Tag - CDM Regulations

Health and safety, Safer Sphere

HSE to target construction firms in new health inspections

The HSE has announced this month that Construction firms across Great Britain will be targeted on their health standards by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

These inspections will be the first time the regulator has targeted the industry with a specific focus on respiratory risks and occupational lung disease, looking at the measures businesses have in place to protect their workers’ lungs from the likes of asbestos, silica and wood dust.

Inspectors will be visiting construction businesses and sites across the country throughout October and will specifically be looking for evidence of construction workers knowing the risks, planning their work and using the right controls, and if necessary will use enforcement to ensure people are protected.

HSE’s Peter Baker, chief inspector of construction, said: “Around 100 times as many workers die from diseases caused or made worse by their work than are killed in construction accidents. Annually, work-related cancers, mainly linked to asbestos and silica, are estimated to kill 3,500 people from the industry. Thousands of others suffer life-changing illnesses from their work. Not all lung diseases take years to develop. Some, like acute silicosis or occupational asthma, can occur more quickly.

“As a result, we’ve launched this inspection initiative to find out what exactly businesses in the construction industry are doing today to protect their workers’ health, particularly when it comes to exposure to dust and damage to lungs.

“We want construction workers to be aware of the risks associated with the activities they carry out on a daily basis; be conscious of the fact their work may create hazardous dust; and consider how this could affect their health, in some cases irreversibly. We want businesses and their workers to think of the job from start to finish and avoid creating dust or disturbing asbestos by working in different ways. We want to see construction firms encouraging their workers to firstly keep the dust down and wear the right mask and clothing.

“Ultimately, we want construction workers’ lungs to be protected from ill health, so they can go home healthy to their families and enjoy long careers in this important industry.”

Safer Sphere, APS Awards, CDM, Manchester

Safer Sphere named CDM Consultant of the Year at National Awards

Construction (Design and Management) specialist, Safer Sphere has won ’CDM Consultant of the Year’ at the National Association of Project Safety (APS) Awards, which recognises excellence in construction health and safety risk management.

The North West based CDM consultancy beat off strong competition from some of the biggest names in the CDM industry to take home the crown at the 2018 APS Awards held in Manchester.

Safer Sphere won the prestigious award based on the CDM services provided to the multi-site Design and Build PRS scheme by Dandara, which sees the development of residential units across Salford, Leeds, and Birmingham. The project delivery is made up of big names such as Sir Robert McAlpine, Galliford Try, and Interserve; Safer Sphere was appointed as Client CDM Advisor and Principal Designer Advisors on the project.

On receiving the award, Mike Forsyth, Managing Director at Safer Sphere said:

We are delighted to have won CDM Consultant of Year at the national APS awards as this is one of the highest accolades we can receive for our business. To make it into the final of these leading industry awards is an achievement but to win just highlights the amazing success for Safer Sphere and its accomplishments. This award is solely down to the efforts and expertise of the team as well as the great support of our clients. The Dandara PRS scheme has been a fantastic scheme to work on and we will continue to work on the scheme having been appointed on the Sweet Street and Chapel Wharf fit-outs, which means we will be seeing the project through from concept to completion. Safer Sphere has one the best CDM delivery teams in the industry and this award is testament to this, I couldn’t be more proud.

Principal Designer Advisor Liverpool, Edward Pavillion

Safer Sphere appointed on Grade 1 listed Edward Pavilion

We are pleased to be working on the fit-out of the Grade 1 listed Edward Pavilion in Liverpool with Ardmac on behalf of CastleForge Partners. We will be acting as Principal Designer Advisor to Ardmac on the project which will see work carried out across 4 Floors of the building.

Angel Meadows, Manchester, CDM, Health and Safety, Principal Designer Advisor

Angel Meadows Archaeological Excavation – Part 2

The Angel Meadows excavation has entered its second week and the team are hard at work finishing the cleaning of the archaeology on Plot 2 (Mincing Street), and the process of recording has started with the completion of a GPS survey and extensive photography. This will be completed later this week with the use of a drone to accurately survey the remains. Cleaning of the structural remains is now being undertaken on Plot 5 (Ludgate Hill), to properly define the features our excavations have revealed there.

