Warning as HSE targets events ‘build and break’ work PDF Print E-mail

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is due to publish a revised version of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations this year and it is expected that the updated document will, for the first time, cover the ‘build and break’ construction work undertaken at sites where indoor and outdoor events are held.

“The standard of safety management during the erection and dismantling of temporary structures in the events and entertainment industry will come under the new CDM regs,” says Neil Warren, Used Equipment and Short Term Rental Director of leading supplier of materials handling equipment to the events sector, Jungheinrich UK. The HSE’s decision to put the events industry under the microscope, is, Neil Warren believes, a legacy from the London 2012 Olympic games. He explains: “The London Olympics delivered a zero injury status and the HSE want the experience of London 2012 to act as a catalyst to effect positive change across the construction industry and beyond, to drive up standards of health and safety.” It is expected that Environmental Health Officers and Health & Safety Executive inspectors will be carrying out more inspections at sports, live music and corporate events. In many cases the inspections will be unannounced.

The financial penalties facing event organisers that are found to operate sites where attention to safety falls short of the HSE’s needs can be significant and the Health and Safety Executive has added to the potential burden by introducing a Fee for Intervention (FFI) cost recovery scheme that will apply to those who are found to be responsible for breaching the legislation.

“In light of the new rules it is essential that event planners have policies in place regarding any materials handling or construction equipment operating on site,” says Neil Warren. He continues: “For example, each forklift , telehandler, or scissor lift machine must have a LOLER Document, CE Certification and a PDI Inspection sheet as HSE inspectors will be looking for compliance documentation to be handed to them on arrival on site.

“Also, the HSE will require evidence to show that when lift trucks and other equipment is delivered on site that a banksman is in place to see the vehicle safely works alongside staff and public. “People and vehicles must be kept apart so it is important to have a traffic management system in place and drivers of vehicles, banksmen and signallers must be trained and competent.” Jungheinrich undertakes an in-depth risk assessment procedure at all sites where its equipment is in use.

The company advises on the best way to work within the new regulations.