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There is a fixed point that intersects many other realities.For any event there is an infinite number of possible outcomes. Our choices determine which outcome will follow. That all possibilities that can happen do happen in alternate reality

Guidelines for Foster Gamble’s Atomic Geometry a) Universe is a continuous, alive and infinite medium. b) The metaphysical, conceptual “geometry” of balance of the system will always be present and, because it is in equilibrium, it will be invisible. c) All multiplication happens by division of the wholeness. d) All form and matter are a function of motion (in the medium), centered by stillness, so action, not matter, is basic, and comes in wholes.

e) All processes evolve through maximum simplicity and efficiency.

f) The simplest distinction creating a self-sustaining entity as motion in and of the medium is toroidal.

g) Since every system is in rotation and embedded in other rotating systems, all movement is helical.

h) All systems are connected, and all centers are one.

i) Complexity builds on combinations and variations of toroidal field distinctions — following fundamental principles of least-effort division of the space medium cohering geometrically around any “point” as center.

j) Each “point” is the center of its system even as it participates in other systems with other centers.

k) There are an infinite number of “points” or “centers”.

l) Curvature toward and away from a center is infinite.

m) Within the infinite is the finite and within the finite is the infinite.

n) The structuring of “reality” is fractal and holographic in nature.

o) Quantization of space pre-exists matter.

p) Since the whole must always be in balance, any event, impulse, break in symmetry is always accompanied by its complementary dual (reflected as linear and radial polarity, opposite — direction, rotation, charge, — contraction/expansion, edge/vertex, fields, alternating shells etc.…)
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Nik Zafri's current statuses: (15 April, 2014)
Went to one conference on education. Also attended a special meeting on draft Education Transformation Blueprint in Damansara.

1. After the conference : mingled around with some education officials.

Asked them : "Where are your kids schooling?",

Answer : "Oh, in the International School".


Asked them : "Why?"


Answer : "For security reasons"


Told them : "Did you know that the current ruler of.
....went to public school and not International?"

Answer : (quiet)

Told them : "How can I trust you to do my kids' education system when you don't even trust public school system?" (not that I'm against International Schools in anyway at all)

2. During FAQ time of the meeting I boldly ask :

"With all due respect, when you people talked about inculcating elements of competency, there should be a representative from Human Resources Ministry or National Vocational Training Centre, I don't see any of those representatives"

Reply : "There is no need for HRM rep" (meaning that the educational person did not understand the word "competency" and the authority for "competency" - the person also did not understand the phrase "competent person" under the law"

Another smart chap who is the panel said : "I send my son to Vocational because he didn't achieved much in SPM (O-Level) and advise my son that you are a 3rd grader but you can still suceed if you go to vocational"

I quickly replied "With all due respect, you can't instill a 3rd Grader mindset on vocational schools, there are so many 1st Grader vocational students because the parents appreciated "competency"

A lot of parents who were there gave me a round applause until the "Chairwoman" said to me "OK...point taken"

(Nik Zafri)

BIODATA - NIK ZAFRI

NIK ZAFRI BIN ABDUL MAJID, CONSULTANT/TRAINER

Email: nikzafri@yahoo.com

* Kelantanese, Alumni of Sultan Ismail College Kelantan (SICA), Diploma (Management), IT Competency Cert, Certified Written English Professional US. Has participated in many seminars/conferences(local/international) in the capacity of trainer/lecturer and participant. Affiliations :- Institute of Quality Malaysia, Malaysian Institute of Management, Malaysian Occupational Safety and Health Professionals Association, Auditor ISO 9000 IRCAUK, Auditor OHSAS 18000 (SIRIM and STS) /EMS ISO 14000:2004 and Construction Quality Assessment System (CONQUAS, CIDB (Now BCA) Singapore)

* Possesses 20 years experience/hands-on in the multi-modern management & technical disciplines (systems & methodologies) such as Knowledge Management (Hi-Impact Management/ICT Solutions), Quality (TQM/ISO), Safety Health Environment, Civil & Building (Construction), Manufacturing, Motivation & Team Building, HR, Marketing/Branding, Business Process Reengineering, Economy/Stock Market, Contracts/Project Management, Finance & Banking, etc. He was employed to international bluechips involving in national/international megaprojects such as Balfour Beatty Construction/Knigh Piesold & Partners UK, MMI Insurance Group Australia, Hazama Corporation (Hazamagumi) Japan (with Mitsubishi Corporation, JA Jones US and Ho-Hup) and Sunway Construction Berhad (The Sunway Group of Companies). Among major projects undertaken : Pergau Hydro Electric Project, KLCC Petronas Twin Towers, LRT Tunnelling, KLIA, Petronas Refineries Melaka, Putrajaya Government Complex, Sistem Lingkaran Lebuhraya Kajang (SILK) etc. Once serviced SMPD Management Consultants as Associate Consultant cum Lecturer for Diploma in Management, Institute of Supervisory Management UK/SMPD JV. Currently – Associate/Visiting Consultants/Facilitators, Advisors for leading consulting firms (local and international) including project management. To name a few – TIJ Consultants Group (Malaysia and Singapore), LSB Manufacturing Solutions Sdn. Bhd. and many others.

* Ex-Resident Weekly Columnist of Utusan Malaysia (1995-1998) and have produced more than 100 articles related to ISO-9000– Management System and Documentation Models, TQM Strategic Management, Occupational Safety and Health (now OHSAS 18000) and Environmental Management Systems ISO 14000. His write-ups/experience has assisted many students/researchers alike in module developments based on competency or academics and completion of many theses. Once commended by the then Chief Secretary to the Government of Malaysia for his diligence in promoting and training the civil services (government sector) based on “Total Quality Management and Quality Management System ISO-9000 in Malaysian Civil Service – Paradigm Shift Scalar for Assessment System”

Among Nik Zafri’s clients were Adabi Consumer Industries Sdn. Bhd, The HQ of Royal Customs and Excise Malaysia, Veterinary Services Dept. Negeri Sembilan, The Institution of Engineers Malaysia, Corporate HQ of RHB, NEC Semiconductor - Klang Selangor, Prime Minister’s Department Malaysia, State Secretarial Office Negeri Sembilan, Hidrological Department KL, Asahi Kluang Johor, Tunku Mahmood (2) Primary School Kluang Johor, Consortium PANZANA, Information Technology Training Centre (ITTC) – Authorised Training Center (ATC) – University of Technology Malaysia (UTM) Kluang Branch Johor, Kluang General Hospital Johor, Kahang Timur Secondary School Johor, Sultan Abdul Jalil Secondary School Kluang Johor, Guocera Tiles Industries Kluang Johor, MNE Construction (M) Sdn. Bhd. Kota Tinggi Johor, UITM Shah Alam Selangor, Telesystem Electronics/Digico Cable (ODM/OEM for Astro), Sungai Long Industries Sdn. Bhd. (Bina Puri Group), Secura Security Printing Sdn. Bhd, ROTOL AMS Bumi Sdn. Bhd & ROTOL Architectural Services Sdn. Bhd. (ROTOL Group), Bond M & E (KL) Sdn. Bhd., Skyline Telco (M) Sdn. Bhd.,Technochase Sdn. Bhd JB, Institut Kefahaman Islam Malaysia (IKIM), Shinryo/Steamline Consortium (Petronas/OGP Power Co-Generation Plant Melaka), Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Association for Retired Intelligence Operatives of Malaysia, T.Yamaichi Corp. (M) Sdn. Bhd.LSB Manufacturing Solutions Sdn. Bhd., PJZ Marine Services Sdn. Bhd., UNITAR/UNTEC (Degree in Accountacy) Cobrain Holdings Sdn. Bhd. (Managing Construction Safety & Health), Speaker for International Finance & Management Strategy (Closed Conference), Pembinaan Jaya Zira Sdn. Bhd. (ISO 9001:2008-Internal Audit for Construction Industry), Straits Consulting Engineers Sdn. Bhd. (C & S, Geotech), Malaysia Management & Science University (MSU)etc.

* Has appeared for 10 consecutive series in “Good Morning Malaysia RTM TV1’ Corporate Talk Segment discussing on ISO 9000/14000 in various industries. For ICT, his inputs garnered from his expertise have successfully led to development of work-process e-enabling systems in the environments of intranet, portal and interactive web design especially for the construction and manufacturing. Some of the end products have won various competitions of innovativeness, quality, continual-improvements and construction industry award at national level. He has also in advisory capacity – involved in development and moderation of websites, portals and e-profiles for mainly corporate and private sectors, public figures etc.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

MANAGING SAFETY AND HEALTH IN THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY

By NIK ZAFRI

 Note : The following article have been garnered from many of the best OSH sources on the internet. Most of the contents are also based on author's experience. All that is cited with or without reference are deemed to be the copyright owners of such source. Despite of this, the article has been rewritten and carefully edited by the author. My special appreciation to : TIJ Consultants Group.

1.0 PRINCIPLES OF OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT 1994 (ACT 514) AND OTHER LAWS RELATED TO IT (FOCUS : CONSTRUCTION)

Cross-References have also been made to : 

Factory & Machinery Act 1967 (Act 139), Local Government Act 1976 (Act 171), Streets, Drainage and Building Act 1974 (Act 133),  Building Operations And Works Of Engineering Construction) (Safety) Regulations 1986) - BOWEC, Uniform Building By Law 1984, Guidelines For Public Safety And Health At Construction Sites (1st Revision: 2007), Guide 26 - Trenching, Guide 28 – Tunnellng & various AS/NZ/ASTM/BS OSH Standards including OHSAS 18000, ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 (EMS)

Self-Regulation

Employers must develop a *good and orderly OSH management system. * (systematic and well-planned)

  • Management system that is based on relevant standards (e.g. OHSAS 18000), codes of practice, method statement/Job Safety Analysis/Risk Assessment, guidelines, POSH Plan, OSH Procedures, Policy, Work Instruction etc. both site & office etc. (Incorporation of value added elements relevant to environment and security)

Self-Regulation – a OSH management system that runs by itself – becomes matured – aimed of becoming the safety culture of an organization.

2. Consultation Tripartite

Where employers, employees and the government must negotiate to settle issues and
problems relating to OSH at the workplace.

