February 2012 in Network Rail and Suppliers
A reporter raises concerns about Safe System of Work (SSoW) packs being provided to the Controller of Site Safety (COSS) with incorrect information. The reporter also states that the pack has been provided to COSSs when they arrive on site, which does not follow theNetwork Rail Standardin which they are supposed to receive the SSoW pack at least one shift in advance of work being undertaken.
The reporter understands that feedback from the Person in Charge of Possession (PICOP) meeting is supposed to be incorporated into the preparation of the packs. The COSS is then supposed to verify the packs in advance of work being carried out. Late production of the pack means that information cannot be checked. This is important as if anything is incorrect or missing it is supposed to be returned to the Planner and a revised pack produced.With incorrect information, COSSs are also unable to plan the work - there have been occasions when the paperwork stated that one machine was going to be on site when there were actually two. This impacts the way work is organised amongst Track Workers.
"With incorrect information COSSs are unable to plan work."
The reporter feels unable to raise concerns about paperwork at such a late stage because the work has been planned and all the resources required for the work are on site. As many Track Workers employed by Barhale have limited experience on the railway, the reporter is concerned that safety standards may slip.
Response from Barhale Construction
Barhale Construction would like to thank the reporter for bringing their concerns to our attention but believe that it has robust systems in place to ensure that it complies with the requirements ofNetwork Rail Standard NR/L2/OHS/019.
Clarify the process that is in place to provide SSoW packs to COSSs?
The majority of Barhale work requiring the preparation of SSoW packs is for work that takes place at weekends.
On Friday of the week prior to a job taking place, a resource order will be placed with the appropriate supplier notifying them of our requirements. This enables the supplier to provide the correct number of staff with the required competency levels.
On the Monday of the week when the work is to take place, a 'tracker' will be distributed by the SSoW Planner to Site Managers to fill in all relevant work site details. This is returned on the same day to the SSoW Planner who produces the SSoW pack with the information provided. Once accepted by the responsible Manager, the plan will be emailed out to the supplier who will arrange for the pack to be verified by the COSS allocated to the job.
The verification form or request for amendment to the SSoW pack is returned to the SSoW Planner by Wednesday evening at the latest. If amendments are required, this will be done by Thursday morning and, once accepted by the responsible Manager, will be re-issued to the supplier for verification by the COSS. Copies of verified packs are also sent to the Site Manager as a precautionary measure in case the supplier has not issued it to the COSS.
Investigate the issue and ensure that packs have the input of all relevant staff before they are issued to reduce the number of errors received?
SSoW packs always contain copies of the Person In Charge Of Possession (PICOP) pack if applicable. In addition, to support the PICOP pack, Barhale have introduced their own form which is included with the SSoW pack and is a record of the pre-possession meeting details. The packs also contain any other relevant information as required by theNetwork Rail Standard.
Ensure that the packs are received by COSSs at least one shift in advance?
By following the process described above, Barhale are confident that SSOW packs are produced and available within the timescales set out in the standard. Barhale will remind all their suppliers who supply them with COSSs to ensure that SSoW packs are made available to their staff at least one shift in advance of the work.