March 5, 2015

On-Site Transport Safety

How do you control the vehicles on your site? Is there a traffic plan in place? Are there designated parking spaces? Who is competent to use what hand signals?

All the above are relevant questions that need to be asked with any vehicle moving on or adjacent to your site, which is there as a result of your works. However, a recent case shows that even the biggest local authority in the country can get it wrong. One of their workers suffered, fortunately non-life threatening injuries, when he was trapped by a non assisted reversing bin lorry. HSE investigators found by reviewing CCTV that such practice was not uncommon. It was however, contrary to the Authorities safe working procedure which required a colleague to act a reversing assistant for such manoeuvres.

As a result of not ensuring that these procedures were followed, the Authority was found in breach of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations Section 5(1). The resultant fine amounted to just under £12,000.

To help you answer all the original questions we suggest a C&D Vehicle Marshalling and Banksman Reversing Vehicles Course which covers:
  • Ensuring the safe passage of reversing vehicles in confined spaces
  • Identifying areas of danger within the site
  • Demonstrating HSE and Road Transport Industry Training Board recommended code of signals
  • Guidance of large goods vehicles both rigid and articulated using the above code of signals to HSE guide notes.
Further details and how to book the course can be found on the C&D Training website.

March 4, 2015

Welcome Back Our Heroes

Since 2001, 275 United Kingdom Service Personnel have lost upper or lower limbs as a result of combat in Afghanistan. Following rehabilitation in the UK and concluding with the fitting of prosthetic limbs or use of a wheelchair, they have been for some time entering back into the UK workforce.

The Disability Discrimination Act clearly states that potential employees should not be discriminated against because of such injuries and that reasonable adjustments should be made to ensure that workplaces and jobs are made more accessible.

How would or does your company deal with these situations? I was on a site recently where the main complex building was clearly DDA compliant with ramps, carefully placed handles, wide doors and signs everywhere. However, the site buildings, temporary for at least two years, were as about as inaccessible as possible, one step to the canteen, two to the site offices, and three to the toilets. It’s not just these obvious measures though, what about site evacuation – do you have an evac chair available? Do you know if any of your employees are epileptic and have you assessed the possible consequences? And what about those other issues that all people have, but you may not know about?

This makes it sound as if I am being very negative about employing people with a disability, but actually I am thinking entirely the opposite. Just imagine all the skills and qualities that ex-service men and women hold and how they could be put to use in our industry. Could you imagine if Stephen Hawking had been a designer or Architect!

As well as lots of information on the web, C&D can help you with any questions you may have as well as providing a Disability Awareness course especially for the Demolition Industry.

Please get in touch to discuss the options.

March 3, 2015

A few places available on Category B Asbestos Removal course March 6th

This Friday, March 6th, a Category B Asbestos Removal Course is being run at the Birkenhead Rugby Club with a start time of 8am. There are a few places left on the course if you will be in the area and you or your staff are interested in attending.

For further details please email Stuart.

Brrrr It’s Cold Out There

It doesn’t take a genius to work out that when it is winter the weather is usually colder and even very cold sometimes. It makes a lot of sense then to wrap up and keep warm. This is where the layering principle is so useful.

Layer 1: The Thermal Layer, Designed to keep skin dry by wicking moisture away from the skin and retaining heat. Tight, stretchy fabrics are preferred as are synthetic fibres, such as polyester or microfibers.

Layer 2: The Insulation Layer, the warmth trap! Walkers commonly use fleece, and in colder extremes down jackets. Fleece is quick drying and traps heat thanks to its closely-knit fibres, while feather and down jackets help trap warm air. Anything that traps air is good, even that old string vest!

Layer 3: The Waterproof / Protection layer, this is to keep out the wind and rain. Gore-Tex is the most recognized material for this job, although there are others on the market. The best jackets use multiple layers, and feature activity zones that stretch and offer protection where it’s most needed.

Remember it is much easier to stay warm than to create heat, all you are doing then is using up your energy to keep warm.

Employers need to bear this in mind and allow extra breaks in warm facilities to enable employees to replenish the extra energy they are using. A full risk assessment covering cold weather should be carried out.

March 2, 2015

C&D customer DSM carry out classic blowdown in Leicester

Congratulations to all in the DSM team for a successful blowdown of a multi-storey office complex on a tight site in Leicester. You can see footage of the New Walk Centre job below:

February 27, 2015

Last day to claim a 30% discount for the World Demolition Summit

The World Demolition Summit (WDS 2015) is taking place on the 6th November in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The conference, networking and awards will take place, once again, at the NH Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky. This will be the seventh time the event is running building on the success of previous years.

Volvo has already announced top sponsorship in what promises to be an excellent event. The early bird discount rate gives you 30% off the joint conference and awards ticket price - but it does expire today, Friday 27th February 2015. To book your place now at the discount price please click on the link below:


February 26, 2015

Doing as we should not just as we say we should

As a company C&D spends a major part of our time advising, or telling if you prefer, our clients what they should be doing in both practical terms and in relation to training their staff. We firmly believe that the principles we pass on should also apply closer to home, within our own company not just those we are advising.

Training our own staff is just as important as passing on our wisdom to others because, how can we do this competently without continuing to grow the knowledge base of our own staff?

A prime example of this is the latest recruit to C&D Stuart Carter. Stuart has recently returned to the sector, having spent 23 years in an Education Health and Safety role at advisor level. He has just received notification of a credit at NEBOSH General Certificate level, has passed a Face Fit Testers course, and also qualified as a Portable Appliance Tester. All helping to further his own professional standing as well as increasing the skills and knowledge base within the company.

