HSE praise Sandsend site

Raithwaite Hall Health and Safety inspection''w110909c   Picture: Ceri Oakes
Raithwaite Hall Health and Safety inspection''w110909c Picture: Ceri Oakes

ONE of the biggest developments to hit the Yorkshire coast is also proving to be a big hit with health and safety bosses.

Raithwaite Hall at Sandsend is currently being turned into a 45 bedroom luxury five star resort in a £30 million redevelopment of the 80 acre site.

Raithwaite Hall Health and Safety inspection''w110909b   Picture: Ceri Oakes

Raithwaite Hall Health and Safety inspection''w110909b Picture: Ceri Oakes

A recent spot inspection by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) revealed contractors Wates are also leading the way when it comes to safety of the 70 plus workers on site.

Alasdair Green, a HSE inspector, found examples of good practice on the site which are above and beyond the legal requirements.

At Raithwaite the scaffolding is 12 metres off the ground in some places meaning no more than five kilo newtons can be carried onto the structure but the notices use language workmen will understand telling them this is equivalent to one tub of mortar and two packs of bricks.

Extension cables for powering equipment are fastened to the walls instead of being run along the floor reducing the threat of trips.

Mr Green said: “Any job above a certain size has to notify the HSE. I have the authority to go on to any of these sites and inspect it. I turned up at this site and said I want to look around and I am satisfied they comply with all the regulations and this is a good site.

“An example of good practice is cables up and out of the way. It is very simple but means we have clear walkways. The most common type of injury is slips and trips.

“The signs are a nice touch. They have put how much weight can be put on the loading bay and in terms the lads understand rather than in kilo newtons.”

Wates has spent at least £120,000 on health and safety measures such as scaffolding frames, edging boards and platforms.

But the HSE is running a campaign this week to improve safety on sites and Mr Green says the right equipment is not often this expensive.

He added: “These guys have spent a lot because it is a massive and complicated site but for the basic site scaffolding is not £120,000 it is £50 a week.

In recent weeks the HSE’s team of inspectors has visited 13 building sites between Staithes and Scarborough and issued three prohibition notices and two improvement notices - if the regulations are breached continually that firm could face a fine of up to £20,000.

Mike Gorman, construction manager for Wates said: “Anything from a cut finger , minor first aid, a day off work or serious injury like a broken arm or leg we record. We have not had any incidents since we came on site which is not the norm.

“We do safety inductions with all our operatives, we encourage them to report any near misses and things that are foreseeable.

“Most publicity that surrounds construction sites is negative but there is an awful lot of good stuff going on out there.”

There is four weeks worth of external works left to be done on the Raithwaite development before the internal tradesman like electricians, plasterers and plumbers come on site to start work on the inside of the hotel which is expected to open in autumn.

Bookings are already being taken by West Paces, the American firm which will run the complex, one of which includes a wedding in October...so no pressure then!