Tag: construction risk assessment

Tips for construction management safety

Source: Tips for construction management safety | Construction and AEC Project management software Raptorpm

Construction safety is serious business with legal and employee welfare implications. During the course of construction management, companies must ensure they take care of their workers. Organizations’ can face criminal charges if they do not comply with occupational health and safety legislation.

Accidents rates can increase on construction sites if safety is not on everyone’s mind. Also, laws are tightening to protect workers in the construction industry. Workers have the right to work in a safe environment, free from the fear of having an injury or worse. While it is a worker’s responsibility to take care of their own safety while on a work site, the employer handles construction management safety. Employers must conduct risk assessments, put risk management policies and procedures in place to guide their workers. Part of that is keeping up-to-date health and safety records, as well as organisational safety processes and procedures.


Construction Risk Management software can help organisations manage risk strategies in compliance with legislation. And, for the safety of all workers and anyone else on a construction site.

Even if you are following workplace occupational health and safety guidelines, there are things you should instil into construction workers. Learn how to practice the management of construction projects with appropriate safety requirements. Some is simple commonsense.

Chemical threats

Correct storage of chemicals is important. Some can react with each when stored close together. Workers must know how to deal with chemicals in accordance with manufacturer instructions and workplace procedures. Disastrous consequences can be the result if a chemical spill occurs. All workers handling dangerous chemicals must have the correct training to remain safe.

Walking the scaffolding tightrope

Walking the scaffolding tightrope while building hundreds of feet up in the sky is not for the faint hearted. It is a dangerous job. Common sense habits working at heights include:

  • erecting scaffold on solid ground stable enough to hold heavy weights

  • do not support scaffold on an uneven surface r try to level the ground out using things like planks or bricks

  • work at least 10 feet away from powerlines

  • do not use weak or damaged scaffold parts

  • do not put too much weight on the scaffold (overloading can cause accidents)

  • ensure there are sturdy guard and toe rails for worker protection

  • ensure the rig is checked by a qualified supervisor at the start of each shift and whenever it moves location

  • immediately replace damaged parts

  • do not use scaffold in storms or when there are high winds

  • keep an eye on your workmates and what is going on below.

Use the right tools for the job

Accidents and injuries can occur when workers try to use the wrong tools for the job. Consider the following when managing construction safety:

  • use ear protection in noisy environments

  • use eye protection when welding

  • do not carry tools by the cord

  • understand and follow workplace safety policies and procedures

  • make a conscious effort to be aware of your surroundings at all times

  • do not use damaged tools

  • use signs to keep non-essential workers out of highly-dangerous operating areas.


Operating heavy machinery safely

Heavy machinery is dangerous if not operated correctly. All people must be trained appropriately. Workers should keep the following in mind:

  • be careful when boarding or getting down from heavy machinery

  • wear appropriate gloves and footwear for the job

  • use a spotter to alert you to hazards in your blind spots

  • make there is enough room to move the machine safely

  • alert people close to the equipment of your intention to move

  • leave enough room to turn the equipment safely (heavy machinery needs more turning space than a light vehicle)

  • be extra careful when manoeuvring up and down inclines

  • do not allow unauthorised people use machinery

  • do not leave the keys in machinery when left unattended.

There is no room for complacency on a construction site. Using good construction management safety strategies for risk management will help keep everyone safe.


Guide to Risk Assessment in Construction

Source: A Guide to Risk Assessment in Construction

Construction sites have inherent risks, no matter whether it is a multi story building or a house renovation. Too often a realized risk can cause personal injury. Or, a serious risk not well managed can wipe out a whole company. Construction risk assessment and management is essential to successfully completing each building project.


Defining risk

A risk is an event that may or may not happen. Risk is uncertainty of an outcome that can cause construction project issues. No matter what the project, there is a certain amount of unavoidable risk. Risks are not hazards but they are events. Risks can refer to behavior, processes and procedures, and events. You need to decide what level of risk is acceptable in terms of value to the business.

Risks can include events that have:

  • only negative variances or results – referred to as pure risk

  • both negative and positive variances (eg. where there is a risk of loss or gain) – referred to as speculative risk

  • only positive variances and the possibility of gain – these may not always be identified as risks.

Construction is a risky business. It is not possible to avoid all risks. Instead you must meet relevant legislation to manage, monitor, minimize and mitigate risks. For this you need easy to follow processes that help your organization and staff make the right decisions. So, you must complete a risk assessment to calculate the risks.