  • Notify DOSH prior to construction activities.
  • Building Plan submission and approval, land subdivision to relevant authorities
  • Demolition, Debris, Hoarding, Plant & Machinery, Signs etc.
  • Documentation : Contractor All-Risks, Workman Compensation etc.
  • Safety and Health Committee
  • Statutory and Regulatory Requirements
  • Site Investigation
  • Safety Audits and Inspections, Non-Conformances and Corrective Actions
  • Reporting of Dangerous Occurrences, Incidents and Accidents
  • Action to be taken during emergency & Effective Communication
  • Inspection and Testing, Commissioning, Handover

3. Cooperation

Where employers and employees must cooperate to take care, nurture and to increase the quality of OSH at the workplace.


OSH Management Systems Requirements – policy, planning, hazard Identification, risk assessment, control, legal requirements, objectives & programs, implementation, operation, resources, roles, responsibility, accountability and authority, competence, awareness, training, communication, participation, consultation, documentation, emergency preparedness & response, checking, performance measurement & monitoring, evaluation of compliance, incident investigation, nonconformity, corrective action and preventive action, records, internal audit, review etc.


2.0 ACCIDENT REPORTING AND EMERGENCY PROCEDURES



3.0 Hazard Identification, Risk Assessment and Control



1. Emergency Preparedness & Response

Establish, implement and maintain a procedure(s):

a) to identify the potential for emergency situations;
b) to respond to such emergency situations.

Respond to actual emergency situations and prevent or mitigate associated adverse OH&S consequences - take account of the needs of relevant interested parties, e.g. emergency services and neighbours.

Periodically test its procedure(s) to respond to emergency situations, where practicable, involving relevant interested parties as appropriate (e.g. fire drill)

Periodically review and, where necessary, revise its emergency preparedness and response procedure(s), in particular, after periodical testing and after the occurrence of emergency situations

2. Incident investigation

Establish, implement and maintain a procedure(s) to record, investigate and analyse incidents in order to:

a) determine underlying OH&S deficiencies and other factors that might be causing or contributing to the occurrence of incidents;
b) identify the need for corrective action;
c) identify opportunities for preventive action;
d) identify opportunities for continual improvement;
e) communicate the results of such investigations.

The investigations shall be performed in a timely manner. Any identified need for corrective action or opportunities for preventive action. The results of incident investigations shall be documented and maintained

3.0 Accident Prevention

According to European Agency for Safety and Health and Work and Senior Labour Inspection Comittee Factsheet reference : ISSN 1681-2123, accidents can be prevented by :
  1. Promotional activities : target everybody working in construction: from clients and architects to employers, trade unions, workers and subcontractors.
  1. The inspection campaign will focus on safety and health in construction sites, accesses to workplaces and emergency routes.
Inspections will be carried out to ensure that the appropriate preventive measures and provisions are in place. The campaign will also investigate the obligations for prevention and coordination on construction sites.

1. Responsibilities

Clients, project supervisors, employers, individual contractors and self-employed persons all have responsibilities to ensure safety. Ensure clear roles and responsibilities of competent persons.

Competent Person (Designated Person): appointed by an employer to carry out any supervision or inspection or to perform any tasks or duty. (Regulations 2 – Buildings Operations and Works of Engineering Construction-BOWEC (Safety) 1986) examples :

  • Safety and Health Officer : registered under provision of regulation 6(1), Occupational Safety and Health (Safety and Health Officer) Regulations 1997;
  • Contractor Safety Supervisor : appointed under regulations 26, BOWEC (Safety) 1986
  • Site Safety Supervisor : appointed under regulations 25 BOWEC
  • Professional Engineer : as defined by section 2 of the Registration of Engineers Act 2002 (Amendment)
  • Crane Operator : DOSH Certified Training Firms
  • Electrical Personnel, Welder, Fitter, Boilerman, Machinist : TNB, National Vocational Training Centre (SKM L1-5) etc.
Relevant requirements include:

■ considering occupational safety and health from the planning stage onwards in all construction work. Work has to be coordinated between all parties involved in planning and doing the work;

■ ensuring safe work equipment (covers suitability, selection, safety features, safe use, training and information, inspection and maintenance);

■ providing safety and/or health signs where hazards cannot be avoided or adequately reduced by preventive measures;

■ providing personal protective equipment (hard hats, safety harnesses, eye and respiratory protection, safety footwear etc.) appropriate for the risks involved and where they can not be prevented by other means;

■ ensuring a safe working environment and welfare facilities for construction workers, e.g. access, safe traffic routes;

■ following a general framework to manage health and safety, including: assessment and prevention of risks; giving priority to collective measures to eliminate risks; consulting employees, providing information and training; and coordination on safety with contractors.

■ Employees have duties to cooperate actively with employers’ preventive measures, following instructions in accordance with training given.

Consulting the workforce is a requirement. Using their knowledge helps to ensure hazards are correctly spotted and workable solutions implemented.

2. Working at height

Falls from heights are the most common cause of injuries and death in the construction industry. Causes include: working on a scaffold or platform without guard rails, or without a safety harness correctly attached; fragile roofs; and ladders that are badly maintained, positioned and secured.

The whole construction process should be planned to minimise the risk of falls. At the project design stage, protection against falls can be planned. The risk can be reduced by adding purpose-made guard rails or finally, if the risk is still present, providing safety harnesses.

3. Moving loads

Plan to minimise the movement of materials and for safe materials handling. Ensure equipment is set up and operated by trained and experienced workers.

Have the equipment regularly inspected, tested and examined by a competent person.

Coordinate site activities — for example do not let those involved in lifting operations endanger other workers or vice versa. Where manual handling can’t be avoided, organise tasks to limit the amount and distance of physical handling. Train workers on avoiding risks and use of techniques.

All mobile crane lifts should be planned and carried out by competent people. The driver should have a clear view, and the crane should be on level ground and a safe distance from excavations and power lines.

4. General ‘housekeeping’ and safe access

General site organisation and tidiness is important. For example, ensure that: there is safe access (roads, walkways, ladders, scaffolds etc.) to and from all places of work, free from obstructions; materials are stored safely; holes are fenced or covered and clearly marked; there are proper arrangements for collecting and disposing of waste materials; and that there is adequate lighting.

5. Training and information

Workers need to understand the risks, their consequences, and precautions they need to take to act safely. Training should be related to real situations, e.g. problems encountered, what went wrong, and how to avoid it happening again. Cover risks, prevention measures, emergency procedures, reporting problems, personal protective equipment, work equipment etc. Plan for refresher training. Training should be backed up by good communication. Discussion of health and safety issues and passing on information should be part of team meetings.

6. Personal protective equipment

Personal protective equipment should always be worn when required on construction sites. It should be comfortable, well maintained, and not lead to increase in other risks. Training is needed in its use. Protective equipment includes: safety helmets — if there is a risk of being struck by falling objects or a person might hit their head; suitable footwear — with toe and sole protection and anti-slip; protective clothing — for example, against bad weather or with high visibility so workers can be seen more easily, e.g. by vehicle operators.









































4.0 HEALTH AND HYGIENE (including Manual Work)

1. Concepts of Health and Hygiene
  • Recognition,
  • Evaluation, and
  • Control of Environmental Factors or Stresses
1.1 Concepts of Manual Handling

Purpose : to eliminate or reduce the risk arising from performing manual tasks include:

• preventing injury, illness, pain and suffering of individuals in the workplace;
• improved business performance, efficiency and productivity;
• fewer workers’ compensation claims, which may lead to lower premiums;
• faster and easier return to work for workers who do sustain an injury;
• fewer absences from work and less disruption;
• retention of skilled workers; and
• a safe workplace with a positive safety culture.


2. Environmental Factors or Stresses

  • Chemical hazards : gases, vapors, dusts, fumes, mists, and smoke
  • Physical hazards : non-ionizing (e.g. transmission lines, UV, IR, RF etc) and ionizing (e.g. nuclear/atomic, laser) radiation, noise, vibration, extreme temperatures and pressures
  • Ergonomic hazards : workstation design, repetitive motion, improper lifting/reaching, poor visual conditions
  • Biological hazards : insects, mold, yeast, fungi, bacteria, and viruses

3. Measurements

  • ppm : parts per million
  • mg/m3 : milligrams per cubic meter
  • ppcf : millions or a particle per cubic foot
  • f/cc : fibers per cubic centimeter
  • PEL - Permissible Exposure Limit
  • REL - Recommended Exposure Level
  • TLV - Threshold Limit Value

Exposure Limits : Air Contaminants

a) REL : takes into account variable exposure through a full shift, 8 hour work day
b) TLV : limit of exposure during a short period, 15 minutes
c) PEL : absolute maximum level of exposure not to be exceeded

4. OSHA Control

1) Engineering controls
2) Work practice controls
3) Administrative controls
4) Personal protective equipment (PPE)

5. Risk Factors in Construction

  • constantly changing job site environments and conditions
  • multiple contractors and subcontractors
  • high turnover; unskilled laborers
  • constantly changing relationships with other work groups
  • diversity of work activities occurring simultaneously
  • exposures to health hazards resulting from own work as well as from nearby activities (“bystander exposure”)
TYPICAL JOB SAFETY ANALYSIS OR RISK ASSESSMENT

Occupation
Hazards
  • Brickmasons
  • Drywall installers
  • Electricians

  • Painters
  • Pipefitters
  • Carpet layers
  • Insulation workers
  • Roofers
  • Solderers
  • Drillers
  • Excavating and loading machine operators
  • Hazardous waste workers
  • Cement dermatitis, awkward postures, heavy loads
  • Plaster dust, heavy loads, awkward postures
  • Heavy metals in solder fumes, awkward posture, heavy loads, asbestos dust
  • Solvent vapors, toxic metals in pigments, paint additives
  • Lead fumes and particles, welding fumes, asbestos dust
  • Knee trauma, awkward postures, glue and glue vapor
  • Asbestos, synthetic fibers, awkward postures
  • Roofing tar, heat
  • Metal fumes, lead, cadmium
  • earth, rock, silica dust, whole-body vibration, noise
  • Silica dust, histoplasmosis, whole-body vibration, heat stress, noise

  • Heat, stress






































































































Exposure may occur during demolition, renovation, sewer work, work on air handling systems, or other construction work from contact with contaminated or disease-carrying.
  • soil
  • water
  • insects (mosquitoes, ticks)
  • bird, bat droppings
  • animals
  • structures
Ergonomic hazards can cause painful and disabling injuries.
  • heavy, frequent, or awkward lifting
  • repetitive tasks
  • awkward grips, postures
  • using excessive force, overexertion
  • using wrong tools for the job or using tools improperly
  • using improperly maintained tools
  • hand-intensive work
(Mostly found in manual handling)

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs) and injuries:

Strains and sprains : one of the most common injuries among construction workers
  • tendonitis
  • carpal tunnel syndrome
  • low back pain and fatigue
Ergonomic hazards can cause a lifetime of pain and disability.

