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Monday, December 31, 2007

Safety Tips You Should Heed

Recently there was a front page incident which a person was killed by a falling piece of steel mould from a highrise construction site (you can read our posting here). There are construction sites all over the country, and with a heavy concentration in the city, and sometimes they pose a hazard to members of the public.

While the pointers below are not related to the incident highlighted above, members of the public are encouraged to note them for safety.

Avoid parking you car next to a construction site. Especially if it is a high-rise construction site, near to the road. There are usually warning signs posted around the hoarding, but due to the scarcity of parking, people usually ignore them. Any falling materials or debris will damage your vehicle. And construction sites constantly have heavy vehicles like concrete trucks, dump trucks and trailers going in and out, increasing the chances of your vehicle being hit by them.

Do not enter a construction. It is a regulation that those without a green card by CIDB or a pass from NIOSH cannot enter a construction site. If a raid takes place, you be apprehended. While most of the time (and at most sites) this ruling is not always strictly enforced, it is also for your own safety to stay outside the hoarding. For property sales launches where you need to enter the site to view their show unit, there is a legal grey area here. In these cases, it is best to be careful and follow the signs set up by the developer. Do NOT enter any restricted areas.

If you have to enter an actual construction site for a particular reason (for example if you are a reporter), insist the contractor provide you with basic Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) – which, in this case, means a safety helmet, safety boots and safety vest (if necessary). Also insist a qualified personal follows you wherever you go, and as far as possible, stay on ground level and do NOT go up the building under construction. And keep your visit as short as possible.

A note on safety helmets – they actually have a warranty period (usually 10 years). Always insist on a new one. It basically protects you from falling small objects, like pebbles and stones. It does NOT protect you from anything bigger. If say a hammer or a brick falls from the 10th floor on you, it will most likely still kill you.

Watch out for the second part of this series coming soon.

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