 Managing construction risks

Managing risks is an important element of all construction projects. It involves completing a risk assessment of all work sites. It is important to assign each risk to the right people to take responsibility. There must be good processes and procedures in place to track and report on major risks.

There are four main aspects to managing construction risks:

  • identifying risks:

·       establish what risks can impact a project including:

·       Occupational. Occupational risks include workers at risk of receiving an injury and possible death because of the actions of others, weather, unforeseen circumstances and procedures.

·       Contractual. Contractual risks include penalties for not meeting milestone deadlines.

·       Project. Project risks include inadequate processes and procedures, project resources and time management.

·       Financial. Financial risks include interest rate rises, economic instability and insufficient funds.

·       Natural. Natural risks include severe weather events, storms, floods and earthquakes.

·       Stakeholder. Stakeholder risks include communication problems, misunderstandings about deliverables and punch lists at the end of a project.

·       create and maintain a risk register.

  • analyzing risks:

    • assess the time and cost effects of each risk if it occurs – consider its probability of occurring and its impact on the project (time delays, cost)

    • consider the likelihood of each risk occurring.

  • responding to risks:

    • involve all team members when assigning ownership of workplace risks

    • address risks before they cause consequences

    • put processes and procedures in place to monitor, manage and mitigate risks

    • reduce the threat of a risk by either removing or minimizing its threat.

  • reviewing risks:

    • review and update risk information during the life of the project

    • review risks to ensure to ensure adequate management of them.

Responding to risks

Once the construction risk assessment is complete, respond to the risks it identified. Construction risks are complex, but are still categorized as follows:

  1. Avoid accepting projects in flood prone areas during the wet season, for example.

  2. Use insurance and contract clauses to transfer risks.

  3. There are always safety hazards on a construction site. You can mitigate these with appropriate training and correct personal protective equipment for staff.

  4. Weather is a risk beyond anyone’s control. Good project management lessens the impact.

Using the right resources to manage risks

Selecting the right resources to help manage risks can help keep projects on track. New methods can eliminate and mitigate risks. Such as using drones to reduce safety hazards and prefabricated modules in buildings to reduce time spent with the building at risk to the weather.

Using the right management software can make managing construction risks easier and less time-consuming. As a construction company grows, it takes on more projects simultaneously. Construction project risk assessment and management software integrates and links into all company projects to keep everyone on track for the life-cycle of each project.

Free Risk Assessment Tool for Construction and Building Industries

Source: Free Risk Assessment Tool for Construction and Building Industries

With any construction project, there are inherent risks involved that can threaten not only the safety of your workers but also your reputation and bottom line.

RaptorPM makes it easy for Project Managers or Health and Safety Managers to manage their Risk Assessments and Safe Work Method Statements (SWMS) online without the hassle of paperwork.

Create project specific risk assessments and method statements in minutes with our easy to use, intuitive software. Suitable for Construction, Engineering and Facility companies of all sizes and for use on small to the very largest of projects.

RaptorPM makes complying with your local Work Health and Safety Act quick and easy, giving everyone more time to get on with the tasks safely. Easily create safety documents and safety procedures with a few simple clicks.

Quickly create a range of questionnaire type documents such as SWMS and Risk Assessments (RAMS) for any worker to complete quickly on site. To save time and cost, safety documents can be stored as PDF files so then can be reused by managers and safety officer’s multiple times.

Guide to Construction Risk Assessment | Construction

Source: A Guide to Construction Risk Assessment

Construction risk assessment is a real challenge as part of an Occupational Safety and Health Administration role. There are over 4,500 work-related fatalities in the United States every year. So, you would think that the days of pen and paper to manage risk, safety and health are gone? Well, they are for most industries. However, the construction industry has been slow to change towards online digitization. This can be part of the reason why the industry has a poor productivity record. Relying on spreadsheets, pen and paper makes it difficult to keep track of everything. The loss of transparency of the building process happens when all the information required is not accessible all in one place.

In a modern business, using paper to manage business processes and deliverables like risk management reports, material and equipment procurement, scheduling, drawings, and plans, as well as equipment logs and daily progress reports is not the most efficient way to manage that side of a construction business. Moving towards digitization, gives the business more consistent, better outcomes. It gives everyone involved transparent access to information sharing. Without this access, all stakeholders can work from a different version of the truth. This can cause misunderstandings, disagreements, mistakes and delays.

