• Higher Safety Higher Safety Chipmunk Data Chipmunk Data

    METHOD STATEMENTS: TIME FOR CHANGE IN 2016?

    Not required? Not followed? and Not necessary?

    The written Method Statement (MS) has been part of the construction project H&S scene since the early 1980’s and the subsequent legal requirement regarding Risk Assessment (RA) led to the acronym RAMS – Risk Assessment and Method Statement.

    HSE explain that risk assessment is a careful examination of what, in your work, could cause harm to people, so that you can weigh up whether you have enough precautions or whether you should do more.

    You MUST carry out a risk assessment but you only need to record the “significant findings” if you employ five or more people. By contrast, HSE explains that a safety method statement is “NOT required by law” and that whether safety method statements are used or not, it is essential to make sure that risks are controlled.

    Are method statements helping to control risk?

    Despite the near universal use of method statements we frequently hear comment t that “nobody reads the method statement” or that the MS is far too long and prepared without reference to those carrying out the work.

    The MS is viewed by many as the “paperwork” required and designed to satisfy clients or regulators with little relevance to how risk and precautions are communicated on the project.

    Checking that the MS is being followed is often secondary to having the statement signed by those likely to be injured and safely filed away.

    The revelation that the MS is not, or cannot be followed, often comes to light after an accident, or a visit by the regulator.

    Is it therefore time to rethink the role of Method Statements on construction projects? Questions we should ask in 2016 include:

    • Not Required? – why do line managers and H&S advisers spend so much time on something which is NOT a legal requirement and held in contempt by many?
    • Risk Assessment? – would it be better to invest that time and energy on implementing the risk assessment which already identifies the hazards and required controls?
    • Focus on checking? – would this allow more time for checking that the sensible controls required are being followed rather than preparing and shuffling around an additional document which is not required by law?
    • Greater involvement? – would such change result in greater involvement of those carrying out the work and improve their understanding of the risks and commitment to maintaining the control measures required?

    We would not want to throw the baby out with the bath water and many may conclude that their current MS system remains fit for purpose. However, our experience suggests that the construction project Method Statement is not in “good health” and in need of thorough review by all as we move into 2016.

    Some Relevant Posts

    HSE PLEA FOR FOCUS ON CONTROL NOT ‘PAPERWORK’
    Paperwork makes H&S risk assessments a “bugbear”
    ANNUAL RISK ASSESSMENT REVIEWS NOT REQUIRED
    HSE Myth Buster panel holds forth on risk assessments
    MODEL RISK ASSESSMENTS ENDORSED IN HSE GUIDE
    New guidance on risk assessment requirement simplified and updated

     

    Latest Construction Health and Safety News

    CONSTRUCTION SAFETY NEWS – END OF NEW CONTENT

    The addition of content on this website ceased on 17th April 2020.

    Material posted before this date can be found by clicking on our SEARCH NEWS DATABASE function.

    Posted on 3rd May 2020

    CDM REGULATIONS 2015: GUIDES AND TEMPLATES

    Summary of our advice and tools to aid CDM 2015 compliance

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 21st April 2020

    HSE WARN OF NEED FOR RPE FACE FIT TEST AND CHECK

    Incorrectly fitted RPE will not protect the wearer from dangers to health

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 16th April 2020

    CORONA VIRUS: LATEST SITE OPERATING PROCEDURES

    Industry Bodies publish risk management guidance Version 3

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 15th April 2020

    TOWER CRANE OUT OF SERVICE SAFETY ALERT

    Important advice from Construction Plant-hire Association and HSE

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 30th March 2020

    HSE PLAN AND CONSTRUCTION PRIORITIES 2020/21

    Appointed CDM 2015 Principal Designers remain focus of HSE inspections

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 30th March 2020

    COVID-19 ADVICE & GUIDANCE FOR CONSTRUCTION

    BuildUK support industry with advice, guidance and information

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 30th March 2020

    HSE TARGETING WELDING FUME CANCER RISK

    Inspections to enforce improved controls required by new risk evidence

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 24th February 2020

    HSE TO OVERSEE NEW BUILDING SAFETY REGIME

    Government to deliver biggest change in building safety for a generation

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 21st January 2020

    FESTIVE GREETINGS TO ALL OUR READERS

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 20th December 2019

    SELECTED NEWS POSTED RECENTLY ON TWITTER

    PP Construction Safety logo and link to home page [1]Links to other construction health and safety related news reports

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 18th November 2019

    HSE LOOK TO LOCAL AUTHORITIES FOR CDM SUPPORT

    Council Inspectors focus on CDM client duties – asbestos, fragility and RCS

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 14th November 2019

    HSE WELDING FUME REVISED GUIDANCE PUBLISHED

    New research evidence on cancer link prompts revision on welding fume

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 14th November 2019

    STRUCTURAL SAFETY BODY LATEST NEWSLETTER

    CROSS publishes reports and expert comment on a range of issues

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 18th October 2019

    HSE RISK REDUCTION THROUGH DESIGN AWARD

    Regulator seeks to promote hazard avoidance and risk minimisation

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 18th October 2019

    HSE START PROJECT HEALTH RISK INTERVENTIONS

    Regulator set to check health risks assessed and controls in place

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 30th September 2019

    AIF NATIONAL WORKING AT HEIGHT CONFERENCE

    HSE Construction Head to speak at Access Industry Forum conference

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 23rd September 2019

    NEW HSE HAVS CALCULATOR TO HELP CONTROL RISK

    New calculator includes “cautious estimates” for common tools

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 23rd September 2019

    IMPROVING CDM DESIGNER HAZARD AWARENESS

    Research explores power of “multi-media digital tool” for design hazards

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 27th August 2019

    DEMOLITION FEDERATION ON RECENT INCIDENTS

    NFDC ‘statement of awareness’ follows unplanned collapses

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 27th August 2019

    RAISING COMPETENCE AND MAKING BUILDINGS SAFER

    Life-safety-critical disciplines urged to act on Interim Report

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 27th August 2019

    BUILDING WORKS COMPROMISED GAS SAFETY

    Company and director fined after work created risk to residents

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 27th August 2019

    HSE SPEAK AT ACCESS INDUSTRY CONFERENCE 2019

    AIF National Working at Height Conference November 2019

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 6th August 2019

    STRUCTURAL SAFETY BODY LATEST NEWSLETTER

    CROSS publishes reports and expert comment on a range of issues

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 23rd July 2019

    CONSIDERING TEMP WORKS IN PERMANENT DESIGN

    Useful overview for civil and structural engineers on contemporary practice

    Read the rest of this article »

    Posted on 23rd July 2019
  • Higher Safety Higher Safety Chipmunk Data Chipmunk Data