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					COMPARATIVE STUDY OF SAFETY MANAGEMENT IN HONG KONG AND
                   ZHEJIANG PROVINCE

Ma, Chunjie Department of Construction Economy and Management, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou,
             P.R. China
Lin, Detian Department of Construction Economy and Management, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou,
             P.R. China


KEYWORDS

Safety management, construction, site


Introduction

During the last 10 years, with the accelerated pace in economic reformation, the building industry in
China has developed very fast. The amount of investment, the scale of buildings developed and the
building labours increase every year. Due to its characteristics, such as complexities, difficulty in
management and the huge number of people involved in it, the building industry is more dangerous than
other industries. In turn, it leads to the high incidence of accidents. Thus, it is necessary to implement
safety management in the building industry.

Though the injury and death rate in the China building industry has gone down in recent years, it is still
very high and unacceptable. Therefore, it is essential for the China construction industry to learn from
other country/area’s experiences in safety management.

Hong Kong (HK) has pretty much the same culture background, living habits, traditions as mainland
China. So the experiences from building industry of HONG KONG will definitely be useful to the
development of building industry in the mainland.


Instruction of Safety Management System in Hong Kong and Zhejiang

Safety management system in Hong Kong

The HONG KONG government began to introduce safety management system via Airport Core Program
in 1991. After development and improvement for 10 years, now HONG KONG has established an
effective safety management system. The various systems and schemes are elaborated as follows:
Factories and Industrial Undertakings (Safety Management) Regulation
To ensure that the contractors have set up a safety management system, the HONG KONG government
requires them to establish a management system. The key elements of the system are:

    Safety policy
    Safety organization
    Safety and health training
    Safety and health inspection
    Personal protective equipment
    Evaluation, selection and control of sub-contractors
    Process control program
    Safety committees
    Safety promotion
    Emergency preparedness
    Job Accident/incident investigation hazard analysis
    Health assurance program

Pay for Safety Scheme (PFSS)
To effectively carry out daily safety management missions, contractors must pay for the expenditure of
preparing safety plans, holding safety meetings, and employing safety officer etc. The cost of safety



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management is pre-priced, which is fixed at 2% of the estimated contract sums.

Independent Safety Audit Scheme (ISAS)
According to the scheme, independent safety auditors carry out safety audits at quarterly intervals. The
audit reports highlight the strength and weakness of the contractors’ safety management system. The
score and comments are also included. If the contractor can achieve 70% of the scores, they can attain the
pre-priced payment. If the score is less than 60%, they will be given an adverse report.

Safety Promotion and Safety Award Scheme
The purpose of safety promotion is to enhance the safety performance of contractors and the awareness of
all building workers. The award scheme aims to encourage contractors to maintain a healthy and safe
environment to workers.

Monitor System
Government will monitor and assess the performance of contractors by using both active system such as
PFSS, ISAS etc, and reactive system, such as the monitoring of accident frequency rates, record of site
safety convictions, etc.

Regulation Action against Contractors with Poor Site Safety Record
A “carrot and stick” approach is adopted to manage site safety. Contractors with good performance are
rewarded while contractors with poor performance will be punished. The regulation actions include the
issue of warning letters and voluntary suspension from tendering.

Safety management in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, PRC

A standard safety regulation, Civilized Construction Safety Standard Site Management Regulation, which
require the contractor to set up a safe, healthy and neat construction site, is established in the ZheJiang(ZJ)
province. The regulation consists of 4 parts:

1.    General rules

2.    Safety management
     General rules of construction company
     Professional training
     Safety inspection
     Hazard control program
     Safety board
     Arrangement on site
     Roster management on special kind of work

3.    Detailed requirement on construction facilities
     falsework
     construction electricity
     derrick
     tower crane
     middle and small types of construction facilities
     safety net, safety belt, safety helmet
     protection of holes

4.    Setting up a neat construction site

The regulation mentioned above is just a guideline. The company must comply with this regulation, and
can formulate its own safety policy and safety plan according to its own conditions.

