Are building sites safe?

Three people killed last year on building sites in Merseyside and West Cheshire

After three people were killed and more than 200 injured in West Cheshire and Merseyside over the past year, health and safety inspectors say they're gonna clamp down on unsafe construction sites.

The inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive will be doing spot checks on worksites  across the North West during the next month.

The Health and Safety Executive reckon that half of all fatalities in the North West were during refurbishment or repairs works.

During a similar month-long initiative last year, 100 of the 343 sites inspectors visited in the North West failed safety inspections. A total of 144 prohibition notices were issued stopping work activities immediately, with more than 40 percent relating to working at height.

Wayne Crumpton, HSE Principal Inspector for Construction, said:  "This will be the fifth year that we have run the inspection initiative and we expect that they'll be examples of both good and bad practice – those where employers are taking all the measures they can to protect their workers, and those where safety is way down the list of priorities.

"A lax attitude to health and safety in one of Britain's more dangerous industries is not acceptable, especially when many of the incidents are completely avoidable by taking commonsense actions and precautions.

"As we've demonstrated in previous years, we will not hesitate to take action if we find poor practice that is putting the lives of workers at risk."