Health And Safety Measures In Buildings Construction Essay

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There are special interests touching on the safety standards in wherever we go. There are major concerns of what would happen in case of fire outbreak, bomb explosion, earth quake or even a killer in a building. This proposal introduces us to how best these concerns can be evaluated through critical review of secondary sources. Health and Safety is a concept which calls for critical consideration in the design and use of any structure. This is important because day to day lives of occupants and visitors are valuable just like those of other people. For detailed description of this topic frequent reference will be made to Health and Safety policy of Times Tower.

Aims/objectives

By the end of this study, Health and Safety measures in buildings will have been explored. With a specific focus on Times Tower case study, we are going to evaluate how security of human beings is assured within the premise. The objectives of this study are clearly defined before the start of research. This is going to ensure success of study. Therefore, the following are specific objectives of this study proposal:

To study the situation of human safety in buildings: a case study of Times Tower.

To determine problems facing contractors who aspire to develop safe structure.

To examine government's policy in upholding watchdog responsibility of ensuring safety for all.

To identify challenges threatening to curtail Health and Safety maintenance in built environment.

To explore the health and safety measures put in place to govern the building construction.

To understand the needs of safety measures.

To unearth the struggles and obstacles of general safety in buildings.

Investigations are expected to reveal details of safety measures in practice. Such measures are geared towards ensuring that no life of building occupant is put in jeopardy by any means.

The causes of the risks and hazards are going to be ascertained so as to understand the situation on the ground and all the factors that play a role in the whole scenario are going to be studied and inferences made.

Finally the paper intends to establish the measures that are implemented in the Times Tower to ensure that hazardous situations are eliminated completely. The research seeks to unearth health and safety situations in the Times Tower which is used as an example in the pinpointing of the building commission's efforts to ensure that the health of the persons accessing the structure is not put at stake. The success or failure of the government's measures if any is to be studied and conclusions made.

Justification

There is no doubt that this topic of Health and Safety in Buildings is a critical issue. It attracts attention of people with diverse professions and interests because at some point everyone is either an occupant or a guest in a building. It is therefore important to bring out real issues surrounding health and safety. Improvements in Safety standards within structures may not be realized unless detailed study like the one proposed in this document is carried out. Since at the end of this evaluation recommendations will be made, continuous improvement will be feasible. After exploration of government programs, ugly loop holes which have sometimes crippled Safety Standards are going to be sealed once and for all because such a detailed study is reliable.

The paper has several methodologies to be utilized in the whole study. It further explores the significance of performing this kind of research. Huge benefits are expected to come from this kind of study basing on how important the subject is. Further study should also reveal challenges facing Health and Safety maintenance in the buildings.

Literature Review

Intense research in building and construction technology has yielded a number of ways through which safety within building can be maintained. The following are several measures put in place to uphold desirable Health and Safety standards in the building:

Air conditioning systems

Exit doors

Early warning systems

 Smoke control systems                          

Emergency lifts and lighting

Emergency lighting                                  

Emergency power supply

Emergency warning systems                   

Exit signs                                      

Fire control centers      

 Smoke alarms                                    

 Path of travel to exits

Sprinkler systems                             

Fire curtains and doors

Fire extinguishers                                     

Fire detectors and alarm system           

Fire hydrants                                            

Fire isolated stairs                       

Fire rated materials

Fire windows                                          

Mechanical ventilation  

Passage ramps                        

Laws governing maintenance of safety measures have been continually reviewed to suit emerging safety concerns. However, there is a general reason motivating formulation and review of these regulations. The main reason behind articulate documentation of safety standards measures is nothing but a strong urge of improving safety. Generally, these regulatory measures require that every owner of a building is responsible for the safety of its occupants and visitors (David, 2002). All items classified as safety features, equipment or fittings must be maintained by the owner or his/her agents. The regulations further require that fundamental safety measures reports be annually maintained. These reports are supposed to cover such as maintenance checks, repairs and servicing. They should be readily available on site for inspection by Municipal Building Surveyor at his/her own discretion. They also describe the content of yearly report which must also be signed by property owner. Annual Report (David 2002).The Regulations do not go further than requiring the owner to sign off the Annual Essential Safety Measures Report and ensuring that the essential safety measures are maintained. However, these regulations do not go as far as controlling business practices.

Aspects concerning safety of the building were first conceptualized at the earlier stages of design. As a matter of fact, aesthetic value of the building was given a lighter attention than safety features. The idea of utilizing natural source of light during the day in a bid cut energy costs as well as meeting requirements of green building highlighted the dangers posed by daylight to occupants. Building designers combined glass and steel framework which is one of the hazards posed to occupants despite being meant to curb the daylight hazards inside the glass building (Newman n.d.).

The building also incorporates a new coating technology, in tumescent coating, developed by International Protective Coatings that protects the structure against extreme heat fires and blast pressure. The coating also protects exposed steel structures from corrosion and also adds to the aesthetic element of the building. This coating is a paint-like substance that is applied on exposed steel and provides insulation to the steel from fire. Once exposed to fire, the coating undergoes a chemical reaction that causes it to expand to many times its original thickness thereby preventing or prolonging the time taken for the steel to give in to extreme heat. Consequently, it allows enough time for evacuation purposes incase of a fire accident or prevents the collapse of a building as a result of the weakening of the steel structure. This technology was developed in response to the collapse of the World Trade Centre which was blamed on the steel structure of the building giving in to the extreme heat caused by impact of the planes (International pc).

To further cement safety foundation standards of Times Tower, an advanced elevator system that pre-empt the problem of elevator malfunctioning and increases efficiency has been incorporated. Unlike other conventional lifts, the elevators at Times Tower building require users to input their destination before entering the elevators thereby grouping them to reduce the number of stops required. The elevators contain smoke detectors and are gearless for faster speeds (1600 feet/min) (Newman n.d.).

Research Methodology

As a result of magnitude of this research, review of secondary sources was preferred to other available methods of data collection. Secondary sources are better than primary sources because all the information available is at a third party's view. This is a crucial aspect in maintenance of data integrity because conflict of interest scenario is eliminated. Suitability of this source is however challenged by scarcity of information available about the building. This is facilitated by the fact that there is no official website of Times Tower. As a result, information about the safety measures of Times Tower is obtained from external sources which are biased to structural design of the building instead of describing actual safety measures. However, from these sources, there is some crucial information on safety of the building which gives weight to fire safety incorporated in the original structure and design.

Conclusions

Health and Safety matters are of vital importance in any structure. It is therefore a matter of concern which needs to be carefully taken care of (Gary, 2007). This is achieved through ensuring that postulated safety measures are adhered to within and outside the structure. In the case of times tower the outlined measures such as better air conditioning systems are put in place to support the other factors that are directed to safety of the occupants. Health and safety is essential in a building hence the research is directed at finding out the implementations of the measure that are meant too ensure that safety is not threatened.

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