Other Issues
  • Sewer Gas
  • Wood Dust in Carpentry works
  • Electromagnetic Fields in Electrical Rooms and Nearby Power Lines

5.0 WORKING AT HEIGHTS
























  1. Hazard Identification, Risk Assessment and Control (Refer 2.0)
  • Hazards : Heights, Falling Objects, Lifts, Hoists, Scaffolding, Roofs, Transmission Line/Overhead Electrical Cables, Maintenance Work, Cleaning etc.
  • Control : provision and maintenance of :
  • a stable and securely fenced work platform (such as scaffolding or other form of portable work platform).
  • Risks must be controlled through the use of stable and securely fenced work platform.
  • Scaffolding, as well as temporarily erected structures, intended or used to support sheetings, hoardings, guardrails, means of access or egress and entertainment equipment, must be erected and dismantled by the accurate standards and guidelines
  • secure perimeter screens, fencing, handrails or other forms of physical barriers that are capable of preventing the fall of a person.
  • Guardrails should only be used in situations when it is not reasonably practicable to use temporary work platforms.
  • physical restraints that are capable of arresting the fall of a person from a height of more than two metres.
  • Fall arrest systems should only be used in situations when it is not reasonably practicable to use either temporary work platforms or guardrails.
  • Reasonably Praticable or Not
  • due to space restrictions where it is not possible to erect scaffolding or to employ other portable work platforms, such as an elevating work platform (cherry picker or scissor lift).
  • Similarly, it may not be reasonably practicable to use a physical barrier, for example, because it may not be possible to fix it due to the roof profile or type of rafters being used.
b. Scaffolding

Ensure that a scaffold from which a person could fall more than four metres, and its supporting structure, is inspected by a competent person:
  1. Before its first use, and
  1. As soon as practicable, and before its next use, after an occurrence that might reasonably be expected to affect the stability or adequacy of the scaffold or its supporting structure, such as a severe storm or earthquake, and
  1. Before its use following repairs, and
  1. At least every 30 days (once a month)
If an inspection of a scaffold or its supporting structure indicates an unsafe condition, an employer must ensure that appropriate repairs, alterations and additions are carried out and the scaffold and its supporting structures are reinspected by a competent person before the scaffold is used
  • There must be safe access to the scaffold platform,
  • Scaffolds are to be erected, altered and dismantled only by competent persons. All scaffolding over four metres in height must be erected or monitored by a certificated scaffolder,
  • Each working platform and access platform must have full edge protection comprising handrail, mid-rail, and toe board or a handrail and infill panel,
  • If the scaffold is incomplete and left unattended, an employer must ensure that appropriate controls are put in place to prevent unauthorised access, including the use of danger tags and warning signs,
  • A scaffold should only be placed in service after it has been formally handed over by the erection crew and on receipt of a handover certificate.
  • The scaffold should be checked for alterations or removal of planks, toeboards and guardrails before use.
  • The scaffold should be stable and if necessary should be secured to the building or structure in enough places to prevent collapse.
  • The scaffold should be checked for clearance from nearby power lines prior to its erection.
  • Where scaffolding is used to protect against falls at the perimeter of a building, the platform should be as close to the eaves as possible, but no lower than 500mm beneath the edge of the roof. This may require lifting the working level or installing an intermediate hop-up platform between the working platform and the edge of the roof.
  • Mobile scaffold wheel locks should be engaged before people work from the scaffold.
  • Persons should leave a mobile scaffold before the scaffold is moved.
  • The path of travel of a mobile scaffold should be checked for electrical and other hazards such as excavations, before it is moved.


















































































































































c.  MOBILE ELEVATING WORK PLATFORMS (MEWP)

Mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs) - Cranes, hoists and winches: Elevating work platforms. All boom type MEWPs(‘cherrypickers’) and nonboom-type MEWPs (including ‘scissor lifts’) with a platform movement.

Before hiring MEWPs, the employer (who hires the equipment) must carry out a risk assessment to ensure the MEWP is appropriate for the intended work.

Persons operating MEWPs must be properly trained in their operation and use. Where equipment is hired, all necessary instructions should be provided by the hire company initially,and then the employer as required, to ensure that persons operating the MEWP are competent to do so.

Note: A certificate of competency is required to operate boom-type MEWPs with a boom length greater than 11 metres.

MEWPs are designed as a work area and not for access purposes. Persons should only egress from an elevated MEWP in an emergency or if a thorough risk assessment identifies that as the only practicable means of gaining access to an area.

Self-propelled MEWPs should only be used on firm level surfaces unless the equipment is designed for non-level surfaces and the manufacturer’s instructions state this.

Every person working in the cherrypicker should wear an appropriate fall arrest device connected to a dedicated anchor point in the basket.

The MEWP should be left in a properly stowed safe configuration whenever it is unattended. It should not be left extended as it may make the unit unstable.

MEWPs must be fitted with an emergency retrieval device that will enable the platform to be lowered in the event of a malfunction of the normal operating power source

In addition, the MEWP should have a controlled descent device to enable persons on the platform to be evacuated in the event of an emergency

The MEWP should be provided with a self-escape or rescue facility to allow persons on the platform to escape in the event of a malfunction.



















































































































SAFE USE OF CRANES (Sub-Topic for Working At Heights and MEWPs)

There are four key aspects to the safe use of cranes:

1. Planning lifting operations : All lifting operations should be planned so they are carried out safely with foreseeable risks taken into account. The person appointed to plan the lifting operation should have adequate practical and theoretical knowledge and experience of the lifts being undertaken. The plan will need to address the risks identified by a risk assessment, the resources required, procedures and the responsibilities so that any lifting operation is carried out safely. The plan should ensure that the lifting equipment remains safe for the range of lifting operations for which the equipment might be used.

2. Safe systems of work : You must plan lifting operations carefully to ensure they are carried out safely. Your plan should result in a safe system of work which may need to be written down if it is a complex lift. This record is sometimes known as a method statement and you must ensure that everyone involved understands it.

Key elements include:

  • planning – including site preparation, crane erection and dismantling;
  • selection, provision and use of a suitable crane and work equipment
  • including safe slinging and signalling arrangements;
  • maintenance and examination of the crane and equipment;
  • provision of properly trained and competent personnel;
  • supervision of operations by personnel having the necessary authority;
  • thorough examinations, reports and other documents;
  • preventing unauthorised movement or use of the crane; and
  • measures to secure safety of persons not involved in the lifting.
  • Supervision of lifting
  • Thorough examination

3. Supervision of lifting : The right level of supervision must be in place for lifting operations, reflecting the degree of risk and personnel involved in the particular lifting operation. The crane supervisor should direct and supervise the lifting operation to make sure it is carried out in accordance with the method statement. The crane supervisor should be competent and suitably trained and should have sufficient experience to carry out all relevant duties and authority to stop the lifting operation if it is judged dangerous to proceed.

Tower and mobile cranes are used extensively on construction projects and present two principal hazards – (a) Collapse of the crane – such incidents present significant potential for multiple fatal injuries, both on and off-site; (b) Falling of the load – these events also present a significant potential for death and major injury)

4. Thorough examination

There are strict legal requirements concerning the thorough examination of all cranes. Lifting equipment must be thoroughly examined at the prescribed intervals. This is a detailed and specialised examination by a competent person. Records of thorough examinations and tests must be: readily available to enforcing authorities; secure; and capable of being reproduced in written form.

























































d. Guardrails

Fixed platforms, walkways, stairways and ladders

The perimeter of buildings, structures, pits, tanks, floor openings, etc, should have guardrails to stop people falling over the edge.

The guardrails should have the necessary strength so that they are able to withstand the impact of a person falling against them.

Where guardrails are used, they should be in place prior to any work commencing and should not be removed until all work is complete.

Guardrails should be erected by competent persons trained in the safe erection and dismantling of guardrails.

Prior to installing a guardrail system at the edge of a roof, it is important to check that it is suitable for that roof. Particular attention should be given to ensuring that the supporting members, including the rafters where the system is connected to them, can support the loads that will be generated should a person fall against the rails. This should be checked with the rafter supplier before committing to the type of system chosen. (Some types of guardrail systems use brackets that are fixed to the roof trusses at their point of fabrication.)

It is also important to make sure that the system can be erected to follow the roof’s profile and does not result in any gaps through which a person can fall. This is a potential problem on buildings with an unusual plan profile or roof construction. In such circumstances, if a system is not available to fully secure the edge of the roof, all gaps between the roof and the guardrail system should be filled locally.

A risk assessment should be used to determine anticipated loads and should consider factors which influence the load on the guardrail system. These may include:
  • The type of roof surface – for example, a person may generate more momentum in falling down a roof with glazed tiles rather than unglazed tiles.
  • Roof pitch – the steeper the pitch, the greater the speed generated.
  • The length of the rafter – the longer a person falls, the more speed they can build up.
Guardrails including those on scaffolding should be between 900mm and 1100mm above the working surface and have a top rail, midrail and a toeboard, or include an infill panel that incorporates a kickplate. The top rail should be between 900mm and 1100mm above the working surface measured 300mm from the inside edge of the guardrail.

















































Where the pitch of the roof exceeds 35 degrees but is less than 45 degrees, a platform should be constructed in order to minimise the likelihood of a person falling onto the top rail or over the guardrailing system. The platform should be a minimum of 450mm wide (two planks), include guardrails on the outside perimeter of the platform and an infill panel on its outside perimeter and should not be used to stack materials or equipment.

