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The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has warned that construction firms in the UK must manage any risks related to a reduction in workforce.

According to the body, which promotes information and training on issues including personal protective equipment, businesses in the sector must cover any impact that may occur due to the cutting of jobs in relation to the credit crunch.

Previous figures from the organisation revealed that there were just under 1,000 major injuries in the trade during 2005-06.

However, a HSE spokesperson did not comment on how a reduction in the number of workers at a firm could affect such statistics.

The source explained: 'The view of Health and Safety Executive, as the health and safety regulator, would be that it is for the construction industry to manage the risk and if they are reducing the workforce, they would need to ensure that all risks are covered by any impact that might have.'

Firms were recently urged by the HSE to ensure their equipment is fit for use, after two companies were fined for an incident in which an access cradle led to the death of a worker

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