Preliminary comparisons between the Plot 2 site and historic mapping are allowing the team to begin the work of understanding how the layout of the dwellings in the area changed over time. The documents available to us show buildings were remodelled and removed, courtyards and alleys were extended, and points of access were changed over a period of 100 years. Evidence can be seen of this on the ground existing in the form of blocked doorways, truncated walls, and areas of more recent building superimposed over older foundations. The reasons for these changes isn’t always immediately clear, but some may relate to the efforts of the social reformers who during the later part of the nineteenth century, were (rightfully) concerned that the dark, squalid, and utterly unsanitary, cramped conditions of the area were contributing to the spread of disease and crime and high mortality rates.

Perhaps the most significant indication of these changes is the addition of later sanitation works. These took the form of proper drainage and toilet blocks, much-needed facilities in ‘The Meadow’ and a response to legislation introduced in the mid-1800’s, making such facilities a legal requirement for existing housing, as well as new buildings. In several examples on site, later structures can be seen and have been built onto and over the old to incorporate these amenities.

It’s a strange thing to portray lavatories as a ‘highlight’ of an archaeological site, but the implementation of basic plumbing is representative of the wider initiative to improve conditions for the working classes in Angel Meadow during the Industrial period. It will be interesting to see what other evidence of the conditions will be found and what the excavation further reveals.

CDM, Angel Meadows, Manchester, Health and Safety

CDM Contractor Duties Advice

Further Duties For The Contractor To Comply With CDM15 Regulations

In previous articles we have considered the duty of the Contractor under CDM15 and the role of the Contractor; the duty to manage the work safely, how a Contractor may check the competency of workers on the project team, safety with tools, equipment and materials and any information and instruction that is passed to the contractor from the Pre-Construction Phase or during the Construction Phase of the project.

It must be remembered that the flow of information will be two way and the Contractor must keep the Construction Phase Plan up to date and expect that the Principal Contractor manage the Plan similarly.

Here we are going to delve deeper into the requirements for consultation and co-operation with other duty holders.

How Contractors can consult with Employees

There must be collaboration between Contractors as employer and the workers that are on task to get individuals to work safely. Involving workers in the decision making process with regards health and safety tends to lead to practical solutions, practical solutions that increase the potential commitment and buy in from workers to any Health and Safety topics.

Practical solutions are more easily fostered by the workforce, practical solutions generally come from speaking to workers about their experience and knowledge about a task or job. When experienced workers are consulted on matters of health and safety, it will be easier to spot workplace hazards and to implement realistic controls that will not be seen as a burden or barrier to completing a task to programme.

Consultation is a proven means of managing Health and Safety on construction projects. Consultation is not only about employers giving information to workers that is part of the Construction Phase Plan, but also requires the Contractor as an employer to listen to workers and consider their experience in the field and previous issues that they have come up against in similar situations.

Consultation with the work force should cover the hazards associated from their own work and the work of others working on the project as well as those environmental risks that modern construction techniques may harbour, the way these risks are managed and how information and training to protect workers from relevant risks should be discussed at length.

Preparing the Construction Phase Plan

Preparing the Construction Phase Plan is the responsibility of the Principal Contractor where more than one Contractor is present on site. In situations where there is only one Contractor, the Construction Phase Plan cannot be left up to another contractor as there is essentially no one to pass this duty to.

A Construction Phase Plan describes how health and safety will be managed during construction and will contain information that is relevant to all Contractors working on the project. The Construction Phase Plan should be available to anyone who wants to see it and therefore the information contained in it should be clear and easily understood with all superfluous information removed. Issues such as logistics, working at height, hazardous substances, demolition and groundworks should all be considered and included in the Construction Phase Plan if the works include it.

