CROSS Safety Report
Adapted masonry support props
This report is over 2 years old
Another reporter gives their experience on the use of adapted masonry support props.
Key Learning Outcomes
For the construction team:
Temporary supports should be used in accordance with the manufacturer's guidelines (where these exist), and should be checked and signed off on installation
Having a competent temporary works designer/adviser in place to supply an engineered solution can ensure all temporary works are carefully considered and planned
Props should not be adapted without formal agreement of the appropriate responsible person on site
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In report 32 it was asked if other engineers have had any contact with a modified dead shore popular with builders.
Another reporter responding to the item has frequently seen builders using props with cantilevering head-plates which cause the supporting props to bend. Some years ago, they photographed a set of such props which had very noticeable curvatures. The wall above had dropped in consequence causing damage to the building and resulting in a substantial claim against the builder. The reporter generally advises builders not to use such head-plates.
Expert Panel Comments
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Correct propping is essential and temporary works failures are a recurrent theme in collapses on site. It appears that this type of prop should only be used in specific low risk circumstances which have been examined by a competent person.
Temporary supports must be used in accordance with the manufacturer's guidelines (where these exist), should be checked and signed off on installation, and should not be adapted without formal agreement of the appropriate responsible person on site.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has plans for a refurbishment safety initiative in view of the many safety problems encountered in this type of work, e.g. ensuring general interim stability of the building structure, and CROSS will be apprised of progress.
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