Misuse of working platforms may lead to the creation of additional hazards in relation to trips and slips, people falling onto materials or collapse of the platform.




























e. Fall-arrest systems

Industrial fall arrest systems and devices are designed to stop an accidental fall and shall consist of some or all of the following:
  • Anchorage point or static line (also known as a safety line or horizontal lifeline)
  • Energy absorber
  • Inertia reel or fall arrest device
  • Fall arrest harness
  • Lanyard or lanyard assembly
Fall arrest equipment such as harnesses and lanyards can be used as travel restriction systems to prevent workers moving from safe to unsafe areas. Fall arrest systems and devices should be used accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions and when mixing components, check for compatibility before use.

Fall arrest systems require a minimum distance to be effectively activated, usually 4 metres. It is therefore essential that there are no objects within this fall zone and that the activation distance is not greater than the height above the ground or other surface.

Hazards

Potential hazards listed below should be noted in the use of connecting hooks in both fall-arrest and suspension applications.

Latch may not close or may not lock:

- due to weakened spring
– when caught on clothing
– due to corrosion or other contamination, which prevents free movement
– due to bent latch, which prevents free movement.

Dynamic rollout may occur on some hooks. A twisted lanyard or pole strap may cause the connecting D-ring to rest on and load the latch. If pressure is accidentally applied on the locking lever, the latch will open and release the connector.

If a fall arrest device is provided for use by persons at work, the employer must ensure that:
  • All anchorage points for the device are inspected by a competent person before their first use and then on a regular basis so that they are capable of supporting the design loads. In addition, the user should carry out a visual inspection before every use.
  • If the load bearing capacity of an anchorage point is impaired, the anchorage is immediately made inoperable so as to prevent its use.
  • Any harness, safety line or other component of the device that shows wear or weakness to the extent it may cause the device to fail is not used.
  • All persons using the device have received training in the selection, assembly and use of the system.
  • Adequate provision is made for the rescue of a person whose fall is arrested by a fall arrest device
  • It is strongly recommended that persons using fall arrest systems should not work alone. Where it is necessary that persons do work alone they should be constantly monitored to ensure that they have not fallen. In the event of a fall, it is vital that the person be rescued as soon as possible, even if uninjured. This is necessary as a suspended person may suffer suspension trauma.
  • Before each use, hooks should be checked for correct operation. If the hook does not close and lock quickly the mechanism may be partially jammed, bent or the spring weakened. Unless cleaning rectifies the problem the hook should not be used.
  • Loose clothing should be avoided as it may become entangled in the hook and prevent closure.
  • A visual check should be made to ensure that the hook has closed fully and is not tangled in clothing. For the rear connection, a person should connect before putting on the harness or have someone else check it for them.
  • The user should be familiar with the operation of the hook before use.
  • There should be adequate clearance inside the snap hook enclosure so that the D-ring cannot become jammed in any position.
  • Whenever a hook is required to make a connection between the worker and the anchorage point, an automatic locking or double locking hook is recommended as snap hooks can open accidentally.
Pendulum effect

The ‘pendulum effect’ is a potential hazard associated with the use of fall arrest systems. The pendulum effect may also occur within the interior of a roof if the positioning of the inertia reel allows for a significant length of unsupported line connected to the user. Following an arrested fall at this extreme diagonal, the inertia reel line moves back along the roof, dropping the worker dangerously down to the ground.
























Eliminating the pendulum effect:

• A secondary anchorage point and lanyard or line should be used

• Place the inertia reel anchorage point more or less perpendicular to the position of the line at the perimeter edge. A mobile anchorage helps here.

A perimeter guardrail could be used to prevent any falls over the perimeter.






























Rescue plan

It is essential that before using a fall-arrest system, a plan is in place for the rescue of anybody left suspended mid-air, following a fall. Serious injury or even death can occur in a matter of minutes, particularly where the person’s movement or breathing is restricted or where they are unconscious.


f. Falling Objects

It is important to consider the risks associated with objects falling from heights. Risk control measures should be developed for controlling the risks associated with objects falling from heights. It requires: 
  • An employer to provide a safe means of raising and lowering plant, materials and debris in the place of work.
  • A secure physical barrier to be provided to prevent objects falling freely from buildings or structures in or in the vicinity of the workplace.
Where it is not possible to provide such a barrier, the provision of measures to arrest the fall of objects. These measures may include the platform of a scaffolding system or certain types of other roof edge protection systems, or the careful positioning of a toeboard that forms part of the guardrail, or the use of appropriate infill panels to the guardrail.

Personal protective equipment to minimise the risks associated with falling objects.

Where the controls used to safeguard persons on the roof do not prevent objects from falling then means must be used to protect persons working under or near the roof. These may include the provision of a screen or an overhead protective structure that catches falling objects, or the establishment of a no-go zone with the necessary barriers and training of personnel in its observation.

This last method represents administrative means of controlling an identified risk and, in accordance with the principles of risk management, should only be used if it is not reasonably practicable to use others.


5.0 ELECTRICITY - UNDERGROUND & OVERHEAD SERVICES
  • Working near electrical lines (underground & overhead) – Sections 1 - 12
  • Electrical Installations – Sections 13
1. Planning and preparation before starting work

Careful planning and preparation is an essential step to ensure that work is done safely, this can include:

  • identifying the nature of the work planned and ways of dealing with changes as the work proceeds
  • the possible hazards and risks associated with the work
  • consultation with the electricity supply authority regarding the proposed work
  • compliance with any conditions imposed by the electricity supply authority for the work
  • an effective communication system in place to ensure communication and interaction between workers at the site
  • training, qualifications and competency of workers
  • provision of information and instruction to operators and other workers about control measures to eliminate or minimise electrical risks
  • supervision to ensure safe work procedures are followed
  • checking the operation of plant and equipment, including the operation of limiting devices
  • proximity of persons, cranes, mobile plant, material and tools to overhead electric lines
  • proximity of persons to cranes and mobile plant
  • workplace access and egress
  • emergency rescue procedures
  • ensuring approach distances are appropriate for the authorisation levels of the workers undertaking the work.
When preparing for the work, a person conducting business or undertaking should ensure no new hazards are created.

2. Safe work method statements

Construction work that is carried out on or near energised electrical installations or services is defined as ‘high risk construction work’.

A safe work method statement (SWMS) is required for energised electrical work, as well as any high risk construction work. The SWMS must be prepared before any work commences.

3. Approach Distances (Overhead Electric Lines)

Before starting any work in the vicinity of overhead electric lines it is essential that the height and voltage of the overhead electric lines (and if applicable the horizontal safety clearance) be assessed at the worksite. When assessing the relevant approach distances for the work, a number of factors should be considered including the possibility of errors in estimating distances, especially at higher voltages, where the approach distance is large. It may be necessary either to allow more clearance or to use methods that provide more accurate estimation of distances. If the height or voltage of the overhead electric lines cannot be accurately determined, you should consult the competent electrical engineer or Tenaga Nasional Berhad.

















Overhead electric lines are made of metal and are therefore subject to expansion and contraction when heated and cooled. This can be a direct result of high ambient air temperature and/or excessive electrical load current passing through the conductors. Regardless of the cause, any expansion will result in gravity causing the electric lines to sag downwards. Wind can also cause the electric lines to swing from side to side. For this reason the approach distances should be increased either vertically or horizontally by the amount of conductor sag or swing at the point of work.




















Where more than one voltage is present, for example, overhead electric lines where two or more circuits operating at different voltages are supported on the same poles, the approach distance appropriate to each voltage should be maintained independently.

Increased clearances should be allowed where a risk assessment identifies a reasonable possibility of the load or lifting gear (crane hook, chains and slings) moving or swinging towards the overhead electric lines or associated electrical equipment when the crane or item of mobile plant is operated.










































4. Safety Observer

* The safety observer is a person specifically assigned the duty of observing the work in the vicinity of energised overhead electric lines and associated electrical equipment in order to:
  • warn persons or the crane or plant operator so as to ensure the approach distances are being maintained and of any other unsafe conditions.
  • be used whenever the work activity is likely to be performed in the authorised person zone
  • be positioned at a suitable location to effectively observe both the overhead electric lines and plant
  • be able to immediately and effectively communicate with the operator of the crane or mobile plant, or other persons if required
  • ensure that all persons stay outside the specified approach distance (unless performing a rescue in accordance with approved procedures or carrying out a specific task that is described in the safe work method statement, for example a crane dogman holding a non-conductive tag line attached to a load suspended from a mobile crane)
  • not carry out any other work while acting as a safety observer, which includes the passing of tools, equipment or materials directly to the personnel performing the work
  • not observe more than one work activity at a time
  • monitor the work activity being carried out and have the authority to suspend the work at any time.




















5. No Go Zone

A no go zone is the area around overhead electric lines or electric parts that forms a safety envelope. A safety envelope is the space encapsulating an item of plant, including attachments such as rotating/flashing lights or radio aerials, categorised as:
  • a design envelope - the space encapsulating all possible movements of the plant and any load attached under maximum reach, or
  • a transit envelope - the area encompassing the normal height and width of a vehicle or plant when travelling to or from a worksite.
No part of a person, hand tools, equipment or any other materials held by a person, cranes, vehicles or items of mobile operating plant including the load, controlling ropes and any other accessories may cross into the no go zone while the electrical part is energised without the written approval of the electricity supply authority. This approval should be made available at the worksite.

No go zones apply whenever carrying out work or operating plant (for example tip truck, crane, elevating work platform, concrete pumping truck), around an energised electrical part and the risk cannot be eliminated.

The safest option is to have the electricity turned off and tested or have the lines shifted. This will rule out the need for a no go zone. If the electrical part is high voltage, it must be earthed. If the electricity cannot be turned off, the electric line remains energised and dangerous. 




















The risks associated with operating a crane or an item of mobile plant in the vicinity of overhead electric lines must be managed. The types of cranes and/or mobile plant include:
  • cranes (including mobile cranes and vehicle loading cranes)
  • concrete placing booms
  • elevating work platforms
  • load shifting equipment (including forklifts)
  • excavation and earthmoving equipment
  • high load transportation vehicles.



















Define areas that the crane or mobile plant should not enter by (a) using rigid or tape barriers to mark off areas under overhead electric lines (b) arranging for the competent Electrical Engineer or TNB to mark the limit of the approach distance with high visibility ‘bunting’ or similar.















6. Identifying and Eliminating Hazards and Risks

Before operating a crane or item of mobile plant, a worksite inspection should be conducted to identify any potential hazards, such as energised overhead electric lines or other associated electrical equipment.

