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The Labour Inspectorate Inspected Compliance with Requirements of Health and Safety at Work at 213 Construction Sites.
Target inspection of construction sites has been conducted on a regular basis from 2012 onwards. This year during the inspection activity, inspectors focused on how construction companies have organized regular internal control at the site. It is required to carry out a control of the construction site at least once a week, during which the condition of the site and compliance with health and safety requirements is checked. Among other things, the work equipment used at the construction site, e.g. the condition of scaffolding, ladders and lifting equipment must be checked. It is important that the inspection is carried out by a specialist with practical experience in construction, who has undergone training in safety of construction works. In May, labour inspectors identified in 32 cases non-compliances. 213 construction enterprises in all were inspected in the course of regular inspection visits. "The figures and infringements identified in the course of nationwide target inspection activity that has been carried out for four years already, indicate a slight improvement in the sector. This year, we carried out checks on construction sites without prior notification, while the average number of identified infringements and other indicators were similar to the ones of previous years, when companies were informed of forthcoming inspection visits. Here we can assume that employers are interested in substantive compliance with health and safety requirements. It is likely that a lot of the construction entrepreneurs understand that it is cheaper to comply with health and safety requirements than to ignore them”, said Apo Oja, Deputy Director General of the Labour Inspectorate in the field of inspection of work environment and development. The majority of the violations identified in the course of target inspection visits were related to failure to wear personal protective equipment by workers, although it had been issued to them. Such violations were formulated at 96 building sites. Although workers are required to wear personal protective equipment issued to them, they justified themselves that the personal protective equipment did not suit them. At 24 construction sites inspectors found that the area of working at heights had not been delineated and also builders working at heights did not have safety belts or harnesses together with safety ropes or other security measures. 76 percent of violations related to temporary work at heights concerned scaffolding, which had no barriers or elements of design did not meet the requirements. 24 percent of violations related to temporary work at heights concerned ladders, the majority of which were home-made ladders and stability was not guaranteed. The Labour Inspectorate adjures that safety instructions must be drawn up on all work equipment that are in use, workers must be familiar with them and use proper and safe working practices. Personal protective equipment is not designed to make work more inefficient, but it can often save lives.