Simple jobs can have serious consequences

I was ready recently in the news about how a construction worker was permanently scarred after an electrical explosion occurred when underground cables were hit, and it just re-iterated to me how important method statements and risk assessments are to even the most simple of jobs.

Taking the case of this poor man, who was simply asked to install a sign outside the front gates of his firm, failure to do this effectively has left him scarred for life – literally…

A full risk assessment of the area would have identified the need to check for underground cables (and perhaps relocation of the sign) before the work commenced. This would then lead to the method statement (which is simply a sequence of steps taken to complete a work task in a safe manner.) which would have as the start point “use scanning equipment to check all underground services.”

The worker (who was untrained to do ground work so should actually have been supervised) would at least then have know the correct position for the sign, and also where any underground cables or pipes were running, it would probably have saved him from a very serious injury.

So for every job, no matter how small, make sure it is planned carefully with properly completed risk assessments and attached method statements, that way you are giving the best protection possible to your employees.

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posted on November 24, 2011
in In the News, Specialist Trades
about author Tom Searle

Tom Searle

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