Construction Trends for 2022

What is the definition of a trend? A general direction in which something is developing or changing or something that is popular. While a trend usually refers to a certain style in fashion or entertainment, trends can be found in any industry and seeing as we are in the building and construction industry, we thought it would be fitting to have a look at some Construction Trends in 2022…so let’s go:

1. Updated safety measuresThe wearing of face masks is not a new thing at construction sites, prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. It is now the standard to wear face masks on-site as well as having your temperature scanned, workplace cleanliness on a stricter level, coronavirus testing, social distancing and a few other safety regulations. Safety-related technology is also on the increase, which includes a few of the following:

  • Drones – which can access hard to reach areas.
  • Robots – which can handle tasks that bring about injuries such as scaffolding construction and bricklaying.
  • Environmental Sensors – which can detect wind, heat and noise and provide warning signs/signals to evacuate workers and in case of an emergency or natural disaster, move high-cost construction equipment.
  • Wireless Sensors – Construction workers’ personal protective equipment such as vests, hard hats, gloves will have sensors and trackers instilled in them, and keep track of workers vital signs, movements, slips or falls. This ensures the safety of workers and immediately notifies safety managers when workers are at risk of injury.

2. Green Building What is Green Roofing? A green roof is a roof of a building that is partially or completely covered with vegetation and a growing medium that is planted over a waterproofing membrane.

Green roofs are becoming more and more common. They offer huge environmental benefits, such as Reducing temperatures of the roof surface and surrounding air, providing shade, improving stormwater management, insulating the building reducing the need for air conditioning in summer and providing insulation in winter, improving air quality, and lasts two to three times longer than a normal standard roof.

3. 3D PrintingDefinition: Using an automated machine (3D printer), the structure of a construction project is automatically printed on a layer-by-layer basis.

3D printing of homes hasn’t been done on a big scale as yet but there is definitely growth in it. 3D printing is mostly used for building low-cost and emergency housing is usually more affordable and faster than the conventional methods. A few more advantages are reduced material costs, cheaper construction overall, reduced injury, and many more. This is definitely a construction trend to look out for as it also reduces waste, has exceptional turnaround times and has the capacity to mass print designs without changing machinery.

4. Finding and Retaining Workers/LabourersA shortage of workers is nothing new according to many in the construction industry. Not having enough workers can slow down the construction process hugely, which then affects customer satisfaction and poses consequential risks to companies when taking on new construction projects. So the way of solving the problem and tackling this challenge will include paying competitive wages and benefits, offering bonuses and incentives, worker development, training programs, better tools, etc. These are just to name a few.

5. Smart CitiesIn general, a smart city is a city that uses technology to provide services and solve city problems. A smart city does things like improve transportation and accessibility, improve social services, promote sustainability, and give its citizens a voice. A few advantages of smart cities are more job opportunities, better transport services, efficient public services, the decline in crime, improvement of infrastructure, and a few more. However, there are also a few disadvantages of smart cities such as Social control and limited privacy. Smart cities have been defined as “high-tech intensive” urban developments that can link people and data to improve a city’s economy and quality of life.

Sources
Ace Work Gear
Method. me
Wikipedia
Green Builder Media


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About Bianca Edgcumbe

I started working at Leads 2 Business in May 2013 in the Africa Tenders Department. I worked my way to the Leads 2 Quotes Department in September 2016 and have been there ever since.

Photography & Drones in Construction

You generally hear them before you see them. You tend to be looking here and there until you spot it. A splayed machine rising near vertically into your line of sight. Hovering. Until it banks and zooms off. No matter what innocuous activity I’m partaking in, I always squint in suspicion at our local neighborhood drone as it zips off over the farm. My dog also tends to get a bark in.

No matter how commonplace drones have become, they’re toys for crying out loud; they still give me the creeps. They do still have an air of science fiction about them. And we all know they have cameras.

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV’s), commonly referred to as a drone, are considered aircraft without pilots on board. They are controlled by remote control by a human on the ground (I sincerely hope so, because I’ve seen that movie, and it does not end well for us). They were initially developed by the military, for less than savory undertakings “dull, dirty or dangerous”, but with the development of their technology, and the reduction of cost; their use expanded into non-military applications. They are used for aerial photography, agriculture, product delivery, surveillance and policing, an inspection of infrastructure, science, smuggling, and drone racing (because “of course they are”).

