Updated: 02/23/2013 00:20

MOM found major breaches, issued 27 stop-work orders & $350,000 in fines against errant companies

MOM found major breaches, issued 27 stop-work orders & $350,000 in fines against errant companies

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) issued 27 stop-work orders and imposed fines of about $350,000 to errant companies during an operation against unsafe construction sites in late 2012.

About 1,100 fines and notices of non-compliance were issued during Operation Talon by its Occupational Safety and Health Inspectorate.

During the operation, 529 work sites of 378 companies were checked.

More than 60 per cent of the stop-work orders lasted over 10 days.

Work at height, scaffolding, excavation and formwork are still the main areas of safety lapses.

Eight workers have died in work accidents so far this year (2013), compared with seven in the same period last year (2012).

Acting Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin, who shared these statistics at the bizSAFE Convention on Friday (22 Feb), said the MOM inspections unearthed major breaches which could have been better managed if companies had put in more effort.

He urged companies to press on with efforts to make their workplaces safe, at a time when the construction industry is set to grow further.

He said employers must invest in safety, as this is the "right thing to do".

He said good safety practices are also at the core of profitable and thriving business.

Mr Tan highlighted three aspects of business success.

One is a well-managed workforce, where employees are more satisfied, loyal and productive.

Mr Tan said business success also depends on operational efficiency, and stressed the importance of maintaining safety standards.

The third factor for business success, he said, is a positive reputation.

Mr Tan said workers will want to work for a company with a reputation for taking care of their safety and health while businesses will want to work with those with good safety track records.

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