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Ready for anything?
23 January 2013
It seems it's to be a summer of surprises. Parts of Britain have gone from debating how to deal with the effects of severe drought, to having to cope with the aftermath of torrential rain and ferocious floods, some of the worst to be experienced in years.
Places which have had no previous experience of flooding have been completely washed out and severe flood warnings have, with short notice forced people out of their homes and businesses. Meanwhile a similar level of unpredictability surrounds the build up to the London 2012 Olympics. A surge in demand for products or services may create exceptional revenue opportunities for some organisations, but the inevitable disruption will bring with it unpredictable challenges, and businesses have been warned planning is key to making sure they are fit for the challenge. And of course a Brit made it to the final of Wimbledon. which just goes to show that anything can happen!
These events (other than the Wimbledon final) have forced some organisations to take a step back from the day to day and ask what if? Or if they have been affected by recent events what now? But the reality is that the majority of the time emergency planning is not at the forefront of our business culture and much of UK Plc is ill prepared should the unexpected happen. Hopefully the Emergency Planning and Response Handbook included with this issue of HSM will help to provide some focus on this issue while offering some advice on how to be better prepared to deal with emergencies and their possible outcomes. This is the sixth in our handbook series and if you have missed any they are all now available to download in a digital archive at: hsmsearch.com.
A less surprising fact about the Olympics, but one well worthy of recognition, is that the Olympic build project has been hailed as the safest in history. Thanks to the emphasis that the Olympic Delivery Authority put on health and safety there has not been not a single death compared with six people constructing the last Olympics in Beijing, and at least 14 in Athens in 2004. In a special Construction Site Safety report HSM speaks to the people who made this possible and finds out what lessons can be learned from this achievement for the construction industry as a whole. See page 30 for more.
Also in this issue don't miss the first in a series of articles which aim to demystify insurance looking at how insurance premiums are calculated (page 65). Future articles will cover: what can be done to reduce insurance premiums, an overview of a workplace Civil Claim and the benefits of OHSAS 18001 relative to risk. So if you have any questions with regards to these topics now is the time to ask, please send them in by email and they will be passed on.
Health & Safety Matters