The impact of the Construction Regulations 2014 on a water utility’s projects’ health and safety (H&S) performance in South Africa
The construction industry plays a major role in South Africa’s economic development. Despite its importance, the poor health and safety (H&S) performance and associated costs to the industry are a concern. The literature review indicates that improved H&S performance can be achieved on a project where there is a collaborative approach among all stakeholders during the six project stages. This study focuses on the impact of the Construction Regulations 2014 on a water utility’s projects’ H&S performance. It determines the H&S involvement of client representatives and internal project stakeholders during the six project stages. It also addresses their commitment towards H&S, measures taken by them during planning and design, in contracts to improve H&S, and to select conscious contractors, and the extent of their H&S participation in construction H&S. Mixed methods research (a questionnaire survey and four case study projects) was used to collect the data required for the study. A total of 67 responses were obtained from the five stakeholder groups from the water utility, namely client representatives, designers, quantity surveyors (QSs), project managers (PMs), and construction H&S (CHS) professionals to obtain information regarding their H&S involvement during the six project stages. Four case study projects (three pre- Construction Regulations 2014 and one post- Construction Regulations 2014) were obtained, using a stratified random sampling technique and a checklist to obtain information regarding the stakeholder H&S involvement during the six project stages and the overall project performance. The study found that the Construction Regulations 2014 are perceived to have had an impact on the water utility’s H&S performance. There is a direct relationship between stakeholder H&S involvement and project H&S performance. The integration of H&S in the initial project phases; early involvement of CHS professionals, and H&S training for stakeholders are among the recommendations arising from this study.
Keywords: Clients, construction health and safety professionals, designers, project managers, quantity surveyors
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