In South Africa, in the commercial sphere to legally operate, you are required to have a Remote Pilots License (RPL) and a ROC (Remote Operator Certificate). There are laws governing the flying of drones, and should you break the law you could be given a fine, have your drone confiscated, or go to jail.

They are, however, proving very useful in a variety of industries.

Drones are being used in the construction industry for inspections and to keep abreast of project progress, as well as to keep on top of site safety and security. Drones and aerial photography are proving cost-effective and efficient. They are used for land mapping and for ground assessment. And although aerial images from high up, and wide angles do come to mind, drones are also used for close-up inspections.

Drone photography is even being incorporated into CAD software. These images are being used for progress reports as well as for accurate measurements.

They are invaluable when it comes to marketing. Often the photographs captured via drones, are stunning. They are arresting not only in their composition but in their sheer uniqueness. We are not used to seeing the world from such an aerial perspective. Plus a lot of the time, the images are unobstructed.

A bird’s eye view has been replaced by a drone’s camera view.

 

Sources:
Fly Guys
Drone Photography Services
Wikipedia
Robert Lowdon
CAA
Law for All
Baithe


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About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Construction Pollution

 

Our planet has been fighting a non-stop battle against pollution. On our average day today, we do not take note of the damage we cause to our planet. This is a very sensitive topic to most people. Typically we hate to face the reality however at some point it is inevitable to avoid.

Construction pollution involves so many aspects in this topic from Air, water, soil, and/or Noise pollution. This is caused by the materials used, such as harmful chemicals used during the construction. Fossil fuels being one of them produces greenhouse gases that harm the environment.

The most common types of pollution found on Construction sites are dust and diesel emissions. Dust pollution being a very common Construction Site pollution, It may contain Microscopic solids or liquid droplets, they are minute enough to seep into the lungs and cause health issues such as wheezing, Bronchial infections, dermatitis, Asthma attacks and more. It can also contain chemical particles that can cause Long-term Health issues.

Out of 195 Counties, South Africa is standing at 37 on the list of the most polluted, with stats standing at 21.56 Average PM2,5 (Fine particulate matter 2.5) refers to tiny particles or droplets in the air that are two and one-half microns or less in width. It is caused by Car, truck, bus and off-road vehicle exhausts and from operations that involve the burning of fossil fuels such as wood, heating oil or coal. Consideration to our communities around our construction sites plays a role in reasoning to reduce our pollution on site.

Let’s look at ways to reduce Construction Pollution

Time: Consider time management on site. Decrease the amount of time spent on site. Modular construction can decrease time and speed up the process. “Modular construction – is a process where pieces and structures are built off-site in manufacturing plants before being transported to the job site “

Vehicles: Construction sites require the use of machinery. It is a tough one. The use of economic fuel-efficient vehicles “Tier 4 equipment”. The use of this equipment reduces hydrocarbon emissions. Reducing idiling time will benefit in more ways than one. Saving on fuel expenses and reducing Air pollution.

Clean-Up: No one enjoys cleaning up after a long day’s work. So create a cleanup policy, have bins laid out across your construction site, so your workers can have a clean Working environment with no arb wrapper in the midst of your equipment.

Sources:
China Daily
World Population Review
Air Veda
Exak Time
Frame CAD
Tracey Road
Portland Maine Junk Removal
Steadfast Building


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The Cost of Free

When you think of the eTenders portal, the adage “No such thing as a free lunch” comes to mind. To be fair though, when has a government-driven solution ever been successful?

There is one “positive” though: The eTenders Portal is free? This might lead you to consider it a viable alternative to Leads 2 Business?

The reality is that almost nothing is truly free. Consider the long-term effect this will have on your business:

  1. Spending time on multiple sources looking for the relevant, updated information?
  2. Catering for your specific requirements?
  3. Quality and quantity of information?
  4. Assistance and support?

The question is, can you really afford to miss another opportunity? Keep your order book healthy and your pipeline filled with validated opportunities. Think long-term.

Ps. Did you know Leads 2 Business also offers a free publication of tenders by simply emailing Tenders@L2B.co.za?

Read more: What’s gone wrong with Government’s tender website? from GroundUp.


