover, project managers make sure that building managers are well briefed on any site-specific health and safety risks, to ensure that appropriate risk assessments and method statements are in place ready for maintenance to commence.

In cases where we refurbish properties with occupiers still in situ, our project teams and building managers work collaboratively to minimise disruption to occupiers and to ensure that any health and safety implications are fully understood.

Where incidents occur

Where a reportable accident on-site or a near miss with the potential to result in a reportable accident or incident occurs, an investigation report is provided by the contractor within 24 hours.

All accidents and incidents reported from our development sites and investment properties are reviewed by the Executive Committee on a quarterly basis and by the Board as appropriate.

Health and Safety statistics*

2014

2015

2016

Number of reportable injuries

0

2

0

First aid injuiries

10

10

12

Three day injuries

0

0

0

Work related fatalities

0

0

0

Number of Enforcement Agency prosecutions or fines

0

0

0

Number of prohibition notices

0

0

0

Employee accident and incidents

2

2

3

Number of employee days off work from injury

0

0

0

 * to 31 March

Legislative changes

All changes to legislation are monitored and communicated to relevant employees and procedures amended accordingly. As a result of changes to the Construction (Design and Management) regulations 2015, during the year ended 31 March 2016, we have worked collaboratively with our contractors and consultants to introduce changes to health and safety management across our projects.

Health and wellbeing

We recognise that as well as addressing how we improve the health and wellbeing of our occupiers at our buildings, it is also essential that we have policies and processes in place for our employees.

We provide all our employees with access to an Employee Assistance Programme offering 24-hour access to counselling, legal advice, an online health portal and occupational health support as and when required and on a confidential basis.

In July 2016, we ran our first Employee Engagement survey. As a result of the feedback from the survey, we updated our employee health and wellbeing policies and flexible working policy.