Employees` Health & Safety has become an even greater concern for companies in the pandemic period, with all sectors of activity having seen how workforce infestation with Covid-19 virus leads to serios activity blockage, delays and budgetary unforseen expenses. As related to real estate developments planned for 2021, we discussed with Razvan Chiru, Managing Partner of EUROFIN, one of the leading Health & Safety companies in Romania, about the major risks associated with Health & Safety on construction sites.
The Legal Frame
Buildings can present a great number of possible risks both in construction and operation. There are many duties placed on those commissioning, designing, constructing and operating buildings to control those risks. The Romanian legislation affecting health and safety in design and construction falls under the HG no 300/2006, with any developer or investor being required to work with safety and health coordinator during the whole project implementation. Also, in 2021, construction companies use a wide range of safety practices as part of their safety management programmes, with an increasing emphasis on creating prevention measures and a safety culture on the construction sites.
Risks of not having a Strong Health & Safety Plan
Developers, investors and tenants know that implementing a health, safety and security plan has a huge impact on their business. Nowdays, if they don’t have the correct health and safety procedures in place for every construction site, then they will most likely be breaking the law. This means that their business could be fined, sued or even banned from operating depending on the level of risk. They may also face the problem of compensation if a worker is seriously injured on the construction site and the project might even need to be stopped and delayed for investigation. That means an important impact on budget and terms of execution. An unforeseen accident on the construction site leads nevertheless to construction delays and reputational risks, which translates into unforeseen costs for the investor / developer.
“In 2021, investors, developers and tenants are facing new challenges: new technologies, forgetting not every worker speaks Romanian, rushing trainings for workers, difficulty to identify hazards, putting maintenance aside. It is crucial for construction business to create and implement a safety culture, starting with top management. We need to ensure that health, safety and security plan is focused both on workers but also on whole business functioning, collective measures prevailing the individual ones,” says Razvan Chiru, Managing Partner of EUROFIN Health & Safety.
Saving People, Time and Money
In a nutshell, efficient health and safety plans help to reduce both the human and the business costs of injuries and unnecessary lawsuits, having a major impact on productivity and profitability. Additionally, improved health and safety standards help companies become more effective to finish quality projects on time and improve their business profile with customers and clients.
Not only is health and safety important to avoid injury, there are also plenty of other long term benefits that your business stands to gain. By implementing the right health and safety procedures, employees are much more likely to be happier in their roles. If workers have the right knowledge and tools, it can boost morale on the construction site and lead to better productivity. With less illness and injury you can also gain more productive working hours, which can lead to better profitability. In the long term it can also build a good reputation for entire business and it will help to retain staff.
EUROFIN Health & Safety is a leader on its market segment, having worked in the Real Estate sector with companies such as Skanska, Gran Via Real Estate, Lidl, P3, GSE or Atenor.