More than a year on since the introduction of the new sentencing guidelines for corporate manslaughter, businesses need to be prepared as never before, says Simon Olliff.

A Manchester building contractor has been sent to jail for eight months for hiring two workers who were not qualified to carry out work at height and failing to provide fall protection measures on a roofing job, resulting in the death of a casual labourer who fell to his death. In another recent case, an engineering company in north east England was fined £150,000 for providing inadequate PPE to its workers, who were severely burned carrying out cleaning tasks using corrosive substances.

These convictions have happened since the introduction of the Sentencing Council’s new guidelines in February 2016 – with the potential for courts to levy increased fines and custodial sentences for serious breaches of health and safety law.

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