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Heavy-side construction surge could drive health and safety recruitment

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A boom time for the heavy-side construction industry could have knock-on positive effects for construction health and safety recruitment, with a second wave of vacancies still to come as the growth trickles down into the light side of the sector as well.

The heavy side traditionally gets involved first in new projects, and this was seen in the first quarter of 2016, when the Construction Products Association reported that 100% of heavy-side firms saw growth in salaries and wages, an indication of greater demand for employees.

Within the light-side segment, salary growth was reported by 71% of firms, but in a climate of newly increasing order books this is to be expected, with light-side suppliers usually only entering projects in their later stages.

As such, the coming months should see more of those companies contracted to work on projects whose heavier stages are complete - with a 'second wind' for related health and safety recruitment.

Each part of the sector poses its own challenges, from the heavy-side risks presented by plant machinery and bulk supplies, to the lighter side where personnel may be more exposed to muscular complaints and manual handling mistakes.