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About Sasha Anderson

Millennial Mom + wife living the hash-tag life. Remember: If You Fail - Fail Forward

Transportation & the Construction Industry

posted in: Construction Chat 0

Planning and transportation of materials, tools, and equipment is an important aspect of completing any construction job on time. Construction projects have many moving parts and managing all of these different elements is crucial to the success of any project, so you have to have to make sure you have a logistics plan in place in order for the project to run as smoothly as it possibly can and within the budget of course. We do not often think or realize how important this aspect of the project is.

Depending on where the site is will ultimately decide how the materials will be transported as well as what is being transported. The most common mode of transportation are trucks and flatbed trucks and trailers.

When the site is ready and all the materials and equipment have arrived, the transportation of construction material on site begins.

Examples of construction equipment on a site:

1. Boom Lift – a type of aerial platform used to get workers off the ground to work on an elevated project.
2. Scissor Lift – Similar to a boom lift, scissor lifts are aerial work platforms used to elevate workers.
3. Forklift – If materials need to be transported a short distance, forklift equipment can be used.
4. Telehandler – used for jobs where a forklift is inadequate. It’s more heavy-duty than a forklift and can access much higher areas as well.
5. Bulldozer – is used to push, carry and condense any sort of loose material on site.

6. Skid Steer Loader – a skid loader can host different equipment and is also small enough to maneuver into tight areas of a site.
7. Excavator – An excavator is a heavy piece of machinery used to dig and crush material on a site.
8. Off-Highway Truck – The off-highway truck is specifically made for rugged environments. This heavy-duty dump truck has massive wheels with deep treads, allowing it to venture off-road and support construction and mining sites. It’s primarily used to transport materials like rocks or dirt from one site to another. Some models use multi-axle dump buckets to support even heavier loads.
9. Carry Deck Crane – A carry deck crane is a small, mobile crane system.
10. Articulated Hauler – As with an articulated truck, an articulated hauler has a pivot joint in its build, giving it increased mobility. Because of this joint, it can carry massive loads around tight turns, making it ideal for most structural builds. This dump truck has a control hub where the driver sits and a material pail where loads go to be transported. Almost all articulated haulers are four-wheel drive, giving them access to most sites regardless of condition.

Sources:
Construction Business Owner
The Boss Magazine
Big Rentx


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About Nadia Milln

My journey at Leads 2 Business all started back in September 2014 as a content researcher in the Daily Tenders Africa Department. In March 2018 I was promoted to content researcher in the Private Project department. I am a fun loving, bubbly person and mom to a beautiful baby boy who is the absolute light of my life.

Construction Technology

Posted by Brett Long

If it’s not broken don’t fix it, right? Despite technological progress, it’s not uncommon for construction companies to still rely on spreadsheets, manual data entry, and paperwork. Low IT budgets and lack of time for training have contributed to a hesitancy around adopting new methods and technology.

Emerging construction technology isn’t just a fad or a fun new toy. There are real, practical applications and benefits to modernizing your current processes. And if your construction company wants to remain competitive and not be left behind, you’ll need to find ways to integrate new approaches into your strategy and workflows.

These cutting-edge technologies are drastically changing how the industry operates and how future projects will be completed.

Types of Construction Technology Impacting the Industry:

  • Mobile Technology
  • Drones
  • Building Information Monitoring (BIM)
  • Virtual Reality and Wearables
  • 3D Printing
  • Artificial Intelligence

1. Mobile Technology

Mobile technology isn’t just for games anymore. Apps are becoming more of the norm in construction and for good reason. The increased portability of tablets and smartphones allows for greater communication and the ability to work from anywhere. Integrating this type of technology into your current processes can be much simpler and require a smaller upfront investment while still providing major benefits and boosting productivity in your day-to-day operations. So if you want to start implementing technology, this is a good place to start.

Mobile technology can help to save time and keep your project moving forward faster by providing real-time updates and making information available between the job site and the office. You can easily access the latest revisions to plans or report a problem to the project manager off-site.

2. Drones

Drones are the most widely used emerging construction technology. They can conduct site surveys more quickly and accurately than a crew on the ground and are cheaper than aerial imaging. Their high-resolution cameras and the data collected can create interactive 3D or topographical maps and models and take volume measurements.

