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Skill shortages linked to poor site safety

CONSTRUCTION'S FAILURE to tackle site safety is adding to skill shortages, health and safety minister Lord Whitty said on Tuesday.

Whitty challenged the industry to develop 'its own strategy to address the failure by all in the supply chain' to reduce the causes of ill health.

Construction loses 25,000 people each year as a result of construction related illness.

With contractors and consultants struggling to recruit skilled labour, it is a significant figure.

Accidents and work related illness cost British industry £10bn a year, with construction industry figures twice the national average.

Whitty said that as the biggest construction client, Government must 'lead by example'. Problems must be 'designed out at source' he went on, and emphasised the importance of communication between different disciplines, from designer to contractor.

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