Using paper makes it difficult to capture real data for analysis. This can be crucial to your budget, and goods and services procurement. And, it puts the project and your business at risk. In an interconnected world, risk assessment is an area the industry has not yet embraced.

Construction work is high risk, so risk assessments are fundamental to the construction process. While using software to complete online risk assessments should be a normal part of the process, the industry is stuck in the past. Using paper-based methods is time consuming, costly and put the project and your business at greater risk. Surely, you are already busy enough dealing with the day-to-day operations out on the road. Does paperwork get pushed aside for more important things? Risk assessment software can help you remain competitive, and save you money and time. It can value-add to your business.

Importance of risk assessment

According to the United States Department of Labor, More than 4,500 workers die on the job each year with specialty trade contractors at most risk.  All employers, regardless of industry must, by law, conduct risk assessments in the workplace. And, records of these are kept safely stored. Construction business operators may find this daunting or complicated. But, it does not need be this way. Completing a risk assessment is looking at anything in the workplace that could cause employees or visitors harm. This allows processes and procedures to be put in place to minimize the risk. This is more time-consuming in the construction industry as you can work on many work sites. With the changing conditions, you may have to often update the risk assessment and plan.

What is risk assessment?

Risk assessment is a method a business or employer uses to:

  • Identify hazards. Identify, report and categorize risks and hazards that can cause harm. This involves observing the work site to check for potential hazards. Consult workers and other stakeholders, review previous risk assessments to get a clear picture of risks on site.

  • Complete risk analysis and evaluation. Analyze and evaluate the risks involved with each hazard:

    • Risk analysis. Risk analysis is the process of identifying hazards and establishing the level of risk for each one based on the likelihood of it causing an accident (see Table 1). It accounts for those things in a project that may occur, with a probability ranging from 1 to 99 percent. You need to determine and rank the likelihood of all of the risks relevant to a project or work site.

    • Risk evaluation. Risk evaluation is when the risk is measured against set criteria (see Table 1) to work out the implications or consequences of the risk (see Table 2). Risks usually constitute a negative impact. The magnitude of this varies depending on the situation of your organization, and the resources and money invested in the project.

  • Plan risk control. Bases on the risk analysis and evaluation, put processes in place to control or eliminate risks and hazards. This can include ongoing monitoring the situation, revising and ensuring decisions are carried out. You can agree on risk priorities with your client and the relevant stake holders, if the project is relatively small. For larger projects, you need a more structured approach to the prioritization, to ensure the decisions are objective. Risks in the construction industry change as the job site changes. So, to remain compliant with health and safety laws, complete risk assessments for each new work site.

Good risk assessment software can simplify this process so you can stay on top of workplace risks and hazards. Risk assessments identify who is at risk, and help you to plan ways to prevent accidents.

Make sure you include all relevant stakeholders in the decision-making process and communicate the risk assessment plan with workers and subcontractors.

Table 1 Risk Assessment Analysis


Dynamic risk assessment

In a busy world, all a construction manager wants is more time. There is no such thing as downtime, with piles of paperwork to complete if not out on the construction site. Lack of time usually puts the paperwork at risk. This can see risk assessments forgotten, lost or filed away. These can be time consuming to carry out, to plan and implement controls. Pushing aside risk assessments puts workers, visitors, and yourself and business at risk.

Good risk management software offers a dynamic risk assessment process that allows continual identification of hazards and risks. This makes them visible so you can take action to reduce or eliminate risks. It also involves monitoring and reassessing the fast-changing circumstances on a construction site. Because of the nature of construction sites, risks and hazards are a moving target and constantly evolve. A site manager needs eyes in the back of their head to keep on top everything. It is time for the construction industry to embrace technology to minimize the time spent on managing risk assessments. This helps keep everyone’s mind on the job.

With the mobility of today’s technology, download risk assessment software onto a smartphone or tablet. This capability makes it convenient and fast to capture new hazards as they arise. No more paperwork, so more time to spend doing more important things. No one likes doing paperwork.

Connectivity is low-cost, even using handheld devices. With the choice of so many new Cloud-based technologies, easy to setup, even for use even on remote construction sites. It is worth investigating how risk assessment software can help you and your construction crew.

So, what are you waiting for? Get connected. Turn tedious, time-consuming vital jobs around. Investigate moving your construction business towards digitization.