Material Breaches are here.
Fee for Intervention (FFI) is HSE’s cost recovery regime which started on 1 October 2012. Duty holders who are compliant with the law, or where a breach is not material, will not be charged FFI for any work that HSE does with them. The scheme only applies to HSE enforcement not local authorities.
A material breach is when, in the opinion of the HSE inspector, there is or has been a contravention of health and safety law that requires them to issue notice in writing of that opinion to the duty holder.
Written notification of the contravention must be provided:-
• Instant inspection report
• Formal letter
• Improvement notice
• Prohibition notice
• Notice of prosecution
It must contain :
the law that the inspector’s opinion relates to;
the reasons for their opinion; and notification that a fee is payable to HSE.
Note that you do not have to be served with an improvement or prohibition notice to receive a material breach notice.
Currently the fees will be charged at £124 per hour, but this could be more if the HSE have to seek further external specialists advice.
Invoices will be issued every two months.
What do you need to do?
Company’s may need to nominate a specific person internally to manage FFI across the business:
Ensures a consistent approach
Enables appeals to be considered quickly (only 21 days to appeal)
An internal point of contact with HSE should:
• Ensure areas of investigation are relevant – requests for documents should be focused
• Ensure key people are interviewed – try to avoid more statements than necessary being taken
• Keep an internal record of who is interviewed and dates/ length of time an Inspector is on site
We only have figures for October to December 2012 but they can only increase with more HSE activity.
1,419 invoices worth over £700,000
Of those around 10% were for more than £1000, 20% were between £500 and £1000, and 70% were for less than £500
Once the scheme has been running fro 12 months an annual review will be held by the HSE.