Guidance and information changes to be aware of

Many of you involved in construction will be interested in the following useful information notes and guidance changes.

Institute of Engineering and Technology Wiring Regulations (17th Edition)

The first is an Amendment to Regulation 521.11.201 of the IET Wiring Regulations, first published in January 2015. The amendment details a new requirement for supports to wiring systems in escape routes to be fire resistant. The reason for this is that non-metallic cable trunking or other non-metallic means of support can fail when subject to either direct flame or hot products of combustion.  This may lead to wiring systems hanging across access or egress routes to a point that they hinder evacuation and firefighting activities. In recent years a number of firefighters have died as a result of being entangled in this way.

Full guidance from the EIT on the new regulation can be found here.

Institute of Civil Engineers (ICE)

The second information note is from the Institute of Civil Engineers (ICE) concerning paving slabs. It sounds quite a dull topic, but the ubiquitous nature of paving slabs in construction projects mean it’s important that designers understand the health and safety issues involved. The information note, which can be found here, highlights these.

If designers can better understand the issues around buildability then we can continue to reduce the health related injuries we encounter in the construction industry.

National Access and Scaffolding Confederation (NASC)

NASC, the trade body for scaffolders, has re-issued its guidance on preventing falls. Even if you are not directly involved with scaffolding, the document could be useful to you.

Although the guidance is described as “industry good practice”, it is used by enforcing authorities to check the suitability of safety arrangements on site, so it should be regarded as compulsory. The 50-page document is a comprehensive guide to a wide range of scaffolding structures and is filled with simple illustrations, so you don’t need to be a scaffolder to understand it. It has sections on:

  • Planning for work at height, a key hazard in construction
  • Description of the scaffolders’ safe zone and how to construct one
  • Some of the specialist scaffolding structures used
  • Methods of access and egress
  • Personal fall protection
  • Rescue arrangements

Whatever your role on a project, you can use the document to check if scaffolders are working safely. It’s free to download here.

For more information on any of the amendments and guidance discussed above, speak to one of our team on 01772 736522 or email