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Waste management company Biffa has been awarded 'five star' recognition by the British Safety Council (BSC) for three years in a row now.

Although waste and recycling is second only to the agricultural industry as the most dangerous in the UK, the BSC has applauded the efforts of the company to improve workplace health and safety yet again.

During January 2015, BSC spent four days auditing operations at the company, looking at procedures for reporting accidents, ill health, near misses and evidence of how procedures have improved.

According to the head of health and safety at Biffa, Matt Humphreys, the procedure was intensive but the company is pleased that it is setting an industry standard.

The company has introduced a programme to change behaviours, called ‘iforsafety’. According to Humphreys, 90 per cent of accidents in the workplace are caused by a worker doing something that they know they shouldn't be, and that they have been trained not to do.

Colleagues receive incentives to encourage them to report any 'near misses' in the workplace.

The trucks at the company have been modified to help prevent accidents. Just as workers are provided with necessary workwear to keep them safe, the trucks now have reversing sensors and front-facing or 360-degree cameras. If the door of the truck is opened and the handbrake is not secured, an alarm sounds. Health and well-being are also concerns at the company, following a tragedy when a driver fell unconscious at the wheel of a collection vehicle belonging to the council.

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