The iconic former flour mill at the heart of London’s Royal Docks will be transformed into a vibrant centre for business and enterprise with £12 million funding provided by the government.
The Millennium Mills site has been out of use since the early 1980s however, work has now begun to demolish parts of the interiors and rid the building of asbestos contamination. The funding will fast track its renovation by 5 years and make it ready to welcome the next generation of start-up businesses by 2017.
Redevelopment of the 450,000 sq. ft. land-mark forms the centrepiece of a wider £3.5 billion project to transform the Silvertown Quays part of the Royal Docks from the industrial to the digital age delivering 5 million sq. ft. of business and retail space, more than 20,000 new jobs, 3,000 new homes and contributing £260 million each year to the London economy.
This is the latest in a string of exciting investments at London’s enterprise zone, including plans to create the UK’s largest floating village at Royal Victoria Dock and the ABP business port at Royal Albert Dock. Read more
Two Devon companies have been fined after workers were exposed to potentially deadly asbestos.
A recent announcement from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reported that Pilkington Plumbing and Heating Ltd started work on a house in Jubilee Close, Ilfracombe, despite not receiving an asbestos survey from North Devon Homes.
The company instead relied on information from North Devon Homes’ website for contractors. This was not specific to each property being worked on and was incomplete or misleading. As a result, asbestos insulation boards were disturbed and the workers exposed.
The incident, on 27 September 2012, was investigated by the HSE, which prosecuted North Devon Homes for safety failings at Barnstaple Magistrates Court.
North Devon Homes Ltd, of Westacott Road, Barnstaple, pleaded guilty to a breach of Construction (Design Management) Regulations and was fined £1,000 and ordered to pay costs of £650.
Pilkington Plumbing and Heating Ltd, of Pilton Street, Pilton, Barnstaple pleaded guilty to two breaches of Control of Asbestos Regulations at an earlier hearing before the same court (on 8 October) and was fined £1,500 with £642 costs.
A social club in Stockton has been fined over £2,000 for unlicensed removal of asbestos from its premises following inspection.
Elm Tree Social Club pleaded guilty to four offences under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 when they appeared at Teesside Magistrates’ Court.
Following an anonymous complaint, Environmental Health officers from Stockton Council visited the premises on 29th November 2013 to investigate whether the work had been carried out incorrectly.
The court heard how committee members removed a number of asbestos insulation boards from the ceiling of the club’s store room rather than using a licensed asbestos removal company. Read more
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has launched a new campaign to help tradespeople at risk from the dangers of asbestos exposure.
Asbestos can be found in any building built before the year 2000 (houses, factories, offices, schools, hospitals etc.) and causes around 5000 deaths every year.
The Beware Asbestos campaign aims to raise awareness of the real and current risks facing today’s tradespeople. It also seeks to help them work more safely when doing jobs that might disturb asbestos, to help protect them from harm.
The campaign has seen the launch of a new, free web app to help tradespeople easily identify where they could come into contact with asbestos as they go about their day-to-day work.
Before starting any work that may disturb asbestos, you must ensure that you have had the correct level of information, instruction and training.
As stated in the previous article Clive Johnson, Group Health and Safety Manager of Land Securities, visited ARCA’s Head Office Training centre at Burton upon Trent to deliver Land Securities in house ‘Working at Height’ and ‘Behavioural Safety’ presentations. The recent HSE focus on the competency of asbestos removal operatives working for HSE Licensed asbestos removal companies brings the subject of ‘Safety Behaviour’ into sharp focus.
The Pye Tait report commissioned by the HSE on ‘A Commentary on Routes to Competence in the Construction Industry’ concludes that the construction industry’s current understanding of ‘competence’ may warrant extension to develop an ‘industry-specific’ definition and broadening to encompass both situational awareness and the sustaining of appropriate behaviours.
The following article is adapted from an article taken from the HSE Web site and talks about safety behaviour in general within high risk occupations. As asbestos removal companies are now focussing more than ever on the competency of their staff we thought that this article may provide food for thought when considering the safety culture within your own organisation.
There has been a large uptake of “behavioural safety” approaches over the past decade or so, in a wide range of industries. These approaches are based on the premise that a significant proportion of accidents are primarily caused by the behaviour of front line staff, such as pilots, drivers, production operators or maintenance technicians. There is a wide range of such programmes available, but they generally involve (i) the definition of safe/unsafe behaviours, (ii) observations of behaviours by trained observers and (iii) feedback/reinforcement of behaviours. Read more