Another benefit of using drones is the ability to inspect hard-to-reach places such as bridges or around tall buildings, and to do it safely. You can also use them to monitor progress on a job site and see how people are working.

3. Building Information Modeling (BIM)

BIM is similar to CAD (computer-aided design), but not exactly the same. It is software for 3D design to digitally model what will be built. But its capabilities don’t stop there: “It doesn’t just create a visually appealing 3D model of your building—it creates numerous layers of metadata and renders them within a collaborative workflow,” writes Engineering.com. It captures things in a way that paper just can’t.

32.7% of builders are currently using BIM/CAD software, JBKnowledge reports in their 2016 survey. The use of BIM has even been mandated in the UK for government construction projects.

The use of BIM provides space for better collaboration because each person and expertise area can add their piece to the same model, instead of breaking out onto multiple versions of a 2D paper drawing. This way, the model evolves immediately as people contribute, streamlining the process and increasing efficiency. BIM also helps with problem-solving in the design and planning stages of a project, by automating clash detection and providing a more complete picture of the project.

4. Virtual Reality and Wearables

Virtual reality technology is often used in conjunction with BIM to help better understand complex projects. Think of the potential: you create a building design with BIM and can then use VR to actually walk around it. Pretty cool, right? This will give your team, or the client an even more realistic idea of what the project will look like once completed. Having a more complete grasp on the project before it begins allows you to avoid big changes and expensive change orders mid-way through.

Wearables are a construction technology that will have an impact on job site safety and risk management. The Daqri smart glasses, though still in the early stages, are one example. The glasses have an augmented reality display, wide-angle camera, depth sensor, and other features that allow workers to collect and see data based on their environment. The glasses give workers the information and instructions they need to complete a task right on the display, getting the job done faster and with less room for error.

5. 3D Printing

3D printing as a construction technology has the potential to change material sourcing. For prefabrication, materials for a project can be printed and then transported to the job site, ready for use immediately. This can allow you to get materials faster and streamline the process by removing extra steps in the middle.

According to the U.K. Green Building Council, around 15% of materials delivered to construction sites end up in landfills, and the American Institute of Architects believes that building-related waste makes up between 25% to 40% of America’s solid-waste stream, reports Fortune. With 3D printing it will even be possible to print materials right on site, reducing waste and further saving on transportation and storage costs.

One of the current challenges with the adoption of this technology is limitations with mass production. Although some 3D printers can produce on a larger scale, they are expensive.

6. Artificial Intelligence

The construction industry is already seeing the implementation of artificial intelligence on the job site with the use of robotics for tasks like bricklaying and autonomous equipment that can operate and complete tasks without the need for human interaction.

AI can benefit construction projects through increased safety, improving workflows, and getting jobs done faster and better. “AI can replicate the judgments, decisions, and actions of humans without getting fatigued,” said Dan Kara of ABI Research. It can also identify when information or pieces are missing and ask questions, and use the data it collects.

Sources
Device Magic
UK Connect


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About Sasha Anderson

Millennial Mom + wife living the hash-tag life. Remember: If You Fail - Fail Forward

Renewable Energy in SA

What is Renewable Energy?

Renewable energy is the energy that is collected from renewable resources, which are naturally replenished on a human timescale, such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, waves, and geothermal heat.

Not only does renewable energy reduce carbon emissions, but the infrastructure can be built quickly to match the country’s need for electricity. Some renewables already supply cheaper electricity than the newest coal power plants. Renewables will get cheaper and coal and nuclear likely more expensive.

The energy sector in South Africa is an important component of global energy regimes due to the country’s innovation and advances in renewable energy.

Of all South African renewable energy sources, solar holds the most potential. Because of the country’s geographic location, it receives large amounts of solar energy. Wind energy is also a major potential source of renewable energy. Investment in renewable energy in SA can provide decent jobs and increase skills. SA is a solar-rich country with one of the highest solar resources in the world.

South Africa is taking the lead in Africa which gives us the opportunity to become a key global player in this growing industry thus investment in renewable energy in SA can provide decent jobs and increase skills.

