Steve Ashworth

Most common but most preventable issues on site

Stephen Ashworth - Health and Safety Services Manager

5 February 2018

My team of advisors record all health and safety issues found on site. This allows them to provide management information to their clients on their health and safety performance over a period of time.

We are all really surprised that some of the most preventable hazards are still being found on sites, and from builders of all sizes.

Here are the issues with the most frequent reported items in the final quarter of 2017:

  1. Work at Height / Falls
    • Operatives working on scaffold with no guardrails in place
    • No fall protection on open stairwells
    • No internal fall protection in place from the working platform.
  2. Access / Housekeeping / Workplace
    • Access routes blocked with site materials
    • Poor housekeeping on the working platform, as well as poor housekeeping across the site – waste and materials.
  3. PPE
    • No eye protection being worn when using a paslode gun
    • No respiratory protection being worn when using a disc cutter or saw
    • Hard hats are being worn over hoodies.
  4. Traffic Management
    • No pedestrian/traffic segregation in place, with operatives and members of the public walking in the road with the site traffic.
    • Poor control of vehicle access onto site.
  5. Work Equipment
    • Operatives not wearing seatbelts
    • Often they are overriding the safety systems in place by plugging in the seatbelt so the safety beacon is green. However, they are sat on top of the belt.
  6. Scaffold
    • Scaffold is not being erected correctly in accordance with TG 20.13
    • Bracing is missing (both ledger and sway)
    • Loading bays not built to either the compliance sheet or design.

The most frustrating thing is, these issues are easy to rectify and would dramatically improve the safety on site. Our advisors are happy to provide coaching for site managers on what to look for.

Or for further training NHBC delivers the week-long Site Management Safety Training Scheme (SMSTS) training, which is accredited by CITB, at dates across the country.


What can you do?

Speak to your local NHBC Health and Safety Advisor on 01908 746113.