We have a person responsible at Group level for ensuring that our businesses meet our health and safety standards. We have a target to reduce lost-time accident rates for our employees and plan to extend our monitoring and targets to also cover our contractors and customers.
Lost-time accident rates and policy
Kingfisher's Group policy and standards on health and safety are based on both local regulatory requirements and International Labour Organisation (ILO) standards. A Group-wide health and safety review is conducted on an annual basis and includes a review of compliance with the Group standards as well as local regulatory requirements.
We achieved a 6% reduction in the total lost-time accident rate over the past year as well as a 6% reduction in work days lost from these accidents. Since 2006/07 we have achieved a 25% reduction in the total lost-time accident rate. However, there was an increase in the number of major accidents this year – from 81 in 2010/11 to 117 in 2011/12.
There are some significant variations in accident rates across the Group. This is partly due to differences in legislation, mandatory accident reporting requirements, and health and safety cultures across countries. The accident rates are highest in France and Spain where companies are required to report and claim accidents through insurance/social security systems. In 2011/12, the total lost-time accident rate in the UK (B&Q UK, Screwfix and Kingfisher corporate head office) was 1,107 per 100,000 full-time equivalent employees. This is significantly lower than the Group average of 3,220. However, each operating company has full-time safety managers who operate within a set framework and job description, and who champion safety within the business.
Our Group accident data currently covers employees. We are planning to develop a Group-wide accident reporting framework for customers and on-site contractors, and set a reduction target.
An ongoing legal case reported in last year's CR report, relating to a customer fatality in March 2009 at a B&Q UK store in the Republic of Ireland, was settled in 2011. B&Q UK is currently being prosecuted for three offences under H&S at Work regulations as a result of incidents at the Exeter Supercentre and Exeter Warehouse.