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safety equipment, safety supplies, personal protective equipment  



The standards for scaffolding specifically outlines the capacity, width, tipping point requirements and

guardrail requirements of various types of scaffolding. While variations exist, the general rule

dictates standard scaffolding must be 18 inches wide and support its own weight along with

four times its intended load. Direct connections and counterweights must be able to resist at

least four times the tipping moment while ropes and connecting hardware

used on suspension scaffolds must be able to support six times

their intended load.


How to comply

In addition to complying with capacity, width and

tipping moment requirements, employers can avoid

scaffolding standard violations by paying acute

attention to fall protection requirements. All scaffolds

must have a 10-foot trigger height for protection, with

guardrails at least 38 inches high when they are

the primary fall protection and 36 inches high

when fall arrest systems are in place.

Properly inspecting scaffolding before

each shift is a must, as are training

dismantlers and erectors to

recognize hazards.




Fall Protection

The OSHA standard dictates that all walking and

working surfaces have the structural integrity and

strength to support employees. It also outlines

safety precautions that must be in place to

prevent workers from falling or overhead objects

from falling upon workers. Precautions must be

taken when any surface is 6 feet or higher above an

adjacent surface.

How to comply

Fall protection systems are a must for complying with fall

Protection standards. Systems can include protective barriers,

guardrails, safety gates, safety net systems or

personal fall arrest devices. The most effective

system depends on the individual situation, with

employers responsible for choosing adequate

protection for workers on roofs, ramps, edges

or near holes, excavations. The standard

also requires protection for bricklayers

reaching 10 inches or more to a surface

below or workers positioned.

Temporary edge protection systems and the LAW

Temporary edge protection systems during construction


It is against many laws for people to work unprotected close to an edge off which they can fall a distance that will cause injury or harm.


Examples can be, people working on roofs must be protected from falling from any exposed edge. Similarly, those who install the selected protection must also be protected from falling. Edge protection can be achieved in many ways.

Any system in conformity with the BS EN 13374 will provide adequate edge protection for workers.

BS EN 13374 specifies three classes of edge protection: Class A, Class B and Class C. Edge protection can take many forms but, traditionally, it has used, tube and fitting‟ scaffold components, supplemented where necessary by nets, fencing meshes and tensioned wires.

More recently, it has been formed from purpose-made components, manufactured and/or assembled by specialist companies like foldable edge protection screens manufactured by Protect in®. Whichever system you propose to use you must be able to demonstrate that the system you specify is ‘fit for purpose’.

Class A edge protection systems which are designed to withstand only static loads, based on a requirement to:

(i)     Support a person leaning on the protection or provide a handhold when walking beside it, and (ii) Arrest a person who is walking or falling towards the protection.


Class B edge protection systems, which are designed to withstand static loads and low dynamic forces, based on a requirement to:

(i) Support a person leaning on the protection or provide a handhold when walking beside it.

(ii)  Arrest a person who is walking or falling towards the protection.

Class C edge protection systems are designed to withstand high dynamic forces (refer to BS EN 13374 for test procedure) based on the requirement to:

(i)   Arrest the fall of a person sliding down a steeply sloping surface.


The Protect in® temporary edge protection system can also be used as a slab edge protection system during civil construction of buildings, or any construction site for temporary edge protection, while displaying promoting your company logo. Safety rules, slogans AIDS awareness campaigns can also be printed on the fence at construction addition the

Protect in® product is also green building as the product is eco-friendly as it is manufactured from recyclable materials.


Protect in® are now available in South Africa. For more detail, technical specs please visit our website or contact us.

Construction safety netting

About Safety Netting safety net for construction site

On high-rise construction projects, personnel cantilever netting systems are installed around the exterior perimeter of a building floor to provide fall protection for construction workers.

Netting systems are also used in high-rise construction projects. The construction netting is installed in the interior of buildings in the spaces between beams, where concrete has yet to be poured or floors have not yet been laid.

Personnel safety netting is also used on bridges where lifelines might be difficult to attach.

Debris netting is also combined with personnel safety netting on high-rise and bridge construction and renovation projects. A debris netting liner is placed inside personnel safety netting to catch debris, dropped tools and other falling objects.

Fall injuries and fatalities are a possibility at any type of elevated job site. Without the right safety netting system for fall protection and prevention, the lives of your workers and the pedestrians below are at risk. These workplace accidents also have the potential to rack up a considerable financial burden for your construction business.

Good news is that all fall-related accidents are preventable.

Protect in is also an  innovative safety product a safety fence that certified ,can withstand a push force of 1.200kg, can be personalized and is ideal for contractors, or companies who want to have their name advertised and displayed at worksites.

Protect in has a variety construction safety nets for sale, and  is a construction safety net supplier in South Africa

Preventing accidents in construction


Professor John Smallwood, PhD (Construction Management) Pr CM PrCHSA FCIOB MACHASM MACPM MESSA MICOH MIOSH MIoSM MSAIOSH

Department of Construction Management, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University


Fatalities, injuries, and disease continue to occur in South African construction and the recent Tongaat Mall collapse resulted in a frenzy of media attention, only to dissipate similar to a spent firecracker. Needless to say various stakeholders are interested in the causes, and the Department of Labour has investigated and will continue to investigate the „accident‟. The question is: „What will the findings be?‟

Fatalities, injuries, disease, and inadequate H&S, non-compliance included, will continue to occur till such time that the following are a feature of, and / or optimised in the South African construction industry.

‘Failure of management’ versus ‘Accident’

There is no such thing as an „accident‟ (Myth)! Traditional definitions include, among other: „An unplanned event‟. Are „accidents‟ unplanned? Absolutely not! Any review will indicate that they are meticulously planned by default i.e. through actions and or omissions. Consequently, given that the five functions of management work are planning, organising, leading, controlling, and coordinating, then unplanned events such as „accidents‟ = „failure of management‟ (Reality). Effectively, the aforementioned is a philosophy and constitutes a state of mind. However, the term management must not be construed to apply solely to contractors, as there is a management echelon in all built environment stakeholder organisations, including client, project manager, designer, and quantity surveyor.

Construction is not inherently dangerous

The myth that „construction is inherently dangerous‟ or „accidents are part of the job‟ implies that there is nothing that can be done to mitigate hazards and risk. This is not the case, as strategies, systems, procedures, and protocol can mitigate or even eliminate hazards and risk.

Risk management

There are numerous risks in construction, H&S included. However, the built environment is not renowned for risk management. This lack of aversion to risk does not complement construction H&S. Project managers, principal agents, and construction managers especially should adopt a formal risk management process, and as in the case of H&S hazards and risks, quantify the risks, rank, and evolve appropriate responses where required.

