Legal experts have raised concerns about a lack of justice over health and safety failures.
Only 3% of complaints ever lead to a prosecution or enforcement notice in Scotland. The number of cases recommended for prosecution has fallen by nearly 50% in two years.
One in three deaths at work is not scrutinised by a fatal accident inquiry (FAI) , despite being mandatory by law. The cases that do result in an FAI, they take an average of 30 months to set up. In one-third of instances, it took three to four years for an FAI to be held. None took under a year.
Patrick McGuire, of the major personal injury specialists, Thompsons Solicitors Scotland, said: "Breaching health and safety legislation is a crime but is not treated with the seriousness it deserves. For as long as the perception remains that this is not a 'proper crime' that devastates lives, the effectiveness of health and safety legislation will not be maximised. Disregarding people's safety at work or anywhere is a serious offence. It deserves the most serious enforcement measures possible."
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