Stuart however, is just part of a team. He joins 3 others in the company with NEBOSH qualifications as well as others that have many wide ranging qualifications and experience that is put to good use by all of our clients.

Remember its reassuring to have a team like C&D behind you.

February 25, 2015

Apprenticeships…the buzzword for the upcoming election, but are we still missing a trick?

The last few weeks have seen the battle lines drawn for the forthcoming election, with the political heavyweights being wheeled out at various economic hotspots across the country.

Skills, or rather the lack of them, appear to be high on the agenda of all parties and in particular Apprenticeships, with Milliband going a step further by announcing that all school leavers will be guaranteed an apprenticeship by 2020.

In general, this is music to my ears and I think we’re all on the same page in wanting our young people to get vocational experience and qualifications to help make them more ready for work.

However, there is a big ‘but’. I run a business involved in demolition and there is very little provision or courses for demolition engineering apprenticeships and, believe me, our industry is crying out for young blood.

Yes there are operative apprenticeships and both the National Demolition Training Group (NDTG) and CSkills are pushing those hard, but these are more for individuals wishing to enter the sector as a labourer or plant operator.

Both good career moves, but what about those who aspire to become demolition engineers and want to study demolition engineering? Where can they go to get the knowledge? The answer is…nowhere!

Currently, no UK College or University offers this type of course and the Government seems unwilling to provide firms with grants or any type of funding. It appears our industry is not sexy enough to get them the column inches or sway the swing voters.

I estimate we need around 350 labourers, 70 topmen (responsible for preparing a site for demolition), 50 supervisors, 40 managers and at least 50 engineers. That’s 500 new jobs and we probably haven’t even scratched the surface.

At C&D, we have recently taken on an ‘apprentice’ in Matty Bardgett, who is working on complex demolition projects from our office in Liverpool. His education will not be from a college course, but will be through our own courses, mentoring from our professionals and on the job training.

Closer to home, we have also taken on Matt Birch, who came to us for work experience following an ‘Inspiring the Future’ talk I gave at his school. Despite our best efforts, we have not been able to find him a local provider to help with his development.

If he was interested in civil engineering, hairdressing or media studies – all interesting careers in their own right – we’d have tens to choose from.

Demolition is a very skilled industry and a fantastic career, so my message to the political parties would be…’don’t forget the non-mainstream sectors’.

We need the same education and training provision as automotive, aerospace, retail or professional services, especially if you don’t want troublesome buildings or structures preventing future infrastructure projects.

Educate and we will thrive.

February 24, 2015

Level 1 Award in Health and Safety in a Construction Environment

This qualification is aimed at learners who currently work, or want to work, in construction.

Successful completion of this qualification will enable learners to apply for the Construction Skills Certificate Scheme (CSCS) Green Card which allows access to construction sites in the UK as a non-skilled worker.

From the 1 July 2014 those who need a CSCS Green Card can obtain one by completing this qualification. This includes those entering the construction industry plus those who are renewing their card.

Full details of the course, which is set to be held on Thursday, March 26th in the West Midlands, can be found over on our training site.

February 23, 2015

Demolition Awards 2015 shortlist announced

The NFDC executive committee has drunk a lot of coffee recently, but because of that we now have a Demolition Awards shortlist to share. Here it is, split into categories:

  • Central Demolition Ltd - John Carpenter
  • Connell Brothers Ltd - Kevin Clarke
  • Downwell Demolition Ltd - Ross Evans
  • KDC Contractors Ltd - Sean Joyce
  • Maylarch Environmental Ltd - Quincy Mofford
  • Squibb Group Ltd - Jordan Morris
  • Central Demolition Ltd - Derek Jeffrey
  • Downwell Demolition Ltd - Matthew Stevens
  • Squibb Group Ltd - Nick Smith
  • Tilley & Barrett Ltd - Jason Davey
  • Cantillon Ltd - David Strzelecki
  • Connell Brothers Ltd - Kevin Brooks
  • Dem-Master Demolition Ltd - Paul Sharkey
  • Downwell Demolition Ltd - Christopher Young
  • Erith Group Ltd - Genti (Sal) Kalaci
  • Tilley & Barrett Ltd - Mick Gannon
  • Total Reclaims Demolition Ltd - Richard Stanbury
  • Erith Group Ltd - Utilisation of Grey Water
  • Lawson Demolition Ltd - Waste Management System/Oil Water Separator/Conveyer belt shoot
  • DCS Engineered Bursting Division of DCS Training Ltd - Autostem Pyrotechnic Cartridges
  • Kocurek Excavators Ltd - KMC 350-5 BTV Multi Purpose Demo Machine
  • Komatsu UK Ltd - PC490LC - High Reach Demolition Excavator
  • Liebherr-Great Britain Ltd / ECY Haulmark - R974D VH-HD Special Build
  • Swanton Consulting Ltd - Training Courses
  • Worsley Plant Ltd - MB Crusher Bucket Model BF135.8
  • AR Demolition Ltd
  • GBM Demolition Ltd
  • Maylarch Environmental Ltd
  • AR Demolition Ltd
  • Erith Group Ltd
  • Lawson Demolition Ltd
  • Liebherr-Great Britain Ltd
  • Total Reclaims Demolition Ltd
  • Central Demolition Ltd - Michael Gough Jnr
  • Connell Brothers Ltd - Gareth Sharvin
  • Erith Group Ltd - Ade Parreira
  • Maylarch Environmental Ltd - Gary Beach
  • Squibb Group Ltd - Jason Campbell
Source: NFDC