Here are just a few of the Renewable Energy Projects that we currently have on our Leads 2 Business website

PPA 26177 – Vortum Solar Park
PPA 26040 – Zoute Kloof Solar Farm
PPA 14457 – Kangnas Wind Energy Facility

Get in the know with these renewable energy projects and more by subscribing to our platform, please feel free to contact me on SharikaR@l2b.co.za to receive daily project leads and updates.

Sources:
Wikipedia
Engerati
Civiconcepts

 


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About Sharika Raman

I have worked for Leads 2 Business from January 2015 till present. I work for the Leads 2 Quotes Department for Directory and Control List.

Health & Safety Construction Changes since COVID-19

“Oh, Sh#$, My Mask!” – Normal Person on the Daily.

I know we don’t all particularly like change, but times have changed and we, therefore, need to embrace change as well and conform to the new norm and try to remember to wear a mask and sanitize all the time.

The health and safety within the construction industry is challenging at the moment as everyone has to try to adapt to the new way of working.

To reduce the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, plans need to be in place to help identify risk levels in the workplace. They also need to determine the implementation of control measures.

Owners of companies as well as their staff need to remain in the know and up to date with the changing Covid-19 outbreak conditions as they directly affect and relate to community spread of the virus.

This blog is on “Changes since COVID-19” within the Construction industry. I’d like to focus on the construction site itself.

As a Health & Safety officer onsite or the main contractor, you will need to assess the hazards to which your workers may be exposed. You also need to then evaluate the risk of exposure and ensure workers adhere to rules in place to prevent exposure.

Conducting a job hazard analysis can also help you determine whether work activities require close contact (within 2 meters) between staff, visitors, customers or members of the public.

There is so much information on this particular topic, however, below are some points which I believe most stood out to me:

1. Personal Protective Equipment
  • To be honest, most construction workers are unlikely to need more PPE beyond what they already use. What I mean is that the PPE that they should already have to have is a hard hat, gloves, safety glasses, and a face mask. Since Covid-19, the PPE required may now include eye protection, gloves, and/or face shields.
2. Transportation
  • Washing your hands before and after using public transport. Also washing your hands and sanitizing as soon as you get home. All persons should ensure that their hands are sanitized before and after, entering and existing any vehicle.
  • The use of individual transport is much preferred during this crisis. Where possible, workers should use their cars and drive alone rather than collective or make use of public transport. The employer can facilitate this and assist by ensuring there is a car park or open site available to all employees. If you think about it, even a rack for securely storing bicycles would also help. Heck if you live close enough and are fit do to so, then walk to work.
  • The contractor or health & safety consultant should note and assess the number of workers being transported. A log should be kept and the consultant can also implement measures to ensure that social distancing between persons is adhered to.
  • Work buses or work transport should have space where people can sit apart from each other (adhering to social distancing) and the vehicle should be well-ventilated. Masks are to be worn in both public transport & employer transport/buses.
  • Visitors to the construction site should be discouraged to visit. Should there be a delivery of any sort, drivers should try to remain in their vehicles while being screened and provided with hand sanitizer. When goods are being delivered, it is suggested to do so through pick-up or delivery outside of the construction site. It’s not often, but delivery workers could also be allowed to use facilities such as toilets and cafeterias onsite, and these should be sanitized and cleaned thoroughly at all times.
  • Transportation of staff:
    • Vehicles being used to transport workers or being used on site are to be thoroughly disinfected each time before and after boarding
    • Each person onsite is to be screened and have their temperature taken twice daily. A log of the everyone’s details, temperatures, times and dates as well as those of visitors to the site will need to be kept.
    • Stickers or markings on the ground should be placed around the site to ensure social distancing.
    • Wearing of masks is mandatory
    • The appointed Covid19 officer on site would need to monitor staff as they disembark from any transport vehicle to make sure social distancing and sanitizing are done.

3. Site access & workspace

Contractors have specific responsibilities for health and safety and must coordinate all activities of workers & sub-contractors. They are responsible for ensuring the health and safety of everyone and would do so by implementing policies and procedures as well as providing workers with instructions, training and supervision.

It is recommended that a Covid-19 safety co-ordinator or officer be appointed at each site and that everyone is familiar with that person. This officer will ensure compliance with Covid19 regulations and safeguard against infection as well as be able to provide answers to any questions persons may have.

