Construction SafetyManagement GuideBest Practice Guidelines in theManagement of Health andSafety in Construction
Published by Site Safe New Zealand22 The TerraceWellingtonNew ZealandFirst Edition: May 1999ISBN 0-473-06016-7
ContentsA Word About Site Safe4Acknowledgements5About This Guide6The Health And Safety In Employment Act7Health And Safety Action Planning – Key Points10The Construction Project – In Brief11Key Tasks And Who Does Them14Health And Safety Planning18Key Terms And What They Mean21
A Word About Site SafeA Word About Site SafeSite Safe is a small independent organisation set up by the construction industry. Itssingle job is to reduce construction injuries and deaths by taking the lead inpromoting construction site safety. This guide is the first step towards that goal.Construction Safety Management Guide 4
Site Safe would like to thank the Accident Rehabilitation and CompensationInsurance Corporation (ACC) and the Building and Construction Industry TrainingOrganisation (BCITO) for financial assistance to develop this guide, as well as thefollowing organisations: Fletcher Construction Hartner Construction Hawkins Construction Ltd. MainzealMany other organisations and individuals from various industry sectors havebeen involved in both the consultation and development process. OSH in particularmade a contribution to the writing and formatting of the guide. Site Safe and theconstruction industry would like to thank all those involved.Construction Safety Management Guide 5AcknowledgementsAcknowledgements
About This GuideAbout This GuideConstruction can be a hazardous business. This is widely recognised by OSH, andeveryone in the construction industry. When accidents happen, the costs are high – inpeople, profits and productivity.One of the best ways to avoid injuries and minimise costs is through goodplanning and co-ordination – both before and on the job.This should start when thedecision is made to go ahead with the project, and should consider all stages and partiesassociated with the work. In this case, the size of the job doesn’t matter — systems do.This guide is intended as a useful tool to provide all players in the constructionindustry with a better understanding of their roles and responsibilities under the Healthand Safety in Employment Act (HSE Act 1992).More than that, it tries to present a picture of what is possible – a future wheresite safety in New Zealand is as good as, or even better than, the best in the world.It’s also worth noting that following this guide could help you provide a meansof demonstrating the practicable steps you have taken to fulfil your responsibilities.This guide is not intended as a step by step guide to the HSE Act, nor is it aguide to planning and on-site processes. It is intended to reinforce theunderstanding of the various roles people involved with construction mayhave and how they can assess their performance in these roles.Future sector-specific workplace guides will contain more detail to supportthis guide. But, if you need to know more now, the Act is readily availablefrom Bennett’s Government Bookshops and selected stationers.What’s in the Guide?The guide has been developed in consultation with representatives of the constructionindustry, OSH, building/property owners and developers, and architects and engineers.It includes: a brief overview of the purpose and requirements of the Act an explanation of the roles, responsibilities and key tasks of everyone workingon a project a list of important terms and what they meanNote: Throughout this guide, terms marked with an asterisk* are defined inthe section Key Terms and What They Mean (pp.21-23).Construction Safety Management Guide 6
The main purpose of the Health and Safety in Employment Act is to make theworkplace safer through better management of health and safety.Everyone involved in a construction project is responsible under the Act,including:Work Group:Roles you could have:ClientsPrincipal*, employer, person who controls a placeof work*.Designers/ advisers*Principal, employer, self-employed,(includes architects, engineers, employee.consultants etc.)Head contractors*Principal, employer, subcontractor,person who controls a place of work.SubcontractorsPrincipal, subcontractor, employer, self-employed,person who controls a place of work.EmployeesEmployee, subcontractor.Though the client has responsibility as a ‘principal,’ several people can beprincipals at any one time, and all key people involved in a project have a duty toprovide for the health and safety needs of their own areas of operation.Note: Anyone who contracts another party for any part of a constructionproject (that is, has engaged anyone to work on the project for gain or rewardother than an employee) has a duty as a ‘principal’. Remember, you may bewearing more than one ‘hat’ at any particular stage of the project.However, this does not apply when work is being done on or in your own home– though information found in this guide may still be useful in this situation.Construction Safety Management Guide 7The Health And Safety In Employment Act – A Brief IntroductionThe Health And Safety In Employment Act – A BriefIntroduction
