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New Safety Laws for Hydrodemolition and Hand Lancing

We are members of the British Water Jetting Association, demonstrating our commitment to protecting employees and the public as we carry out our services. To achieve this, we always make sure to stick to the Safety Laws For Hydrodemolition, as laid out in the latest Blue Code of practice. (New edition 2012 – A4 Blue Cover, ISBN -1 874278 02 4)

Construction companies who call in hydrodemolition companies to do work for them are also obligated to follow the Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992.

Regulation 4 (1) A States

(1) Each employer shall

(a) As far as possible, ensure that employees do not undertake any manual tasks at work which could result in accidents or injury.

The regulation then discusses such topics as:

  • Avoiding manual handling of equipment as much as possible.
  • Eliminating manual handling fully.
  • Mechanisation of the process so that work is carried out by robotic machinery rather than people.
  • An ergonomic approach to maximise safety and limit strain on the body.

It then asks the following questions:

  • Does the work involve the worker twisting their body?
  • Does the work involve bending over?
  • Does the work involve reaching up to a height?
  • Does the work involve pulling or pushing heavy materials?
  • Does the work involve any sudden movements?
  • Does the work involve more than one of these risks?

If the answer to any of these questions is YES when your workers are utilising a water jetting hand lance, then consider these factors.

  • Does the hand lance operator need to twist his body to reach the desired areas while jetting?
  • Take a look at the operatives above and take note of their stooping positions.
  • What is the level of force being exerted on the operator’s body?
  • Consider any other risk factors not mentioned in the above list – for example, what if there was a leak or the hose burst?