This article considers the impact that the Coronavirus pandemic is having on the concept of ‘reasonable practicability’ in relation to compliance with health and safety legislation.  In particular, it addresses tolerable risk, use of guidance, face coverings, risk assessments and what …

Reasonable practicability in the age of Coronavirus Read more »

Concrete structures will deteriorate when exposed to severe environments. This deterioration can lead to risks to the safety of deteriorating concrete structures.  In this article, Mike Webster discusses the behaviour of deteriorating concrete structures to provide a qualitative understanding of what contributes …

The influence of design and detailing on the safety of deteriorating concrete structures Read more »

  CDM 2015 Regulation 9 requires Designers to eliminate, reduce or control the risks through design.  Where it is not possible to eliminate risks, they should provide information on the significant residual risks that could not be designed out.  As …

CDM 2015 Designer Duties – Considering temporary works in permanent works design Read more »

Concrete structures can be affected by a range of defects and deterioration.  These can impact on both the safety and service life of structures. The most common forms of defects and deterioration that may occur in concrete structures, how they …

Deterioration and defects – what are the risks to the safety and service life of concrete structures? Read more »

Reinforced concrete structures degrade with time and exposure to the environment, particularly if that environment contains salts.  That degradation can lead reinforcement to corrode, and this can affect the safety and load-carrying capacity of concrete structures. The data from existing research were reviewed …

Impact of corrosion on the safety and strength of concrete structures – Summary of the mechanisms Read more »

The improvement and prohibition notices data provided on the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) web site have been analysed to establish where HSE identified potential breaches in construction projects.  These analyses were carried for 2016/17 – the first full year where …

HSE improvement and prohibition notices – what do they tell us about CDM 2015 and construction health and safety? Read more »

The conviction data available on HSE’s web site has been analysed to assess the impact of the first year of the new Sentencing Guidelines on organisations and individuals working in the construction industry who have been convicted of breaches of …

The new Sentencing Guidelines one year on: Their impact on the Construction industry Read more »

This article discusses the impact of deterioration on the safety of concrete structures.  This is illustrated by examples where deterioration has led concrete structures to collapse.  The article suggests steps that designers can take to minimise the risks of deterioration to safety and discharge …

Impact of deterioration on the safety of concrete structures – what can designers do to minimise risk? Read more »

This article suggests a range of ways to engage boards on health, safety and risk issues. Our suggestions are a combination of ‘nudges’ and ‘shoves’.  They recognise the potential barriers to engagement that we identified in an earlier article, and are aimed at addressing …

How to engage boards on health, safety and risk issues Read more »

This article summarises key reasons why board engagement with health and safety risks does not always happen.  The lessons from landmark incidents are discussed, and common causes for non-engagement are identified.  To gain a better understanding of these causes, we …

Board engagement with health and safety risks – why doesn’t it always happen? Read more »

This post contains a comparison of the differences between organisations with best practice in risk management and those whose practice is the industry average. This post shows that the quality of those factors which influence risk is higher and less …

Benchmarking against risk management best practice – how do ‘industry average’ organisations compare? Read more »

This article discusses why organisations’ susceptibility to risk is largely determined by the mindsets and behaviours of their staff and the difficulties this causes in assessing what factors influence risk.  A methodology is proposed that recognises that incidents are caused …

Why is it so difficult to assess what factors influence risk in your organisation? Read more »