24 September 2018 / Safety Alert

Masonry Wall Safety

Another uncorefilled masonry wall is blown over on a construction site – as we move to the summer months, winds historically increase considerably and this is s timely reminder of the importance of temporary bracing to these walls.

https://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/construction-worker-crushed-by-falling-wall-at-capalaba/news-story/ca90f208c83588b836e944761364721a

Please ensure we comply with the engineer's requirements for maximum heights of wall construction before corefilling is required as well as temporary bracing required AND the below downloadable guide found in the Doc Library and the WH&S system risk assessment and SWMS.

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5 March / Public Holiday

Tuesday 5 March 2019 (TAS only)

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19 March / Weather Alert

Severe Tropical Cyclone Trevor continues to move west-southwest towards the eastern Cape York Peninsula coast. It is expected to cross the coast just south of Lockhart River late this afternoon or early evening. The cyclone will most likely cross as a high end category 3 system, but further intensification to category 4 cannot be ruled out.

The cyclone will weaken as it crosses the northern Peninsula tonight and Wednesday, but is expected to remain a category 1 cyclone until it enters the Gulf of Carpentaria later on Wednesday. It is expected to reintensify rapidly once it enters the Gulf of Carpentaria and track towards the Northern Territory.

Consider all site housekeeping and remove loose waste and material from roofs, scaffold, balconies and open areas (hardstands / laydown) and ensure site fences are well supported with the minimum bracing (every second panel for scrim & every panel for hoarded).

General advice in storms

  • Move cars under cover or away from trees. 
  • Secure loose outdoor items. 
  • Seek shelter, preferably indoors and never under trees. 
  • Avoid using the telephone during a thunderstorm.
  • Beware of fallen trees and powerlines. 
  • For emergency assistance contact the SES on 132 500.

People between Orford Ness and Cape Melville and adjacent inland areas (including Lockhart River and Coen), should complete preparations quickly and be prepared to shelter in a safe place.

People in western Cape York Peninsula between Mapoon and Pormpuraaw (including Weipa and Aurukun) should immediately commence or continue preparations, especially securing boats and property, using available daylight hours.

Hazards

The VERY DESTRUCTIVE CORE of the cyclone, with extreme gusts up to 220 km/h, will make landfall near Lockhart River later this afternoon.

DESTRUCTIVE WINDS, with gusts in excess of 125 km/h are expected between Cape Grenville and Coen. These DESTRUCTIVE WINDS will move some way inland with the cyclone tonight.

GALES, with gusts in excess of 90 km/h, are expected in coastal areas between Orford Ness and Cape Melville today and tonight. These GALES are expected to extend inland over the Peninsula overnight and on Wednesday as the cyclone moves inland to include areas between Mapoon and Pormppuraaw during Wednesday. Gales are possible later Wednesday further north between Cape York and Mapoon if the cyclone takes a more northerly track than forecast.

As the cyclone crosses the coast, a STORM TIDE is expected between Lockhart River and Cape Melville, including Princess Charlotte Bay. During Wednesday, a STORM TIDE is also expected between Cape Keerweer and Mapoon on the western Peninsula Coast. LARGE WAVES may produce minor flooding along the foreshore. People living in these areas are likely to be affected by flooding and should take measures to protect their property as much as possible and be prepared to help their neighbours.

ABNORMALLY HIGH TIDES are also expected around the Wednesday morning high tide for the far northeast Queensland coast, north of Port Douglas.

HEAVY RAINFALL, which may lead to flash flooding, is forecast across far north Queensland today and continuing over the next few days. A Flood Warning is current for the Daintree and Mossman rivers as well as a broader Flood Watch for catchments north of Innisfail to Kowanyama.

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18 March / Weather Alert

Severe thunderstorms are likely to produce damaging winds, heavy rainfall that may lead to flash flooding and large hailstones in the warning area over the next several hours. Locations which may be affected include Gold Coast, Toowoomba, Brisbane, Dalby, Ipswich, Kingaroy, Coolangatta, Caboolture, Cleveland, Gatton and Jimboomba.

Consider all site housekeeping and remove loose waste and material from roofs, scaffold, balconies and open areas (hardstands / laydown) and ensure site fences are well supported with the minimum bracing (every second panel for scrim & every panel for hoarded).

Summary of weather

Storms are likely across Australia in several regions and cities. Please monitor the live radar below for a national summary.

General advice in storms

  • Move cars under cover or away from trees. 
  • Secure loose outdoor items. 
  • Seek shelter, preferably indoors and never under trees. 
  • Avoid using the telephone during a thunderstorm.
  • Beware of fallen trees and powerlines. 
  • For emergency assistance contact the SES on 132 500.
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15 March / Weather Alert

Severe thunderstorms are expected to become more extensive this afternoon and evening. Currently, the primary risks are damaging wind gusts and large hail, however this will transition to heavy rain later this afternoon and evening, particularly across the far southeast.

