Source from: The Star, Original Article
PETALING Jaya City Council (MBPJ) has become the first local council in Selangor to launch its own occupational health and safety guidelines to better safeguard workers from accidents at worksites.
The new guidelines and SOP, drafted based on the Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series (OHSAS) 18001 certification, will be implemented immediately and apply to all future construction applications, be it from in-house or third-party developers.
Petaling Jaya mayor Datuk Mohd Azizi Mohd Zain said MBPJ was focused on improving occupational health and safety in the city because there had been too many accidents.
“In the past year itself, we have seen too many accidents and even deaths at construction sites around the city. This has to stop,” he said during the launch at MBPJ’s headquarters.
MBPJ has published three different guideline books, namely a safety manual, procedures, and standard operating procedures (SOP). Among the few new safety standards set are that contractors must now put on a safety harness when working at height and all workers, on site, must be briefed on the safety measures thoroughly before work can commence.
“With the proper guidelines in place, I hope all those involved will adhere to them and maintain the safety standards set,” he said at the event attended by stakeholders in the city.
Mohd Azizi added that these books were drafted by officers from four different departments, which are town planning, engineering, landscape and building control.
Comprising 36 officers, they will also form a new committee named the Safety Audit Unit, which will be in charge of overseeing the safety aspects of all worksites in Petaling Jaya.
This team will oversee the safety in four fields namely environment, infrastructure, digital, as well as management and enforcement.
Apart from construction sites, Mohd Azizi said MBPJ would also be strict on road safety, especially when roads were closed for road works during the day and at night.
Safety, health and environment consultant Khairuddin Hairan who helped draw the safety guidelines and train personnel of the Safety Audit Unit, said with the new guidelines, contractors and developers in Petaling Jaya were expected to implement higher safety standards at worksites or risk being terminated or suspended.
“Usually when a construction project is approved by the local government, they will only look at the traffic and social impact on an area, and not other aspects such as how the work will affect the health and safety of contractors and the public,” he said.
A few booths featuring an exhibition on safety were also set up at the main entrance of MBPJ.