Tuesday, 20th October
Plant and Pedestrian Safety
Hazards Associated with Plant and Pedestrian Safety
According to the Health and Safety Authority (HSA), the greatest risk to pedestrians is from vehicles and mobile plant. It is highlighted that there are substantial blind spots on dozers, wheeled loading shovels and excavators, with workers at risk of being run over if they are in the operator’s blind spot.
The law requires that pedestrians and vehicles must co-exist safely both in indoor and outdoor places of work. Where vehicles are operating, the vulnerable group may be co-workers, visitors, or members of the public. To protect pedestrians, vehicle travel routes should be clearly delineated, with enough clearance space between persons and vehicles considering the number of users and the work activities.
The HSA highlights that employers or a person in control of a workplace must carry out a documented risk assessment of workplace transport hazards to include an evaluation and assessment of vehicles and mobile work equipment in use in the workplace. Additionally, pedestrian activity within the operational areas shall wherever possible be restricted, particularly in hours of darkness, and for certain operations ‘no entry’ zones should be identified and clearly marked.
Kevin Cummins, BU HSE Manager East, Civils & Living, John Sisk & Son has kindly facilitated a brief video to advise of measures to ensure plant and pedestrian safety; this may be accessed here:
Construction Site Traffic Management Plan
According to the HSA, an average of twenty people are killed at Irish workplaces following interactions with vehicles. The law requires that pedestrians and vehicles must co-exist safely both in indoor and outdoor places of work. Where vehicles are operating, the vulnerable group may be co-workers, visitors, or members of the public. To protect pedestrians, vehicle travel routes should be clearly delineated, with enough clearance space between persons and vehicles.
The HSA highlights that employers or a person in control of a workplace must carry out a documented risk assessment of workplace transport hazards to include an evaluation and assessment of vehicles and mobile work equipment in use in the workplace.
The HSA, through BeSMART.ie facilitated the generation of a Construction Site Traffic Management Plan (CSTMP) 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.
Construction Work: Avoid Danger when working near overhead electricity wires and underground cables
- Remember: There are no second chances with electricity. Don’t put yourself or others at risk of electrocution!
Arthur Byrne, Public Safety Manager, ESB Networks, is asking everyone involved in construction to take the opportunity of Safety Week to take the time to recognise the dangers before starting work near overhead electricity wires and underground cables. The specific themes of Plant & Pedestrian Safety, Working at Heights and Emergency Preparedness are all very relevant.
Take the time to understand the risk of electrocution and remember these important safety times.
KEY SAFETY TIPS
- Watch out for overhead wires and keep a safe distance. Implement the Code of Practice for Overhead Lines.
- Avoid hitting buried cables and always check that you are following safe digging practice. Implement the Code of Practice for Underground Services.
- Contact ESB Networks for information and advice.
- Remember – electricity wires and cables are always live; never touch fallen wires or handle cables.
- Contact ESB Networks for the records of overhead and underground cables by:
- Email to [email protected]
- Phone: 1800 928 960 for Map Records and Advice.
- Watch out for overhead wires:
- Remember to implement the safety controls and comply with the Code of Practice for Overhead Electricity Lines.
- Know what the required safety zones are by contacting ESB Networks in advance
- Erect goal posts to restrict access for tall machinery.
- Keep clear of underground cables:
- Remember to implement the safety controls and comply with the Code of Practice for Underground Cables.
- Identify the location of underground cables
- Use competent staff and calibrated equipment
- Implement safe digging practices.
IMPORTANT RESOURCES TO HELP YOU BE SAFE:
- Phone 1800 928 960 or [email protected] for the electricity network records on your site
- For information on the Codes of Practice, Safety Videos and Safety Advice: visit www.esbnetworks.ie/stayingsafewww.esbnetworks/stayingsafe/
- In an emergency, phone 1800 372 999.
Michael Norton, Managing Director, Proactive Safety has kindly facilitated a brief video to advise of safe lifting practices; this may be accessed here:
When planning a lift, there is a need to consider:
- Site conditions (access and egress, site gradient, load bearing characteristics of the ground, excavations, underground structures, services, overhead electricity or telephone cables, and any other potential hazard specific to the work area)
- Weather conditions
- Margin of safety for lift (may equate to 20-25% crane lift capacity)
- Size and type of crane, its duties, outrigger settings and loadings, radius for intended work and boom length
- Select appropriate load handling equipment including chains, slings, lifting beams, spreaders, lifting eyes etc.
- Load weight and dimensions, lift points, sharp edges, and location before and after lifting operations
- Weight of the equipment to be used and impact on the overall weight to be lifted
- Determine the method of attaching the load to the crane (i.e. the slinging technique)
- A full risk assessment to identify any hazards, the associated risks, and appropriate controls.
Safe lifting is as much about load preparation and we must also consider the importance of safe load securing and transportation. Fatalities have resulted from the loading, transportation and unloading of materials and equipment. In recognition of this, a video recording on Load Securing of Construction Plant and Attachments was filmed for Construction Safety Week 2019 in conjunction with the HSA, Gills Driving School, Coffey Group, Ward & Burke, EPS, Murphy and Glan Agua, which outlines best practice for load securing. This may be viewed here:
Live CIF Webinars
2pm – ‘Managing Safety in Construction through the COVID-19 Pandemic’ – panel discussion with Wayne Metcalfe (John Sisk & Son), Gerry Keane (Walls Construction), Brian Sheehan (Irish Water), Mark Madigan (ESB Networks), Derek Murphy (Designer Group), Dermot Carey (CIF), and Shane Dempsey (CIF)
Registration Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_qaoaRtqzSMSVRuJ7iu6adQ
About Safety Week
Construction Safety Week is an initiative of the Construction Safety Partnership Advisory Committee (CSPAC). This is a grouping of all the main stakeholders in the construction sector in Ireland – Employers, Unions, State Bodies ( in conjunction with the Health & Safety Authority ) and Professional Bodies.
Our collective objective is to continue to highlight the issues of health and safety in the Irish construction industry and to drive continual improvement.
Good health and safety depend on co-operation between all parties on a project – from client to designers and contractors – everyone’s safety depends on their co-workers or the person working beside you or above you.
The mission for this week is to re-focus on health and safety and it’s a call to action for companies of all sizes to run a safety event this week.