  • Covid-19 compliance procedures are to be included in the contractors existing safety manuals onsite.
  • Site safety manuals should highlight where Covid19 safety procedures are difficult to adhere to, depending on the nature of work. (eg: shared fall protection ropes, tools and equipment that could be potential transmission points)
  • Covid19 signage and posters in all languages necessary should be installed onsite. Especially in high traffic areas such as entries, exits, hallways, meeting points, material docks, canteens and changing rooms.
  • Adopt staggered work schedules – alternating workdays or extra shifts, to reduce the total number of employees on a job site at any given time and to ensure physical distancing.
  • Ensure clean toilet and handwashing facilities. Clean and disinfect portable site toilets regularly. Fill hand sanitizer dispensers regularly. Disinfect frequently touched items such as door handles, soap dispensers, taps and toilet seats.
4. Lunchrooms / Eating Area
  • Stagger lunch hours to reduce the number of staff in the breakroom at one time.
  • Food should be consumed at designated areas only. When you are eating, your mask is off and the risk of infection may be greater. Social and safe distancing still applies.
  • As said before, signage should be in the lunch area creating Covid19 awareness or simply just reminding everyone to wash your hands and wear your mask. Remember this is sort of “new” to us, and its human nature to forget to wear your mask sometimes. 6 months of it and I’m still not 100% used to it, but we have to be. I appreciate the signs and reminders.
  • Seating arrangements now needs be modified to include social distancing.
  • Tables, chairs, microwaves, utensils and any other equipment or surfaces need to be disinfected before and after every use. Where possible, encourage staff to bring their cutlery and crockery and to keep this at their desk or in their locker.

5. Staircases
  • One-way walking on the staircase should be implemented. Basically, have people keep left at all times. This is to avoid social distancing being compromised.
  • The handrail needs to be regularly disinfected and should you use this you need to sanitise before and after use. Staff shouldn’t touch anything.

6. Site Offices
  • Again, Covid19 signage needs to be up at the site office as well as “Restricted Access” so that they know there is a limit to the number of people allowed in that area.
  • Sinks need to be installed with hand sanitizer available for staff and visitors
  • A checklist of commonly used items should be drawn up and those need to be wiped and clean periodically (such as doorknobs, chairs, desks, stationery). The construction safety officer is to ensure this is complied with.

7. Site Sanitation Measures
  • Provide hand sanitizers/handwash and sinks with clean running water.
  • Provide paper towels instead of hand towels. This you can throw away after use, instead of all using the same, dirty hand towel.
  • Provide foot-operated/foot pedal rubbish bins in all bathrooms and site offices.
  • Limit the number of persons allowed to make use of the toilet facilities at any one time. Have a visible sign with the maximum capacity allowed.
  • Toilet facilities and fixtures are to be disinfected by cleaning staff regularly.

8. Material Management

1. Unloading and loading zones should be clearly marked and also have limited access.

2. Any vehicle entering or exiting the premises is to be disinfected. Especially machinery or vehicles used by multiple persons.

3. Documents are to be reviewed and validated in digital formats where possible. If you can fill in contracts or documents online then do so. This is to avoid the physical exchange of paperwork and avoid the spread of the virus.

4. Any delivery that is unloaded should be disinfected before storage at the site.

9. Training & Awareness is to be provided to all employees on the following:

  • Signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and the need to report any safety and health concerns
  • All policies and procedures are to be followed
  • Hygiene and social distancing
  • Avoiding physical contact with others and maintaining a distance
  • Appropriate cleaning practice
  • The proper way to cover coughs and sneezes
  • Alternatives to shaking hands upon entry
  • Not touching your face, or anyone else’s
  • Decontamination, removal and disposal of any PPE being used
  • The importance and seriousness of staying at home if you are sick.
  • Wearing a mask, always
  • Any members who have been in isolation, quarantine or had been diagnosed with COVID-19 should be physically separated from any other members of the team. Be it in a different room or on a different part of the site. You can even use closed doors or walls as physical barriers to separate workers.
10. Reporting
  • A team which includes a safety officer could be put together to form a Covid19 response unit onsite. This team can then plan, co-ordinate and provide information to others. They would be involved in decision making and co-ordination with other companies and stakeholders.
  • Daily, weekly, fortnightly and monthly reports should now include Covid19 stats. This means Covid19 safety compliance as well as staff screening. The number of workers being screened, their locations and any workers suspected of symptoms.
  • Site safety procedures are to be updated and managed.
  • Documents, including training logs, should be kept and readily available.
  • A three strike policy could be implemented for those who are non-compliant. In the same breath, you can implement a rewards program for those who have done well and adhered to the rules.
  • Meetings. Keep in-person meetings as short as possible and limit the number of workers in attendance. Limit this to less than 15 minutes and use social distancing practices. No more than 50 persons gathered in the same area. If you have to, rather consider holding on-site meetings in open spaces or outside. Another alternative is having staff or team meetings online.