The officials from the government in ZHEJIANG inspect and assess the construction site safety
performance by using a “score list system”, which includes 9 parts:
1. safety management
2. falsework
3. safety helmet, belt, net and holes
4. construction electricity




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5.       derrick
6.       town crane
7.       middle and small types of construction facilities
8.       physical site conditions
9.       summary

Except for this “score list system”, the accident rate is another criterion for scoring. There are three kinds
of results, i.e. excellent, pass, or failure. The safety supervision department, a department in the
government, is responsible for this inspection.

Study of Safety Plans in Hong Kong and Zhejiang

Having discussed the government-level regulation, we now study the company-level regulation both in
Zhejiang and Hong Kong.

Two safety plans, one in Hong Kong and the other in the city of Hang Zhou, which is the capital of
Zhejiang province, and their safety management are studied and compared.

Plan A— From a large-scale Housing Authority project site in the north-western part of the New
Territories in Hong Kong, with the plan prepared by a well known Hong Kong building contractor.

Plan B— From a sizable agriculture pesticide factory project in No.5 th road of XiaSha in Hang Zhou, with
the plan prepared by a reputable construction company in China.

(Scores range from 1 to 5)

           Safety policy      Safety organization      Safety committee    Safety training        Safety inspection
                                                                           And promotion
Plan A     Contained the      Outlined the structure   Described the       Set forth the          Described the
           company safety     of the organization,     members and         schedule for safety    procedures of the
           policy statement   described individual     functions of the    training; specified    safety inspection
                              safety                   safety committee    individual
                              responsibilities, and                        activities to
                              presented an                                 promote safety;
                              organizational chart                         described the
           (5)                                                             safety newsletter,     (3)
                                                       (3)                 and the safety
                              (5)                                          bulletin board
                                                                           (5)
Plan B     Contained the      Outlined the structure   Described the       Set forth training     Indicated the
           company safety     of the organization,     members and         objectives, course     formation,
           policy statement   described individual     functions of the    content; described     content, method
                              safety                   safety committee;   the safety bulletin    and frequency of
                              responsibilities, and    presented the       board and facilities   safety inspection
                              presented an             standard form of
           (5)                organizational chat      meeting minutes                            (5)
                                                       (5)                 (4)
                              (5)




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         Risk                Accident               Hazard control          Emergency              Health assurance
         assessment and      investigation          program                 procedure              program
         hazard analysis
Plan A   Indicated the       Described procedures   Described               Presented              Described
         procedure of        for recording and      precautionary           organizational         procedures for
         risk assessment     investigating          safety measures for     chart for              monitoring and
         and job hazard      accidents and          each major site         emergencies;           controlling noise,
         analysis            compiling statistics   operation               described accident     dust, and chemical
                                                                            reporting              substance
                                                                            procedures and
                                                                            facilities; outlined
         (5)                 (3)                                            procedures for
                                                                            typhoons, fires,       (3)
                                                    (3)                     and evacuation
                                                                            (4)
Plan B   Outlined the risk   Described procedures   Described safety        Presented the          Outlined methods
         element of some     for reporting          procedures for          emergency faulty;      for the handling of
         kinds of works      accidents and          each site operation;    described the          hazardous
                             dangerous              indicated the           makeup of the          materials and the
                             conditions; outlined   relevant legal          emergency team         use of safety
                             procedures for         ordinances and          and the duties of      equipment and
                             investigations and     regulations             each member;           controlling noise,
                             compiling statistics                           outlined               dust, and chemical
                                                                            emergency and          substance
         (4)                 (4)                                            procedures             (5)
                                                    (5)

                                                                            (4)


           Personal                Evaluation selection,             Safety audits                       Total
           protective              and       control            of                                       scores
           equipment               subcontractor
           (PPE)
Plan A     Listed all the          Described procedures for          Indicated that safety audits of
           commonly used           evaluating, selecting and         both safety management and
           PPE along with          controlling subcontractor;        physical site conditions
           related safety          outlined safety penalties         should be carried out at least
           requirements            and the award scheme              every three months
           (3)                     (3)                               (3)                                    (48)
Plan B     Listed all the
           commonly used
           PPE along with
           relevant statutory
           requirement and
           safety standards;
           indicated the
           requirements for
           PPE use
           (5)                     (0)                               (0)                                 (51)


Besides the content discussed above, the plan B has its own special safety system. For example, safety
license management system, safety technology management system, construction safety requirement,
safety performance award and penalty regulations, etc.

