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Abu Dhabi site reaches safe working milestone

A worksite in Abu Dhabi has completed 15 million working hours without a reportable accident occurring.

A worksite in Abu Dhabi has completed 15 million working hours without a reportable accident occurring.

Al Raha Gardens is nearing completion, but keeping the diverse labour force out of danger has been a challenge. Aldar Properties' Health and Safety team leader Andrew Broderick explained "It's a huge education process here. Heath and Safety is very much at the start. It's like the UK was ten years ago. Then, there was legislation, but no-one to act on it. Here (in Abu Dhabi) it is very much the same. There is legislation, but it isn't - yet - widely enforced. There's no enforcement agency, so the way to do it here is, I quickly realised, to train, and train some more. You have to just keep educating."

Equipment safety was another factor. Contractors were bringing in cranes with missing, or incomplete documentation. Broderick explained; "I would very much like a list of approved inspectors for safety certificates. If we stop a crane working and say 'Where is your document?' he'll say something like 'Oh, I left it in the office' and the next thing you know one has been faxed to the site with the time and the date that the fax has come through. We also have certificates that say things like 'safe load indicator, not working' but they have still been issued, which is ridiculous."

The age and safe use of lifting equipment is one of the topics to be discussed at the Saudi Crane Conference in Damman, KSA from April 29. Event manager Kimon Alexandrou explained "Health and safety on building sites, and crane safety in particular, is an issue which many experts have different opinions on"

He added "With the region's many projects getting ever taller and more complicated, there has never been a more urgent need to reform health and safety rules."

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Construction Week - Issue 767
Sep 01, 2020