To identify the environmental problems in the superstructure construction, we need to recognize the environmental aspect of this site. So that identifies the environmental impact or problems. According to the ISO 14001:2004 Environmental Management system, it lists out several environmental aspects a) emissions to air, b) releases to water, c) releases to land, d) use of raw materials and natural resources, e) use of energy, f) energy emitted, e.g. heat, radiation, vibration, g) waste and by-products, and h) physical attributes, e.g. size, shape, colour, appearance.
Environmental aspect and impact
Emissions to air
During construction, all the material e.g. ready mixed concrete truck will deliver to the site by trucks or other vehicles, any transportation method to the site will require fuel to run. Thus they will release some pollutant to the air like CO, CO2, NO, NO2â€¦
Global warming will become more obviously. Although CO2 can maintain the temperature in the earth, excessive CO2 emission will cause green house effect. If the temperature continuous rise, it will become a big disaster for example the mean sea level will increase and the land will drown due to the ice in polar is melted.
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On the other hand, some of the pollutant will affect the health of human for example NO2 can irritate the lungs and lower resistance to respiratory infection such as influenza.
Releases to water
Due to the statutory requirement in Hong Kong, the exit of the site must install a wheel washing system to avoid any dust or pollutants bring to outside environment by vehicles. This kind of system will consume so much water and the water will be soil water. Any discharging of waste water will cause pollution.
If the waste water is directly discharged to the soil without any treatment, the toxic chemical inside the water will affect the existing plants or tree. The soil will store the toxic contaminant even passing many years. Also, the waste water will create a bad smell to environment. They may not damage the human health, but the bad smell will affect the working condition for worker.
Releases to land
The site area will divide to several parts for storage area. However this kind of material may be highly corrosion to the existing land for example cement is acidic and the soil is alkali. When cement is leakage to the soil, the soil original property will change and harmful the existing tree and plants.
The soil contamination will happen; the soil will become harmful to the existing tree and plant. This effect will not disappear in a short time; it is a long term effect.
Use of raw materials and natural resources
Timber is one kind of natural resources. It made by tree e.g. hard wood, soft wood. In building construction, timber is playing a very important role of construction material. The most commonly type is timber formwork. Before discharging the fresh concrete, timber formwork will form the fresh concrete to required shape. However the timber formwork cannot use many times because the fresh concrete will corrode the timber formwork.
The tree needs to take long time to grow, so timber will not provide without limit. In addition, there are many other products made by timber like furniture, paperâ€¦ If the timber is over used and the timber becomes less production, it will very inconvenient for human life. Moreover the tree have a function to absorb the CO2, so when more and more tree disappear, the situation of global warning will get worse. Also the root of the tree can hold tightly to the soil, when the tree is cut, more chance to happen landslide in sloping area.
Use of energy and f) energy emitted
All the equipments will require electricity to operate in the site for example some hand tools use by worker, lighting system, passenger hoist and material hoist. On the other hand the machine will consume fuel to operate during excavation or transportation.
During piling work on the site, the piling process will create big noise and vibration to the environment. Nevertheless, other construction process will also generate big impaction to environment.
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Since the electricity is come from the fossil fuel by generator, the fossil fuel will create lot of containments like CO2 when burn them. As the above mention, CO2 will lead to green house effect and global warming will appear.
Huge vibration will easily get settlement in adjacent buildings. Also the noise will annoy people and become noise pollution.
Waste and by-products and h) physical attributes,
They are almost same as the above mention.
What is a safety plan? Safety plan is a document to direct the safety activity for a project. The main idea of the safety plan is to minimize the accident which causes worker injury and any hazard of their health. It will include the following things 1.Safety Policy, 2.Safety Organization, 3.Safety Training, 4.In-house Safety rules & regulations, 5.Safety Committee, 6.Programme for inspection of hazardous conditions, 7.Job hazard analyze, 8.Person Protection Programme (PPP), 9.Accident/incident investigation, 10.Emergency preparedness, 11.Safety Promotion, 12.Health Assurance Programme, 13.Evaluation selection and control of subcontractor, 14.Process control programme
We need to follow the statutory requirements
- Factory & Industrial Undertakings Ordinance and Regulations
- Dangerous Goods Ordinance and Regulations
- Electricity Ordinance
- Fire Services Ordinance
- Builders' Lifts and Tower Working Platforms (Safety) Ordinance
- Any related ordinances and regulations
The following safety responsibilities should be clearly assigned:
- Monitoring the implementation and compliance of the Site Safety Plan
- Arrangement for regular reporting and communication
- Preparation of method statement, hazard identification survey, risk assessment and establishment of risk control system and monitoring its effectiveness and progress
- Training and promotion
- communicating with the enforcement agencies and outside advisory sources
- Reactive action to staff suggestion
- First-aid officer, competent persons and examiners
3. Safety Training
To ensure the worker can use the machine properly to speed up the construction sequence and avoid the accident happening. The project should provide the following training like:
- Aerial Lift Operator Training
- Crane Operator Training
- Defensive Driver Training
- Powered Industrial Truck Operator Training
Before the work start, it should have a site orientation or induction of training. The orientations provide a forum for the owner/managing contractor to convey its commitment to provide a safe working environment for all individuals on the job site. There also is an opportunity to remind everyone of their responsibility to give due consideration to safety while planning and conducting their work. This is the time to reinforce their responsibility not to expose others on the job site to risks or hazards.