Respect for people and ‘People are our most important resource’

Respect for people is the catalyst for the value „people are our most important resource‟. However, poor welfare facilities on site, among other, are not a manifestation of respect for people. This value is critical as it is the catalyst for H&S culture. It must be remembered that supervisors and workers that are exposed to hazards and risk are people that have a body, mind, and a soul. They invariably have a partner, a family and are derived from a community. In essence, such a value is the foundation for H&S and sustainability of an organisation.

Optimum H&S culture 2

The catalyst for H&S culture is the value „people are our most important resource‟. Such a value will engender a vision of a „fatality, injury, and disease-free work place‟. Such a vision requires a complementary goal of „zero deviations‟. To realise a goal of „zero deviations‟, requires „continual improvement‟ – the mission. A higher-level purpose is necessary for an optimum H&S culture – „sustainability of the organisation‟, and for that matter, „sustainability of the industry‟. The reason being there needs to be a rationale for H&S endeavours when fatalities, injuries, and disease are no longer occurring. In effect, H&S is a means to the end, not an end in itself.

Optimum status for H&S – H&S is a value not a priority

The passé paradigm of cost, quality, and time is a critical mind set yet to be dispensed with. The continued citing of the traditional three project performance parameters as the set of criteria by which projects‟ success is measured marginalises H&S and confirms ignorance with respect to the synergistic role H&S plays in overall project performance. Such citing also marginalises H&S culture, and reflects a lack of respect for people.

Furthermore, often H&S is referred to as a priority. Given that priorities may change on a daily basis, H&S should be a value i.e. H&S must always be the first consideration and all activities must be „structured around it‟.


Planning is a hallmark of the built environment and relevant to all built environment disciplines. In terms of construction, the maxim „construction is 80% planning and 20% execution‟ is an understatement. Furthermore, „H&S does not happen by chance, it must be planned‟.

However, there are many facets to „planning for construction H&S‟. Completeness of design facilitates construction planning for H&S. Then, design hazard identification and risk assessments (HIRAs), a form of planning, are required to mitigate the use of hazardous materials and undertaking of hazardous processes. Such HIRAs are a prerequisite for preparing H&S Specifications, which should include residual hazards and risks i.e. those remaining after conducting HIRAs. Designers may also need to prepare „design and construction‟ method statements which inform, among other, with respect to temporary works and related interventions to assure the integrity of temporary works and the structures. Clients‟ requirements, a form of planning, should also be included in such H&S specifications. Contractors‟ H&S Plans should respond to such H&S Specifications and such response should reflect in the tender documentation i.e. in the form of budgeting. However, adequate financial and other resource budgeting is not facilitated by the competitive tendering system, the obvious solution being the inclusion of comprehensive „H&S‟ preliminaries.

Construction planning for H&S commences during the pre-tender stage, followed by the pre-contract stage, which provides the foundation for construction stage planning for construction H&S. Pre-tender and pre-contract HIRAs, programmes, site layouts, generic method statements, and temporary works designs are obvious focus areas in terms of integrating construction H&S into the future construction process. Following adjustments during the pre-contract phase the aforementioned need to translate into daily actions such as HIRAs, focused planning of construction activities, and coordination.

The six stages of projects and H&S

Historically, construction H&S has been viewed as the contractor‟s problem. However, a brief review indicates the influence of all project stakeholders on construction H&S during the six stages of projects: project initiation and briefing; concept and feasibility; design development; 3

tender documentation and procurement; construction documentation and management, and project close out. A brief upon initiation that includes a planned 100 storey office block presents challenges and opportunities in terms of H&S. Given that it is likely to entail a structural steel frame, the challenge of extensive work at elevated heights presents itself. However, the opportunity exists to drop AC ducting and cable tray suspension rods (hangars) through holes drilled in the corrugated decking which is to receive a concrete overlay i.e. permanent formwork to the slabs. This mitigates having to drill holes in the soffit of reinforced concrete slabs in the case of a reinforced concrete framed structure to insert anchors to receive such rods. The concept of natural stone cladding panels has implications for construction H&S during their attachment to the frame. The specification of materials that contain hazardous chemical substances during design development and for that matter tender documentation and procurement has implications for construction H&S. The extent to which construction H&S is included as a criterion for selection of contractors and budgeting for H&S is facilitated, has obvious implications for construction H&S. The linkage between the management of the physical construction process and its related activities and construction H&S is obvious. Project close out includes activities such as the handing over of the H&S File including as built and as laid drawings, the latter including the „as laid‟ position of electrical cables and gas lines.

Construction is a Science, Art, and a Profession / Sound Construction Management

Management skills and the application thereof are a pre-requisite for optimum H&S. The five functions of management work, namely planning, organising, leading, controlling, and coordinating are necessary to realise among other the development of objectives, strategies, systems, procedures, and protocol.

Management and integration of project resources (Smallwood, 2006) are also a pre-requisite for H&S – these include: management; supervision; labour; surface and core competencies; information; technology; innovation; subcontractors; plant and equipment, and materials.

One of the many challenges in terms of construction H&S is the limited „barriers to entry‟. The establishment of Construction Management programmes at traditional universities in the 60‟s and 70‟s was the result of an identified need therefore. Such programmes focus on three streams, namely economics, management, and science and technology, all of which are required to manage the business of construction and projects, construction H&S included. An example includes the subject „Structures‟, which empowers graduates to design temporary works such as support work and formwork, and scaffolding.

Tertiary Built Environment education that addresses construction H&S

Given the impact of the six stages on, and the role of all built environment stakeholders in construction H&S, a pre-requisite for optimum H&S, including appropriate status, is the inclusion of H&S in the tertiary education of all built environment disciplines. The reason being that education is a pre-requisite for awareness, sensitisation, commitment, and the development of an optimum H&S culture, and the required competencies to contribute to, as opposed to marginalise, construction H&S.

However, the reality is that with the exception of construction management programmes, which address construction H&S to varying degrees, tertiary built environment education addresses construction H&S to a limited extent, if at all - architecture, engineering, interior design, landscape architecture, and quantity surveying.

Sound core and surface competencies 4

Competency and more specifically, „competent‟ person is frequently referred to, and certainly within legislation, regulations, and standards. The draft 2013 South African Construction Regulations make reference to knowledge, training and experience, and where applicable qualifications specific to the work or task. However, Sanghi (2004) suggests that competencies are divided into two categories: the surface, which are required to be at least effective, and core, which distinguishes superior performance from average performance. The surface competencies are:

• Knowledge: information regarding content, and

• Skills: ability to perform a task.

The core competencies are:

• Self-concept: values, aptitude, attitude, and self-image;

• Traits: self-confidence, team player, and handles ambiguity, and

• Motives: focus on client success, and preserves organisation / personal integrity.

