Health & Safety

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This section contains the content related to Health & Safety.

The management of health and safety issues is a key concern for the construction industry in Ireland. Therefore, the CIF has a dedicated department to manage the needs of members in this area. Policy in this area is overseen by the CIF Safety Policy Sub Committee.

Please be advised that materials accessible from this location are intended for members of the CIF. If you / your organisation are members but do not have membership details readily available, please contact John Egan: [email protected] and specify materials requested. Conversely, if you are interested in CIF membership, please contact Bernardine Walsh: [email protected]

Safety, Health & Welfare Legislation
25th April 2019
John Egan
6.38 MB

Intoxicants

Sample Policy on Intoxicants at Work
Sample Policy on Intoxicants at Work
13th March 2020
John Egan
477.30 KB
Intoxicants at Work
25th April 2019
John Egan
333.00 KB

Mental Health

Mental Health and Wellbeing
Mental Health and Wellbeing
25th April 2019
John Egan
9.04 MB

Dusts

Management of Construction Dust
Management of Construction Dust
25th April 2019
John Egan
14.45 MB

Chemicals

Chemicals
Chemicals
25th April 2019
John Egan
3.27 MB

Accident & Incidents

CIF Management of Temporary Works Design
CIF Management of Temporary Works Design
23rd March 2021
John Egan
5.28 MB
CIF Guidance - Rescue from Tower Cranes
CIF Guidance - Rescue from Tower Cranes
8th February 2021
John Egan
0.00 KB
CIF Guidance - Interacting with Emergency Services
CIF Guidance - Interacting with Emergency Services
8th February 2021
John Egan
382.01 KB
Sample Policy on Mobile Phone Use
Sample Policy on Mobile Phone Use
6th March 2020
John Egan
586.43 KB

Fire & Emergency Planning

CIF Guidance - Interacting with Emergency Services
CIF Guidance - Interacting with Emergency Services
8th February 2021
John Egan
382.01 KB

Safety Alerts

Sunsmart / Skin Protection
Sunsmart / Skin Protection
25th April 2019
John Egan
3.25 MB

Communications to CIF Members

CIF Management of Temporary Works Design
CIF Management of Temporary Works Design
23rd March 2021
John Egan
5.28 MB
Sample Policy on Mobile Phone Use
Sample Policy on Mobile Phone Use
6th March 2020
John Egan
586.43 KB

Lessons Learned / Best Practice in Health & Safety

2019/09 - Tumble Dryer Fire
2019/09 - Tumble Dryer Fire
13th March 2020
John Egan
616.70 KB
2019/08 - Failure of Job-Box Hinges
2019/08 - Failure of Job-Box Hinges
4th July 2019
Construction Industry Federation
0.00 KB
2019/07 -  Demolition of White Hart Lane
2019/07 - Demolition of White Hart Lane
4th July 2019
Construction Industry Federation
0.00 KB
2019/06 - Working at Height Fatality
4th July 2019
Construction Industry Federation
0.00 KB
2019/05 - Uncharted Electricity Cable Strike
2019/05 - Uncharted Electricity Cable Strike
4th July 2019
Construction Industry Federation
1.24 MB
2019/04 – Hydraulic Breaker Chisel Replacement
2019/04 – Hydraulic Breaker Chisel Replacement
10th April 2019
Construction Industry Federation
0.00 KB
2019/03 – Stone Between Truck’s Dual Tyres Became Dislodged
2019/03 – Stone Between Truck’s Dual Tyres Became Dislodged
10th April 2019
Construction Industry Federation
0.00 KB
2019/02 – Temporary Working Platforms
2019/02 – Temporary Working Platforms
10th April 2019
Construction Industry Federation
0.00 KB
2019/01 – Failure of Nut and Bolt Connection
2019/01 – Failure of Nut and Bolt Connection
10th April 2019
Construction Industry Federation
0.00 KB
2018/08 – On a day in August 2018, an Irish Contractor experienced a near miss that could easily have resulted in a workplace fatality.
2018/08 – On a day in August 2018, an Irish Contractor experienced a near miss that could easily have resulted in a workplace fatality.
10th April 2019
Construction Industry Federation
0.00 KB

Toolbox Talks

Sunsmart / Skin Protection
Sunsmart / Skin Protection
25th April 2019
John Egan
3.25 MB
Sample Training Matrix
25th April 2019
John Egan
234.66 KB
Chemicals
Chemicals
25th April 2019
John Egan
3.27 MB
Mental Health and Wellbeing
Mental Health and Wellbeing
25th April 2019
John Egan
9.04 MB
Management of Construction Dust
Management of Construction Dust
25th April 2019
John Egan
14.45 MB

Videos

Sorry, no files available in this category.