The Health And Safety In Employment Act – A Brief IntroductionWhat the Act Requires for PrincipalsPrincipals are required to take ‘all practicable steps’* to ensure the health and safety ofpeople contracted by them to carry out work of any kind throughout all stages of aproject. In terms of ‘best practice’, they also have a duty to consider the safety ofothers who may be affected by the project, such as the public.To achieve this, the principal (depending on their knowledge and experience)may need help from designers/advisers, contractors and subcontractors.The steps required will depend on the size and scope of each project. Thelarger the project, the wider the range will be of possible risks and hazards.Designers/advisers in particular need to consider the potential effect of theiractions and designs* on the health and safety of those carrying out the work andothers affected by it.What it Means on the JobIn short, everyone involved with a construction project of any kind — from planners,designers and supervisors through to on-site workers — have a role to play in themanagement of health and safety during a construction project. This level of duty* foreach duty holder* doesn’t go beyond what is reasonable for them to take.Remember to keep records:Maintaining a record (a ‘paper trail’) of all the steps you have taken for thehealth and safety of any project under your control is the best means you haveof demonstrating how you have complied with the obligations you hold.Construction Safety Management Guide 8
Principal relationshipPossible principalrelationshipCLIENTPrincipalDuty link you may haveThough you may not havedirectly engaged the groupsseveral steps removed fromyou, you still have a duty toensure their safety to a levelthat could be reasonablyexpected of you.What you can do will usuallydecrease the further you areremoved from theirengagement, but you are stillrequired to do what could bereasonably expected given thecircumstances.For example: the headcontractor is usually more ableto influence general site safety,and less able to influence howsubcontractors carry outspecialist tasks for which thehead contractor has noexpertise.DESIGNER/ADVISERHEAD CONTRACTORPrincipal(Responsible forconstruction NTRACTORaConstruction Safety Management Guide 9Where a designer/adviser directlycontracts with the headcontractor, the designer/advisermay take on the role andresponsibilities of a principal tothe contractor(s) and the groupsbelow.Designers/advisers may also beengaged by the contractor(s)(essentially as a subcontractor) todesign the works, the constructionprocesses and temporary works.If the head contractor thenengages subcontractors to assistin the construction, the headcontractor then takes on the roleand responsibilities of a principalto the sub-contractors and thegroups below.If the subcontractor(2) thenchooses to engage a furthersubcontractor(a) to assist with theirwork, they too take on the roleand responsibilities of a principalto the subcontractor(a).The Health And Safety In Employment Act – A Brief IntroductionThe client may choose to engagea designer/adviser to act on theirbehalf, or they may choose todirectly engage a contractor(s).In either case, the client has therole and responsibilities of aprincipal to the groups below.In some instances, the designer/adviser will simply act as theclient’s agent.The Principal to Contractor Relationship
The seven important points for successful planning include: A commitment to safe practice Knowledge/expertise Effective management Co-ordination/communication/feedback Information Training Monitoring/reportingConstruction Safety Management Guide 10The Construction Project — in BriefHealth And Safety Action Planning – Key PointsHealth And Safety Action Planning – Key Points
Where Health and Safety Planning Fits and Who isResponsibleArea of work to be consideredResponsibility (‘the team’)Planning and designClient, designers/advisersPreparation of health and safety plansClient, designers/advisers, contractorsSelection of designers and contractorsClient, designers/advisersPlanning and scheduling of the workDesigners/advisers, contractorsCarrying out the construction work* orparts of itAdvisers, contractorsBefore You StartThe Team: Client, Designers/Advisers, ContractorsThe client decides to go ahead with construction work (this may include repairing,refurbishing, demolishing or maintaining a structure). Decisions are made regardingthe overall plan, initial design, and construction methods that will affect health andsafety throughout the project.Construction Safety Management Guide 11The Construction Project — In BriefThe Construction Project — In Brief
