Scaffolding & formworks: IN DEMANDScaffolding and formworks are an integral part of the construction industry and their demand is growing day by day, a reportScaffolding and formwork are important in construction sector as safety plays an important role at construction site. With increase in infrastructure and residential projects across the country, demand for scaffolding and formwork is increasing.Status of scaffolding and formworkTalking about the status of scaffolding and formwork industry in India, A. Banerjee, Marketing Director, Dhruva Scaffolding Systems, said, “Scaffolding and formworks are related to civil and infrastructure projects and forms an integral part of the construction industry. Depending upon the growth in the construction and infrastructure industry, there is a significant parallel and simultaneous demand for scaffolding.”Quality of Indian scaffolding and formworkDiscussing about the quality of scaffolding and formwork industry in India, Mr Banerjee explained, “Modernisation is a continuous development process, and we can see the rapid changes in the infrastructure industry in terms of new, improved scaffolding formworks making construction faster, following the highest safety standards and improving quality and affordability.”Standards for safe construction in IndiaThe main objective of high-rise design of structures in any manner should be assurance of life safety, property protection and continuity of operations or functioning. While mentioning about the standards for safe construction in India, Gaurav Soni, General Manager, K. K. Gupta Constructions, said, “It is the responsibility of the main contractor to take adequate fire safety measures during the construction according to ISO and others parameters.”Pankaj Srivastava, Chief Operating Officer, Maitreya Realtors & Construction, said, “The standards are very much in place; it is the strict compliance which is a cause of concern. Most of the reputed developers and builders insist on safe working conditions and have a well-documented safety, health, environment and well-being policy.”Products in offingMr Banerjee added, “We manufacture all types of scaffolding equipment like cuplock systems, H frames, props, spans and couplers. Also keeping pace with changes in scaffolding industry, we are authorised distributors of Plastech Construction Technologies and Advance Vibrators for Maharashtra.”
AWPs would definitely not be able to substitute the requirement of scaffolding and formworks even in the long run.- A. Banerjee, Marketing Director, Dhruva Scaffolding SystemsLimitations of AWPAerial Work Platforms (AWPs) are being used extensively for infrastructure of bridges and high-rise structures and has become a part of the scaffolding industry. However, Mr Banerjee informed, “AWPs has certain limitations in terms of its usage and would definitely not be able to substitute the requirement of scaffolding and formworks even in the long run.”Best practices in scaffolding in high-riseScaffolding accidents are significant cause of injuries in construction work sites across the world. Talking about the best practices that are involved in scaffolding in high-rises, Mr Soni said, “The scaffold is manufactured in various configurations. Scaffolding is a temporary framework used to support construction workers and their materials during the construction or repair of large structures. I think proper selection of scaffolding and related components requires basic knowledge about site conditions and the work to be done. Considerations include site conditions, height or heights to which the scaffold may be erected type of work that will be done from the scaffold, anticipated weather conditions etc.”
It is vital to select the appropriate, right formwork solutions and their service providersGaurav Soni, GM, K. K. Gupta Constructions
Whereas Mr Srivastava emphasised that there should be use of double layer scaffolds with proper bracing/entry/exit points and access to the various levels. Use of toe guards and lifeline support should be followed. It’s also important to provide safety nets at the required intervals and a cover around the scaffolding so that the workers are not exposed to the view outside from a height for persons suffering from fear of heights/vertigo. There should be also proper steps to prevent electrocution due to contact with live wires used during construction or use of hand tools.Scaffolding accidents in IndiaSpeaking about the scaffolding collapses in India compared to China, where scaffolding collapse is 62 per cent, Mr Soni feels it’s not accurate. About 500 million tonnes of steel scaffolding are in use in China; and for the same, improve safety practices are involved in construction. China is striving to half the amount of scaffolding across the country by 2015 and increases the use of mechanised access such as aerial work platforms and mast climbing platforms. Scaffolding accidents are a significant cause of injuries on construction work sites around the world. On an average, nearly 6.5 million people work at about 2.5 lakh construction sites across the nation on any given day. The fatal injury rate for the construction industry is higher than the national average in this category for all industries.
Most of the reputed developers and builders insist on safe working conditions
-Pankaj Srivastava, COO, Maitreya Realtors & ConstructionHe further added, “Potential hazards for workers in construction include falls from height, trench collapse, electric shock and arc flash/arc blast, failure to use proper personal protective equipment, and repetitive motion injuries. When scaffolds are not erected or used properly, fall hazards can occur. About 2.3 million construction workers frequently work on scaffolds. Protecting these workers from scaffold-related accidents would prevent an estimated 4,000 injuries each year.”Standard of Indian scaffolding and formwork productsIndian manufacturers have introduced a suit of innovative products and systems which are affordable. “It is vital to select the appropriate, right formwork solutions and their service providers,” added Mr Soni. “These days, most of them are offering best of their services and cost-effective scaffolding and formwork solutions. I personally think that innovations in any industry don’t happen overnight; it takes time to understand a product and desire to take it to the next level of excellence.”While Mr Srivastava emphasised, “The majority manufactures of scaffolding and formwork products have a complete system and a proper documented operating procedures.”