Construction firms across the UK are still to be the subject of health and safety inspections despite the government unveiling a new initiative around cutting red tape within the sector.

Companies operating within the construction industry have been highlighted as an area where employees are carrying out work in a "high risk" environment and therefore will not receive the same exemption as firms within different sectors. The government has released details about a new scheme that aims to reduce the amount of health and safety inspections, allowing businesses to promote within their operations without the threat of time consuming red tape issues.

Business secretary Vince Cable and business minister Michael Fallon have been quick to praise the new initiative that will see pubs, clubs, shops and offices benefit from being exempt or receive fewer inspections than they are currently. However, sectors such as construction along with firms which have a poor track record in terms of safety performance.

Mr Cable said: "In these tough times, businesses need to focus all their energies on creating jobs and growth, not being tied up in unnecessary red tape. I've listened to those concerns and we're determined to put common sense back into areas like health and safety, which will reduce costs and fear of burdensome inspections."

The scheme will take effect from April 2013 and will see around 3,000 pieces of legislation either overhauled or completely scrapped, making it easier for companies to operate. However, construction firms will still be required to ensure that their health and safety standards are up to current standards or run the risk of receiving a fine from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) if they are found to be endangering worker welfare through the way it operates within its site.

Mr Fallon also added his sentiments to the new scheme, stating: "We're getting out of the way by bringing common sense back to health and safety. We will now be holding departments’ feet to the fire to ensure all unnecessary red tape is cut."

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