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ASSISTANCE TO DESIGNERS FROM WORK AT HEIGHT BODY

Helpline offers work at height assistance to architects and other designers

The Access Industry Forum (AIF) has introduced a dedicated work at height information helpline for the Designer’s Initiative on Health & Safety (DIOHAS) whose members include professionals from the major architectural practices and other construction disciplines.

Using the email helpline, DIOHAS members can now contact the Forum direct with any questions or queries relating to safe working at height. In response they will receive information and guidance from the relevant AIF member organisation whose area of expertise best matches the enquiry.

DIOHS consists of representatives from major architectural practices, other construction disciplines and HSE meet every six weeks to develop and disseminate best practice in relation to construction health and safety, particularly with regard to the role of the designer under the CDM Regulations. DIOHAS welcomes input from all sectors of the construction industry.

The launch of the helpline coincides with publication of BS 8560: 2012 – Code of practice for the design of buildings incorporating safe work at height which encourages architects and designers to assess, as early as possible in the design process, the implications of work at height.

The standard seeks to minimise work at height over the lifetime of a building, but where work at height cannot be avoided, to take account of practical, efficient and cost-effective solutions for the safety of those who have to undertake ongoing work such as cleaning, maintenance and repairs.

Designer ‘plug in’ to work at height industry

According to the Forum, work at height issues should be considered and controlled at every stage of a project, and these latest initiatives will help provide a better understanding of the issues involved and how they can be planned and managed effectively from the outset of a project.

Paul Bussey of the RIBA comments:

“Architects and designers often need advice or assistance with any design work that they undertake which has implications for both access and safety. Working with the Forum on both these initiatives has enabled our community to plug in to the work at height industry directly and ensure that we are as informed as possible about this important area.”

The AIF provides a forum for all the principal trade associations and federations involved in work at height. Each organisation represents a different facet of the work at height sector and is committed to advancing safety and best practice.

The AIF will host the Work at Height Safety Zone at Roofex, 1-2 May, at the NEC, and the AIF Knowledge Base at the Safety and Health Expo, 14-16 May, also at the NEC.

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