UK Health and Safety Executive

Sheffield, United Kingdom

UK Health and Safety Executive

Sheffield, United Kingdom

Time filter

Source Type

Day N.C.,UK Health and Safety Executive
Risk, Reliability and Safety: Innovating Theory and Practice - Proceedings of the 26th European Safety and Reliability Conference, ESREL 2016 | Year: 2017

Road freight accounts for around three-quarters of all domestic freight moved in the UK. In 2014, UK-registered light goods vehicles (LGVs) and heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) moved 140 billion tonne kilometres of domestic freight and 7 billion tonne kilometres of international freight (Department for Transport 2015). Almost all companies operating in the UK will have goods delivered or dispatched by road, and often the operation will be time-critical. © 2017 Taylor & Francis Group, London.

Temminck E.,Robert Gordon University | Mearns K.,UK Health and Safety Executive | Fruhen L.,University of Aberdeen
Business Strategy and the Environment | Year: 2015

Workers engaging in voluntary and unrewarded environmental actions that go above and beyond their job requirements in an organizational setting can crucially contribute to a reduced environmental impact of organizations. This research investigates some of the factors that may contribute to the emergence of such organizational citizenship behaviour directed towards the environment (OCBE). The hypotheses predicted employees' concern for the environment, employees' perceived organizational support for environmental efforts and organizational commitment as antecedents of OCBE. Employees from two organizations (n=547) completed an online survey. Controlling for organizational tenure, a significant relationship between (a) employees' concern for their environment and OCBE, (b) perceived organizational support for environment efforts and OCBE and (c) organizational commitment and OCBE were found. Furthermore, organizational commitment mediated the relationship between perceived organizational support for environmental efforts and OCBE, but not environmental concern. This study's insights into the factors that can drive employees' engagement in small, voluntary environmental actions at work can guide organizations wishing to encourage such behaviours. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.

News Article | October 7, 2016

If you're a night owl but decided to work a day shift because of the possibility of developing breast cancer while working during the night, it's time you reconsidered that. An assessment back in 2007 suggested that the effect of night shift work on the body is probably carcinogenic, influencing the incidence of breast cancer in women. However, data from three recent studies and a review published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute show that, on the contrary, night shifts have little or no influence on the occurrence of breast cancer. Ruth Travis and colleagues from the Cancer Epidemiology Unit at Oxford University followed 800,000 women in their three large-scale UK studies. The purpose of the researches was to examine and identify the risks of night shift work. The three studies involved 522,246 participants in the Million Women Study, another 22,559 women who participated in the EPIC-Oxford study and 251,045 UK Biobank volunteers. The subjects answered questions regarding their shift work, then they were followed for incident cancer. There was no increased risk of breast cancer development due to working at night, not even long-term night shifts, according to these studies. The study was funded by the UK Health and Safety Executive, along with Cancer Research UK and the UK Medical Research Council, and it analyzed data from 10 separate previous researches conducted in the UK, the United States, China, Sweden and the Netherlands. The researchers compared breast cancer risks for women who didn't work night shifts to women who did for long periods of time, up to 20 or even 30 years. The comparative analysis reported that there was little or no difference between the breast cancer incidence of the two groups of subjects. "We found that women who had worked night shifts, including long-term night shifts, were not more likely to develop breast cancer, either in the three new UK studies or when we combined results from all 10 studies that had published relevant data," explained Travis, lead author of the research. The incidence of developing breast cancer for women who had worked any night shifts was found to be 0.99, while the one for women who worked 20 or more years was 1.01 and the combined relative risks for those who have done night shifts for more than 30 years was 1.00. Approximately 14 percent of the women in the United Kingdom worked night shifts at least once, while 2 percent have done this for more than two decades. The study was conducted as, in the UK, there are more than 53,000 women annually diagnosed with breast cancer, out of which an average of 11,500 die every year because of the disease. This problem is especially serious in the UK, where 27,000 women are being denied affordable breast cancer treatment. © 2017 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

Harding A.-H.,UK Health and Safety Laboratory | Darnton A.J.,UK Health and Safety Executive
American Journal of Industrial Medicine | Year: 2010

