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Dept issues 112 notices to firms over safety concerns

 The Borneo Post Online, 19 December 2013

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SAFETY FIRST: Zainee and Wong at the launch of `Ops Cegah Runtuh II’ at the site of Wharf Apartment project at Miri Waterfront Commercial Centre.

MIRI: The Department of Occupation Safety and Health (DOSH) Sarawak issued 112 notices, including 36 stop work orders, for various violations during ‘Ops Cegah Runtuh I’ last October.

During the four-day operation, 23 construction sites were ordered to stop work immediately.

There were 13 notices for prohibition of work, 42 restraining orders, and 21 notices of improvement during the operation from Oct 28 to 31.

Most of the companies nabbed lacked scaffolding safety requirements and verification by competent scaffolders, and structure safety endorsements by professional engineer.

Head of DOSH Miri, Zainee Mohamad said this at the launch of ‘Ops Cegah Runtuh 2’ at the Wharf Apartment Project site at Miri Waterfront Commercial Centre yesterday.

He was representing DOSH Sarawak director Mohd Hatta Zakaria at the event.

Zainee lamented that the state’s construction industry had a relatively high fatality rate compared to other industries, and the number of notices issued was also high.

“Of the 39 fatalities this year, 11 were from the construction industry, and that is why DOSH is taking action.”

Zainee said there was much room for improvement by construction companies, particularly in construction site management.

There was also a need for a safe working culture.

“The culture of prevention is one of the most important hazard-management aspects, where safety and occupational health is integrated into daily work.”

On Miri, he said the council had focussed on making the city safe and clean through road designs, construction, and maintenance of safe infrastructure and amenities.

These include safe road designs, effective road maintenance and traffic management, and inculcating safe work culture.

“Miri City Council can demand their contractors adhere to workplace safety in the construction and maintenance of roads, infrastructures and others.”

Meanwhile, Unique Harvest Sdn Bhd, the developer of the five-star hotel and Wharf apartment blocks at Miri Waterfront Commercial Centre, said it emphasised safety and occupational health compliance at its project site.

“We uphold a safe work attitude among our staff and the contractor at the site,” said company representative William Wong.

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