Although the surface competences are important, it is core competencies that are invariably critical in a dynamic environment such as construction. Examples include values, aptitude, ability to handle ambiguity, and preservation of integrity.

Integration of design and construction

There are two issues in terms of the integration of design and construction, namely the influence of design on construction H&S, and the type of procurement system.

Design influences construction directly and indirectly. Directly, through design, choice of structural frame, details, method of fixing, constructability, and specification of materials and finishes. Indirectly, through choice of procurement system and conditions of contract, procurement, decision regarding project duration, and reference to H&S on various occasions.

Certain procurement systems such as design-build promote the integration of design

and construction. Optimum integration engenders and enhances H&S as it facilitates contractor contributions to the design process. Furthermore, designing for H&S is one of sixteen design for constructability principles – contractors can contribute substantially to designing for constructability.

Quality and Quality Management Systems

Phil Crosby (1979) presents the four absolutes of quality as: definition – conformance to requirements; performance standard – zero defects; system – prevention, and measurement – price of non-conformance. These absolutes apply unequivocally to H&S. Firstly there are numerous H&S requirements contained in, among other, legislation, standards, and H&S Specifications, that need to be conformed with. Secondly, the obvious performance standard relative to H&S is zero accidents. However, it is the deviations that create the opportunity for incidents, the outcome of which is fortuitous, either minor, moderate, major, or catastrophic. Thirdly, the system is certainly prevention as opposed to appraisal or inspection. Although inspections play a role in H&S and quality, unlike in the case of brickwork which can be demolished and re-built, once an arm is severed it is severed! Fourthly, in terms of measurement, the cost of accidents (COA) is ideal as all stakeholders can relate thereto and it can be expressed as a percentage of the cost or value of a project or the value of completed construction on a macro scale. In South Africa this was estimated to be between 4.3% and 5.4% of the value of completed construction, whereas the cost of implementing H&S is estimated to be between 0.5% and 3% of project costs (Smallwood, 2004). 5

Furthermore, a documented Quality Management System (QMS) complements H&S as it, among other, documents the systems, procedures, and protocol required relative to the design, procurement, and construction processes. Furthermore, adopting a formal standard approach to activities assures an optimum outcome and prevents issues being overlooked.

Health and Safety Management Systems (H&SMSs)

The elements of an H&SMS provide the framework for the management of H&S, namely policy, planning, implementation and operation, checking and corrective action, and management review. However, given the relationship between quality and H&S, the use of a documented QMS or an integrated management system, will complement H&S as it will require the following of procedures relative to, for example erecting and striking of support work and formwork.

‘H&S is a profit centre’

Given that the COA is estimated to be between 4.3% and 5.4% of the value of completed construction, whereas the cost of implementing H&S is estimated to be between 0.5% and 3% of project costs, clearly H&S is a profit centre‟ (Smallwood, 2004).

However, the synergy between construction H&S and the other eleven project parameters (Smallwood, 2006) results in further financial benefits: environment; cost; developmental criteria; environment; productivity; public H&S; quality; time; client satisfaction; design team satisfaction, and worker satisfaction.

Elimination / Mitigation of ‘excusitis’

Schwartz (1995) maintains unsuccessful people suffer from a mind deadening thought disease called „excusitis‟. Every failure has the disease in its advanced form. However, the more successful the individual, the less inclined he / she is to make excuses. Schwartz also cites a traffic engineer‟s contention that there is no such a thing as a true accident. An accident is a result of human or mechanical failure, or a combination of both – nothing happens without a cause. Consciousness and mindfulness will avert the development of „excusitis‟ due to the lack of necessity.

Consciousness and mindfulness

Consciousness can be defined as "the perception and awareness of sensations, which will be related to particular intentions." and "the awareness of sensations, namely seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching and cognising; the basic climate of the mind from moment to moment." (Payutto, 1999). It is important to note that consciousness is fashioned into specific qualities by intention.

Through self-observation a person can see, be aware, and in control of his / her own body or mind-mindfulness. This includes awareness of mind movement - thoughts, and awareness of the constant changes of all mental phenomena resulting in intuitive wisdom, which in turn averts clinging to conditioned phenomena that would lead to suffering (Tanphaichitr, 2001).

Support work can be used to explain the role of optimum consciousness and mindfulness. The intention to realise optimum H&S will engender optimum observation and cognising relative to inadequate support work - consciousness. Mindfulness will result in, among other, intuitive wisdom, which will prevent clinging to the conditioned phenomenon of cost i.e. reducing the centres of standards or omitting bracing to reduce cost, which could result in a collapse and suffering of workers. 6


There is an unhealthy „culture‟ in the form of: a lack of respect for people; the focus on cost, quality, and time; „excusitis‟; „construction is inherently dangerous‟; „accidents happen‟, and „H&S costs money‟.

A pre-requisite for the realisation of optimum status for, and focus on H&S are respect for people, values, H&S culture, and competence, which in turn requires comprehensive tertiary built environment education, which includes construction H&S. The aforementioned, in tandem with a focus on risk management, planning, and integrated multi-stakeholder contributions throughout the six stages of projects, appropriate procurement underpinned by quality and H&S management systems, and sound management, will realise optimum H&S, provided there is a level of complementary consciousness and mindfulness.


A paradigm shift is necessary in terms of how construction H&S is viewed and promoted. Legislation constitutes a template; however, „people are our most important resource‟ and „H&S is a profit centre‟ represent rallying points. The Council for the Built Environment and its constituent Councils and related Voluntary Associations must act.

Built environment tertiary education must address construction H&S in the form of the strategies, systems, and interventions related to the respective disciplines, which must be reviewed during accreditation visits by the respective Councils. Despite the promulgation of the Construction Regulations on 18 July 2003, this is still an issue! Furthermore, current inadequacies in terms of built environment practitioners‟ H&S competencies must be addressed through continuing professional development (CPD).


Crosby, P. 1979. Quality is free. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Payutto, P.A. 1999. Dependent Origination. Bangkok: Buddhadhamma Foundation.

Schwartz, D.J. 1995. The Magic of Thinking Big. London: Pocket Books.

Sanghi S. 2004. The handbook of competency mapping. New Delhi: Response Books.

Smallwood JJ. 2004. Optimum cost: The role of health and safety (H&S). In: Verster JJP, ed. Proceedings International Cost Engineering Council 4th World Congress, Cape Town, April 2004. International Cost Engineering Council, 2004: CD-Rom Smallwood-J- Optimum Cost-Health & Safety.pdf

Smallwood, J.J. 2006. The Practice of Construction Management. Acta Structilia. 13(2), 62-89.

