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Most Frequent Building Site Health & Safety Issues Revealed

Posted: 06/04/2018

Construction companies and any other contractors working on a building site must always prioritise health and safety, given just how dangerous somes sites and locations employees, working in this sector face. It’s estimated that 2.3 million working days are lost annually in the construction sector due to workplace injuries and work-related illnesses – so bosses should seriously consider how good health and safety practices can support their business and employees.

New research from the National House Building Council (NHBC) has revealed the most frequently reported health and safety problems on building sites in the last quarter of 2017, which could help site managers decide which issues to start tackling first.

The biggest problems were revealed as being no fall protection on open stairwells, access routes blocked with site materials, workings on scaffolding with no guardrails in place, no eye protection when using nail guns, no pedestrian/traffic segregation in place, scaffold not being erected in-accordance with TG 20.13 and no respiratory protection when using saws or disc cutters.

Health and Safety Services Manager with the NHBC Stephen Ashworth, commented on the findings, saying: “Over recent years, we have seen big improvements with regards to safety on site and the number of injuries to construction workers has reduced. Here at NHBC we’ve seen the importance given to health and safety on house-building sites across the UK, with record levels of entries for the NHBC Health and Safety Awards and higher levels of take up for our health and safety services.

“One way to avoid injuries on house-building sites it to make sure a safe work environment is provided and taking a proactive approach to safety on site helps keep workers safe.”

If you are looking to really make health and safety a priority in the near future and want to see what technology is available and how it could help you make a big difference in this regard, it may be worth looking into emerging artificial intelligence.

Software has now been developed that can spot health and safety breaches on construction sites, with numerous companies across the US now trialling it to see how effective it is.

The Smartvid.io software works, according to Construction Manager Magazine, by scanning images of sites and tagging what it finds, including different materials, people, ladders, hard hats and other site safety concerns. By doing so, people working on site are better able to search for relevant tags depending on the jobs being undertaken, so they can check on the projects easily and more efficiently.

Another option could be the use of drones, as a bird’s eye view can be particularly useful. Drones can help to spot any potential hazards before they arise and add to the wealth of information you already have to help drive down any risks on site.

If you think your emergency response teams need help or advice – or if you need assistance in setting such a team up – get in touch with us at HFR Solutions CIC today.