11. Engineering Controls

  • Plastic sheets can be used as barriers
  • Special attention needs to be given to those “High Risk” employees as well as those with family members who are at high risk.
12. Use of Technology
  • Thermal imaging scanners can be used for easy temperature screening of groups of staff.
  • Digital scanners (instead of biometrics) can be used for recording staff attendance.
  • Drones. I’ve even heard people go as far as to use drones to spray disinfectant on-site areas.
  • Spray booths or disinfectant walk-through booths are also used at the entrance to the site.
  • Occupancy of rooms or common areas can be displayed and viewed.
  • Covid19 mobile compliance app which includes chat-bots in multiple languages, are very helpful and should be introduced to employees.
  • A control centre should be set up where you can use remote camera technology to track those who arrive to and leave the site.

13. Mental health

We need to be aware that Covid19 not only affects our physical health, but our mental health as well.

  • We need to assist those who are suffering from anxiety or stress and support should be in place for those persons.
  • This is also a time of uncertainty and many will need advice, support or just someone to talk to.

Additional important points
  • Never mix any of the solutions or different types of disinfectants (e.g ammonia with bleach). Hazardous vapours will be released and can be very toxic.
  • As hand sanitizers result in dehydration, we need to moisturise hands regularly.
  • If any of the staff members develop skin rash or irritation after using disinfectants or the hand sanitizers, they are to inform occupational health practitioner/specialist immediately. They can then establish what the cause is and recommend another brand or type of sanitizer or disinfectant to be used.

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Sources
Osha
Oshwiki
CIDB
Hseni
Lexology
Ehs Today Construction
Ehs Today Webinar
Hsa
CDC
Ontario
SA Builder
KPMG
PBC Today


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About Michelle Crosby

I started my journey at Leads 2 Business in the Directory Department in 2012. I was then promoted to the Private Projects department in 2014 and have been working as the Regional Gauteng content researcher ever since.

Affordable Housing in Africa – what’s being done?

 

It is hard to argue that housing is not a fundamental human need. Decent, affordable housing should be a basic right for everybody in the world. The reason is simple: without stable shelter, everything else falls apart. Across the world, people are being asked to stay at home and practice social distancing, to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus. This first strategy against the global epidemic brings the home or Housing into sharp focus.

Africa is all about low-cost affordable housing. Housing is an often contentious and aggressively debated topic as it carries the weight of a huge number of socio-economic factors. While there have been local and global investors who are investing in most affordable housing projects, we will be looking at how Government bodies facilitate in meeting the requirements through various schemes and policy initiatives that are favourable to the low-income groups.

Do we have affordable housing in Africa?

Nigeria: One of the notable interventions has been the creation of Family Homes Funds which is a partnership between the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority. The Fund has the commitment to facilitate and supply 500 000 houses for low-income earners by 2023. The gap between supply and the huge housing demand in Nigeria is exacerbated by market variables such as accessibility of land, infrastructure and building materials. The UNOPS and its partners have signed an agreement with Nigeria to build houses in Ekiti State. The affordable homes will feature renewable energy and disease preventative technology including solar panel roofs, waste-to-energy technology and mosquito-repelling coatings. The initiative is expected to create thousands of local jobs and spur economic growth to a host of local industries.

Ghana: The development of 6,500 homes has begun in Amasaman, near Accra, in the first part of an ambitious project by the government of Ghana, UNOPS and Sustainable Housing Solutions (SHS) Holdings, to build 200,000 affordable and sustainable homes. The project will support the local economy and help reduce the country’s current housing deficit of two million units. Local employees will carry out all production and construction, creating several thousand new jobs. SHS has established a local factory to make building materials needed for the homes, which will be constructed with energy-efficient materials, including solar panels. Ghana has proposed an annual delivery of 85 000 homes over the next decade. The government is also working towards facilitating creative finance schemes that improve overall affordability and access to modern communities for all working-class citizens.