Tanphaichitr, K. 2001. Buddhism answers life. Bangkok: Kled Thai Co. Ltd.

slips trips and falls


by Dr. Isabel Perry, “The Safety Doctor”

One in eight Workers Compensation cases results from slipping and falling.  We fall for a variety of reasons:

¨      Unguarded wet floors

¨      Loss of balance

¨      Tripping over an object on the floor, such as trash, unused materials, electrical cords, tools or anything else left in the way.  At home this can include pets, children, and toys.

¨      Falling from an elevated position, such as a ladder or stairs

¨      Foreign substances such as water, food, grease, oil or debris

¨      Slippery floors, which may be caused by weather when rainwater or snow is tracked inside. 

To avoid becoming an unwitting victim, pick up things that you see out of place and put them away.  Don’t wait for someone else to do it – they may be the one to trip or fall.  If it is materials that belong to a contractor or business, let them know right away that they have a safety hazard.


Other things that you can do to stay safe:

¨      Walk in designated areas only – shortcuts may contain an unexpected hazard.

¨      Concentrate on what you’re doing

¨      Hold onto handrails when using the stairs

¨      If you are carrying a heavy load, use the elevator


The worst falls are from elevated positions, such as ladders.  They can result in serious injury or death.


Ladder Safety

Positioning a ladder:

¨      The proper length for a ladder positioned against a wall is three rungs above the highest point.

¨      The proper angle for climbing a ladder is one foot away from the wall for every four feet of height.  If you don’t have that, be sure to tie the ladder securely to something.

¨      When climbing or descending a ladder, place both hands on the side rails. NEVER climb a ladder with your hands full.  Climb as high as you need to and hoist any tools or materials up with a rope.

¨      Once you’re at the necessary height,  don’t overreach.  Your body and legs should be within the ladder side rails. Extend only your arms.


Scaffold Safety

¨      Make sure the scaffold is assembled according to directions.

¨      Check for defects before using a scaffold.

¨      Make sure that planking is level and clean.

¨      Toe boards will help prevent tools from falling and workers from slipping.


Slips and falls happen daily.  They cause pain and suffering, sometimes death.


Stay safe – practice safety daily.  

Dr. Isabel Perry is an internationally-known safety expert, motivational speaker, author, and safety educator.  Based in Orlando , Florida , she can be reached at 407-291-1209 or via e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Accident investigation


by Dr. Isabel Perry, “The Safety Doctor”



168 words


When accidents happen, people often look first at assigning blame somewhere instead of trying to find out what happened and why it happened.  Should an accident happen to you, or around you, first focus on:


¨      Taking care of the immediate situation

¨      Determining what happened

¨      Figuring out how or why it happened

¨      Seeing what can be done to keep it from happening again in the future


Full disclosure of the facts relating to the event is important to making sure that there is not a recurrence of the same or similar event in the future.  All accidents, even very minor ones, should be investigated thoroughly.  A seemingly minor accident could be a sign that there is a potential for a larger accident to occur.  It is important to stay calm throughout the process.


Accident reports are important for future prevention.  When added to company wide or nationwide statistics they can form an impressive database of how successful we are being at keep our workforce safe.


Dr. Isabel Perry is an internationally-known safety expert, motivational speaker, author, and safety educator.  Based in Orlando , Florida , she can be reached at 407-291-1209 or via e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Hand protection

Hand Protection

by Dr. Isabel Perry, “The Safety Doctor”

The hands and feet contain more bones than any other single part of the body.  We use them all day, to do everything; they “take a licking and keep on ticking.”  Feet provide us with mobility, and hands can do the most intricate maneuvers, but most of us never give them a second thought. 

How many times have you reached for something without looking and stubbed a finger? How often have you hit your finger with a hammer, slammed your fingers in a door, or burned your hand on the stove?  It happens all the time! For those few minutes we are totally aware of our fingers. Soon, however, we forget them again and keep doing whatever it was that hurt them in the first place.  We take them for granted.

*   Hand injuries account for one third of the two million disabling on-the-job accidents each year.

*   Eighty percent of these injuries are caused by pinch points!

Hand protection is not a new development. Gloves have been considered important for hundreds of years. 

When using machinery, pinch points can catch us when we’re not looking. Pulleys and belts can form in-running nips, a type of pinch point that can draw the hand in and cause severe damage.

¨      Never wear gloves around in-running nips.  The glove can be caught and the hand pulled right in and hurt.

¨      Wear appropriate work gloves when handling rough materials and when hands are directly involved with lifting or moving objects.

¨      Take time to remove or bend down protruding nails, splinters and sharp edges on materials before you begin working with them.

¨      Always use machinery guards.

¨      Always replace a removed guard and lock your machinery before reaching into it.

¨      When moving objects with a hand cart or truck, make sure that you have sufficient room to get through doorways and small spaces with enough clearance for cart and hands.

¨      Be equally cautious when setting down loads.

¨      Keep hands free of grease and oil – slippery hands can get you in trouble.  If you get grease or oil on your hands, clean them right away.

¨      For safety’s sake, don’t wear any rings when working – a ring caught in machinery or on a protruding object can badly damage a finger. 

¨      Wear gloves to pick up broken glass, nails or other sharp objects – including when sweeping up.  Never attempt to handle these things with your bare hands.

Despite the precautions we take, our hands will receive minor injuries from time to time.  Always treat these injuries promptly, so they don’t become infected. 


¨      Pay attention to what you are doing. 

¨      Keep an eye on pinch points and in-running nips.

¨      Keep guards in place on pinch points.

¨      Have minor cuts and scratches treated to prevent infection.

¨      Wear gloves to avoid cuts and splinters.

¨      Don’t wear gloves around in-running nips.

¨      Keep hands free of grease and oil.

¨      Don’t wear rings when working.

Our hands will do whatever we ask them to, whether it’s wise or not.  Use common sense when you use your hands!


Fire safety


by Dr. Isabel Perry, “The Safety Doctor”

Every year millions of dollars of damage occur because of fires, but more importantly, people are hurt and LIVES ARE LOST.

Fire prevention is a critical part of an active Health and Safety plan.  Everyone needs to know what to do in case of a fire, and what he or she can do to prevent the conditions that can cause a fire.


Fires begin when three elements come together: oxygen, fuel, and heat.  We can’t do anything about oxygen, which is in the air.  However, we can make sure that fuels and heat don’t join oxygen. Fuels can be anything from paper, wood and candles to gasoline and other combustible materials.  Heat is caused by everything from open flames and sparks to friction and electricity.


Your management should have established procedures for reporting fires as part of the company Health and Safety Plan. The procedures in this plan should be reviewed regularly, because they are easy to forget in an emergency situation.

In the unfortunate situation that a fire does occur, what do you do?

