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Safety and Health Practitioner (SHP) is first for independent health and safety news.
June 20, 2011

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New online safety tool for construction sector

The HSE has launched a new online tool aimed at helping construction contractors and managers learn how to make health and safety improvements in their businesses.

The Leadership and worker-involvement toolkit has been developed by the HSE, the Health and Safety Laboratory, and principal contractors in the construction sector. It is designed to help small and medium sized construction sites improve their health and safety performance by engaging with their workforce.

The project has been in development for three years and was initially intended to be a paper-based toolkit, but this was scrapped in favour of a digital version in order to make it more interactive and easy to use. It was launched in earlier this month and features guidance, checklists, questionnaires, video demonstrations, and downloadable toolbox talks.

The toolkit also features a diagnostic tool, which allows companies to measure the health and safety culture on their construction sites. Once this has been analysed it displays tips, and best practice advice provided by leading construction companies, to help improve safety at a site. The tool provides seven steps to help improve safety culture, including:

  • Assess how you are doing;
  • Find the root cause of your issues;
  • Make it fit what you do;
  • Lead this in your company;
  • What’s in it for your team;
  • How your team can carry it out; and
  • Make it last.

HSE construction division inspector, Gordon Crick, explained that the toolkit has been rigorously tested by SMEs to ensure that it is easy to use. He went on to say that several principal contractors from the construction industry had been closely involved during the development. Companies involved during the process include: Bovis Homes, BAA, Bovis Lend Lease, Laing O’Rourke, Morgan Sindall, and Magnox.

Inspector Crick told SHP: “This initiative was born from studying the industry, and we have aimed to produce a toolkit that communicates messages about leadership and involvement. We believe that good leadership, when integrated with worker involvement, will lead to a better safety culture at construction sites.
 
“The toolkit is easy to use and has wide applicability that will transfer across all sectors of construction and will be of great interest to people who want to learn more about leadership and worker involvement.”€

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