Electric lines should always be treated as energised unless the operator of the crane or mobile plant has received an access authority or other form of written documentation from the electricity supply authority which allows persons to work within the no go zone. There are two options for operating a crane or mobile plant in the vicinity of overhead electric lines:
  • have the electric lines de-energised, or
  • stay outside the authorised person zone 









A risk assessment involves considering what could happen if someone is exposed to a hazard and the likelihood of it happening.

Once the hazards have been identified and assessed, control measures must be implemented to eliminate the hazards so far as is reasonably practicable, or if that is not possible, minimise the risks so far as is reasonably practicable.

If elimination of the hazard is not possible, minimise the risk by implementing control measures such as :
  • setting up the crane or mobile plant in a position that keeps the design envelope outside the approach distance
  • separating the hazard from the crane or mobile plant and people by using an alternative crane or mobile plant which cannot encroach on the approach distances
  • using an effectively tested insulated elevating work platform bucket that could prevent electric shocks from the exposed energised part to ground via the operating plant. (Warning: in spite of the insulated bucket, the worker could still receive an electric shock by touching a current source with one hand and an earth point with the other hand)
  • working at another time when the electricity supply can be isolated.
  • Erect a physical barrier to prevent any part of the machine or the load being moved from encroaching on the authorised person zone. (the barrier should be made of non-conductive material – wood/plastic or earthed metal)
  • Engineering controls : limiting the hoisting, slewing (i.e. forcible turning or swinging of a crane to a new position while moving a load) by :
  • mechanical stops or interlocking of the motion to prevent it from being moved by electricity within the approach distance
  • mechanical constraints on the jib, boom, or other part of the crane or mobile plant likely to contact energised overhead electric lines or associated electrical equipment as a result of surge or backlash
  • using cranes or mobile plant fitted with programmable zone limiting devices. Where the limiting device prevents movement, sudden stopping or the momentum of the load should be catered for.
  • Minimise unxpected movement through additional outriggers, support – to increase stability of the crane,
  • Administrative Control : Supervision and
  • Provision of PPE : insulating gloves used by anyone who may come into contact with any conducting part of the crane, plant or load being moved, standing on a rubber insulating mat, standing on an ‘equipotential conductive mat’.
7. Other Risks

Trees/Vegetation : The risks associated with persons who carry out tree trimming and cutting or vegetation planting in the vicinity of energised overhead electric lines must be managed where:
  • a person or something the person is holding or is in contact with could come closer than the relevant approach distance whether it’s the construction worker or a nearby householder trimming/cutting tree on his/her property,
  • the work creates risk of damage to overhead electric lines or electrical equipment.
Scaffolding : The risks associated with work involving the erection, dismantling and use of fixed scaffolding in the vicinity of overhead electric lines and associated electrical equipment must be managed :
  • A 4-Metres safe distance
  • energised electric lines and associated equipment
  • deteriorated or broken down insulation on the conductors or electrical equipment
  • scaffolding coming into contact with overhead electric lines
  • the possibility of hand held tools, equipment or materials coming into contact with overhead electric lines.

8. Low Voltage O/H Electric Lines near buildings and houses

The risks associated with people working in the vicinity of low voltage service lines must be managed. This work may involve:

  • painting or maintenance work undertaken in the vicinity of low voltage overhead lines
  • erection of scaffolding in the vicinity of a low voltage overhead line
  • operation of motor vehicles (concrete trucks, furniture removal vans, etc) in the vicinity of low voltage overhead lines
  • minor building work in the vicinity of low voltage overhead lines, or
  • any other non-electrical work where there is a risk of contact with a low voltage overhead line.
Electric lines covered are any ‘low voltage overhead service lines’, including:
  • electricity supply authority’s low voltage overhead lines including service lines
  • low voltage overhead lines forming part of consumers’ installations
  • insulated low voltage aerial conductors and associated electrical equipment that are connected from the point of supply (either the overhead electric pole located on the street or the consumer’s boundary) and terminated on the consumer’s building, pole or structure at the point of attachment
  • insulated low voltage aerial consumers’ mains and associated electrical equipment forming part of the consumer’s electrical installation.




















9. Identifying Hazards, Assessing and Controlling Risks

a. Carry out inspection – identify :
  • bare exposed energised conductors
  • deteriorated or broken down insulation
  • damaged overhead service line mains connection box or damaged insulation around conductor clamps
  • deterioration of earthing of exposed conductive parts that are required to be earthed
  • voltage of the line is higher than the expected low voltage (240/415 volts a.c.), and
  • the possibility of hand held tools and equipment coming into contact with exposed energised parts.
  • Assess :
  • type of work activities, safety of access and egress,
  • tools or equipment used, and the risk of mechanical damage to the low voltage overhead service lines if inadvertent contact is made with the conductors and electrical equipment. Examples may include:
  • handling a sheet of roofing material that inadvertently comes into contact with the service lines
  • use of cutting or grinding tools where the operator could lose control and come within the 0.5 metre approach distance
  • use of a heavy electric disc sander to sand timber near the point of attachment of a service line; this may impose a high risk of encroaching the no go zone if control were lost. The risk of damage to and contact with the line and consequent electric shock is high if the sander touched the line. Manual sanding should be considered
  • proximity of the work to the low voltage overhead service lines
  • environmental conditions, for example rain, wind or uneven terrain, which may bring a risk of unexpected movement of tools or equipment held by workers.
Visually check :
  • the insulation is intact, with no tears, cracks or other physical defects, and there are no exposed energised parts along the line
  • there are no exposed energised parts anywhere on the line.
  • Control, Eliminate & Minimize Risk
  • de-energising the lines for the duration of the work. This should be confirmed by the person with management or control of the electric line
  • re-routing the low voltage overhead service line away from the worksite in consultation with the electricity supply authority or in the case of overhead service lines forming part of the consumer’s electrical installation, the person with management or control of the premises.
  • using non-conductive scaffolding instead of metal scaffolding w/a
  • isolate hazards from people
  • welding a bracket to a column, which may result in excessive heat and damage to adjacent electrical cable, during the welding process
  • consider bolting the bracket to the column
  • Contact relevant authorities or advise competent person (s)
  • Use PPE such as electrically tested insulating gloves and/or fire retardant clothing.
  • Engineering & Administrative Control
  • sanding by hand near the point where an overhead line meets a building, rather than using an electric disc sander ,
  • using an insulated fibreglass extension handle on a paint roller, instead of a conductive aluminium extension handle
  • planning and documenting work procedures before starting work
  • PPE – include electrically tested insulating gloves
10. Electrical Risk Underground & In Buildings

Examples (High Risk Construction Work)
  • a builder removing a sheet of plasterboard from a stud wall and thus creating a risk of contact with exposed energised parts, for example, an electrical accessory for example a socket outlet
  • a plumber cutting a water pipe in a building where there could be an electrical cable next to the water pipe
  • a fencing contractor digging holes where an electrical cable could be buried.
11. Identifying Hazards, Assessing and Controlling Risks

  • Prior to work commencement, plan and find out types of underground electrical services could create a risk if contacted or damaged.
  • any electric lines or equipment installed in building cavities that may become accessible when:
  • a part of the building covering the cavity has been removed
  • work is being carried out in the building cavity
  • conductive material or fixings that may inadvertently contact energised parts e.g metallic sarking or thermal insulation being installed/removed from a building
  • work activities involving risk of damage to electric line or cables, e.g. drilling or sawing
  • excavating or driving nto the ground here underground services may be located.
  • Assess risk on possibility of the impact if anyone exposed to hazard
    • tools damaging cables/equipment e.g. excavation where buried electrical cables may be present
  • when demolishing part or whole of a building
  • when installing a building component/material, e.g., using screws to fix a bracket to a wall where the screw could penetrate a cable installed behind the wall surface
  • Reduce Risk w/a
  • welding a bracket to a column, which may result in excessive heat and damage to adjacent electrical cable, during the welding process
  • consider bolting the bracket to the column
  • Contact relevant authorities or advise competent person (s)
  • Use PPE such as electrically tested insulating gloves and/or fire retardant clothing.
12. Cable Identification

Not all cables are covered with thermoplastic sheath, although these are common and often well known in the building industry. They can be circular, oval, flat, or ribbed in cross section and can also be of any colour. It may consist of a copper sheath with copper conductors within the sheath and a mineral insulation separating the conductors and sheath.

These cables is almost similar to copper water or gas pipe could be made of other metals e.g. stainless steel and aluminium. Cables in buildings and structures can operate at low or high voltages, for example, cables supplying a transformer in a building may be energized at 11,000 volts (11kV).

Some installed cables may be exposed while others may be concealed in many ways, e.g:
  • in wall, floor and ceiling cavities
  • behind joinery - skirting boards and pelmets
  • in structural parts of buildings - hollow steel studs and supporting columns.
Electrical conduits are often made of different materials and constructed differently e.g.:
  • PVC rigid conduit from 16mm outside diameter (OD) to 150mm is generally light grey; if the conduit is heavy duty and suitable for underground use, it may be orange (PVC conduit for protection against high temperatures is black)
  • PVC flexible conduit or flexible hose
  • PVC corrugated conduit
  • screwed metal conduit, generally made from galvanized steel
  • split metal conduit (obsolete but still widely used) and generally painted black
  • cable trunking, rectangular or square in cross section, and in a wide range of sizes, made of steel or plastic
  • cable tray, generally galvanized steel in a wide range of sizes and styles.

13. ELECTRICAL INSTALLATIONS AT CONSTRUCTION SITE

a. Switchboards

All construction switchboards installed for construction or demolition purposes to take into account :

• to include a tie bar or other device to prevent strain on termination of cables and flexible cords. The tie bar or other means to prevent strain must be insulated and prevent mechanical damage
• be securely attached to a pole, post or wall or other stable, free-standing structure designed to withstand external forces that may be exerted on the switchboard (eg from flexible cords)
• be protected from the environment conditions
• be designed to ensure all main switches and isolating switches are accessible at all times, clearly marked and capable of being locked in an open (off) position
• have markings at least six mm high identifying all main/isolating switches
• incorporate insulated stands for supporting cables and flexible extension cords or have a stand fixed near the switchboard
• be fitted with a lockable door for isolation and security purposes that will not damage the cables when closed.