¨      Report: No matter how small you think a fire is – report it.  It only takes seconds for a small fire to get out of control.  Also, what you can see may not be the whole fire.  Only trained professionals can tell for certain.

¨      Prepare for evacuation if it is necessary.  Even a small fire may require evacuation; you won’t know until you report the fire to someone.

Fire Extinguishers

There are several different types of fire extinguishers, each for a specific use. It is important to verify that you have the right fire extinguishers to do the job.  These are the types of fire extinguishers needed:

¨      Ordinary materials like paper, cloth, trash and wood need a CLASS A

¨      Gases, flammable materials like grease, oil, paint or solvents require a CLASS B

¨      Electrical equipment requires CLASS C. Never use water on an electrical fire

¨      Combustible metals like magnesium, sodium, potassium and sodium-potassium alloys, as well as lithium and lithium alloy - CLASS D

¨      Combination fires need CLASSES ABD and BC

To save people having to remember what class of fire extinguisher to use in an emergency, a simple sign should be posted over each fire extinguisher

It is also advisable to post a diagram (large enough to be seen without glasses) on the wall next to the extinguisher or as part of the sign, that shows how to use the fire extinguisher. These instructions should be reviewed in regular health and safety classes.  In the excitement of an emergency, it may be difficult to remember what to do.

Fire extinguishers must be checked yearly to keep them current and legal.

Basic principals of using a fire extinguisher:

¨      Stand about 8 feet away from the fire and pull the pin.

¨      Aim at the base of the fire

¨      Try not to blow sparks away, causing the fire to get even larger than it is.

¨      For larger fires, get out and leave it to the professionals.

                  Material possessions can be replaced, people cannot!


There are a number of things that can be done to avoid the possibility of a fire occurring.  Take an inventory of your area, looking for potential fire hazards such as materials that are sitting or stacked together, or flammable materials like paper or cloth placed near an electrical outlet or a lamp.  Here are specific measures you can take:


¨      Smoke in designated areas only.

¨      Don’t leave cigarette butts lying around – dispose of them properly.  You may think your cigarette is out, but it might get blown into an area that’s potentially dangerous and spark a fire.

¨      Make sure that smoking materials and matches are put out thrown away in the proper receptacles.

¨      Space heaters should be authorized for use first, even in approved areas.  Extra care should be used to make sure they don’t touch anything while on and are turned off after use.


¨      Lubricate bearings, gears and moving joints so they don’t get hot.

¨      Make sure that moving parts don’t rub against each other

¨      Debris and grease should be kept clear

Electrical Equipment

The number one cause of industrial fires is the misuse or failure of electrical equipment.

¨      Check equipment regularly; checking at the start of each shift would not be excessive

¨      Replace frayed or worn cords and wires

¨      Don’t overload outlets, circuits, motors or fuses

¨      Have a good ground connection

Flammable Substances

¨      Store them in approved containers

¨      Clean up spills immediately

¨      Dispose of both flammables and clean up materials quickly and properly

¨      Know what is flammable – check labels

¨      Never store flammable materials around oxidizers

¨      When working with flammable material always use the proper tools and equipment


¨      Before cutting or heating a container, make sure it’s safe; make sure you know WHAT  WAS IN IT.

¨      Avoid creating static electricity by grounding a container before you transfer flammable materials

General Safety Tips

¨      Keep all work areas as free of dust, lint, wood, grease, oil, trash, etc. as possible

¨      Dispose of materials properly – whether flammable materials or trash

¨      Keep flammable material away from heat sources like machinery, electricity and lights.

Safety comes first.

Alertness to our environment is the greatest protection we have.  

Dr. Isabel Perry is an internationally-known safety expert, motivational speaker, author, and safety educator.  Based in Orlando , Florida , she can be reached at 407-291-1209 or via e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

chemical safety

Chemical Safety

by Dr. Isabel Perry, “The Safety Doctor”

Whether you work in an office, a shop, a kitchen or a factory, you are working near chemical substances.  In an office environment you may only be exposed to cleaning materials or paints; factories and industrial facilities might contain a variety of extremely dangerous materials which can be life-threatening if mishandled.

Manufacturers of chemical materials are required to determine the level of hazard for each product they sell.  They must make this information known to potential buyers and provide Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) detailing the handling of these hazardous materials.

It is important to learn the specific safety requirements for each chemical you handle.  Know what chemicals should not be mixed together or stored together (in case of accident).  Take special care to use the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) whenever working with hazardous chemicals.

What makes a chemical “hazardous”?  A hazardous substance is any substance that can cause harm to people or the environment.  This includes materials that are:

¨      Toxic – may cause sickness or death

¨      Corrosive –cause irritation or burns to the skin or eyes on contact

¨      Flammable – catch fire easily

¨      Reactive – could explode under certain circumstances

¨      Radioactive

There are four ways that chemicals can cause harm:

  1. Contact –  with skin or eyes
  2. Ingestion – in food or beverages or smoking materials that become contaminated  in areas where chemicals are present
  3. Breathing
  4. Injection – by cutting or sticking yourself with a contaminated instrument

Protecting yourself should be your first priority.  Learn all you can about the chemicals around you.  Read the MSDS and the label.  Wear personal protective equipment.  Follow any safety procedures your company has in place.  If you feel your company needs additional measures, make recommendations. 

Taking precautions and remaining alert are the best preventatives against harm.

Here are some basic guidelines to follow anywhere:

¨      Make sure that food, cigarettes and street clothing are not left in the work area where they can become contaminated.

¨      Is the correct type of fire equipment readily available? (Check our article on Fire Safety)

¨      Is there adequate ventilation?

¨      Where are the emergency eyewash kits kept, and where are the emergency showers?

¨      Have items that burn, explode or react with chemicals been removed?

¨      Do you know who to contact in case of an emergency?

¨      Do you know what to do in an emergency?

¨      Do you have all the protective equipment you’ll need?

¨      Does someone know where you are at all times and what you are doing?

In case of an accident or spill:

¨      Clean it up immediately

¨      Make sure that you’re wearing the appropriate personal protective equipment to do the cleanup.

¨      Properly dispose of the cleanup and materials used for clean up.

If you are overexposed to a chemical:

¨      Let a supervisor know immediately

¨      Get medical attention

¨      If your skin has been exposed, wash the area with water only for at least 15 solid minutes

¨      If you have inhaled something, get fresh air immediately

Be aware of the possible chemical hazards which exist in your work area, and follow instructions for handling chemicals safely.  Take responsibility for your health and safety, and for the health and safety of your co-workers!


Back safety

by Dr. Isabel Perry, The Safety Doctor

Back safety

How often do you lift something? Dozens of times a day? Were lifting things all day long, from a toothbrush in the morning to bags of groceries, small children, big heavy boxes and furniture. Lifting is such an integral part of everything we do that we tend to do it automatically, without thinking. And that's when it can become a problem - suddenly we ve lifted something and our back starts to hurt.


