Think health and safety is some other lucky bugger’s responsibility?
In construction, everyone gets to have a slice of the pie.
And we all have to pitch in to keep things safe – from clients to workers on the ground.
Whatever hat you wear, there’s always something you can do. Here are some of the ways you can help out:
If you’re a client:
- Clients don’t get to wash their hands of H&S – you’re just as important as the rest of the team. If you’re having work done, you’ve got proper responsibilities under the CDM regulations.
- Make sure everyone you employ is competent. Don’t be afraid to ask for evidence to confirm this.
- Give pre-construction info promptly. Don’t hang around – you’ll only cause yourself grief.
- Make sure there are arrangements in place to cover all H&S requirements.
If you’re a principal designer / designer:
- Your client’s paying you a pretty penny to make sure you do your job right. You need to make them aware of their duties too – before you start work.
- Are you competent? Don’t just assume anything. Check your CDM competency first.
- Avoid risk. As the principal designer, you’ve got the crystal ball to spot any hazards before they happen. It’s called risk management – do it!
If you’re a principal contractor:
- Project management’s a sexy name for making sure you plan, implement and review everything properly.
- Draw up the rules – make sure you’ve got appropriate site rules for the area set up.
- Notification – you’ve got to have all the correct formal notices on display on site – no exceptions!
If you’re a small builder:
- Set realistic lead times, and allow lots of extra time for planning and prep.
- Restrict site access – many an unfortunate accident was caused by idiotic kids wandering in for a dare. Make sure no unauthorised persons can get in.
- Provide info and training – your workers are looking up to you – literally. So give them all the training and knowledge they need.
If you’re a construction worker:
- Stay competent – always refresh your training and make sure you know how to do things safely
- Remove hazards – spotted something dangerous? Don’t be a plonker – get it out of the way! Or at least tell someone about it.
- Follow the rules – they’re there for a very good reason.
- Report any problems – a problem shared and all that… but it also means that if there are risks, they can be properly addressed.
Your takeaway points
- Clients need to make sure that everyone you employ is competent and that you give important information in time.
- Designers need to identify risks and take them into consideration during design.
- Contractors better draw up proper rules – and make sure everything is properly notified.
- Small builders – need to give all the necessary training and keep the site secure.
- Workers should tackle everyday hazards and most importantly – notify someone of any issues.
Where do you fit into the construction picture? Are you doing everything you can to keep the workplace safe?
Let us know your thoughts below!
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