Clearview North October 2013 - Issue 143 - Page 25

industrynews HOMEOWNERS ‘LOSING CONFIDENCE’ IN BRITISH TRADESMEN Homeowners are losing confidence in British tradesmen, according to TrustMark, the government endorsed quality mark for firms in the home repair, maintenance and improvement sector. At first glance, new research into public perceptions of tradesmen commissioned by TrustMark, indicates that most people have a good impression – 71% of respondents felt their overall experience of using a tradesman was more positive than negative. When given a list of good and bad adjectives to describe tradesmen, the five most frequently used words were ‘skilled’, ‘hardworking’, ‘professional’, ‘helpful’ and ‘trustworthy’. ‘Overall experience of using a tradesman was more positive than negative’ But almost quarter say they have had an overall negative experience with tradesmen, and more than half of all respondents (52.5%) felt their perception of tradesmen had become more negative because of the ‘cowboy builder’ TV programmes, which pursue the worst rogue traders and criminals masquerading as tradesmen in the domestic sector. Liz Male, chairman of TrustMark, said: “The appalling activities of rogue traders are tarnishing the reputation of British tradesmen, and this must stop. The government has committed to help us extend the TrustMark scheme so that far more good local firms can get the TrustMark badge. We will be working with these firms, as well as government and industry and consumer advice groups, to boost customers’ confidence in the many excellent tradesmen in the sector.” Key findings from TrustMark’s poll reveal: • One in five people would encourage friends or family to get a job in the sector only if there was more recognition of good quality and skilled tradesmen. • 43% of people agreed with the statement “Many tradesmen do a good job – there are some great firms out there”, but 50% of people also said they were not confident about the level of consumer protection available to them when they employ a tradesman to work on their homes. • Almost 94% of people would have more confidence and trust in tradesmen if they had undergone a full vetting and inspection process to ensure their work met an industry standard. To read more, visit NUMBERS ARE FALLING IN FATAL INJURIES TO WORKERS The latest HSE statistics have revealed a fall in the number of workers killed in Britain last year. Provisional data shows that 148 workers were fatally injured between April 2012 and March 2013, compared to 172 in the previous year. The overall rate of fatal injury has dropped to 0.5 per 100 000 workers, below the five-year average of 0.6. Britain has had one of the lowest rates of fatal injuries to workers in leading industrial nations in Europe consistently for the last eight years. There were 20 fatal injuries to workers in manufacturing, lower than the five-year average of 28. There were 39 fatal injuries to workers in construction, 26% lower than the average figure of 53. There were 423 members of the public fatally injured in accidents connected to work. Of these deaths, 310 (73%) related to incidents occurring on railways (including acts of suicide or trespass). Find out more at: http://www. HEALTH AND SAFETY MYTH BUSTING Case 209 - Double glazing company says ‘no’ to use of super glue for repairs. Issue Panel decision The enquirer recently made a complaint to a double glazing company regarding the installation of double glazing to his home. He was informed that the window sill could not be repaired using super glue because of health and safety rules. This is a clear case of “health and safety” being used as a convenient excuse to hide poor customer service. Superglue is readily available for purchase by the public and only requires users to follow the directions and simple precautions for its use provided by the supplier. If the company has some other reason for not using glue to fix what appears to be a simple problem it should say so, not use health and safety as an excuse. ‘a convenient excuse to hide poor customer service.’ OCT 2013 25