Lifting things incorrectly can cause a variety of injuries to our back and other parts of our body. Back strain, caused by overstretching certain muscles, is the most common type of injury. Lifting incorrectly can also cause a hernia. These types of injuries can be worse if were not in good physical condition. Poor posture, lack of exercise, and stress, coupled with incorrect lifting, can be a hazardous combination.


The best lifters in the world are small children. As adults we should emulate the techniques they use automatically. Watch any small child and you will see them:

      Bend at the knees  they squat

     Keep the head up  they squat

    Keep the back straight  they don't have the agility to bend and lift at the same time

    Lift with their legs they don't have a choice, with their weak arms

    Hold the load close to their body  if its too far away from their body, they cant get their arms around it

     Avoid twisting  they fall

     Find stable footing  they fall

     Let you know when its too heavy  they cry or call out for help

Safe lifting involves learning how our back works and using the right methods whenever we lift something larger than a toothbrush. There are several steps to take every time you are about to lift something:

Size up the load: Look it over, decide if you can handle it alone or need some help. Often we look at something that is questionable and lift it anyway, rather than appear weak to others. Keeping up the appearance that you are strong is not worth hurting your back.

Size up the area: Before you begin moving things make sure that there aren't any obstacles in the way. Make sure that you can make any turns without running into another object or stumbling over something on the floor.

Keep your back straight: Bend at the knees  not the waist. As we grow, we have a better sense of balance and forget to use our leg muscles to do the work. Bending at the waist will put strain on the back.

Get a good hold: Your grip has to be firm in order to move something efficiently. If you don't have a good hold on the item, it can slip out of your grasp and fall damaging the item and possibly you as well. Using gloves will also help give you a better grip and keep hands safe.

Find stable footing: You will be able to keep your balance better and use your leg muscles more effectively. These muscles are stronger than your back muscles.

Lift close to the body: Don't try to lift something that is away from your body. You wont be able to get a good grip on it. Reaching may strain your back.

Avoid twisting: Use your feet to change directions. Always move with your whole body. Twisting your upper body to move an object will put additional stress on your back.

Teamwork: Its easier and faster to have a helper in moving things. Be sure to discuss how you're going to lift, and what direction you're going in, and make sure that there are no obstacles. Lift, carry, and lower the object in unison. If you're losing your grip, warn your partner and put the load down, reposition yourselves, and then continue. A moments pause may save dropping or injury.

A back injury, besides being very painful, can leave you incapacitated for weeks and may even cause permanent damage. Follow the steps for safe lifting, and you will be carrying things for years to come!

Dr. Isabel Perry is an internationally-known safety expert, motivational speaker, author and safety educator. Based in Orlando, Florida, she can be reached at 407-291-1209 or via e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

intro to health and safety



What is occupational health and safety?

Occupational health and safety is a discipline with a broad scope involving many specialized fields. In its broadest sense, it should aim at:

 the promotion and maintenance of the highest degree of physical, mental and social well-being of workers in all occupations;

 the prevention among workers of adverse effects on health caused by their working conditions;

 the protection of workers in their employment from risks resulting from factors adverse to health;

 the placing and maintenance of workers in an occupational environment adapted to physical and mental needs;

 The adaptation of work to humans.

In other words, occupational health and safety encompasses the social, mental and physical well-being of workers that is the "whole person".

Successful occupational health and safety practice requires the collaboration and participation of both employers and workers in health and safety programs, and involves the consideration of issues relating to occupational medicine, industrial hygiene, toxicology, education, engineering safety, ergonomics, psychology, etc.

Occupational health issues are often given less attention than occupational safety issues because the former are generally more difficult to confront. However, when health is addressed, so is safety, because a healthy workplace is by definition also a safe workplace. The converse, though, may not be true - a so-called safe workplace is not necessarily also a healthy workplace. The important point is that issues of both health and safety must be addressed in every workplace. By and large, the definition of occupational health and safety given above encompasses both health and safety in their broadest contexts.

Poor working conditions affect worker health and safety

 Poor working conditions of any type have the potential to affect a worker's health and safety.

 Unhealthy or unsafe working conditions are not limited to factories — they can be found anywhere, whether the workplace is indoors or outdoors. For many workers, such as agricultural workers or miners, the workplace is "outdoors" and can pose many health and safety hazards.

Poor working conditions can also affect the environment workers live in, since the working and living environments are the same for many workers. This means that occupational hazards can have harmful effects on workers, their families, and other people in the community, as well as on the physical environment around the workplace. A classic example is the use of pesticides in agricultural work. Workers can be exposed to toxic chemicals in a number of ways when spraying pesticides: they can inhale the chemicals during and after spraying, the chemicals can be absorbed through the skin, and the workers can ingest the chemicals if they eat, drink, or smoke without first washing their hands, or if drinking water has become contaminated with the chemicals. The workers' families can also be exposed in a number of ways: they can inhale the pesticides which may linger in the air, they can drink contaminated water, or they can be exposed to residues which may be on the worker's clothes. Other people in the community can all be exposed in the same ways as well. When the chemicals get absorbed into the soil or leach into groundwater supplies, the adverse effects on the natural environment can be permanent.

Overall, efforts in occupational health and safety must aim to prevent industrial accidents and diseases, and at the same time recognize the connection between worker health and safety, the workplace, and the environment outside the workplace.

Why is occupational health and safety important?

Work plays a central role in people's lives, since most workers spend at least eight hours a day in the workplace, whether it is on a plantation, in an office, factory, etc. Therefore, work environments should be safe and healthy. Yet this is not the case for many workers. Every day workers all over the world are faced with a multitude of health hazards, such as:

 dusts;

 gases;

 noise;

 vibration;

 Extreme temperatures.

Unfortunately some employers assume little responsibility for the protection of workers' health and safety. In fact, some employers do not even know that they have the moral and often legal responsibility to protect workers. As a result of the hazards and a lack of attention given to health and safety, work-related accidents and diseases are common in all parts of the world.

Costs of occupational injury/disease

How much does an occupational disease or accident cost?

introduction to Protect in


Introduction Protect in construction safety fence

With Protect in safely cordon off, barricade construction sites objects falling from a high structure. hot work areas, sand blasting areas, rock blasting areas, crane operating areas, heavy machinery areas, open Excavation areas, road works areas mechanical construction works areas, civil construction works areas mining areas and more!

Protect in can substantially reduce costs allocated to health and safety at construction sites, and are a cost effective and return on investment. Protect in is a safety fence system that can prevent workers, or objects falling from a high structure.

