Coronavirus: Safety watchdogs deal with hundreds of workplace complaints
May. 17, 2020
Workplace safety watchdogs are dealing with hundreds of coronavirus-related complaints from Scotland.
The Health and Safety Executive said it had been contacted 390 times with concerns about Scottish workplaces since early March.
That's about 8% of the 4,813 cases raised across the UK over a two-month period.
The agency said it was addressing all concerns and would not hesitate to take enforcement action if required.
Ensuring social distancing and providing personal protective equipment (PPE) have become important issues for employers during the pandemic.
Scots firms urged not to bring back workers early
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) said its advice team resolved many concerns but about 40% triggered an investigation.
In some cases, it said work had to be suspended while safety measures were put in place.
'Controlling the risk'
It has not yet issued enforcement notices related to Covid-19 anywhere in the UK.
The caseload figures are for the period 9 March to 7 May.
That covers the two weeks before lockdown started and continues until just before Boris Johnson announced plans to ease some restrictions in England.
In Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon is still advising the public to stay at home except for essential purposes.
An HSE spokesman told BBC Scotland: "At the heart of the return to work is controlling the risk posed by the virus.
"Ensuring safe working practices are in place will help deliver a safe return to work and support businesses across the UK."
"We'll continue to take proportionate action, but will not hesitate to take enforcement if needed.
"We have a strong track record of using enforcement to ensure workers health and safety is protected."