Even if they have comprehensive liability insurance, many construction companies aren't doing enough to protect their workers.
This has resulted in the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) putting together a mass inspection of 69 sites in North Eastern England - and a further 78 in Scotland - as part of an investigation into safety while working at height and the prevention of falling.
The inspections took place across the first three weeks of September. As a result, 14 sites were issued with Prohibition Notices (with an additional 15 in Scotland) for not following the proper precautions. Liability insurance claims are only part of the cot and aggravation that poor health and safety can cause a construction company - lives are being endangered too.
This drastic action undertaken by the HSE is part of a campaign to reduce dangerous working practices in the construction industry. In the 12 months to April 2012, a total of 49 deaths were caused in the UK in construction. The most common cause of death was fatal injuries through falling.
HSE Principal Inspector Robert Hirst explained: "Whilst the initiative was primarily to raise awareness of the problem of unsafe working practices, it is of serious concern that such a significant proportion of sites visited were undertaking work at height in a dangerous manner."
Liability insurance customers in construction work hard to keep their employees safe, but drastic steps such as those taken by the HSE are necessary to stamp out widespread bad practice by others.