Kenya: Low-cost housing Kenya project will be funded by Kenyan investors who will be supported by the government. The government has also put in place mechanisms to collect cash from its population and invest it into the project. The Ngara housing project comes with a different set of housing units. One bedroom houses are covering 30 square meters all the way to three-bedroom houses covering 80 square meters, these costs are very low compared to what developers are charging at the moment. It is proof enough that the low-cost housing projects in Kenya are indeed low and targeted for the different types of Kenyan earners.

South Africa: The government, however, addresses the affordability challenge by focusing on the supply side, providing houses to low-income households as part of a comprehensive subsidized programmed in which government is the delivery agent. Minimum 45 m² floor area, two bedrooms, renewable source, wind, solar, rainwater collection with filters, prevent pollution for a family earning less than R3,500 per month can qualify for a subsidy of up to R160,000. Another option that the government plans to employ and considers to be a potential factor is microfinance, which rolls out loans at an affordable repay rate. The South African government has allocated R2 billion to upgrading slums to improve access to water and sanitation facilities. This could have a significant impact not only on the current pandemic, but on health, overall.

Ethiopia: Addis Ababa’s housing sector has been a long-standing challenge. For over a century the rapidly growing Ethiopian capital has been unable to provide adequate and sufficient housing, particularly for its low-income citizens. Ethiopia’s financial sector has been State-controlled, limiting foreign investment. Affordability is a major issue in the housing market in Ethiopia. The problem of the generally low income of urban residents is exacerbated by costly construction material and unreasonably high land prices. Most of the inner cities in most urban centres are houses owned by the government and rented to residents at a comparatively low fee. The government has committed to reducing the housing shortage and has recently showed interest in enhancing the role of the private sector in supplying houses.

Uganda: Uganda’s housing situation is characterized by inadequate homes in terms of quality and quantity in both rural and urban areas. The housing deficit currently stands at 2.4 million housing units. The government has sponsored housing development projects in urban areas such as Kampala, where there is a tremendous need to provide new housing units to keep up with the rising population. Credit is a real challenge for low-income families in Uganda’s cash-based society.

Rwanda: The Government of Rwanda, through the Ministry of Infrastructure, has developed the Urbanization and Rural Settlement Sector Strategic Plan, 2018-2024. The Strategic Plan focuses on integrated human settlement planning and coordinated development of the City of Kigali and secondary towns, creation of livable, well serviced, connected, compact, green and productive urban and rural settlements with cultural identity access to social and affordable housing, and informal settlements upgrading.

Sources:
Wikimedia
Economist
IFC
All Africa
SA Affordable Housing


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About Nirasha Rampersad

I started working for Leads to Business June 2017 as Support Assistance in L2Q.

5 Essential Tools used in Construction

When I was first given this topic, my mind went straight to the larger tools such as concrete mixers, scaffolding, etc but why do we always need to think big, what about the basic tools, not even the powered tools, let’s get back to the basics.

After giving it some thought, I realized that 5 essential tools would be different for everyone, as no two constructors are the same, and it would all depend on what one specializes in and of course what they deem useful to them


So from an office worker, here’s my take on the five most essential tools to have in one’s tool belt if you are in construction:

 

  1. Tape measure, as the saying goes measure twice, cut once. Everything in construction needs to be measured, no matter what field you are in.
  2. Pencil/chalk – once measured, the measurement needs to be marked off, drawings and designs need to be marked too.
  3. Hammer – what would a builder be without a hammer especially one with a claw. So many things one can do with a hammer!.
  4. Stanley knife – such a handy tool, one can cut tape, rubber, electrical wire, etc. Strip the end of the wire and so much more.
  5. Pliers – a good quality pair of pliers is vital to hold, pull and cut building materials.

 

This is my take but I am sure that many will find that other items are more essential or important to them.
Happy Constructing:)


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About Debora Keet

My journey at Leads 2 Business started in January 2006 as a Private Projects Researcher, Since October 2008, I have been in the Administration and Human Resources department.

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