The Construction Project — In BriefA Special Word to ClientsTo date, you’ve probably already spent a considerable amount of time andmoney complying with Government and Local Authority legislation andplanning requirements.At this point you take on the role of a ‘principal’* under the HSEAct.As a principal, you now have the duty to make sure that people ororganisations you may contract to carry out the various stages of yourproject are safe while working on the site. You’re the person who has theauthority and responsibility to make sure that health and safety ismanaged and co-ordinated and that the necessary steps are taken to makethis happen by all those involved in the project.So it’s in your interests to make sure that health and safety areintegral to the total planning for the project.Points to ConsiderTo be sure you are meeting requirements at this early stage, make sureyou consider the following points: Designers and advisers you have appointed have the necessaryhealth and safety knowledge and experience. Timeframes and budgets will allow health and safety provisionsto be included in the project. Procedures will be in place to assess contractors’ ability tomanage and control health and safety on the project. Plans to monitor on-site health and safety will be included. All relevant health and safety information about the project,such as any known hazards, will be provided to the advisers andcontractors. Procedures will be developed to make sure there is ongoingco-ordination of information and activity between all contractors (and the client) during construction.Construction Safety Management Guide 12
The Team: Client, Designers/AdvisersDetailed design and planning work is done, giving consideration to health and safetyat each stage. Final production information (such as drawings and specifications) areproduced. Preparation of information for the tendering process begins, including thepre-tender health and safety requirements.Stage 3 – Tender/SelectionThe Team: Client, Designers/Advisers, Head ContractorsTender documentation is finalised. Pre-qualification procedures and the pre-tenderhealth and safety site requirements are checked and used to make sure that thecontractors have made adequate provisions for health and safety and are competent tocarry them out.Stage 4 – ConstructionThe Team: Client, Designers/Advisers, Head Contractor,SubcontractorsThe selected head contractor plans, programmes and prepares the construction workmethods. A site-specific health and safety plan is developed, implemented, monitoredand updated throughout the construction stage. Health and safety plans of contractorsand subcontractors are monitored until the project is completed and all trades haveleft the site.Construction Safety Management Guide 13The Construction Project — In BriefStage 1&2 –The Project Begins/ Design and Planning
Key Tasks And Who Does ThemKey Tasks And Who Does ThemStage 1 & 2– The Project Begins/Design and PlanningClients: Questions You Need to AskHave you: made sure that any designer/adviser or contractor engaged to doany work is professional and has made adequate provision forhealth and safety? provided information needed for the health and safety managementof the project, including pointing out any known hazards? made sure of co-ordination between designers/contractors? checked that designers consider health and safety in their design? considered the timeframes required for the safe completion of theproject?Designers/Advisers: Questions You Need to AskHave you: considered how your design and planning will impact on the healthand safety of all those involved in the project? provided the client and others on the project with information aboutthe health and safety risks associated with your design and planning? co-ordinated with other designers/advisers involved in the project?Also: has a reasonable building programme been prepared?If you or your staff have day-to-day management responsibility on the site: are they familiar with the health and safety requirements of on-siteactivities, as well as the health and safety requirements of your ownorganisation?Construction Safety Management Guide 14
Clients: Questions You Need to AskHave you: made sure that a pre-tender stage selection procedure that takeshealth and safety into account has been prepared (this may be prepared by the designer/adviser on your behalf)? provided the designer/adviser and tenderers with relevant health andsafety information (such as existing drawings, any existing site safetyplan — including any known hazards, surveys of the site or premisesor information on the location of services)?Designers/Advisers: Questions You Need to AskHave you: obtained sufficient information from the client and other parties tomake sure the plan is prepared competently (such as drawings, jobspecifications and product specifications)? prepared the pre-tender stage health and safety plan, whererequested, on behalf of the client (essentially, this is a collection ofinformation about the significant health and safety risks of theproject)? provided the client and potential contractors with information aboutthe risks that cannot be avoided and will have to be controlled by thehead contractor and other contractors? provided advice, where requested, to the client on the health andsafety performance of potential contractors and organisations tendering for the work?Stage 4 – ConstructionClients: Questions You Need to AskHave you: made sure the building programme allows sufficient time to carryout the construction phase safely?Construction Safety Management Guide 15Key Tasks and Who Does ThemStage 3 – Tender/Selection
