The Health and Safety Commission (HSC) and the government have challenged Britain's top 350 companies to cut injuries and ill-health at work.

Their proposed three-point plan may be extended to all companies with more than 250 employees.

Injuries and illness at work cost the UK up to £18bn a year.

They are asking the big names in British industry to:

  • set ambitious but achievable targets for improving their health and safety performance
  • include health and safety performance in their 2001/2002 annual report, and in annual reports thereafter
  • report back by the end of May 2001 on the progress made.

    The HSC has issued guidance to help companies meet these objectives.

    HSC chairman Bill Callaghan said: "This initiative is designed, as much as anything, to identify good practice, which we will recognise formally and seek to share throughout the industry as a whole."

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