CSCS / Safe Pass

Safe Pass Subsidy for Transition Year Students
Safe Pass Subsidy for Transition Year Students
20th November 2019
John Egan
693.69 KB

Campaign Materials

Sunsmart / Skin Protection
Sunsmart / Skin Protection
25th April 2019
John Egan
3.25 MB

Construction Safety Week 2022

Construction Safety Week 2022 is scheduled for the month October; further details will be shared via the campaign webpage: https://cif.ie/safety-week/

CIF Safety Summit 2022

The CIF Safety Summit is scheduled to take place on the 24th of May 2022 at Croke Park Conference Centre. Further details will be shared here: https://cifsafety.ie/

COVID-19

CIF COVID-19 Online Induction

The CIF Online C-19 Induction closed at 5pm on Friday, 22nd October to coincide with the measured easing of COVID-19 public safety protocols by the government.  Therefore, the service is now closed, and it is not possible to take an induction or check an existing card.  Persons working in construction are now directed to the latest version of the CIF C19 Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) and FAQ document for further information: https://cif.ie/2020/04/15/new-operating-procedures/

The CIF Safety and Health Subcommittee determined that the CIF Online C-19 Induction had fulfilled its purpose (i.e. that content is now widely known) and that the requirement for a COVID-19 induction as a site access requirement should be lifted (i.e. no longer required).  As such, there is no requirement for a COVID-19 induction, unless dictated by a client or contractor (i.e. at their discretion).  All CIF members were given advance notice of the cessation of the CIF Online C-19 Induction.

For reference only, the Health and Safety Authority offers an induction programme for COVID-19; see: https://www.hsa.ie/eng/topics/covid-19_coronavirus_information_and_resources/covid-19_business_supports/business_supports/work_safely_online_courses/

CIF Construction Sector C-19 Pandemic SOPs

The latest version of the CIF Construction Sector C-19 Pandemic SOP may be accessed here: https://cif.ie/coronavirus/

Face Coverings

The wearing of face masks is still recommended by the CIF in certain circumstances, as outlined in Version 10 of the CIF Construction Sector C-19 Pandemic SOP.  Be mindful that the wearing of barrier or face masks (for protection against COVID-19) does not equate to use of personal protective equipment (PPE) or medical device (MD), under EU law.  Therefore, it may be difficult to leverage on the mandatory requirement to wear face masks at work unless the employee has signed-up to adhering to company rules etc.

Recognition of Training Undertaken Outside of ROI

Recognition of Training Undertaken in Great Britain

For information on recognition of qualifications obtained in the UK in the ROI, see: https://www.cefni.co.uk/news/change-to-recognition-of-qualifications-in-republic-of-ireland

Brexit has influenced arrangements for the recognition of UK-obtained qualifications in the Republic of Ireland from January 2021; in short, SOLAS will review all UK qualification recognition applications on an individual basis.  The EU directive that previously recognised qualifications between the 2 jurisdictions no longer applies. From 1st January 2021, individuals seeking recognition of UK qualifications (e.g. CPCS trained operator card) to acquire CSCS or QSCS cards will be subject to the same conditions as all other third country applications. Therefore, applicants seeking recognition of their UK qualification are required to submit a detailed CV, including reference(s) from previous employers confirming the applicant’s work experience, a copy of their valid operator’s card and associated certification to SOLAS, as the Competent Authority, to: [email protected]

Recognition of Training Undertaken in EU

SOLAS’ Construction Services Unit has a system in place for the recognition of qualifications of citizens of EU member states wishing to operate in the construction sector in the Republic of Ireland. The process is governed by S.1.No. 139 of 2008- Recognition of Professional Qualifications (Directive 2005/36/EC) Regulations, 2008. The recognition process only applies to the regulated occupation contained in Schedule 5 of S.I.No.291 of 2013 – Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Construction) Regulations 2013. Skills must have been acquired in an EU member state. Enquiries to [email protected]

SOLAS Safe Pass

Safe Pass is a legislative requirement for certain categories of construction worker only (e.g. craft workers, general operatives, hands-on supervisors and site security), as per Section 4(3) of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Construction) Regulations 2013. A checklist as to who requires Safe Pass is provided on the webpage of the HSA: https://www.hsa.ie/eng/Your_Industry/Construction/Construction_FAQ’s/Safe_Pass/

Therefore, Engineers or persons not meeting the above description do not require Safe Pass from a legislative viewpoint. However, it may be a requirement for workers to hold a valid Safe Pass under the finer details of your insurance policy, or within your company policy or procedures. You may also need to consider contractual arrangements with a client (if commitments were made regarding training).

