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The main concern will be the protection of workers’ lungs from asbestos, silica and wood dust, to prevent respiratory risks and occupational lung disease. The HSE has revealed that construction workers are at a particularly high risk of developing lung diseases due to high volumes of dust on construction sites; with lung diseases believed to be the cause of death of over 500 construction workers annually, mainly due to silica dust.

It is estimated that the construction industry is responsible for around 3,500 out of approximately 8,000 work-related cancer deaths annually; the main causes of these are exposure to asbestos and silica. The HSE has said that the approach for construction businesses in order to ensure health and safety compliance, particularly with the CDM Regulations 2015, is that of an approach to risk of ‘assess, control and review’. Evidence of this will be sought in the inspections.

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