Key Tasks And Who Does Them made sure construction work does not begin until the head contractor has prepared a suitable health and safety plan? made sure you are satisfied that any contractors carrying out construction work are competent and have made proper provision forhealth and safety (such as by seeking advice from other advisers ororganisations as to the ongoing competency of people contracted todo any of the work)? provided ongoing advice and information, if requested, regardingthe head contractor’s health and safety plan (such as by advisingthem of any changes to planned activities)? made sure the designers/advisers and other contractors continue tocarry out their duties and co-ordinate with others on the project(such as by requesting regular written activity reports)?Designers/Advisers: Questions You Need to AskIf you are involved in the construction phaseHave you: continued to identify the impact of changes in your design on thehealth and safety of those involved in the project? continued to provide sufficient information on health and safetyassociated with your design and planning to those who need it? co-operated and co-ordinated with the contracted parties, and,where appropriate, other designers/advisers involved in the project? provided ongoing advice and information, if requested, regardingthe head contractor’s health and safety plan (such as by advising ofany changes to planned activities)? made sure other designers/advisers and contractors continue to carryout their duties and co-ordinate with others on the project (such asby asking for regular written activity reports or holding site meetings)?Head Contractors: Questions You Need to AskHave you: developed and carried out a site-specific health and safety plan (seepage 19)? made sure any contractor engaged to carry out construction work iscompetent and has made suitable provisions for health andsafety?Construction Safety Management Guide 16
ensured the co-ordination and co-operation of subcontractorsregarding:- information and on-site activity (such as site meetings, site procedures)?- appropriate communication arrangements between contractors onsite for health and safety?- arrangements for discussing health and safety matters with people onsite (such as setting regular toolbox/tailgate* meeting times)?- incident and accident reporting? made sure training for health and safety is carried out? made arrangements to monitor health and safety performance (such asreports, audits and inspections)? made arrangements to pass on information from the client or designer/adviser to other contractors and employees (such as activity reports)? made arrangements to control visitor access, including such things asdelivery of materials?Subcontractors: Questions You Need to AskHave you: developed a site-specific safety plan for your work activity (see page19)? identified the hazards of your work, assessed the risks arising fromthem, and told the head contractor and client about how these risks willbe controlled? evidence of the training and competence of your subcontractors andemployees? kept the head contractor informed of any dangerous incident oraccident? provided the head contractor with the information needed for healthand safety management? co-operated with the head contractor and other contractors on healthand safety matters? followed any directions of the client or head contractor so that they canmeet their obligations? provided information to your employees on site?Construction Safety Management Guide 17Key Tasks And Who Does Them obtained and checked site-specific safety plans from subcontractors?
Health And Safety PlanningHealth And Safety PlanningPre-Tender Stage PlanningWhat’s in it?This plan contains information about the health and safety hazards of the project thatwill have to be managed during the work.What’s it for?The purpose of this plan is: to provide a focus for bringing the health and safety issues of design to theattention of parties likely to be affected (such as tenderers) to enable contractors submitting tenders to be fully aware of the project’shealth, safety and welfare requirements to provide a benchmark against which the tender submissions can be measuredThe information will mainly come from: The cli
Construction Safety Management Guide 13 Stage 1&2 –The Project Begins/ Design and Planning The Team: Client, Designers/Advisers Detailed design and planning work is done, giving consideration to health and safety at each stage. Final production information (such as drawings and specifications) are produced.
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