There is a derogation for Safe Pass that allows for workers living and working outside of the Republic of Ireland to work here for a period not exceeding 20-days (in any 12-month period), without having to undertake SOLAS’ Safe Pass scheme. This is reflected in Schedule 4 of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Construction) Regulations 2013.

SOLAS only recognise one course as being equivalent to SOLAS’ Safe Pass programme; this is the Northern Ireland’ one-day CSR Safety Awareness Course.  Once obtained, persons can apply to SOLAS for recognition of their CSR Health and Safety card.  SOLAS states on its webpage that “The Construction Skills Register (CSR Northern Ireland) one day health and safety course is the only course recognised by SOLAS as an equivalent to the SOLAS Safe Pass course”.  For further information, see: https://www.cefni.co.uk/news/change-to-recognition-of-qualifications-in-republic-of-ireland

First Aid Response

Since the 1st of June 2018, the HSA only recognises PHECC First Aid Response (FAR) as meeting the needs of Occupational First Aid in workplaces.  The PHECC FAR training course is not less than 18 contact hours including assessment but excluding breaks, averaging 6 hours instruction per day. Occupational first aid certification is valid for 2 years after which recertification training is required.  A recertification course is currently not less than 12 hours including assessment but excluding breaks, averaging 6 hours instruction per day.  See webpage: https://www.phecit.ie/  A list of private service providers (a private registered company that provides pre-hospital emergency care) is provided here: https://www.phecit.ie/PHECC/Clinical_Resources/Private/Private.aspx

Notification of Accidents or Dangerous Occurrences

Dangerous occurrences should be reported using the Authority’s online reporting system.

Accidents can be reported to the Health and Safety Authority in two ways, namely by hard copy, i.e. completing the Incident Report Form (IR1) and posting it to the Workplace Contact Unit, Health and Safety Authority, The Metropolitan Building , James Joyce Street, Dublin 1, or reporting online, via the Health and Safety Authority’s website.

Legal obligation in accordance with Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Reporting of Accidents and Dangerous Occurrences) Regulations 2016 (S.I. No. 370 of 2016).  Examples of reportable events include:

  • Fatal and non-fatal injuries are reportable.
  • Diseases, occupational illnesses or any impairments of mental condition are not reportable.
  • Fatal accidents must be reported immediately to the Authority or Gardaí. Subsequently, the formal report should be submitted to the Authority within 5 working days of the death.
  • Non-fatal accidents or dangerous occurrences should be reported to the Authority within 10 working days of the event.
  • The injury of any employee because of an accident while at work where the injury results in the employee being unable to carry out their normal work duties for more than 3 consecutive days, excluding the day of the accident, must be reported.

Temporary Works

Temporary Works (TW) may be defined as engineered solutions designed by (or on behalf of) the contractor to allow or enable the permanent works to be constructed safely and without harming the environment by providing protection, support, or means of access / egress.

Usually, temporary works are removed after use, though in some circumstances, the TW may be incorporated into the permanent works, for example as sacrificial formwork.  For the safety and wellbeing of workers, it is very important that the same degree of care and attention is given to the design and construction of temporary works as for permanent works.  Even relatively simple temporary works may require careful consideration in their design, construction, commissioning, inspection, and loading.  An apparently simple temporary works task could lead to failure and potential injury if not correctly executed.

A CIF Working Group comprising of member representatives and recognised subject matter experts recently finalised CIF Guidance for the ‘Management of the Design of Temporary Works’.  The publication may be accessed through the CIF webpage: https://cif.ie/download/cif-management-of-temporary-works-design/

A brief summation of the guidance is as follows:

  • It is recommended that the duty of ensuring that all the relevant procedures and checks are carried out be given to an individual known as the ‘Temporary Works Co-ordinator’ (TWC). A TWC should be appointed by the PSCS, or the PSCS is to facilitate the appointment of a TWC.
  • The Project Supervisor Design Process (PSDP) should detail in the Preliminary Safety and Health Plan the temporary works that are envisaged for the project, so far as is reasonably practicable.
  • The principles of British Standard, ‘BS5975:2019, Code of practice for temporary works procedures and the permissible stress design of falsework’ should be adopted.
  • Classification of temporary works (0,1,2,3) is recommended. If a contractor has adequate procedures in place for designing and checking of basic temporary works, then Temporary Works Design Certificates may not be required for Class 0 and 1.  Use of Temporary Works Design Certificates is envisaged for Classes 2 and 3.
  • All temporary works designs should be independently checked. The degree of checking should be related to the scale of the temporary works.  A simple scheme may be checked by someone in the same organisation or on the same project, whereas a more complex scheme might have to be checked by an external entity not involved in the initial design.
  • Work should be directed, supervised and checked to ensure that the temporary works are constructed safely in accordance with the agreed design and sequence using materials of agreed quality. Only when all checks have proven to be satisfactory are temporary works to be used (loaded) and removed from use (unloaded), in accordance with an agreed procedure.

