Impact of New OH & S Legislation on Builders & Structural Engineers

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On the 1 January 2012 the new work, health and safety laws
take effect. These laws have a wide reaching inmpact on Structural
Engineers and Builders. Structural Engineers and builders
involved in designing and building structures in the
construction industry will now have greater obligations and
responsiblities. They will inlcude, but not be limited to:

  1. Design Engineers having to produce a safety
    report with all designs that are classed high risk under the new
    laws;
  2. Design Engineers having to consult with
    the PCBU (person conducting a busines or an undertaking -
    usually the principle contractor) so as to explain the safety
    report and any risks;
  3. Design Engineers having
    to eliminate risks at the design stage or find reasonable solutions
    to mitigate risks at the design stage;
  4. the
    PCBU obtaining Safe Work Methods Statements from anyone undertaking
    works on a site/workplace, reveiwing them, changing them if
    necessary and ensuring there’re implementation;
  5. Designers and/or the PCBU and/or others having to
    register and maintain a plant register;
  6. the
    PCBU ensuring all staff and others entering are site have been
    inducted into the workplace prior to entering it;
  7. the PCBU ensuring a site evacuation plan is developed,
    communictaed, maintained and tested;
  8. the PCBU
    must prepare, communicate, maintain, implement and reveiw a Work
    Health & Safety Management Plan for a
    site/workplace.

This new law is all
encompassing and extends to all persons or entities that are
involved with or associated with a workplace or plant being used in
the workplace. The ultimate aim being to protect people in their
place of work. In the construction industry a place of work could
include a residential home or could be a worker driving a truck in
the street. As can be seen a place of work could virtually anywhere
depending on the type of business you operate. One major imposition
of the new laws is on residential sites with the requirement
of registering all excavtions that a deeper than 1.5m. In
effect most foundations or trenches will be impacted by
this rule. With above in mind Insignia DesignCorp staff have
undegone training in preparation for the new laws. This has meant
reveiw of all our systems and processes, in particular review of
our Occupational Health & Site Safety Manual. We can assure
our customers that we are ready to take on the new challenges in
this area of safety. This will benefit our clients, consultants and
sub-contractors alike. As Chartered Structural Engineers and
Licenced Builders Insignia DesignCorp strives to provide the
highest of standards in design, construction and safety. Written
By:

Pasquale Romano

BE(Civil), Chartered
Professional Engineer, Grad Dip (Mgt), Dip Bldg & Const,
FIE(Aust), NPER

DiscussionOne Comment

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