Before any site is set up or work begins in the Construction Phase, the Plan should be developed. While it is the duty of the [Principal] Contractor to develop the Construction Phase Plan, it is the responsibility of the Client to ensure that the Construction Phase Plan is in place before the work begins.

 

Providing Welfare Facilities

Welfare includes the provision of toilets, both lit and ventilated and suitable for both sexes. With more and more female staff working on Construction sites, male and female toilets are thankfully becoming more common, but are open to abuse if not managed correctly. Washing facilities with hot and cold water, soap or skin detergent with a means of drying hands should be close to the toilet facility. Separately, but just as important are rest facilities, a room with tables and chairs with drinking water and cups is a bare minimum.

Where workers will need to change clothes or dry their workwear, a separate changing/drying room with lockers should be provided. It should be noted that while the lockers should be provided by the [Principal] Contractor, it is commonly the responsibility of the Contractor to supply their own key and lock.

The supply of Welfare Facilities is part of CDM15. Where one Contractor is charged with a Construction Project, the Welfare Facilities should be suitable and sufficient for the size of the project and should be available from when construction starts until the end of the project. Were more than one contractor is working on a project, it is the Principal Contractor who is ultimately responsible for ensuring that welfare facilities are provided.

It is the Clients responsibility to ensure that suitable arrangements are provided for workers welfare by the Principal Contractor.

Providing a Site Induction

Suitable site inductions should be provided by the [Principal] Contractor, this may be in groups or given to individuals as they start work. Where there is only one Contractor on site, Site Inductions are still a necessary part of the Construction Phase and should cover all the health and safety risks associated with the site. While each Site Induction will differ from project to project, typical topics that should be covered may be:

  1. The Commitment to Health and Safety by the Contractor
  2. Basic details of the project and the anticipated outcome
  3. What is the management structure on the site – who are the relevant contacts within the organisation
  4. What are site specific health and safety risks (overhead electricity, trees on site, watercourses nearly, railways etc)
  5. How will health and safety on site be controlled via site rule, how will pedestrians and vehicles be segregated, what is the minimum PPE standard, how will deliveries to site be managed, how will temporary electricity be provided, how will hazardous substances be stored)
  6. What are the procedures for accidents and who is responsible for first aid
  7. How are accidents on site recorded and how will RIDDOR events be reported to HSE
  8. When and what will be the subjects of training, toolbox task and task briefings.
  9. How will the workforce be consulted with
  10. What is each individual’s responsibility for health and safety while on site.

Safer Sphere appreciates that the CDM Regulations 2015 and Health and Safety Legislation can be a burden to small and medium-sized contractors. Such organisations rarely have the resource to employ internal Health and Safety professionals, meaning the burden is applied to those managing the organisation or supervising construction activities.

Our aim in this department is to reduce that burden by providing compliant Contractor CDM Support, which enables contractors to make Health and Safety a simple process and gives them the ability to concentrate their efforts in providing quality and cost-effective solutions in their chosen field. Whether you are a “contractor” or acting as “Principal Contractor”, Safer Sphere are here to help you!

CDM Client Advisors Worcestor Hospital

Safer Sphere continue work on Worcester Hospital

Safer Sphere is pleased to confirm that we have been appointed on additional works at Worcester Hospital. The latest project involves the removal of 2 steam generators, hotwell and blowdown vessel. A new hotwell, blowdown and 2 new steam boilers will be installed to replace the old ones. Safer Sphere will be acting as CDM Client Advisor on the project supporting Engie.

School development Principal Designer Advisor Oldham

Safer Sphere appointed on new Oldham High School

We are pleased to have been appointed on another exciting school project working alongside Galliford Try and AHR Architects. The project will see a brand-new replacement school built for Royton and Crompton High School in Oldham. Safer Sphere has been appointed as Principal Designer Advisor on the project and is looking forward to seeing the development progress.

