Notice of Contravention Letter (HSE)

What To Do When You Get A Letter From The HSE

safety inspection

When companies get a letter from the HSE explaining they have breached Health and Safety legislation, it is worrying and sometimes confusing as to what they are asking you to do.

We specialise in handling HSE contravention notices because we not only work to build a good relationship with the inspectors, but also have over 10 years’ experience in working to get exactly what you need in place. What is more, we do all of the work, not give you a list of things to do.

For Example, some companies have letters explaining they have contravention or even breaches of HAVS, Noise and Machinery PUWER safety. We can do the full site inspection, create procedures, risk assessments, develop safe arrangements, train your staff, and deliver Occupational health, so the full process is well controlled and safe, plus the inspector is satisfied.

An because we can do all of these things, you do not need to book multiple contractors and host multiple people with sometimes weeks, or even months lead times.

What Cost Is Involved?

There is no doubt that the fear of prosecution, Fee for Intervention (FFI) and maybe legal costs are going to be very overwhelming, and we see some cases of between £4,000 and £40,000 for companies that are slow to act and do not handle things with as much of a priority as they should.

There is also the cost of getting things up to scratch, but of course this is much less of a cost than the legal problems for not doing it, plus the work still needs to be done after any fines anyway.

We typically allocate a project cost based on how much work is needed. Usually the costs are from £600 for one off things like training, but typically getting things up to speed will be more in depth and we usually see a cost range from between £2,000 and £8,000. This is just based on our experience, and it really does depend on how much work you can do yourselves.

We can also save most companies a significant amount of equipment and facility upgrade costs as we will recommend the most efficient and cost effective measures – for example LEV extraction for CNC machines can have filtration instead of LEV systems. Or even Welding portable units can be used (with the right training) as opposed to full on tool extraction or LEV extraction systems.

We base the decisions around these on risk and resources available by the company.

We also spread the cost of these, so we can help with a heavy handed and fast response in the first instance, find out how much work is needed and agree a cost, but then spread that cost over 12 to 24 months while doing the work up front.

This reduces the financial burden for you, but also gets the results you need in the time available.

How Quickly Do We Have To Get Things Done?

Most HSE letters and notices will give a deadline date to have everything in place and the inspectors will usually give plenty of time based on the level of risk and complexity.

Of course if something is super urgent and dangerous, they may issue a prohibition notice that you want to fix immediately to avoid business disruption and so you may not want to wait until the deadline.

This is why we specialise in fast responses with a video call within days of your initial inquiry. From there we maintain capacity to arrange a site investigation visit within 2-3 weeks and promise to close all actions by the HSE deadline dates.

NOTE – We can sometimes agree an extension with the HSE Inspectors if the risk is acceptable, and the majority of work is in place, but some issues are delaying final completion.

We also spread the cost of these, so we can help with a heavy handed and fast response in the first instance, find out how much work is needed and agree a cost, but then spread that cost over 12 to 24 months while doing the work up front.

This reduces the financial burden for you but also gets the results you need in the time available.
As independent health and safety consultants, we work alongside your business doing the work you need help with, not just giving you advice on what you need to do yourselves.

Who Can Give us Suitable Advice?

When you get someone to help with the HSE letters and to do the work afterwards, it is hugely important that the people helping have experience of dealing with HSE notices. This is because the wording of the letter can be very detailed or complex and finding the underlying cause of what the inspectors are looking for can sometimes be confusing.

The people that help you get things right must be competent. This is even more important when the HSE are investigating you because they will ask. In particular they will want to know the work will be deemed what they call “suitable and sufficient.”

At Orbis we have worked with hundreds of companies all across the UK and so we are able to understand the different HSE inspectors requests.

We also have very experienced specialists that understand the needs of your business as well as the demands of the HSE.

And of course competence is vital which is why we have IOSH membership for all specialists and your project will be led by a Chartered member of the institute of Occupational Safety and Health (CMIOSH).

As independent health and safety consultants, we work alongside your business doing the work you need help with, not just giving you advice on what you need to do yourselves.

What Do We Need To Do Next?

HSE Safety prosecution

The first step is to contact us. Either call the head office line where one of the consultants can answer your questions (we do not use sales people so you will ONLY talk to a qualified person).
We will then (with your permission) have a look at the HSE letter / notice / email and give you some free advice on what to do immediately.
From there we will be able to explain how much work we will need to put in to fix everything and agree costs and availability to make an immediate start.

To know more or chat to a consultant, pop an email over to us at [email protected] or call us on – 01656 470044. We will be in touch within 1 hour.

If it is urgent, please email our senior consultant Ryan Lloyd-Davies (CMIOSH) on [email protected]

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Feel free to drop us a message with a brief description of problems you need help with. If you need someone to talk to, we listen. We won't judge or tell you what to do. We want to make sure we’re providing the best experience for all our customer whenever we can.