The construction industry uses various measures to show how safely a project is progressing.
On the Crossrail project managed by Costain Skanska JV, and on the M25 project managed by Skanska Balfour Beatty JV, seven safety areas (listed below) are measured each month, and the contractor who has scored highest is awarded ‘Contractor of the Month’. Similar health and safety key performance indicators are measured by Skanska on the M1 junction 19 works.
- Behaviour-based safety
There is a training scheme, ‘Be Safe Injury Free’, to encourage operatives to think about how their behaviour affects their and their colleagues’ safety. All operatives must attend a half day awareness session on behavioural safety.
- Tool box talks
These are weekly team meeting chats on the tasks and issues on site. Operatives also get a monthly ‘Be Safe’ briefing covering industry best practice and learning.
- Safety inspections
A weekly inspection ensures work is being done safely. Different people undertake the inspections so there is a new perspective each time. Some inspections are by visiting managers, others are run by operatives, giving an opportunity for personal development.
- Project improvement plan
The project plan is reviewed regularly to ensure continuous improvement
- Constructing Better Health (CBH)
Regular relevant health assessments for operatives, including checking hearing, white finger vibration. VGC was the first company to ensure that all employees have regular health screening relevant to their roles.
- Observations reported
Everyone is encouraged to report any opportunities for making the work better or safer: the number of reported observations gives a measure of how much people are thinking about site safety.
- Management visibility
A measure of how often managers are on site and meeting the team, this indicates how easy it is for people to report any concerns they may have. VGC sites are visited every month by senior management and directors.
Since the Crossrail Bond Street contract began in January 2014, VGC has been named Safety Contractor of the Month more often than any other contractor. We won Contractor of the Year at the end of 2014. And we came top of the Contractor of the Month list at Bond Street station every month in 2015.
We were also awarded Contractor of the Month on the M25 section 5 gantry work for July 2014, and on the M1 junction 19 project for August 2014.
In September and October 2015 we were top of the subcontractor safety league for Ferrovial Agoman at Heathrow Bravo taxiway works.