If you have ever worked at a construction site, then you probably know just how dreadful it is for the person in charge (either the supervisor or foreman) when one of the city council field inspectors pull a surprise visit. Always without warning, they will descend on you asking for relevant site documentation and checking for compliance with County By Laws. All rules exist for a reason, more so in the construction industry but lack of awareness of exactly what is required has led to many site bosses being whisked off by the council askaris and will spend either a few days in jail or let off with a fine.
Relevant Site documentation
It goes without saying that all construction sites need to have a signboard showing project details such as : Name of the project and plot LR No, name and addresses of the client and consultants involved in the project including the contractor, the NCA compliance certificate number and NEMA approval number ( where applicable ). In addition, always have a hard copy of the stamped architectural and structural plans on site. For small renovation works, a letter granting authority for the works will suffice, just make sure to have it hang somewhere visible by all and sundry. It always helps if you have up-to-date rates payment receipts including that of the construction sign board fee.
Hoarding and Site Facilities
During construction, the developer should provide washroom facilities for all the workmen on the project, and also erect and properly maintain a hoarding. The hoarding protects the site and passersby from getting injured by falling material. It also keeps the surrounding environment free of dust and materials that may fall off the construction site. While it may vary from county to county, it is worth noting that there are places in which you may require a hoarding permit for example in Nairobi CBD you can’t put up hoarding around you building without seeking authority from the Nairobi County Council. Where it is not practical to put up hoarding then barricade tapes come in handy as temporary barricades to warn and keep the public away from the working area.
Other Licenses and Permits
A tree felling license is sought from the department of forestry before you are granted permission to cut down a tree or even prune a hedge, falling within your working area. The fee charged will vary depending on the size of the tree in particular. In addition, only licensed tree fellers can carry out the activity. There are fees charged for carrying out excavation and you will require a dumping permit to ensure waste is disposed off on council approved waste grounds.
Occupational Safety and Health of workers
All construction companies are required by law to be registered under NCA. Site supervisors need to be accredited by NCA and are charged with the mandate of ensuring that all works are carried out in a safe manner. Most construction companies will hire a safety and health expert specifically to look into matters regarding work site safety and ensure that everyone is in proper PPE (personal protection equipment). Considering the high hazard nature of the industry then it is of paramount importance that we ensure we promote a safety culture in our sites
This article first appeared on www.buildingcode.co.ke