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Safety warning


I agree entirely with Jackie Whitelaw's views on the reasons for the continued carnage within our industry (NCE 23 November). The CDM Regulations, the various initiatives and reports from recent years all highlight that safety issues must be the first consideration.

With a few notable exceptions clients and their designers continue to fail to specify at tender the level and competency of management required, the recruitment of labour nor a minimum standard of required safety training. How many operatives supplied by labour only companies or agencies have had a risk assessment by their employers before sending them to site?

The standard questioning unfortunately seems to be restricted to cost. How many contracts have a clause to cover this?

Historically we have recruited most young people walking through the gates looking for a job. For the majority, it was a short term option but many saw opportunities and stuck it out regardless of the prevalent safety conditions. The same numbers come through the gates today but, due to awareness of safety and working conditions many quickly decide to move elsewhere.

Subsequently, we are left with a substantial part of the workforce who, for various reasons, do not have an option to move on. Where does their safety motivation come from?

Dan McMullan, 26 Dunbar Wharf, Narrow Street, London E14 8BB.

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