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Exit from Heightened Safety Period and New Measures for Sustainable WSH Outcomes

At the launch of the National Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) Campaign 2023, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) announced that the Heightened Safety Period (HSP) implemented on 1 September 2022 will end on 31 May 2023, without further extension. The HSP has served its purpose as an urgent call on employers to prioritise safety and bring down workplace fatalities.  Workplace fatality rate per 100,000 workers declined from 1.5 for January to August 2022 (before HSP) to 0.8 for September 2022 – to-date, but major injuries rate has not improved.  

2 We will press on towards our WSH 2028 goal of keeping our fatality rate at below 1.0 per 100,000 workers, and our major injury rate at below 12.0 per 100,000 workers. The Multi-Agency Workplace Safety Taskforce (MAST) will retain some HSP measures and implement new measures to strengthen WSH ownership on a sustained basis and build a strong safety culture amongst all stakeholders.

Impact of HSP

3 Since the HSP, we have seen a decline in workplace fatality rate — workplace fatality rate per 100,000 workers decreased from 1.5 for January – August 2022 (before HSP) to 0.8 for September 2022 – to-date (HSP). This outperformed MOM’s WSH 2028 target of 1.0. The major injury rate per 100,000 workers, however, worsened from 16.8 before HSP to 19.2 during HSP . 

4 Notably, the HSP’s impact across industries was uneven. Among the higher-risk industries, Construction remained the top contributor in terms of absolute number of workplace fatal and major injuries but showed the most improvement for the fatality and major injury rates during HSP – with the decrease in major injuries with a higher risk of fatality, the number of fatalities correspondingly reduced. In comparison, the fatal and major injury rate for the Manufacturing sector worsened, exceeding that for Construction. This indicates the need for more sector-specific intervention to improve workplace safety outcomes.

New SAFE measures for more sustainable WSH outcomes

5 Among the initiatives announced during the HSP was the setting up of MAST, comprising key sector lead agencies , which set out to identify measures to address the leading causes of workplace incidents, particularly in higher-risk industries. MAST will implement a set of SAFE (Safety Accountability, Focus and Empowerment) measures to further improve WSH outcomes. 

6 These SAFE measures aim to strengthen WSH ownership fundamentally and sustainably across the entire ecosystem — at the sectoral, company and worker level. These measures include: 

Strengthen Ownership at Sectoral Level

a) Require more stringent safety requirements in Government Procurement Entities’ (GPEs) construction tenders, as well as introduce new measures such as a WSH Bonus Scheme, to align the interest of businesses to WSH. MAST member, SMS Tan Kiat How, will be consulting the industry before MND/ MOM announce the finalised measures.

b) Require Video Surveillance System at worksite locations where high-risk work activities are ongoing, for Construction sites with project value ≥$5 million, to help companies better manage safety.

c) Expand the Demerit Point System for the Construction sector to Manufacturing to deter WSH breaches and uplift standards. MAST member, MOS Alvin Tan, will share more details.

d) Impose legal duties on manufacturers and suppliers to ensure safe usage of more types of industrial machines, equipment and hazardous substances; labelling of organic combustible dusts and users of combustible dusts of prescribed amounts notify MOM and their building owner/ landlord.

Strengthen Ownership at Company Level

e) Retain selected HSP measures such as requiring Chief Executives (CEs) to personally account to MOM for serious WSH lapses and take responsibility for WSH rectifications to strengthen corporate leaders’ WSH accountability.  

f) Require CEs and Board Directors of all companies in higher-risk industries to attend the new Top Executive WSH Programme, to focus their attention on how to meet their WSH responsibilities.

g) Provide an additional avenue for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) to consult and access resources on how to improve their WSH capabilities through SME centres and Business Advisors. 

Strengthen Ownership at Worker Level

h) Empower workers to take greater ownership of their own safety by equipping them with updated WSH know-how through a new online micro-learning component in the Safety Orientation re-certification assessment.  
i) Launch a National WSH campaign to encourage workers to report unsafe practices.

7 Details of the SAFE measures are in the Annex. These measures will be implemented progressively over the next 6-12 months to allow for industry consultation and lead time for companies where required. Fuller details will be announced when ready. 

8 To instil stronger tripartite ownership and accountability for both workplace safety and health risks, MAST will be retained as a standing committee after HSP, with additional members incorporated. MAST will continue to study and implement further measures to foster a stronger WSH culture.   

Launch of “Reporting Saves Lives” Campaign

9 Organised by the WSH Council, and supported by MOM, National Trades Union Congress and Singapore National Employers Federation, the tagline for this year’s WSH Campaign is “Reporting Saves Lives”.  The campaign seeks to build a stronger whole-of-society ecosystem to ensure workplace safety, by calling on: 

a) Employers to set up an internal reporting framework within their companies, to build a culture of trust between employers and workers where everyone watches out for one another, thereby reducing risks; 

b) Workers to proactively report any unsafe situations to their employers, union leaders, or if need be, to MOM; and 

c) Members of the public to report unsafe workplace situations to MOM, using the SnapSafe web-service (  

10 Everyone should play their part to report unsafe workplace situations and take an active role in preventing workplace injuries and fatalities.

11 A safe work environment is fundamental to productivity, competitiveness, business continuity, and workers’ well-being. All stakeholders – the Government, employers, workers, service buyers, suppliers and members of the public – must do our part to actively prevent workplace incidents. This will help to ensure safe and healthy workplaces for our workers, and save lives.