4. In-house Safety rules & regulations
The entire worker in the site must wear the safety helmet and when the worker needs to wear the safety rope before they require working in height. The worker should wear the air-purifying respirators like mask to avoid any harmful contaminants inhale to worker body.
Before the worker start to work, they must have suitable certificate with the corresponded safety training course. So the worker can prove they have required ability to work.
- Confined Space Certified Worker Safety Training Course
- Forklift Truck Operator License Examination Course
- Safety Training Course for Electric Arc Welding
- Manual Lifting and Handling Competent Person Safety Training Course
- Electrician License A Trade Test Preparation Course
- Electrician License B Trade Test Preparation Course
Establish regularly coordinating meeting and site safety committee arrangement.
Programme for inspection of hazardous conditions
Regular inspection on the site the time interval is based on the past performance and hazard profile.
Establish the inspection profile like compliance and safety walk and responsible personnel (including site senior management, safety officers and safety supervisors)
Using the checklist to ensure they are fulfilled the standard.
Job hazard analyze
There are many hazards on the site like:
- Fall from height
- Falling objects
- Stepping on or striking against object
- Hazards associated with operation of machinery, transport and earth moving equipment such as concrete mixing plants, trucks, bulldozers, excavators etc.
- Hazards associated with lifting of materials, both mechanical and manual.
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- Electrical hazards
- Fire hazards
- Chemical hazards
- Collapse of earth - during excavation, slope cutting
After we identify the corresponding the risk of the hazard, we can arrange the suitable solution to minimize the accident.
Person Protection Programme (PPP)
We must ensure that the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) is the last resort after exhausting the hazard control.
The PPE includes Safety helmet, safety footwear, UV protection (e.g. long sleeve shirts, wide brim hats, 15+ sunscreen) and eye, hearing and respiratory protection
The selection and procurement must choose appropriate PPE with the qualification.
We should provide suitable training to the worker to show how to use, storage and maintenance of the PPE. For example, we need to provide the safety helmet's cabinet to store them.
Establish a system of notification, recording and reporting. We should provide some systematic arrangement for investigation and implementation of remedial measures to curb further recurrence. Structured approach for compiling and analyzing accident Statistics. Arrangement for studying the trends of accidents and formulate strategies for enhancement of performance.
For small fire accident, it should provide the suitable fire-extinguisher e.g. water CO2, foamâ€¦ to stamp out the fire. For large fire accident, all the construction work must stop and follow the emergency routes to escape. Also, alarm system should be provided to remind worker to escape.
For heavy typhoon like signal 8 and the red and black signal of the rainstorm, all the construction work must stop.
We should provide the emergency manual on the site which contains:
- An emergency plan
- Floor plans and layout showing emergency exits, firefighting equipment
- Diagrams and layout of dangerous goods stores
- Telephone numbers of key company personnel, the police, etc.
- A list of outside bodies qualified to assist with special problem
We should have regularly meeting to the worker on site to promote the safety construction. Also we can establish the award and penalty system e.g. pay safety. If they can fulfill the safety requirement, they can get extra money. Otherwise, it will be reverse.
Using the posters, magazines, newsletters, accident statistics displays video to increase the safety awareness of the worker.
Health Assurance Programme
We should provide some system such as pre-employment and medical examination programme for monitoring the exposure of labour.
Noise control and provide suitable ear protector to the worker if they need to work in high noise area.
Provide enough toilet facilities, hand washing, drinking water, resting and eating place and facilities for storage of personal protective equipment.
Evaluation selection and control of subcontractor
Means of communication and coordination with subcontractors and their employees and appropriate sub-contractor control. We must provide properly test system to check that all tools, materials and substances used by the subcontractors comply with statutory requirements. Establish some systems for reviewing subcontractors' performance. For example if the sub-contractor cannot fulfill the standard, they will be exchanged.
Process control programme
Arrangement and procedures for ensuring that safety rules, and working sequence have been established and implemented for all safety and health aspects, and in particular a safe system of work, safe working method statement and permit-to-work system for highly risky operations, including but not limited to the following:
Management of the Place of Work
- Fire Arrangements including precautions and firefighting equipment
- Work in confined spaces
- Working at height
- House keeping
- Protection against falling objects
Management of Tasks and Operations
- Lifting operations
- Mechanical materials handling
- Temporary works
Management of Equipment, Plant, Materials and Services
- Compressed air tools
- Electricity supply system
- Electrical works
- Portable tools
Two main hurdles for the implementation of safety plan
I think the money and labour safety awareness are two main hurdles. Since the money is the main domino of the whole project.