The door must have:

• a device to keep it open when working on the switchboard
• a sign on the door – ‘KEEP CLOSED – RUN LEADS THROUGH BOTTOM’
• an opening at the bottom to allow flexible cords to pass through without damage.

In some situations additional measures should be taken:

• switchboards with more than one final subcircuit should have a lockable cover, lock-dog or other security device to prevent unauthorised access to circuit breakers and residual current devices (RCD)
• where supply is needed for equipment such as welders and floor sanders, a switchboard should be fitted with at least one 15A single phase socket-outlet
• where more than one switchboard is installed on site, each switchboard should have a unique identification mark on the exterior of the switchboard enclosure.
















b. Electrical Circuits

Circuit breakers provide protection against circuit overload and fire. Every final sub-circuit must be protected by a circuit breaker except final sub-circuits exceeding 50A, which may be protected with high rupturing capacity (HRC) fuses. RCD is a ‘safety switch’ fitted to an electrical circuit to reduce the risk of electric shock or electrocution. Every final sub-circuit including lighting and socket-outlets must be protected by an RCD with a rated tripping current not greater than 30mA.

Security of power circuits - To prevent unauthorised access and the risk of electric shock or fire - ensure all power circuits are secured at the end of the work shift, and/or when the site is unattended

Identification of wiring - Construction wiring for consumer mains, submains, and final sub-circuits must be readily distinguishable from permanent wiring by using a different coloured cable or by attaching iridescent yellow tape labelled ‘construction wiring’. The tape should be spaced at five metre intervals. Any wiring that has been previously energised must be treated as ‘live’ until verified otherwise.

All live, permanent wiring near construction or demolition work must be clearly identified and labelled. Construction wiring must not be tied to, bundled or grouped with permanent wiring.

Protection of wiring - Existing permanent wiring that is not protected by conduits or metal covers must be protected by an enclosure or barrier.

Flexible extension cords must have heavy duty sheathing. The sheathing must not contain the colour green.

The maximum length of an extension cord depends on the amperage rating, minimum cross section and resulting conductor resistance.

Where extension cords are joined by portable socket-outlet assemblies (PSOA) or other means, the maximum length is the total length of all extension cords as well as the length of the supply cord of the final PSOA from which power is supplied.

If the supply cord on a tool is greater than two metres, this length must be included in calculating the maximum length.

Exceeding the maximum length may effect operation of RCD or circuit breakers during a fault and increase the risk of electric shock. It can also cause voltage drop that can damage equipment.

The allowable length of flexible extension cords is restricted on some equipment, such as motors operating trailing cables on suspended scaffolds,swing stages and false cars, to ensure the safety of operators is not affected by voltage drop.

Flexible extension cords must be raised off the floor using insulated hangers or stands to provide a safe route through the work area and clearance for personnel and vehicles. This is not necessary if the distance is four metres or less between the work area and the power supply.

Where cords cannot be raised off the floor, another means of protection against mechanical damage, damage by liquids or high temperature must be provided.

Where flexible extension cords pass through scaffolding or other metal structures, they should be run on insulated hangers to eliminate the risk of mechanical damage.

Where flexible extension cords are used where water may be present, the extension socket and plug shall be protected against the ingress of water. This may be achieved through the use of proprietary manufactured water proof screw type coupling accessories designed for this purpose.

Orange circular, TPS type cables and other cables normally used as fixed wiring must not be used as flexible extension cords.












Double pole switches must be used on every socket-outlet installed on portable equipment designed to be supplied by a flexible extension cord. All switches, including light switches, on transportable structures must be double poled.

Note: Double pole switches require all live conductors, including active and neutral conductors, to be switched.

Portable socket-outlet assemblies (PSOA) Multi-plug PSOA must:

• incorporate over-current and RCD protection
• have extended sides or covers over the outlets
• have a degree of protection appropriate for the environment
• incorporate a heavy duty flexible cord no more than two metres long.

Domestic type powerboards, double adaptors, three pin plug (piggy back) adaptors and homemade powerboards must not be used on construction or demolition sites.

Unused permanent and construction wiring must be appropriately terminated by a licensed electrician or removed.

Any aerial conductors on site must be insulated, clearly identified and marked, and have height clearances.

Advice on ‘No Go Zone’ requirements is available

Permanent power should only be used for minor or short duration work. When the construction work is more significant in duration, scale or equipment, arrangements should be made to have construction wiring and equipment installed.

Permanent wiring for construction purposes must be protected by an RCD located in the switchboard at the origin of the final sub-circuit. If this is not reasonably practicable, the RCD may be incorporated into the socket-outlet supplying the electrical equipment, or a PSOA plugged directly into the socket-outlet.

c. Inspection and Testing

Inspection & Testing must be conducted by a competent person. The inspection to cover alterations, additions, modifications and repairs that have been carried out to the construction wiring or any fixed electrical installation e.g. to check against :

1. installation of fixed construction wiring and switchboards,
2. relocation of construction lighting or fixed construction supply switchboard
3. disconnection and removal from the premises of permanent and/or construction wiring
4. fitting or repairing a cable.
5. earth continuity, insulation, resistance, polarity, correct circuit connections, earth fault loop impedance and operation of RCD.

Results of inspection and testing should include details of visual inspection, continuity of earthing system, insulation resistance value, polarity, correct circuit connections and RCD trip times.

d. Generators

Hard wired generators : When a generator supplies a fixed installation it must be:
• installed and certified by a licensed electrician and a certificate of electrical safety provided
• inspected by a licensed electrical inspector before it is used for the first time, and after any alteration to the location or installation of the generator.

Where generators are supplying fixed switchboards, the RCD may be mounted on the switchboard.

Free-standing generators : Manufacturers or suppliers of generators must provide information regarding relevant earth and bonding connections if the generator is used to supply portable tools and equipment. This information should be on a decal or label displayed prominently on the generator. The information should indicate whether the unit is a bonded generator or an isolated winding generator.

Electrical socket-outlets on generators must be protected by RCD not exceeding 30 mA and should be connected accordingly. PSOA must not be used in connection with isolated winding generators, as the RCD will not function. Only one item of class 1 electrical equipment must be used with an isolated winding generator.

e. Lift Shafts

Where a permanent lift installation is connected to construction wiring, the following conditions must be met:

• the cables must be fire rated
• the electrical supply must not be subjected to other main switches
• all other safety requirements

Construction wiring in lift shafts must be from a separate final sub-circuit protected by a 30mA RCD. Its sole purpose should be to supply power for installing lift shaft equipment. Circuit breakers and RCD should be locked and tagged to prevent accidental isolation of the supply to the lift shaft by other persons on the site.

Lift shaft lighting may be supplied from temporary or permanent fixed wiring and should conform with the following:

• fixtures are fluorescent lamps of a minimum 36 watt, or equivalent, and guarded against mechanical damage
• fixtures are connected to the wiring by a lighting plug and socket-outlet
• fixtures are installed at maximum intervals of six metres with the uppermost fixture within one metre of the top of the lift shaft
• the lighting is controlled by two-way switches located within easy reach of the lift well access points at the top and bottom floors

Where more than one lift is being installed in a lift shaft, lighting may be provided from a vertical riser in an adjacent shaft.

Emergency lighting must be provided to allow safe egress from the lift well when normal lighting fails. Emergency lighting must provide illumination of at least 20 lux throughout the lift well and be capable of operating for a minimum of one hour.

Where false-cars are to be used for installing lift well equipment, the supply for construction wiring should be 230 volt as a minimum. It should have a 20A socket-outlet sourced from a separate final sub-circuit protected by a 30 mA RCD. The sole purpose of this supply is to provide adequate power to the climbing hoist including task lighting and power for tools when working from the false-car.

The wiring to the false-car should be:

• heavy duty, double insulated flexible cord rated at a minimum of 20A with a minimum conductor size of 4mm2
• suspended from a device that does not damage the core wires, such as a built-in thimble.

The flexible cord should be:

• secured at the top of the shaft and at the point of attachment to the false-car by a means that prevents mechanical damage
• suspended in the lift well to allow running clearance between the false-car and the lift well and prevent fouling or damage to the cord
• long enough to allow for free travel of the falsecar through the length of the lift well.

f. Lightings

To prevent mechanical damage, lights must be fitted with devices such as wire cages or be manufactured from impact resistant material such as polycarbonate.

Emergency evacuation lighting, when required, must be sufficient to allow safe egress from the site. As a minimum requirement, sufficient batterypowered lighting must be installed in stairways and passageways and near the switchboard to allow safe access to, and egress from, the area if there is insufficient natural lighting. Battery-powered evacuation lighting, including exit signs, must operate for a minimum of one hour following loss of supply.

Evacuation lighting should be subject to a discharge test every six months and results recorded and kept on site, or made available for audit.

Exit lights must not be more than one metre directly above an exit or more than two metres directly in front of an exit. Exit directional arrows are required in hallways that do not lead directly to an emergency exit.

Festoon lighting is restricted to underground shafts, wells, and tunnels and must meet the following requirements:

• lamp holders are the moulded, non-removable type
• supply voltage does not exceed 50 volt
• non-conductive and mechanically guarded.


6.0 HAND HELD EQUIPMENTS AND TOOLS

1. General Safety Precautions

Employees who use hand and power tools and who are exposed to the hazards of falling, flying, abrasive and splashing objects, or exposed to harmful dusts, fumes, mists, vapors, or gases must be provided with the particular personal equipment necessary to protect them from the hazard.

All hazards involved in the use of power tools can be prevented by following five basic safety rules:
  • Keep all tools in good condition with regular maintenance.
  • Use the right tool for the job.
  • Examine each tool for damage before use.
  • Operate according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Provide and use the proper protective equipment.
  • Employees and employers have a responsibility to work together to establish safe working procedures. If a hazardous situation is encountered, it should be brought to the attention of the proper individual immediately.
2. Hand Tools (Non-Powered)

Include anything from axes to wrenches. The greatest hazards posed by hand tools result from misuse and improper maintenance.

Some examples:
  • Using a screwdriver as a chisel may cause the tip of the screwdriver to break and fly, hitting the user or other employees.
  • If a wooden handle on a tool such as a hammer or an axe is loose, splintered, or cracked, the head of the tool may fly off and strike the user or another worker.
  • A wrench must not be used if its jaws are sprung, because it might slip.