Protect in can make it easy to cordon off any area of construction.

Protect in fence consists of strong printable screens with measurements of 2 meters length by 1.10 meters height, that can be anchored to any standard size scaffolding with the Protect in fence tensioning device

The Protect in protective barrier fence system, which is not only used for safety but is also ideal for displaying construction safety signs, is now in South Africa.

Protect in differentiates itself from the competition in a number of ways; it is synthetic, solid, foldable biodegradable and can withstand a push force of 1200kg and is certified! By Applus one of the world’s largest testing and certification bodies.

Protect in is an Effective, Versatile, Fast to assemble, Easy to store, Advertising, High return all in one safety fence

For more information, technical specifications, pricing visit our website or contact us

Protect in South Africa


About protect in

Protect in is, a manufacturer, supplier of patented foldable safety fence screens. Protect in Originated from Barcelona now worldwide and also in South Africa the Protect in safety barrier system  has launched a new safety barrier unit with a range of accessories for the construction safety management sector, to make it quick and easy to create safety barricades on construction sites.

The Protect in versatile barrier unit has all the great versatility making it ideal for use inside any building, construction site  it can also be ordered with connector points and steel cables affixing to its own unique accessories but can fit to any standard size scaffolding to make scaffolding safer.

Protect in is a strong robust safety fence that can withstand a Push force of 1200 kilograms.

Protect in have UNE EN-13374:20014 Certification and is patented.

Protect in South Africa,

“Protect-in manufactures the Protect-in suite of safety barrier fencing solutions, for construction sites. The company has been in existence for 4 years, and has recorded growth, in year-one- since its inception in Barcelona”.

“Protect in is an innovative safety barrier system and makes it safe, quick and easy to cordon off almost any area of construction. We have innovative solutions to suit the construction safety management and mining sectors. It is essential that construction sites must be safe

Since the launch of their Protect in safety barrier product, Protect in’s innovative product range has been used in a wide range of applications, in many sectors of construction safety management.

Protect in is a Leading manufacturer supplier of a NEW patented innovative safety fence/barrier for the construction industry

Protect in is easy to install, and offers all the benefits of site fencing systems

Protect in is ultra-compact high quality safety barrier and can withstand a force of 1200kg!

The Protect in product is made from the highest quality possible and we only believe in the best.

Protect in is in a solid synthetic barrier fence and clients, construction companies can even advertise on protect in fence safety barrier

New exiting product by Protect in South Africa  developed for Schools,

This   Unique Crowd control advertisement tool   will enable schools to Generate income through advertising. Schools be able to generate massive income for a small once off investment.  

“Protect in will change the standard of construction safety barricading ”forever!

More About Protect in and Protect in South Africa

Protect in has  distribution partners who sell their products in Europe, Africa and in South Africa. Customers include international construction companies

Protect in was awarded 2nd place business idea of the year in Barcelona in 2011

Protect in South Africa is the distributor safety barrier supplier of the product in Africa

For pricing and product brochures please visit our website

As advertised in your business magazine  February, March 2014 edition more dealers are required contact us today to join the Protect-in global distribution network. Become a dealer This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

View Protect in Safety fence System here



Deaths and accidents in the construction industry can be reduced

According to statistics from the Federated Employer’s Mutual Assurance Company construction-related fatalities in South Africa come to a total of about 150 each year. It also shows that the construction industry suffers about 400 accidents each year in South Africa.

The statistics show that deaths in the construction industry have overtaken deaths in South Africa’s mining industry.

Apparently these statistics do not include motor vehicle related accidents experienced within the construction industry as a whole. If these statistics were taken into account then approximately 150 fatalities could be added to the average.

To date the Department of Labour in South Africa spends approximately R2.5 billion each year on compensation claims related to health and safety in the construction sector.

Safety training in construction industry way behind developed countries

Some within the industry say that the problem in the South African construction industry is that training is about 15 years behind the level of training in the developed countries. Recently new health and safety regulations were implemented to bolster the existing Health and Safety Act. Now company directors will be held responsible for any fatal accidents as a result of any negligence by their employees. This fact puts huge pressure on company directors within the construction industry to ensure that all safety measures possible are complied with.  All workers should be supplied with personal protective equipment and all construction sites should have protective equipment such as fall protection and barrier fencing.  Safety equipment on construction sites is an essential and cannot be dispensed with.

Tladi Marumo, the construction specialist of Routledge Modise’s law firm, says that a large number of accidents are not reported and he also states that the Department of Labour does not have the necessary systems in place to collate and consolidate all relevant information relating to accidents in the construction industry. He adds that this makes it extremely difficult to get an accurate overall picture of how sever the problem is. Many investigations are not done properly, according to Marumo.

The Department of Labour last did a “blitz” inspection in 2007 and of the 1415 construction sites visited 1388 were not compliant with the Health and Safety Act.

Marumo says that the construction industry needs to emulate the South African Mining industry and needs the platforms and commitment from all stakeholders including government, companies and labour.

To help with safety measures in the construction sector Protect-in supplies the construction industry with fencing to protect workers. Our fencing is lightweight yet extremely strong. An additional benefit with our barrier fencing is that it can display advertisements on the barricade. It is also possible to display safety information on the barrier fencing.

Construction site safety, checklist

A checklist for the safety of your construction site

Did you know that there is a checklist for safety equipment in construction? This checklist is extremely helpful in reminding us what tools we need and what we need to do in order to keep maximum safety conditions in the construction workplace. Here is a link to a safety equipment checklist for you to download: Construction safety equipment checklist

Fall protection for the construction industry

Protect-in are manufactures of fall protection for the construction industry. Our fall protection comes in the form of barricade fencing also known as barrier fencing. The fall protection has excellent properties including the ability to withstand an impact and lateral force resistance of more than 1200kg. This impact force resistance is certainly enough to protect workers on a construct site. The Protect-in fall protection barrier fences are adjustable, flexible and allow different modulations. The flexibility of the fall protection means it is possible to adjust the barriers to fit difficult angles.

Easy assembly of fall protection

The easy assembly of our fall protection means there is a lot of time saved when it comes to protecting the workers on the construction site. As we all know time is money, particularly in construction, where running costs are high. The Protect-in fall protection is constructed of high resistance to impact material and it is constructed of extremely light textile and it is easy to store.

