Amidst much spoken controversy, construction regulations were introduced to the South African Construction Industry by the Department of Labour in July 2003. Prior to that although the Occupational Health and Safety Act proceeded by the Machinery and Occupational Safety Act had provided for the regulation of many other facets of industrial and commercial Health and Safety legislation, the 2003 Construction Regulations brought the first attempt to regulate the industry in a far more detailed manner.
The South African construction industry then engaged with these regulations and as anticipated determined that whilst there are many similarities in the UK / European environment there are a number of differences in the conditions, dynamics and circumstances encountered in the South African construction industry. This development necessitated a complete review of the 2003 regulations which commenced approximately 4 – 5 years ago spearheaded by the department of labour’s occupational health and safety committee. It is fair to say they engaged both business and labour under the auspices of their legal legislative team where the committee sought to make meaningful amendments that will impact positively on the desired outcome of reducing fatal and disabling injuries whilst at the same time allowing industry to progressively adapt to the necessary amendments.
These amendments were finally published in August 2014 with certain concessions which will be addressed during this event. The primary outcome of this presentation / workshop is to gain an appreciation of the Occupation Health and Safety Act and therefore the inter relationship with the Construction Regulations and indeed other regulations that govern work activity on construction sites. This workshop does not delve into the National Building Regulations, but seeks to provide a clear understanding of the effect these amendments do and will have on future construction projects.