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Lawmaker seeks safety, health policies at jobsites

(The Philippine Star) - July 23, 2014 - 10:38am

MANILA, Philippines - A lawmaker has proposed a measure seeking to require all construction site in the country to institute a labor safety and health program.

Davao City Rep. Karlo Alexei Nograles said House Bill 4594 or the proposed Occupational Safety and Health in the Construction Industry Act will look after the workers' welfare and condition in job sites.

Nograles said numerous occupational hazards and risks continuously emerge in the workplace with the introduction of new technologies, materials, and substances.

“A high rate of worksite accidents may likely occur if no suitable measures or interventions are in place to prevent related accidents and injuries,” Nograles said.

He said the construction industry, which employs a large number of workers, is expected to double its growth rate by 2015, with hundreds of billions worth of infrastructure projects expected in the light of the public-private partnerships programs being pushed by the government.

Under the bill, every job site should have a construction safety and health committee, the composition of which shall be posted at the entrance of the construction site.

The construction safety and health committee shall be composed of the project manager, construction safety officer, construction safety officer representing each constructor, physician, nurse, certified first-aider, and dentist and workers representatives.

The committee members shall always be present at the construction site and shall convene at regular intervals to effectively plan, develop, oversee, and monitor the implementation of the construction safety and health program.

Every employee shall be provided with personal protective equipment (PPE), free of charge for eyes, face, hands and feet, lifeline, safety belt, harness and protective shields whenever necessary.

The general constructor shall provide qualified occupational health personnel within the work site complemented with the required medical supplies, equipment and facilities based on the total number of workers on site.

Construction safety signages and devices shall be posted in prominent positions at strategic locations, understandable to all to warn the workers and the public of hazards in the workplace.

The employer shall provide a worker’s welfare facilities, such as adequate supply of safety drinking water, sanitary and washing facilities, suitable living accommodation, as may be applicable; and separate sanitary, washing and sleeping facilities for men and women worker, as may be applicable.

Officials of construction companies face a jail term of four to six years, a fine ranging from P100,000 to P500,000, and cancellation of permit to operate for violating any provision of the proposed act. - Dennis Carcamo

CONSTRUCTION CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY ACT DAVAO CITY REP DENNIS CARCAMO HEALTH HOUSE BILL KARLO ALEXEI NOGRALES NOGRALES OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH SAFETY SHALL
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