Safety equipment in the construction industry is essential not only for keeping workers safe but also for keeping the public safe if construction is taking place in a busy place such as a city centre. The consequences of not adhering to safety rules and not protecting workers and the general public do not bear thinking about. It should always be “safety first” in the construction industry.

interesting links

Interesting links


C & CI Cement and Concrete Institute
CETA Construction Education and Training Authority
CIDB Construction Industry Development Board
CIOB Africa
JBCC Joint Building Contracts Committee
SACPCMP South African Council for Project and Construction Management Professions
SAFCEC South African Federation of Civil Engineering Contractors
SAICE South African Institution of Civil Engineering
SAISC South African Institute of Steel Construction
SAQA South African Qualifications Authority
SAWiC South African Women in Construction
ASAQS Association of South African Quantity Surveyors
BUSA Business Unity South Africa
CESA Consulting Engineers South Africa
FEM Federated Employers' Mutual Assurance Company Ltd
NHBRC National Home Builders Registration Council
SAIA South African Institute of Architects
Department of Higher Education
Department of Human Settlements
Department of Labour
Department of Public Works
SA Government information
SA Government online

mining safety

Institute of Safety Management (IOSM)
Southern African Protective Equipment Marketing Association (SAPEMA)
Noshcon occupational health and safety expo.
SafeBuild is a series of Occupational Health & Safety training DVD's for
the South African Construction Industry
BuildSafe South Africa is a non-profit organization aimed at improving the health, safety institute for working at heights





Safety and health in the workplace in South Africa

It is required by law in South Africa that an employer should ensure a work environment that is safe and without risk to the health of workers. The Occupational Health and Safety Act of 1993 requires that “the employer to bring about and maintain, as far as reasonably practicable, a work environment that is safe and without risk to the health of the workers”.  Employers must make sure that the work environment is free of dangerous substances such as chlorine, benzene and micro-organisms. The workplace must also be free of equipment, processes and articles that may cause damage, disease or injury to employees.

Employers, according to the Safety Act, must also inform workers if it is not possible to protect them. Workers must have the dangers pointed out to them. Employers are not expected to take sole responsibility for the health and safety of their workers. The Act is based on the principle that there are inherent dangers in the workplace and there must be communication and co-operation between workers and the employer. There is, therefore, joint responsibility for safety and health in the workplace. Workers must use protective clothing, eye protection, hard-hats and so on, if they are provided by the employer. Workers should also use safety harnesses if working at heights an employers should always provide such protection.  If security fences are provided workers should respect the fence boundaries and not try to clamber over them and employers should provide safety fencing wherever necessary.

All workers should know his or her rights and duties as set out in the Safety Act and employers should provide the information. Workers and employers are involved in a system where safety and health representatives may inspect workplaces to ensure the workplace complies with the Act. The representatives then report to a health and safety committee and the committee may in turn submit recommendations to the employer. It is then incumbent upon the employer to follow through on recommendations.

Here is a link to the South African Labour Guide:

Important points about safety barricade fencing

We all know that safety barricading and safety fencing is an essential in all sectors of industry from construction to mining, roads and transport.  Safety fencing protects the worker and the man in the street from construction accidents.  Sometimes the dangers are obvious sometimes they are hidden.


Safety of workers and the public in different industries

Safety of workers and the public in different industries is of paramount importance.Whilst we are all in business to make money, there is another important aspect that should not be overlooked.  Whether business is good or bad, times are tough or easy, we cannot overlook the safety of our staff/workers/employees as well as the man in the street who could be affected by our business or industry.


Safety fencing on building sites saves lives

Safety fencing and safety barricading saves lives and is as important for the people working on construction sites as it is for civilians in the street. As a result Regulation 298 of the Work Health and Safety Regulations 2012 requires that:

“a  person with management or control of a workplace at which work is carried out must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that the workplace is secured from unauthorized access”. 

This regulation ensures that Joe Soap will not be exposed to dangerous situations resulting from building work on homes and buildings.  The regulation is cognizant of the fact that different types of buildings have different dangers.


The safety regulation applied to construction, renovations or extension of:

1)  detached houses, and

2) semi-detached homes

3) apartment buildings

4) boarding and guest houses, hostels

5) buildings not inhabited by people like garages, carports, sheds


Houses under Renovation

If people are living in a house whilst it is being renovated then the risks should be weighed up in determining whether security fences or security barricades should be used.


Who takes the responsibility for installing safety fencing?  The answer here is clear: the onus falls on the principal contractor as he or she is responsible for the safety of those people in or around the building site.

Factors to determine when fencing is required

The general public is not aware of the dangers that may exist on or around a building site.

The general public may ignore or not read warning signs on or around a building site

The general public may not realize the severity of the risks that occur on or around a building site   

What are the risks to the public?

  • severe injury from falling scaffolding or equipment
  • electric cables can cause electric shock
  • drowning in pits or pools where  water has collected
  • tripping over equipment or uneven ground
  • hanging cables or steel pipes
  • falling off unfinished balconies or stairs

When a building is in progress it is very difficult to keep the area safe and hazard – free.

Safety fencing is therefore a neat, affordable way of keeping dangerous situations at bay.  There is no question that fencing is an easy way of keeping a building site as safe as possible and there is no question that contractors should install fencing around a building especially when it is:

  • near a school
  • in a built up urban area with lots of passing traffic ( people on foot and passing vehicles)
  • close to parks and recreational areas or shopping centres

The type of fence to be installed

The following factors should be taken into consideration for safety all round:

  • high enough so people (especially children) cannot climb over it
  • of a design that makes it difficult to climb
  • strong enough that one cannot climb underneath it, possibly with reinforcement at the bottom
  • strong enough to withstand the elements
  • gates or joints should not provide a security threat

Contractor’s Duties

The principle contractor has a number of duties under the regulations. One of them is to provide signage that can be easily seen from outside the construction site.  This signage must specify the contractor’s name and telephone number as well as an after- hours number. 

Why is safety barrier fencing important for protecting construction workers?

There are many reasons for using safety barrier fencing in the construction industry. Naturally, the overriding reason is to protect workers but in addition the public also needs to be protected. Take a simple case of a worker falling from a height and either injuring himself or perhaps the fall results in his death. What happens if this same worker lands on an unsuspecting member of the public who happens to be walking past the construction site at that moment? Your company could be in for a difficult legal battle on two accounts!


Safety issues in Mining Industry

Safety in the mining industry in South Africa is a complex and complicated issue and involves much more than the simple erecting of industrial safety barricades and safety fences to keep workers protected and safe.


Road construction safety barriers

Road construction safety for workers in South Africa is a concern. With millions of kilometres of roads in in the country there is always road construction or road maintenance somewhere in South Africa at any given time.


Safety in the construction sector

Construction is considered to be the most dangerous land-based work sector in most parts of the world. In Europe it is second in danger only to the fishing industry.  Construction safety statistics in the European Union show that the fatal accident rate in the construction industry is almost 13 workers per 100,000 as compared to 5 workers per 100,000 in the all sector average. The United States fares no better with 6% of workers in the construction industry but 20% of the fatalities.



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