Background: Ascertainment of asbestosis and mesothelioma from underlying cause of death underestimates the burden of these diseases. The aims of this study were to estimate the true frequency of asbestosis and mesothelioma among asbestos workers in Great Britain (GB), and to identify factors associated with the risk of death with these diseases. Methods: The GB Asbestos Survey was established in 1971 to monitor long-term health outcomes among workers covered by regulations to control asbestos at work. Asbestosis and mesothelioma cases were defined by multiple cause of death, and were ascertained by identifying asbestos workers on the GB Asbestosis and Mesothelioma Registers. Standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) were calculated; the risks of asbestosis and mesothelioma were modeled with Poisson regression analysis. Deaths to the end of 2005 were included. Results: There were 15,557 deaths between 1971 and 2005 among the 98,912 workers. Altogether 477 asbestosis and 649 mesothelioma cases were identified. The SMR for all causes was 1.42, for asbestosis 51.3, and for mesothelioma 13.5. In multiply adjusted analysis, age, sex, job, and birth cohort were significantly associated with asbestosis and mesothelioma. For asbestosis year of first exposure, and for mesothelioma latency, were also statistically significant. Conclusions: The asbestos workers experienced high mortality from all causes, asbestosis, and mesothelioma. There was some evidence that the risk of asbestosis and mesothelioma was lower in later birth cohorts and among those first occupationally exposed to asbestos more recently. Due to the long latency of both diseases, further follow-up is required to confirm these trends. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Jones K.,UK Health and Safety Laboratory | Cocker J.,UK Health and Safety Laboratory | Piney M.,UK Health and Safety Executive
Annals of Occupational Hygiene | Year: 2013

Aims: The purpose of this work was to assess the changes in control of exposure to hexamethylene diisocyanate based paints used in vehicle spraying after a Health & Safety Executive (HSE) national project.Methods: Paint sprayers and managers from motor vehicle repair (MVR) bodyshops across the UK, were invited to one of 32 Safety and Health Awareness Days (SHADs) to increase their understanding of the hazards, and practical ways of controlling of exposure to isocyanate based paints. Exposure measurement based on biological monitoring was offered, free of charge, to each of the roughly 4000 participants and used to assess the effectiveness of controls and methods of working. Results are compared with pre and post SHAD measurements.Results: Urine samples were received from 995 paint sprayers. Hexamethylene diamine (HDA) levels in urine, indicative of exposure to hexamethylene diisocyanate (HDI), were significantly lower (Mann-Whitney, p<0.0001) than had been seen in a wider population from previous HSE inspections and routine sampling. Where a sprayer's urinary HDA was above the quantification limit they were asked to send another sample after reviewing and improving exposure control measures. The results from these repeat samples were significantly lower than the original results. There was no difference in the exposures of sprayers using air-fed half-mask face-pieces compared with visor type air-fed breathing apparatus, or between spray booths and rooms.Conclusions: The analysis of HDA in urine is a useful technique for assessing exposure to isocyanates in paint sprayers. The simplicity of this approach has allowed wide-scale use of biological monitoring in an industry dominated by small and micro businesses. Biological monitoring of exposure has enabled individual companies, and sprayers, to check that their control measures are working.This study showed overall lower levels of HDA in paint sprayers following SHADs. These lower levels have been maintained across a wider population of UK paint sprayers over the succeeding years. Whilst there may be many reasons for the reduction in exposure, the weight of evidence suggests that the key messages about exposure control measures, delivered through the SHADs and other means, were influential. © 2012 © Crown copyright 2012.

Frost G.,UK Health and Safety Laboratory | Darnton A.,UK Health and Safety Executive | Harding A.-H.,UK Health and Safety Laboratory
Annals of Occupational Hygiene | Year: 2011

Objectives: Workers in the asbestos industry tend to have high smoking rates compared to the general population. Both asbestos exposure and cigarette smoking are recognized risk factors for lung cancer mortality, but the exact nature of the interaction between the two remains uncertain. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of smoking and smoking cessation among asbestos workers in Great Britain (GB) and investigate the interaction between asbestos exposure and smoking. Methods: The study population consisted of 98912 asbestos workers recruited into the GB Asbestos Survey from 1971, followed-up to December 2005. Poisson regression was used to estimate relative risks of lung cancer mortality associated with smoking habits of the asbestos workers and to assess whether these effects differed within various categories of asbestos exposure. The interaction between asbestos exposure and smoking was examined using the Synergy (S) and Multiplicativity (V) indices, which test the hypotheses of additive and multiplicative interaction, respectively. The proportion of lung cancers among smokers attributable to the interaction of asbestos and smoking was also estimated. Results: During 1780233 person-years of follow-up, there were 1878 deaths from lung cancer (12% of all deaths). Risk of lung cancer mortality increased with packs smoked per day, smoking duration, and total smoke exposure (pack-years). Asbestos workers who stopped smoking remained at increased risk of lung cancer mortality up to 40 years after smoking cessation compared to asbestos workers who never smoked. The effects of smoking and stopping smoking did not differ by duration of asbestos exposure, main occupation, age at first asbestos exposure, year of first exposure, or latency period. The interaction between asbestos exposure and smoking for asbestos workers was greater than additive [S 1.4, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.2-1.6], and the multiplicative hypothesis could not be rejected (V 0.9, 95% CI 0.3-2.4). For those asbestos workers who smoked, an estimated 26% (95% CI 14-38%) of lung cancer deaths were attributable to the interaction of asbestos and smoking. Conclusions: This study emphasizes the importance of smoking prevention and cessation among those who work in the asbestos industry. © The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Occupational Hygiene Society.

