Keeping workers, communities and the environment safe should be top priorities for any building project. Modular construction better supports health and safety than traditional construction – explained below.
Construction is notoriously one of the most high-risk industries to work in. According to a report published by the Health and Safety Executive, an average 59,000 non-fatal injuries were suffered by construction workers each year across the 2019/20 – 2021/22 period, with nearly one fifth of these caused by falls from a height.
From scaffolding and mobile plant to hazardous wastes, there are numerous risks associated with different types of construction that not only impact workers, but the general public, local communities, ecosystems and the wider environment too.
One way to limit such risks is for organisations to utilise modular building – i.e. where a structure’s components are manufactured offsite in a controlled environment and transported to, and assembled on, site. A far more efficient approach, modular construction provides the opportunity for buildings to be safely delivered at speed – a much needed outcome given the expected rise in demand for construction in the UK.
Improving safety with controlled conditions
One of the best means of reducing exposure to the risks associated with onsite construction is to carry out building work within a quality-controlled environment, as is the case with the manufacture of modular units. Primarily, this is because the time workers are required to spend onsite is reduced, decreasing their exposure to associated risks. The advantages of such highly monitored conditions offer benefits not only to the workers but also the safety of buildings by protecting components from inclement weather and external disruption.
As a winner of the British Safety Council’s International Safety Award and a holder of accreditations from the Contractors Health and Safety Assessment Scheme (CHAS), Constructionline, SafeContractor, Achilles, and certified to ISO 45001, Premier Modular is dedicated to consistently prioritising the safety of its skilled workforce and ensuring its modular solutions exceed industry standards. To achieve this, weekly and monthly reviews of the procedures undertaken in the company’s factories are carried out.
Fire safety considerations
Another advantage of offsite building solutions is the reduced risk of fire. In a controlled factory environment, which is highly secure, fire risk is near minimal; there is less chance of materials and waste igniting spontaneously – e.g. under direct sunlight.
To ensure fire safety within the new building, all Premier Modular buildings exceed national standards. As it stands, Premier Modular is the only company in the industry to test buildings under laboratory conditions to ensure they satisfy the Joint Code of Practice for Fire Prevention on Construction Sites.
Safety in practice…
Whilst all buildings are required to meet stringent health and safety regulations, certain structures are held to a higher grade. Examples include schools, hospitals, large infrastructure projects and, in the case of one Premier Modular project, nuclear power stations.
The comprehensive facilities Premier Modular was required to deliver as part of the Hinkley Point C development needed to comply with the strictest of safety standards. The company operated under the full ONR Nuclear Licence and produced a special lifting frame and safety carousel to address the concerns of working at height. Premier Modular is always prepared to make such adaptations to provide the best standards of safety in every project. Due to the ingenuity exercised in the Hinkley Point C development, Premier Modular was awarded a HPC Excellence Award for Best Safety Innovation.
This project is a prime example of how modular construction’s adaptability enables safety solutions to be tailored to specific projects with either significant or unique risks. As a leading provider of modular construction, Premier Modular continuously strives to:
- Promote the highest standards of health and safety in factories and sites.
- Procure products and materials responsibly.
- Make a positive contribution to society at every level.
Interested to know how Premier Modular will deliver your temporary or permanent building safely?