Having discussed the safety regulation and system in HONG KONG and ZHEJIANG, we can see that
both of them have thorough regulations, which detail all aspects of safety management. Frankly speaking,
in the company-level, the safety manual of ZHEJIANG is more detailed than that of HONG KONG. But,
in the government-level, it is not the case. There is an effect of the system to guarantee the regulations to
be carried out in HONG KONG but not in ZHEJIANG. And this is the key point.




140
The contractors are always concerned with cost and profit. To carry out safety management, they think,
with no doubt, will increase their cost, which will in turn, decrease their profit, and waste their time.
Therefore, without efficacious supervision system, the contractors are not willing to execute the safety
management. Even though some of them follow the safety rules, they just do so as a kind of formality,
which will not be of any use at all and may lead to poor safety performance.

To tackle this problem, a supervision system must be established. The ZHEJIANG government can learn
from HONG KONG experiences, and set up a sequence of schemes, similar to PFSS and ISAS, which is
suitable for use in ZHEJIANG.


Conclusion

What is really needed is a list of actions and procedures to be followed by all parties in the same manner
to secure safety on sites. We strongly recommend that the ZHEJIANG government to adopt the methods
below:
1. To ensure it is suitable for realistic situations, the government should update the safety regulations
     from time to time.

2.   The government should set up a new system to encourage contractors to execute the safety
     management.
      The profit can be based on the safety performance. Safety performance and quantity of work are
        two foundations of getting pre-priced payment. Supervisors not only are in charge of the cost,
        process, work period and quality, but also take care of the safety performance on construction
        sites. So, a safety supervisor should be employed if necessary.
      The policy must enforce the functions of the safety supervision department. The department
        must inspect the sites periodically to ensure the contractors have complied with the regulations.
        The performance of contractors will be a reference criterion in future tendering. A contractor
        with good performance in safety will be awarded financially and he will have more chance of
        wining the future bids.

3.   The government should provide professional training to enhance the workers’ awareness of safety
     and prepare plans for preventing accidents and disasters. The government should also conduct
     examination for the workers.

4.   The workers’ bonus should be linked to their safety performance. The longer they work safely, the
     more bonus they can earn. It will encourage the workers to work under the safety regulations.

5.   The government should offer professional safety certificates to competent safety personnel in
     different specialization areas.

6.   The fines from unsafe sites could be used to fund a safety center. The main activities of this center
     include:
      Participate in technical investigation of accidents to identify causes and take steps to
          avoid them in the future;
      Create an accident databank with reasons, results, and methods of accident prevention;
      Explain safety principles and their importance in every workplace;
      Participate in international safety conferences and organize safety courses and provide training
          sessions for workers, engineers and managers at all levels of responsibility;
      Conduct regional and state surveys about safety matters in all economic sectors and propose
          recommendations to improve safe working conditions;
      Facilitate sharing of information and coordination among insurance companies.


References

[1]* S.L. Tang, S.W. Poon, S.M. Ahmed, & Francis K.W. Wong, Modern Construction Project
        Management, Dragon Vision Publisher, 1998.

[2] Lam Hon, “Safety Management System in Public Works Contracts”, Proceedings of Safety




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      management in the Construction Industry—Asia Experience, 2000.

[3] 马纯杰、魏成勇、郑叔民,         ,浙江大学出版社,2000.
                《建筑工程项目管理》

       《香港工程建设和建筑业管理》
[4] 胡建文,             ,海天出版社,1999.

[5] Syed M. Ahmed, Jack Chu Kwan, Fox Young Wei Ming & Derrick Chong Pui Ho, “Site Safety
      Management in Hong Kong”, Journal of Management in Engineering, 2000.




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