Site Traffic Management Plans

In accordance with the Construction Regulations, and for all construction sites on which transport vehicles, earth-moving or materials-handling machinery or locomotives are used, the Project Supervisor for the Construction Stage (PSCS) shall ensure that:

  • safe and suitable access ways are provided, and
  • traffic and pedestrian routes are so organised and controlled including, where appropriate, by the provision of a traffic and pedestrian management plan, as to secure their safe operation.

The HSA’s beSMART.ie platform may be useful; see: https://www.besmart.ie/

It includes a Construction Site Traffic Management Plan (CSTMP) to help a PSCS or small contractor in developing a traffic management plan for work on construction sites (not live roads). It is made up of two elements:

Part A – Guidance document which gives an introduction and summary of the 6 sections – Information, Training, Temporary Works, Hazards, Controls and Resources

Part B – Contains the 6 sections in an online fillable form which can be saved and printed.

Crane Operations

Mobile Cranes

Activities shall be in accordance with the relevant NSAI standard, which is I.S. 360:2019, Code of Practice: Safe use of cranes in the construction industry – Part 1: General.

Tower Cranes

Activities shall be in accordance with the relevant NSAI standard, which is I.S. 361:2013, Code of Practice for the Safe Use of Tower Cranes and Self-erecting Cranes.

Appointed Person (for Lifting)

Annex A of I.S. 360:2019, Code of Practice: Safe use of cranes in the construction industry – Part 1: General outlines the curriculum for a training programme for an Appointed Person; this position is defined as: a person nominated (typically by the employing organisation) to plan, and to have overall control of the lifting operation. This is a responsible role, which warrants relevant training. The CIF offers a training course; see details: https://ciftraining.ie/product/appointed-person-lifting-operations/

Slinger / Banksman

It is a legal requirement that a Banksman or Slinger / Signaller shall have:

  • Current SOLAS’ Safe Pass
  • SOLAS’ CSCS or equivalent (approved) training
  • Be at least 18 years of age.

Additionally, a Banksman/Slinger Signaller should be clearly identifiable to operators at site to operators.

Emergency Response

The Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 (hereafter termed ‘the Act’) requires that employers, including self-employed persons, prepare and revise as appropriate, adequate plans and procedures to be followed and measures to be taken in the event of an emergency or serious and imminent danger.

In accordance with Section 11 of the Act, the employer must provide adequate plans and procedures to be followed and measures to be taken in the case of emergency or serious and imminent danger.

The CIF has developed guidance for (a) Rescue from Tower Cranes, and (b) Interacting with Emergency Services, in conjunction with Dublin Fire Brigade. These may be downloaded by members here: https://cif.ie/downloads/accident-incidents/

Noise

Normal conversation is about 60 dB, a lawn mower is about 90 dB, and a loud rock concert is about 120 112 In general, sounds above 85 are harmful, depending on how long and how often you are exposed to them and whether you wear hearing protection, such as earplugs or earmuffs. In accordance with the Noise Regs (2007), there are two action values and a ceiling or limit value:

Lower and Upper Action Values

  • 80 db(A) & 112Pa (8 hours) – provide information
  • 85 db(A) & 140Pa – hearing protection to be worn, try to engineer-out noise, provide hearing tests.

Limit Value

  • 87 db(A) & 200Pa – limit value not to be exceeded.

Welfare Provisions

Welfare facilities should be in place and working prior to starting work on site. All welfare facilities must be maintained regularly. It is a requirement to provide for the following welfare facilities at a construction site:

  • 1 or more suitable sanitary convenience, (not being a urinal) for every 20 persons at work on site.
  • 1 suitable sanitary convenience for every 25 persons at work on the site up to the first 100 and 1 for every 35 persons thereafter (where there are more than 100 persons at work on site)
  • Separate sanitary conveniences or separate use of sanitary conveniences for men and women
  • Where there are more than 100 persons at work and project duration exceeds 12 months, 6 washbasins shall be provided, with the addition of 1 for every unit of 20 persons at work by which the number of persons exceeds 100.

Lighthouse Club - the Construction Industry Charity

On 3rd June 2020, the Lighthouse Club – the Construction Industry Charity (supported by the CIF) launched a FREE 24/7 confidential employee assistance helpline and app for everyone in the Irish construction industry. The Helpline can be called anytime on 1800 939 122, and the app ‘Construction Industry Helpline’ can be downloaded on Android or Apple mobile devices. The charity has long operated a free EAP and helpline in the UK and recently extended its offerings. Relevant links as follows:

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