NHS Framwork Principal Designer Advisor CDM

Safer Sphere wins place on NHS Share Business Services Framework

NHS Shared Business Services (NHS SBS) has launched its new Construction Consultancy Framework and Construction (Design and Management) safety specialists Safer Sphere have been appointed as one of the successful Consultants on the framework.
The framework is open to both the NHS and the wider public sector and allows them to access a variety of services from Civil Engineering to Principal Designer Advisors.

The 4-year framework is expected to save the public sector around £16 million and supplies the clients with a fully compliant route for public sector purchasing, as they will gain access to construction consultancy services that have already undergone a thorough procurement process.

The new framework replaces the older framework that was awarded in 2014 and has saved the public sector in excess of £12 million. Last year, more than 300 organisations purchased construction consultancy services via the NHS SBS framework, with almost two-thirds (66%) being non-NHS organisations.

Mike Forsyth, Managing Director, Safer Sphere said “We are delighted to have been appointed alongside other great industry professionals on this framework. We have been fortunate enough to work alongside various NHS Trusts and local authorities, and this framework opens up even more opportunities to work alongside both current and new clients.”

The framework is now active and has over 100 core members and over 800 associate members ranging from housing associations to NHS Trusts across the UK.

BIM and CDM15

The Future Of CDM And BIM

What Is BIM?

BIM or Building Information Modelling is the name given to a process of creating a detailed digital model of a build asset. From design through to construction and even hand over, a detailed collaborative model of a building can be created and accessed by anyone involved with the design, construction and maintenance of the project.

Think of a building information model in terms of a 3D digital model that not only gives a detailed visual of the building but also contains dimensions, materials used, service and maintenance instructions, material life spans, load bearings, safe working information and more.

Why Do We Need BIM?

Over 2 million people work in the UK construction industry, a figure that represents around 7% of the national workforce. Despite this, the construction industry accounts for around 25% of fatalities in the workplace and a statistically higher number of occupational diseases than any other industry. It’s thought that effective BIM implementation can help reduce these figures.

In addition, if BIM is implemented effectively during the design stages then it will enable CDM duty holders to identify risks in advance and therefore reduce costs considerably. After all, accidents and last minute changes are expensive.

The Future Of CDM And BIM

Identifying risk is the key element of CDM15. If the design stage can utilise digital modelling then many more risks can be identified. From clash detections on electrical cable and pipe runs to the movement of raw materials across the site during the different construction phases.

As BIM software becomes more developed, it’s entirely possible that the entire construction process can be run in virtual reality to detect any conflict with access platforms, cranes, and other construction equipment and processes. A timeline can then be decided to deliver maximum value, minimum construction time and fewer H&S risks.

BIM systems can aid Architects by automatically checking against current health and safety legislation on such things as where safety glass is needed, what the minimum headroom on a stairwell is and so on.

Building Information Modelling isn’t new. In fact as early as 2011, the UK Government published it’s Construction Strategy, the prime aim of which was to reduce the cost of public sector assets by 20%, one of the means of achieving this was to enable all the supply chain to collaborate in a 3D BIM on all government-funded projects by 2016.

The construction division of the HSE is committed to researching how BIM can improve health and safety across projects of all sizes. In addition, the BSI has published a specification (PAS 1192-6:2018)for collaborative sharing and use of structured Health & Safety information using BIM.

How Important is BIM?

You may, depending on your age, remember people asking the same question about word processors, computers, and the internet. BIM is in its early stages in the UK but is being used extensively around the world. Standards are still being designed and the coming months and years will see industry standard single BIM systems that are capable of delivering slick digital records to the client at the end of a project.

CAD drawings, PDFs and multiple digital files will be as outdated as floppy disks in a just a few years.

Building Information Modelling is here to stay, but unlike other technologies, if implemented correctly it will reward the construction industry with fewer health and safety incidents, higher profits and lower costs.

Retail Park CDM Services

Safer Sphere appointed dual role on new Harrogate Spa Retail Park

We are pleased to confirm that we have been appointed as CDM Client Advisors and Principal Designer Advisors for the new Harrogate Spa Retail Park development. The project will see the development of several large retail units and a car park which will make up the brand-new retail park.