DAC set to launch safety crackdown on scaffolding

Dubai Accreditation Centre (DAC) is set to enforce rigorous safety checks and accreditation procedures for scaffolding.

Scaffolding in Dubai will now undergo rigourous safety checks and accreditation procedures. (Dmitry Dolzhanskiy/ITP Images)
Scaffolding in Dubai will now undergo rigourous safety checks and accreditation procedures. (Dmitry Dolzhanskiy/ITP Images)

Dubai Accreditation Centre (DAC) is set to enforce rigorous safety checks and accreditation procedures for scaffolding.

The move comes as part of the government accreditation body's safety sweep on construction materials.

DAC recently tightened inspection procedures on all lifting equipment used in the construction industry, including cranes and hoists.

"Every day we're getting inquiries from the authorities to expand to cover other product inspections," said Engineer Lina Mofleh Qudah, director of DAC.

"One of these would be an inspection of scaffolding - this is serious because it's very easy for scaffolding to fall down - and a lot of accidents on construction sites happen because of this. At the moment, there's nothing to stipulate that scaffolding must be inspected or has to comply with safety standards - this is where the problem lies."

Companies registered to carry out safety inspections on scaffolding are expected to undergo a similar accreditation procedure used for those testing lifting equipment. This includes expanding the scope of their testing criteria and ensuring that inspectors are qualified to undertake inspections.

"Getting accreditation does not mean 'that's it' - of course, the accredited bodies will be regularly monitored to make sure they're still complying with the accreditation criteria," added Qudah.

DAC also plans to launch an accreditation system for pressure valves used in boilers and is in the process of improving the inspection and maintenance of elevators.

Around five companies have so far been accredited to test elevators.

"We have to evaluate them in August. By the time we've done this, we hope to have around ten companies who are accredited for elevator inspections. And then we will apply the same concept we're adopting for cranes, and ask them to fix a 'plate' on every elevator as a mark of accreditation."

Qudah added that testing companies found violating the new regulations will face suspension and the withdrawal of their accreditation.

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