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OLYMPICS BUILD TEAM SHARE HEALTH AND SAFETY LEGACY

New ODA website contains useful best practice on construction safety

The construction project for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games has been delivered by the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA). The ODA set challenging targets and milestones, including those concerning health and safety, and the project safety record is described as “strong”.

The ODA Learning Legacy aims to share the knowledge and lessons learned from the London 2012 construction project to raise the bar within the construction sector and to “act as a showcase for UK plc”.

The ODA has worked closely with contractors, industry partners, government bodies and academia to capture the lessons learned and document best-practice examples and innovations for the benefit of future projects.

Reports and related information from the Learning Legacy have been categorised into 10 themes including for health and safety: short reports, tools and templates, case studies and research summaries that document how this area of work was approached and the lessons that have been learned and the successes that could benefit others.

Worker safety “always number one priority”

The workforce on the Olympic Park and Athletes’ Village sites peaked at 13,000, and a total of 40,000 people will have worked on the project by the time it is complete. The ODA and its contractors have been “fully compliant with all applicable UK and European legislation and standards”.

The ODA has aimed to provided a safe and secure environment by designing venues, facilities, infrastructure and transport to help eliminate health and safety hazards during construction, operation, maintenance and decommissioning.

Key elements have been contractor involvement and strong leadership in managing potential risk. The accident frequency rate for the Olympic Park, is “well below the industry average and below the national average for all workplaces”.

ODA also implemented occupational health facilities with over 2,000 workers were seen each month by the health teams on the Park and in the Village.

HSE Director calls for wider adoption of legacy findings

The Health and Safety Executive London 2012 director Stephen Williams said the practice of encouraging near-miss reporting on Olympic sites needs to be used more widely and not just by the bigger contractors. He added: 

“We are keen to use the lessons learned to make sure good practice is transferred to the wider industry but also to use the construction experience to achieve a safety legacy for other industries. A key theme at the launch of the report was these lessons now need to be transferred to smaller, less high-profile projects and how the role of the client is key. If you look at what can be transferred from Olympic sites, near-miss reporting systems can be set up very easily.”

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