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‘Dial before you dig to avoid buried services’ 30 March 2007

A number of safety workshops have been running at the Employers’ Federation in Onchan to help make construction workers aware of the dangers of buried electrical cables and other services. These have been organised with the full support of the Health & Safety at Work Inspectorate, Manx Gas, Manx Telecom, Manx Electricity Authority, the Employers’ Federation and Paul Hornsby, a local safety consultant.

Ken Kinrade, Chief Executive, said

“I am particularly pleased that the Utilities, Employers’ Federation and my Inspectors have got together on this important event. We all recognise the dangers involved for workmen who accidentally come into contact with buried services both from the disruption and the safety aspects. We are committed as a Department to continue to promote health and safety throughout the Island”.

Steve Bentham, Senior Health & Safety Inspector, stated,

"The number of contractors coming into contact with electrical cables has not really decreased in recent years and remains at an average of one per week. Each of these events has the potential to have been a fatal accident. There are also a significant number of incidents of damage to gas pipes, water pipes and telecom services. In the Inspectorate we have recognised that ground workers are at particular risk and we are very pleased with the number of people who have taken the opportunity to update their safety knowledge. Any construction company or developer who undertakes ground works who has not taken this opportunity should contact the Employers’ Federation sooner rather than later".

Louise Furniss of the Employers’ Federation said,

“These have been a very successful series of workshops for the construction industry and we hope to provide more as and when required. It has been particularly useful to have the full support of the utilities and thanks go to the staff of the M.E.A., Manx Telecom, Health & Safety at Work Inspectorate and Paul Hornsby for their work. If anybody has missed out on this opportunity please contact me and we will try organise further sessions”.

Paul Hornsby, the safety consultant running the workshops said,

“This is a really important safety matter we have had a number of serious incidents and I am very pleased to be able to help the local construction industry”.
Dial before you dig to avoid buried services’
M.E.A. – 687766
Gas – 644425
Water – 695949
Manx Telecom - 151

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