Construction work is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world, and the UK is no exception. Every year, many construction workers suffer serious injuries or even death while working on building sites. The UK government has introduced a number of health and safety acts to protect construction workers and ensure that building sites are safe places to work. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the key health and safety acts in the UK construction industry.
The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 is the main piece of legislation that governs health and safety in the UK. It sets out the general duties that employers have to their employees and the self-employed to ensure that their health, safety, and welfare are protected. This act applies to all work activities, including construction work.
The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015
The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM 2015) is a set of regulations that apply to all construction projects in the UK. They require the appointment of a competent person to plan, manage, monitor, and co-ordinate health and safety in the construction process. This includes identifying the potential hazards associated with the work and putting in place measures to control the risks.
The Work at Height Regulations 2005
The Work at Height Regulations 2005 were introduced to help reduce the number of accidents and fatalities that occur as a result of falls from height in the workplace. These regulations apply to all work at height, including construction work, and require employers to take appropriate measures to prevent falls and ensure the safety of their workers.
The Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992
The Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992 require employers to provide their employees with suitable and appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) to help protect them from injury while they are working. This includes items such as hard hats, safety boots, and high-visibility clothing.
The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995
The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995 (RIDDOR) require employers to report certain types of accidents and incidents to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). This includes fatalities, major injuries, and dangerous occurrences. The purpose of RIDDOR is to help the HSE gather information about accidents and incidents in the workplace, so that they can be investigated and lessons learned to prevent similar accidents from happening in the future.
The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999
The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 require employers to assess the risks to the health and safety of their employees and put in place measures to control those risks. This includes carrying out regular health and safety audits and providing appropriate training to their employees.
The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998
The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER) require employers to ensure that the work equipment they provide is safe for their employees to use. This includes ensuring that the equipment is regularly maintained, inspected, and tested, and that their employees receive appropriate training in how to use the equipment safely.
In conclusion, the UK construction industry is regulated by a number of health and safety acts that are designed to protect the health, safety, and welfare of construction workers. It’s important for employers to be aware of their legal obligations under these acts, and to take appropriate measures to ensure that their workers are protected. By doing so, they can help to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities that occur on building sites and ensure that the UK construction industry remains a safe place to work.