Provide the safety training to the worker will spend extra time in the whole construction project. Some clients will argue that why don't we spend the time to work to speed up the whole project. Also, we need to use some human resource to supervise the construction process. Since the main purpose of the construction company is making profits. Even the project manager knows that the higher quality and standard of the personal protective equipment will be more safety. However, it will pay more money and increase the total construction cost. From the above reason, the project manager will do the minimize things of the statutory requirement; they will not do the best about the safety, so that they can have maximum return in the construction project.
The other hurdle for the implementation of safety is the safety awareness of the worker. The labour will think that the personal protective equipment is very inconvenient for work. For example, they think that wear safety rope work in height will disturb their working. It is because the safety rope will limit the working area. And if they only work for few minutes at height, they will not wear them due to require extra work. Also, the worker cannot correctly use the PPE, so they cannot function properly.
The main elements of the quality are the following things:
We need to define different quality duty of different position of Executive Committee, Project Manager, Construction Quality Assurance Manager, Design Quality Assurance Manager, Sampling and Testing Personnel, Staff Inspectors, Testing Technician, Geotechnical Engineer & Pile Driving Analyst, QA Surveyor and Construction Manager. For example the duty of the Project Manager is responsible for organization and maintenance of a document control system for all quality data, coordinate quality check point in quality control programme reviews, and ensure reviews coordinated with outside entities.
Objective of the quality plan
- Consistency meets the standard and requirement of the client
- To deliver the project on time with agree quality and prize
- To maintain and continually improve the quality of management systems
- To maintain and continually improve the quality of whole project
Establish the quality policy
- To achieve the highest standard and quality of the project, it should be provided highly professional construction team.
- Establish the long term relationship between supplier and sub-contractor
- Follow the standard of ISO9001_2008.
- The construction work must under the supervision and inspection by authorize people.
- Provide training to the worker who is the first time come on the site.
- When any problems arise, the solving method should not be downgraded the target quality.
- Communicate the expectations of this Policy to all employees and stakeholders.
- Fulfill the client requirement
- Treating all our employees with respect, equality and fairness
For human resource, we need to provide training to teach them how to properly use the equipments. Also demonstrate the require standard for them to reach the require quality.
For material purchase and selection, we need to choose a properly material with suitable budget. Since the prize will directly affect the quality, so the budget arrangement is very important. Well-known and reputation supplier company should be selected to ensure the material quality.
Inspection testing and quality audit
We should establish the acceptable standard to the worker like accepted level of defection. After the standard is published, we need to provide suitable testing to ensure that they can reach the require standard. Then, it will be recorded for future improvement.
An internal quality audit system will introduce in this project and it will be implemented during each phase of the project.
Establish the recording system and process to control Project Documents at each Project Phase.
Ensure that the latest information is provided to the all staff and workers, so they shall use the update information to process the construction work.
Two main hurdles for the implementation of quality plan
Social obligations and professional responsibilities of legal and ethical issues
According to the Hong Kong Institute of Construction Management,
the project manager shall:
in fulfilling their professional responsibilities and the duties which they undertake, have full regard to the public interest.
demonstrate a level of competence consistent with their professional.
ensure, when undertaking any other construction related activity, that all such work is in accordance with good practice and current standards and complies with all statutory and contractual requirements;
at no time improperly offer or accept gifts or favors which would be affect the client to obtain preferential treatment;
keep them informed of current thinking and developments appropriate to the type and level of their responsibility. They should be able to provide evidence that they have undertaken sufficient study and personal development to fulfill their professional obligations in accordance with the current guidelines
not offer or provide whether to a prospective Client or a third party any gift or favor whether in money or otherwise designed to secure instructions for work
not undertake work for which they knowingly lack sufficient professional or technical competence, or the adequate resources to meet their obligation
Social obligations and professional responsibilities of client protection
The project manager shall:
not divulge to any person, firm or company any information of a confidential nature relating to the business activities or processes of their Employer or Client acquired during the course of their work;
not, without the permission of their Employer or Client, render any services, with or without remuneration, which conflicts with the interests of their Employer or Client;
ensure, when providing an advisory service, that the advice given is fair and unbiased;
if undertaking any other construction related activity be required to maintain insurances and indemnify their Client against the risks for which insurance is commonly effected arising out of the works in respect of workmen, third parties and adjoining properties;
when acting for a Client or when in contemplation of acting for a prospective Client whose interests conflict or may conflict with his own, or those of any of his associates to disclose the relevant facts forthwith to the Client or prospective Client and to the associate and where such disclosure is oral to confirm the same in writing at the earliest opportunity and inform the Client that he shall be unable to act or continue to act unless the Client requests him to do so;
keep in one or more bank accounts separate from his own, his firm's or his company's bank account (as the case may be) any Clients' money held by or entrusted to him, his firm or his company in any capacity other than that of beneficial owner;
account at the due time for all moneys held, paid or received on behalf of or from any person (whether a Client or not) entitled to such account and whether or not after the taking of such account any payment is due to such person.