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HSE warning over basement safety

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has issued a warning to construction businesses after nearly one in three projects across four London boroughs failed health and safety spot checks.

Issues such as working from height without sufficient fall arrest equipment, badly-planned work and poor welfare facilities were all highlighted as concerns by the safety organisation.

Furthermore, the HSE found that a competent engineer had often not been used to design suitable support props for existing structures.

Andrew Beal, principal inspector for HSE's construction division in the City and south-west London, said: "Contractors must properly plan their work and protect their workers from risks such as falls from height or structures collapsing."

He added that domestic basement collapses can be extremely dangerous for workers.

The HSE advises that all construction firms put a rescue plan into place before working at height so all employees know what to do in the event of an emergency.

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