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    CPA PUBLISH NEW GROUND CONDITION GUIDANCE

    Assessment of ground and precautions for safe use of mobile plant

    The Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA) has launched new guidance document – Ground Conditions for Construction Plant which was published in October 2014 and launched at the CPA Plant Hire Conference. You can download the document for free from the CPA website

    Failure of the ground on which construction plant stands and moves is a frequent cause of incidents and near misses, together with a significant number of serious injuries and fatalities.

    These events can also lead to delays in construction programmes and significant commercial loss through unrecoverable management time, loss of reputation and effect on future workloads. Adequate assessment of ground ability to support plant is essential if these incidents are to be avoided.

    Know when to stop and consult experts

    The aim of the document is to provide guidance on the assessment of ground conditions and the measures that can be taken to both improve ground and reduce loads imposed on the ground. The CPA stress that:

    “Ground engineering can be a complex topic and part of the purpose of this guidance is to enable construction personnel to decide when they need to consult an expert geotechnical or structural engineer.

    It is essential that those carrying out ground assessment are aware of their own limitations and know when to stop and consult experts in the field. The document is aimed at all those with an interest in the stability of plant.

    The new guidance deals with ground bearing pressures and loadings from mobile plant, and assessment and engineering of the ground’s capability to withstand the loadings.”

    The guidance addresses coordination of duties, with reference to CDM and to Temporary Works, and contains technical guidance presented in an accessible way. Participating organisations included HSE, the Environment Agency, UKCG, CECA, Temporary Works Forum, specialist contractor organisations, and others.

    HSE Construction Chief Philip White said

    “This guidance has been developed by a working group representing all parts of the industry. It provides clarity on the assessment of ground conditions and will help
    construction plant suppliers and users improve health and safety standards.

    The guidance addresses planning, ground assessment, plant selection and measures to ensure ground stability. The advice in this document is straightforward, comprehensive and easy to adopt.”

     

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