Impact tools such as chisels, wedges, or drift pins are unsafe if they have mushroomed heads. The heads might shatter on impact, sending sharp fragments flying.

The employer is responsible for the safe condition of tools and equipment used by employees but the employees have the responsibility for properly using and maintaining tools. Caution should also be given to employees that saw blades, knives, or other tools be directed away from aisle areas and other employees working in close proximity. Knives and scissors must be sharp. Dull tools can be more hazardous than sharp ones.

Appropriate personal protective equipment, e.g., safety goggles, gloves, etc., should be worn due to hazards that may be encountered while using portable power tools and hand tools.

Safety requires that floors be kept as clean and dry as possible to prevent accidental slips with or around dangerous hand tools.

Around flammable substances, sparks produced by iron and steel hand tools can be a dangerous ignition source. Where this hazard exists, spark-resistant tools made from brass, plastic, aluminum, or wood will provide for safety.

2. Power Tools

Power tools can be hazardous when improperly used. There are several types of power tools, based on the power source they use: electric, pneumatic, liquid fuel, hydraulic, and powder-actuated.

Employees should be trained in the use of all tools - not just power tools. They should understand the potential hazards as well as the safety precautions to prevent those hazards from occurring.

The following general precautions should be observed by power tool users:

  • Never carry a tool by the cord or hose,
  • Never yank the cord or the hose to disconnect it from the receptacle,
  • Keep cords and hoses away from heat, oil, and sharp edges,
  • Disconnect tools when not in use, before servicing, and when changing accessories such as blades, bits and cutters,
  • All observers should be kept at a safe distance away from the work area,
  • Secure work with clamps or a vise, freeing both hands to operate the tool,
  • Avoid accidental starting. The worker should not hold a finger on the switch button while carrying a plugged-in tool,
  • Tools should be maintained with care. They should be kept sharp and clean for the best performance. Follow instructions in the user's manual for lubricating and changing accessories,
  • Be sure to keep good footing and maintain good balance,
  • The proper apparel should be worn. Loose clothing, ties, or jewelry can become caught in moving parts,
  • All portable electric tools that are damaged shall be removed from use and tagged "Do Not Use."

3. Guards

Circular Saw : Hazardous moving parts of a power tool need to be safeguarded. For example, belts, gears, shafts, pulleys, sprockets, spindles, drums, fly wheels, chains, or other reciprocating, rotating, or moving parts of equipment must be guarded if such parts are exposed to contact by employees.




















Guards, as necessary, should be provided to protect the operator and others from the following:
  • point of operation,
  • in-running nip points,
  • rotating parts, and
  • flying chips and sparks.
Safety guards must never be removed when a tool is being used. For example, portable circular saws must be equipped with guards. An upper guard must cover the entire blade of the saw. A retractable lower guard must cover the teeth of the saw, except when it makes contact with the work material. The lower guard must automatically return to the covering position when the tool is withdrawn from the work.

4. Safety Switches

All hand-held powered tools must be equipped with a momentary contact "on-off" control switch: drills, tappers, fastener drivers, horizontal, vertical and angle grinders with wheels larger than 2 inches in diameter, disc and belt sanders, reciprocating saws, saber saws, and other similar tools. These tools also may be equipped with a lock-on control provided that turnoff can be accomplished by a single motion of the same finger or fingers that turn it on.

The following hand-held powered tools may be equipped with only a positive "on-off" control switch: platen sanders, disc sanders with discs 2 inches or less in diameter; grinders with wheels 2 inches or less in diameter; routers, planers, laminate trimmers, nibblers, shears, scroll saws and jigsaws with blade shanks one-fourth of an inch wide or less.

Other hand-held powered tools such as circular saws having a blade diameter greater than 2 inches, chain saws, and percussion tools without positive accessory holding means must be equipped with a constant pressure switch that will shut off the power when the pressure is released.

5. Electric Tools

Employees using electric tools must be aware of several dangers; the most serious is the possibility of electrocution.

Among the chief hazards of electric-powered tools are burns and slight shocks which can lead to injuries or even heart failure. Under certain conditions, even a small amount of current can result in fibrillation of the heart and eventual death. A shock also can cause the user to fall off a ladder or other elevated work surface.

To protect the user from shock, tools must either have a three-wire cord with ground and be grounded, be double insulated, or be powered by a low-voltage isolation transformer. Three-wire cords contain two current-carrying conductors and a grounding conductor. One end of the grounding conductor connects to the tool's metal housing. The other end is grounded through a prong on the plug. Anytime an adapter is used to accommodate a two-hole receptacle, the adapter wire must be attached to a known ground. The third prong should never be removed from the plug.



















Double insulation is more convenient. The user and the tools are protected in two ways: by normal insulation on the wires inside, and by a housing that cannot conduct electricity to the operator in the event of a malfunction.

These general practices should be followed when using electric tools:

  • Electric tools should be operated within their design limitations.
  • Gloves and safety footwear are recommended during use of electric tools.
  • When not in use, tools should be stored in a dry place.
  • Electric tools should not be used in damp or wet locations.
  • Work areas should be well lighted.
6. Powered Abrasive Wheel Tools

Powered abrasive grinding, cutting, polishing, and wire buffing wheels create special safety problems because they may throw off flying fragments.

Before an abrasive wheel is mounted, it should be inspected closely and sound- or ring-tested to be sure that it is free from cracks or defects. To test, wheels should be tapped gently with a light non-metallic instrument. If they sound cracked or dead, they could fly apart in operation and so must not be used. A sound and undamaged wheel will give a clear metallic tone or "ring."

To prevent the wheel from cracking, the user should be sure it fits freely on the spindle. The spindle nut must be tightened enough to hold the wheel in place, without distorting the flange. Follow the manufacturer's recommendations. Care must be taken to assure that the spindle wheel will not exceed the abrasive wheel specifications.

Due to the possibility of a wheel disintegrating (exploding) during start-up, the employee should never stand directly in front of the wheel as it accelerates to full operating speed.

Portable grinding tools need to be equipped with safety guards to protect workers not only from the moving wheel surface, but also from flying fragments in case of breakage.

In addition, when using a powered grinder:
  • Always use eye protection.
  • Turn off the power when not in use.
7. Pneumatic Tools

Pneumatic tools are powered by compressed air and include chippers, drills, hammers, and sanders.

There are several dangers encountered in the use of pneumatic tools. The main one is the danger of getting hit by one of the tool's attachments or by some kind of fastener the worker is using with the tool.

Eye protection is required and face protection is recommended for employees working with pneumatic tools.

Noise is another hazard. Working with noisy tools such as jackhammers requires proper, effective use of hearing protection.

When using pneumatic tools, employees must check to see that they are fastened securely to the hose to prevent them from becoming disconnected. A short wire or positive locking device attaching the air hose to the tool will serve as an added safeguard.

A safety clip or retainer must be installed to prevent attachments, such as chisels on a chipping hammer, from being unintentionally shot from the barrel.

Screens must be set up to protect nearby workers from being struck by flying fragments around chippers, riveting guns, staplers, or air drills.

Compressed air guns should never be pointed toward anyone. Users should never "dead-end" it against themselves or anyone else.

8. Powder Actuated Tools

Powder-actuated tools operate like a loaded gun and should be treated with the same respect and precautions. In fact, they are so dangerous that they must be operated only by specially trained employees.

Safety precautions to remember include the following:
  • These tools should not be used in an explosive or flammable atmosphere.
  • Before using the tool, the worker should inspect it to determine that it is clean, that all moving parts operate freely, and that the barrel is free from obstructions.
  • The tool should never be pointed at anybody.
  • The tool should not be loaded unless it is to be used immediately. A loaded tool should not be left unattended, especially where it would be available to unauthorized persons.
  • Hands should be kept clear of the barrel end. To prevent the tool from firing accidentally, two separate motions are required for firing: one to bring the tool into position, and another to pull the trigger. The tools must not be able to operate until they are pressed against the work surface with a force of at least 2kg greater than the total weight of the tool.
  • If a powder-actuated tool misfires, the employee should wait at least 30 seconds, then try firing it again. If it still will not fire, the user should wait another 30 seconds so that the faulty cartridge is less likely to explode, than carefully remove the load. The bad cartridge should be put in water.
Suitable eye and face protection are essential when using a powder-actuated tool.

The muzzle end of the tool must have a protective shield or guard centered perpendicularly on the barrel to confine any flying fragments or particles that might otherwise create a hazard when the tool is fired. The tool must be designed so that it will not fire unless it has this kind of safety device.

All powder-actuated tools must be designed for varying powder charges so that the user can select a powder level necessary to do the work without excessive force.

If the tool develops a defect during use it should be tagged and taken out of service immediately until it is properly repaired.

8.1 Fasteners

When using powder-actuated tools to apply fasteners, there are some precautions to consider. Fasteners must not be fired into material that would let them pass through to the other side. The fastener must not be driven into materials like brick or concrete any closer than 3 inches to an edge or corner. In steel, the fastener must not come any closer than one-half inch from a corner or edge. Fasteners must not be driven into very hard or brittle materials which might chip or splatter, or make the fastener ricochet.

An alignment guide must be used when shooting a fastener into an existing hole. A fastener must not be driven into a spalled area caused by an unsatisfactory fastening.

9. Hydraulic Power Tools

The fluid used in hydraulic power tools must be an approved fire-resistant fluid and must retain its operating characteristics at the most extreme temperatures to which it will be exposed.

The manufacturer's recommended safe operating pressure for hoses, valves, pipes, filters, and other fittings must not be exceeded.

10. Jacks

All jacks - lever and ratchet jacks, screw jacks, and hydraulic jacks - must have a device that stops them from jacking up too high. Also, the manufacturer's load limit must be permanently marked in a prominent place on the jack and should not be exceeded.

A jack should never be used to support a lifted load. Once the load has been lifted, it must immediately be blocked up.

Use wooden blocking under the base if necessary to make the jack level and secure. If the lift surface is metal, place a 1-inch-thick hardwood block or equivalent between it and the metal jack head to reduce the danger of slippage.