Severe thunderstorms are likely to produce damaging winds, heavy rainfall that may lead to flash flooding and large hailstones in the warning area over the next several hours. Locations which may be affected include Warwick, Toowoomba, Dalby, Roma, Kingaroy, Ipswich, Gatton, Jimboomba, Laidley, Lowood, Nanango and Tara.

Consider all site housekeeping and remove loose waste and material from roofs, scaffold, balconies and open areas (hardstands / laydown) and ensure site fences are well supported with the minimum bracing (every second panel for scrim & every panel for hoarded).

Summary of weather

Storms are likely across Australia in several regions and cities. Please monitor the live radar below for a national summary.

General advice in storms

  • Move cars under cover or away from trees. 
  • Secure loose outdoor items. 
  • Seek shelter, preferably indoors and never under trees. 
  • Avoid using the telephone during a thunderstorm.
  • Beware of fallen trees and powerlines. 
  • For emergency assistance contact the SES on 132 500.
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12 March / Quality

Recently, some CodeMark Certifications for a number of widely-used ACP cladding products were withdrawn following an audit by JAS-ANZ. 

For further information on the withdrawal and why it came about, as well as the specific products affected, please see the links to the press releases at the end of this alert.  

How does this affect Hutchies?

Authorities/clients/consultants have already expressed confusion over the validity of the CodeMark Certificates on both past and current projects. 

In some cases, fire brigades have been resistant to CodeMark Certificates, so Hutchies has already been insisting on including ACP usage in a project Fire Engineering Report (FER) for some time.

The withdrawal of these CodeMark Certifications essentially makes it mandatory to do this now.

What do I need to do from here?

Please ensure your façade submissions to the Quality Team includes the FER without reference to the Codemark Certificates. 

Façade submissions to the Quality Team are mandatory for ALL projects, without exception.

Please ensure a fire engineer reviews and produces the FER for the use of ACP products. 

This needs to be backed by the Building Surveyor/Certifier and approved by the fire brigade as necessary. Performance solutions on life safety includes external walls and is a legislated requirement as noted in the Quality Handbook Topic 21.

What about existing projects which were covered by the withdrawn CodeMark Certifications?

CertMark International has advised that any projects completed prior to the withdrawal of the current certificates are still covered by the withdrawn certificate. More information on this is contained in the CertMark press release.

However, despite this, some authorities appear to be resisting acceptance of the CodeMark Certificate on projects commenced prior to the withdrawal that do not have final certification/occupancy certificates in place.

Please clarify with your consultants on any current projects to be certain there are no issues down the track at completion. It may be necessary to have the fire engineer amend the FER to avoid reliance on any CodeMark Certificate.

Don’t delay. 

Ensure this check is completed immediately and ensure the determination is provided unconditionally by the Building Surveyor/Certifier. Unconditionally means not subject to other conditions such as fire brigade acceptance. 

We need to be certain this will not delay completion on any current projects!

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11 - 14 March / Safety Alert

The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has issued warnings for low to locally severe intensity heatwave conditions over southern QLD and northeastern NSW.

Please ensure you stay hydrated, wear appropriate protection (clothing, hats, sunscreen etc) and look out for your mates. 

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5 March / Update

Over the last two years, Hutchies has been subject to over 130 site visits, inspections and audits by ABCC inspectors. In each instance, we are confident that Hutchies’ Site Management Teams have demonstrated Hutchies’ compliance with the Building Code applying to each project.

Whilst evidence of compliance is encouraging, there is no sign that the volume of inspections and the focus on Hutchies’ projects is reducing. It is therefore essential that Hutchies’ teams remain vigilant in the area of Building Code compliance and that you contact Ben Young on 0400 577 953 if there is any aspect of the Code that requires clarification. Two particularly useful resources to refresh your understanding of the Code are Hutchies’ Site Management Industrial Relations Guides and the Building Code Self Audit.

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4 March / Update

Hutchies has updated its company policies in line with the expiration of our existing suite. These policies contain important standards that Hutchies has in place for our business – please take the time to refresh yourself on them.

Please also update any existing policies you may have:

  • Framed in offices and sites (at a minimum all offices and sites should have Work Health & Safety, Environmental & Quality)
  • In project Specific Management Plans, Manuals and / or Procedures 

We have sourced affordable standard clear frames if you would like to update yours. You can purchase them here.

The new policies can be downloaded below. They are also available on Hutchies' website (public) and the Doc Library.

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8 March / Observation

International Women's Day is celebrated in many countries around the world. It is a day when women are recognized for their achievements without regard to divisions, whether national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic or political.

A balanced world is a better world. How can you help forge a more gender-balanced world?
Celebrate women's achievement. Raise awareness against bias. Take action for equality.
Get everything you need to run a successful International Women's Day right here.

#BalanceforBetter

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