An investigation of lifting operations on UK construction sites

Sertyesilisik B., Tunstall A., McLouglin J.

SAFETY SCIENCE, vol.48, no.1, pp.72-79, 2010 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 48 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.ssci.2009.06.001
  • Journal Name: SAFETY SCIENCE
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.72-79
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: No


Lifting operations and associated equipment have become commonplace within the UK construction industry. However, recent high profile accidents involving lifting equipment have shown that the result of its misuse can have serious cost and health implications. The main aim of the research was to investigate lifting operations on construction sites exploring different options, their effectiveness, and their effect on safety. This research looked into the processes in place; the factors that have to be taken into consideration when placing and using lifting equipment; and the competent persons required when operating equipment. With these aims, literature review was conducted. This was followed by investigation on three construction sites. These case studies were enhanced through interviews with general site staff, managerial staff, and appointed persons. The findings revealed six main points to improve safety in lifting operations. These are: through planning; training; equipment selection, use and inspection; feedback/communication; appointed person's role; and database. Thorough planning of lifting operations has positive effects on safety. There is need for tighter accreditation of all qualifications in the lifting operations field. The charter of major lifting equipment from specialist contractors should be considered as industry best practise. Companies should avoid authoritarian working culture to facilitate efficient feedback to improve safety. The appointed person should have site based role. Site inspections and maintenance should be monitored on a national database form. Practitioners can benefit from this paper as it provides information on experiences from three construction sites. Furthermore, researchers can use the findings for their future studies. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.