Harding A.-H.,UK Health and Safety Laboratory | Darnton A.,UK Health and Safety Executive | Osman J.,UK Health and Safety Laboratory
Occupational and Environmental Medicine | Year: 2012

Objectives: Asbestos is an inflammatory agent, and there is evidence that inflammatory processes are involved in the development of cardiovascular disease. Whether asbestos is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease has not been established. The objective of this study was to investigate cardiovascular disease mortality in a large cohort of workers occupationally exposed to asbestos. Methods: Cardiovascular disease mortality in a cohort of 98 912 asbestos workers, with median follow-up of 19 years, was analysed. Unadjusted and smokingadjusted standardised mortality ratios (SMRs) were calculated. The association between indicators of asbestos exposure and mortality was analysed with Poisson regression models, for deaths occurring during the period 1971-2005. Results: Altogether 15 557 deaths from all causes, 1053 deaths from cerebrovascular disease and 4185 deaths from ischaemic heart disease (IHD) occurred during follow-up. There was statistically significant excess mortality from cerebrovascular disease (SMR: men 1.63, women 2.04) and IHD (SMR: men 1.39, women 1.89). Job and birth cohort were associated with the risk of cerebrovascular and IHD mortality in the Poisson regression model including sex, age, smoking status, job, cohort and duration of exposure. For IHD only, duration of exposure was also statistically significant in this model. Conclusions: Cerebrovascular and IHD mortality was significantly higher among these asbestos workers than in the general population and within the cohort mortality was associated with indicators of asbestos exposure. These findings provide some evidence that occupational exposure to asbestos was associated with cardiovascular disease mortality in this group of workers.

Low A.,UK Health and Safety Executive
Journal of Hospital Infection | Year: 2011

Disinfectants (including sporicides) used in the healthcare setting fall within the scope of the European Biocidal Products Directive (98/8/EC). The active substances used in these products will be evaluated as part of an EU wide review programme, to determine whether they can be used in biocidal products without undue risks to humans, animals and the environment, and that these products will be effective. Following the review of an active substance, biocidal products containing the active substance will become subject to regulatory controls in all EU Member States. This paper discusses how the Directive operates, both through the review programme and the authorisation of biocidal products at the Member State level, together with the requirements to provide data on the efficacy of both the active substances and end-use biocidal products. © 2010.

Loizou G.D.,UK Health and Safety Executive
Frontiers in Pharmacology | Year: 2016

The exponential growth of the Internet of Things and the global popularity and remarkable decline in cost of the mobile phone is driving the digital transformation of medical practice. The rapidly maturing digital, non-medical world of mobile (wireless) devices, cloud computing and social networking is coalescing with the emerging digital medical world of omics data, biosensors and advanced imaging which offers the increasingly realistic prospect of personalized medicine. Described as a potential "seismic" shift from the current "healthcare" model to a "wellness" paradigm that is predictive, preventative, personalized and participatory, this change is based on the development of increasingly sophisticated biosensors which can track and measure key biochemical variables in people. Additional key drivers in this shift are metabolomic and proteomic signatures, which are increasingly being reported as pre-symptomatic, diagnostic and prognostic of toxicity and disease. These advancements also have profound implications for toxicological evaluation and safety assessment of pharmaceuticals and environmental chemicals. An approach based primarily on human in vivo and high-throughput in vitro human cell-line data is a distinct possibility. This would transform current chemical safety assessment practice which operates in a human "data poor" to a human "data rich" environment. This could also lead to a seismic shift from the current animal-based to an animal-free chemical safety assessment paradigm. ©2016 Loizou.

Beattie H.,UK Health and Safety Executive
Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology | Year: 2015

Workers in the electroplating industry are potentially exposed to a range of hazardous substances including nickel and hexavalent chromium (chromium VI) compounds. These can cause serious health effects, including cancer, asthma and dermatitis. This research aimed to investigate whether repeat biological monitoring (BM) over time could drive sustainable improvements in exposure control in the industry. BM was performed on multiple occasions over 3 years, at 53 electroplating companies in Great Britain. Surface and dermal contamination was also measured, and controls were assessed. Air monitoring was undertaken on repeat visits where previous BM results were of concern. There were significant reductions in urinary nickel and chromium levels over the lifetime of this work in the subset of companies where initially, control deficiencies were more significant. Increased risk awareness following provision of direct feedback to individual workers and targeted advice to companies is likely to have contributed to these reductions. This study has shown that exposures to chromium VI and nickel in the electroplating industry occur via a combination of inhalation, dermal and ingestion routes. Surface contamination found in areas such as canteens highlights the potential for transferral from work areas, and the importance of a regular cleaning regime.Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology advance online publication, 2 December 2015; doi:10.1038/jes.2015.67. © 2015 Nature America, Inc.

Loading UK Health and Safety Executive collaborators
Loading UK Health and Safety Executive collaborators