Implementation Timeline

Strengthening WSH Ownership at Sectoral Level


Retain MAST as a standing committee

  • Continue to drive the SAFE measures and develop further broad-based and sectoral measures to address leading causes of workplace incidents



Introduce more stringent safety requirements, and new measures in Government Procurement Entities’ tenders to incentivise good safety performance

[Fuller details to be announced after further consultation]

  • Establish a set of harmonised WSH criteria for public construction and construction related projects to strengthen WSH ownership across all levels of main and sub-contractors (e.g. extend Safety Disqualification framework[1] to ensure that only contractors with a minimum safety performance participate in tenders)
  • Require a minimum safety weightage for tender evaluation of public construction and construction related projects
  • Introduce additional WSH requirements for public construction projects above a certain Estimated Procurement Value (e.g. a WSH bonus scheme to incentivise good safety performance)



Expand Demerit Point System to Manufacturing Sector

  • Deter WSH breaches in the Manufacturing sector, with the expansion of the Demerit Point System from Construction to Manufacturing
  • Manufacturing companies that accumulate at least 25 Demerit Points for WSH contraventions (such as composition fine; Stop Work Order; and prosecution action taken for major injuries, dangerous occurrences, and fatality) within an 18-month period will be temporarily debarred from employing foreign employees[2]

Oct 2023


Expand the MAST membership

  • Take a more holistic approach to WSH, and drive sectoral measures and performance more effectively by expanding the composition of MAST to include the Ministry of Health, Industry Leaders, and the Labour movement

By end 2023


Require Video Surveillance System (VSS) for construction sites with project value ≥ $5mil

  • Help companies better manage safety by requiring VSS for high-risk activities
  • VSS is a network of cameras, monitors/display units and recorders for surveillance, identification of WSH risks, facilitation of incident investigation and corrective actions, and to potentially deter unsafe WSH behaviours

Jun 2024


Ensure safe use of machineries and combustible dust

  • Enhance existing WSH Regulations to require companies to comply with additional standards[3]:
  • Legal duties on manufacturers and suppliers of more types of industrial machines, equipment and hazardous substances, to ensure that these are inherently safe when used; and
  • Labelling of organic combustible dusts and users of combustible dusts of prescribed amounts to notify MOM and their building owner/ landlord

Jun 2024

Strengthening WSH Ownership at Company Level


Require CEs to personally account for serious WSH lapses following serious or fatal workplace incidents (Only for selected cases)

  • Retained from HSP



Require companies with major injuries and Stop Work Order to engage external auditors to conduct a thorough review of their WSH processes


Require CEs to attend ½ day in-person Top Executive WSH Programme, for companies with serious WSH lapses following serious or fatal incidents


Require CEs or Board Directors of all companies in higher-risk industries to attend the Top Executive WSH Programme (online or in-person)

  • Better equip corporate leaders in Construction, Manufacturing, Transport & Storage and Marine industries to meet their WSH responsibilities and place clear accountability to improve WSH
  • Curriculum for the Top Executive WSH Programme will include principles in the Approved Code of Practice on Company Directors’ WSH Duties, root cause analysis, and knowledge on how to prevent accidents and ways to develop a company’s WSH capabilities

Required from Mar 2024 (In-person programme is already available and online programme will be ready from Sep 2023)


Ramp up Enhanced Workplace Health Surveillance (WHS+) programme for noise

  • Detect exposure to excessive noise and reduce workers’ risk of noise-induced deafness by requiring all companies identified to have higher risk for noise to:
  • Conduct workplace noise monitoring; and
  • Send their workers exposed to excessive noise for annual audiometric examinations

May 2023


Provide more support to SMEs through SME Centres

  • Provide an additional avenue for SMEs to seek consultation on WSH matters and gain access to WSH resources to improve their WSH capabilities, such as bite-sized WSH guidance resources
  • SMEs will also be informed about available capability-building programmes like StartSAFE and bizSAFE, as well as upcoming WSH events and announcements

Jun 2023

Strengthening WSH Ownership at Worker Level


Launch annual National WSH Campaign to enhance safety reporting

  • Encourage employers to facilitate internal company reporting for WSH and workers to report unsafe workplace practices. MOM has also made available three channels for ease of reporting via
  • MOM’s FWMOMCare app;
  • Unions; and
  • SnapSafe, a dedicated page on MOM’s website.

May 2023


Introduce online micro-learning component to Safety Orientation Course recertification assessment

  • Enhance safety training for workers in higher-risk industries by introducing a new online micro-learning component to Safety Orientation Course recertification assessment. This comprises modules based on high-risk work activities, such as Work at Height, vehicular safety, STF and machinery safety, starting with the Construction sector and expanding subsequently to Marine and Metalworking.

Jan 2024

Continue Enforcement Efforts


Double the quantum for Composition Fine from a minimum of $1,000 to $2,000 per WSH lapse

  • Retained from HSP




[1]  Safety Disqualification framework was introduced in Oct 2022 for public construction projects ≥ $3mil, where contractors will be temporarily disqualified for three months following: (i) entry into MOM’s Business Under Surveillance Programme which occurs when systemic workplace breaches are uncovered; or (ii) accumulation of 25 points or more under MOM’s Demerit Point System.

[2] Debarment duration ranges from three months for employing new foreign employees (for 25-49 Demerit Points) to two years for employing new and existing foreign employees (for 125 Demerit Points and above).

[3] Based on recommendations of the Tuas Explosion Inquiry Committee published on 25 Mar 2022 to ascertain the causes and circumstances of the explosion and fire at Stars Engineering Pte Ltd, which resulted in three deaths and five major injuries.