To set up a jack, make certain of the following:

  • the base rests on a firm level surface,
  • the jack is correctly centered,
  • the jack head bears against a level surface, and
  • the lift force is applied evenly.
  • Proper maintenance of jacks is essential for safety. All jacks must be inspected before each use and lubricated regularly. If a jack is subjected to an abnormal load or shock, it should be thoroughly examined to make sure it has not been damaged.

7.0 PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT (PPE)











1. What is Personal Protective Equipment​?

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is all equipment (including clothing affording protection against the weather) which is intended to be worn or held by a person at work and which protects them against one or more risks to his health or safety. The Regulations covering PPE are the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations (as amended) 1992.

Examples for PPE used in the construction industry are safety helmets, gloves, eye protection, high-visibility clothing, safety footwear and safety harnesses.

Hearing protection and respiratory protective equipment provided for most work situations are not covered by the Regulations because other regulations apply to them. However, these items need to be compatible with any other PPE provided.

2. What do the Regulations require?

The main requirement is that personal protective equipment is to be supplied and used at work wherever there are risks to health and safety that cannot be adequately controlled in other ways. The Regulations also require that PPE:

  • is properly assessed before use to ensure it is suitable
  • is maintained and stored properly
  • is provided with instructions on how to use it safely
  • is used correctly.
3. Can employers charge for providing Personal Protective Equipment?

An employer cannot ask for money from an employee for PPE, whether it is returnable or not. This includes agency workers if they are legally regarded as employees. If employment has been terminated and the employee keeps the PPE without the employer’s permission, then, as long as it has been made clear in the contract of employment, the employer may be able to deduct the cost of the replacement from any wages owed.

4. Training

Anyone using PPE needs to be aware of why it is needed, when it is to be used, repaired or replaced and its limitations. It is essential that workers are Trained and instructed into how to use PPE properly and make sure they are doing this.

Because PPE is the last resort after other methods of protection have been considered, it is important that users wear it all the time they are exposed to the risk. Never allow exemptions for those jobs which take ‘just a few minutes’.

Employers should regularly check that PPE is being used and investigate any reasons why it is not. Safety signs can be useful reminders to wear PPE.

5. CE marking

Ensure any PPE you use is ‘CE’ marked. The CE marking means that the PPE satisfies certain basic safety requirements and in some cases will have been tested and certified by an independent body.

6. Fake Personal Protective Equipment​

In recent years there has been an increase in fake PPE being circulated in construction. Putting it bluntly fake PPE can kill.

The most common form of fake PPE so far seen has been fake safety helmets. In some cases the fake products are so flimsy that they can be split in half using your bare hands.

Workers should check that safety helmets have a consistent colour, have clear and legible marking and are durable. They should also be supplied with an original user information leaflet (not a photocopy), that is correctly spelt and has the manufacturers contact details listed.

Other items of PPE that could be fake include safety gloves and boots.

It is strongly advised that if workers have concerns about the authenticity of their PPE they should raise the issue with employers.

Remember you have a right not to put yourself in danger.

7. Eye and Face Protection

Safety glasses or face shields are worn any time work operations can cause foreign objects to get in the eye. For example, during welding, cutting, grinding, nailing (or when working with concrete and/or harmful chemicals or when exposed to flying particles). Wear when exposed to any electrical hazards, including working on energized electrical systems.

Eye and face protectors – select based on anticipated hazards.

8. Foot Protection

Construction workers should wear work shoes or boots with slip-resistant and puncture-resistant soles.

Safety-toed footwear is worn to prevent crushed toes when working around heavy equipment or falling objects.

9. Hand Protection

Gloves should fit snugly. Workers should wear the right gloves for the job (examples: heavy-duty rubber gloves for concrete work; welding gloves for welding; insulated gloves and sleeves when exposed to electrical hazards).


10. Head Protection

Wear hard hats where there is a potential for objects falling from above, bumps to the head from fixed objects, or of accidental head contact with electrical hazards.

Hard hats – routinely inspect them for dents, cracks or deterioration; replace after a heavy blow or electrical shock; maintain in good condition.

11. Hearing Protection

Use earplugs/earmuffs in high noise work areas where chainsaws or heavy equipment are used; clean or replace earplugs regularly.


8.0 SAFE USE OF VEHICLES

Construction work is considered to be one of the most hazardous industrial activities. The rate of injury in the construction industry is higher than in other industries. The most frequent causes of death in the construction industry are falls from height, followed by fatal accidents with vehicles.

About one in three fatal accidents at work involve vehicles. The main types of transport accidents are:

People are struck or run over by moving vehicles (e.g. during reversing);
Falling from vehicles
Struck by objects falling from vehicles
Injured because of vehicles overturning.

It follows that by removing or reducing the risk of accidents involving vehicles on construction sites, there can be a significant reduction in the number of fatal accidents in this sector.

1. Risk Assessment

Employers are required to assess risks and take practical measures to protect the safety and health of their workers, keep accident records, provide information and training, consult employees and cooperate and co-ordinate measures with contractors.

A hierarchy of prevention is set including:
  • avoid risks;
  • combat risks at source;
  • adapt work to the worker;
  • replace the dangerous with the non-dangerous; and, give collective measures priority over individual measures. Workers have a right to receive information about the risks to health and safety,
  • preventive measures,
  • first aid and emergency procedures.
Employees have duties to co-operate actively with employers’ preventive measures, following instructions in accordance with training given and taking care of their own and workmates’ safety and health.

2. Workplace
  • Establish a traffic plan for the site
  • Ensure all visiting drivers report to site management before entering the site
  • Ensure that vehicles and pedestrians are segregated where possible
  • Check that the layout of routes is appropriate for vehicle and pedestrian activities. Where possible segregate pedestrian and vehicle traffic routes. Provide a physical barrier to achieve the segregation. If not, adequate warnings must be in place. Ensure there are suitable pedestrian crossing points on vehicle routes.
  • Avoid the need for reversing by: better design of the workplace; if unavoidable, use safe systems of work for reversing, and, where risks can not be eliminated by other means, and provide and use a trained signaller to assist the vehicle driver
  • Consider introducing a one -way traffic system to reduce the risk of collisions.
  • Check that vehicle traffic routes are suitable for the types and quantity of vehicles that use them. Ensure they are wide enough and that floor and road surfaces are kept in good condition. Remove obstructions where possible, otherwise, make sure they are clearly visible. Avoid including sharp bends in road layouts. Provide suitable fixed mirrors at blind corners.
  • Check that suitable safety features are provided. Direction, speed limit and priority signs may be needed. Determine whether physical speed restrictions such as speed bumps are necessary. Edges of loading bays, pits etc must be clearly marked and fitted with a barrier if possible.
  • Put in clear road markings
  • Take steps to improve visibility, for example, by the installation of mirrors Where necessary, install speed ramps and warning signs
  • Provide supportive structures where necessary to prevent collapse and to prevent vehicles running of the roadwayCheck that lighting and visibility provide safe passage through the work site (both inside and outside). Potential hazards, e.g. road junctions, pedestrians and obstructions must be clearly visible.
  • Ensure that traffic routes are safe
3. Safe vehicles
  • Ensure that a safe and suitable vehicle is being used.
  • Vehicles should be purchased with appropriate safety features and comply with required standards.
  • Carry out regular inspections and maintenance on all vehicles
  • Apply speed limiter on vehicles where necessary
  • Apply control systems to prevent vehicles from moving when fork lift trucks are loading or unloading
  • Ensure that loads are properly secure
  • Check that there is a safe means of access to and exit from the vehicle.
  • Check whether the vehicle requires audible warning devices e.g. on reversing lorries, and flashing beacons on vehicles to increase their visibility.
  • Check whether the driver has adequate protection against overturning or being hit by falling objects
4. Workers
  • Check that selection and training proc edures ensure that drivers are capable of working safely.
  • Drivers should be competent to operate their vehicles and carry out daily maintenance.
  • Drivers should be medically fit, with good mobility, hearing and vision. Only people who have been selected, trained and authorised to do so should be allowed to drive vehicles.
  • High visibility clothing should be worn if pedestrians and vehicles cannot be segregated adequately.
Checklists

Safe driving checklist

Do you reduce your speed when entering areas where there are pedestrians?
Do you watch your surroundings while working or driving?
Are you away of doorways, passages or pathways where pedestrians or vehicles may suddenly appear?
Are you familiar with the characteristics of the vehicle in all weather conditions?
Did you check tyres, brakes, etc, to ensure that all parts and accessories are in safe operating condition before starting work?
Are you wearing your seat belt?
Did you check that nobody is at risk of injury before moving off, particularly in areas where you visibility is obstructed?
Do you keep to designated vehicle routes and follow site rules and safe systems of work?
Do you respect the appropriate speeds for site conditions?
Do you follow traffic signs and signallers' instructions?
Do you load only on level ground with the parking brake applied?
Do you ensure that the vehicle's rated load or lift capacity is not exceeded?
Do you get off dumper trucks when they are being loaded and ensure that the skip is not overloaded?
Do you check that loads are evenly distributed and that they do not obscure visibility from the driving position?
Do you avoid slopes which exceed the vehicles capacity
Do you descend significant slopes down the gentlest gradient in low gear or reverse down slopes to ensure good stability and traction?
Do you apply the parking brake, switch off the engine and remove the keys?
Do you lower or block bulldozer and scraper blades, end-loader buckets, dump bodies, etc., when not in use, and leave all controls in neutral position?
Do you operate vehicles in a safe, courteous matter?
Are the traffic routes clear of obstructions and movable obstructions?

Drivers’ checklist

Do not drive when your abilities are impaired, e.g. by ill health or poor vision
Make sure you understand the operating procedures and safe operating limits of your vehicle
Carry out daily checks and report all problems
Know and comply with site rules and procedures, including those for emergencies
Understand the system of signals
Keep your speed within safe limits. Take care when approaching bends
If reversing cannot be eliminated, ensure it is carried out safely complying with site rules.
If pedestrians cannot be excluded from the area a trained signaller may be required to assist.
If there is restricted visibility from your driving position, use visibility aids (e.g. mirrors) or a person to signal. If you lose sight of the signaller or the visibility aid becomes defective -STOP!
Turn the engine off before making any adjustments or removing guards 


Note : 

continued - with more topics will be added on 

Fire prevention, Excavations and Confined Spaces, Control of Substances Hazardous to Health,  First Aid

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