The Health and Safety Regulations, part of the Labour Law, requires all construction companies to employ safety officers.
—DER Senior Labour Inspector Gene Hydes
Twenty-five construction workers, managers and safety officers are now more aware of potential work-site hazards following a ten-hour Occupational Safety and Health Workshop.
Hosted over two days by the Department of Employment Relations (DER), the course is a legal requirement for individuals working in the local construction industry.
Department of Employment Relations Senior Labour Inspector Gene Hydes, one of seven Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) authorised trainers in the Cayman Islands, explained, "The Health and Safety Regulations, part of the Labour Law, requires all construction companies to employ safety officers.
"We therefore require that construction managers and safety officers complete the thirty-hour course. However because the knowledge is beneficial, we encourage all persons working in the industry to at least complete the ten-hour one."
The course covered key areas such as fall protection, electrical safety, personal protective equipment, materials handling, and scaffolding safety.
Workshop participant Kristin Butler, a foreman for Cayman Concrete Pumping, had done the course in the US before but completed the workshop as a refresher.
"It keeps you on your toes and helps you recognise potential hazards," she said. "Once you become more aware of these things you can't help but look out for the safety of your crew by sharing your knowledge with them."
Andro Group's Eddie Powell said the course was relevant, "It highlighted many areas we too often take for granted and made me more aware of safety and health issues."
Another participant, Public Works Department Engineering Technician Christopher McNamee added, "This knowledge will definitely help me reduce the risks to which my crew is exposed on the work-site."
Other entities represented at the workshop were Phoenix Construction, Island Builders, and the Department of Education Services.
The Department of Employment Relations plans to offer at least one ten-hour OSHA workshop each month. The next one is scheduled for 8 and 9 April with others to follow in May, June and July.
For more information on workshop dates, contact Debbie Prendergast at 945-3114, 244-7022 or Debbie.Prendergast@gov.ky.
For further information contact: Kenisha Morgan