The Institute of Demolitions Engineers held another of its (as usual, well-attended) meetings in Scotland this week, the first in almost a year,  The meeting drew well-established IDE members NFDC regional Chairman  Craig MacWilliam, George Barclay and NDTG Scotland training manager Shona Farrell, and was hosted by Sibbald Training at their facility in Armadale, central Scotland.

The meeting started with a general introduction by meeting organiser Stephen McCann before Sibbald’s Brenda Nichol took over for some housekeeping.  This was followed by a few words from John Sibbald (Jnr). After short introduction on Sibbald, attendees took part in a brief yet insightful tour of the fabulous facilities. This incorporated a bespoke confined-space training section, tele-handler and excavator training. There was even a race car owned by John Sibbald (in storage, not for training).

First on the agenda was Viridis Safety Limited and a wonderful presentation on Occupational Health. This began with some questions fromRupert Balfray, to be addressed during the presentation, on the importance of occupational health, the numbers of health issues that arise each year, and the lack of focus on this significant subject. Rupert’s polished delivery set the group at ease, with the various subjects covered in the presentation segueing smoothly into each other.

Helen Pearson continued the edifying presentation, covering the Chartered Society for Worker Health Protection (BOHS) and their upcoming Breathe Freely campaign (launching on April 28th).  Helen explained the role of BOHS and the push for the consideration of health issues (already undertaken by IOSH with their No Time To Lose campaign).  Both Rupert and Helen are very active members of the Edinburgh Regional IOSH branch: with Rupert holds the position of Branch Treasurer; Helen, Secretary (soon to be Chair). Helen explained that in June the HSE will be looking at occupational health issues as they add the subject to the list for their summer site blitz.

The standard question period at the end of the presentation started with some excellent points from NDTG advisor and ALU member Jim Caldwell, Bob Munro of TDS and Peter Reilly of Reigart.

Some refreshments were enjoyed by all ahead of the second speaker, Stephen McCann, who briefly discussing changes in CDM (his brevity resulting from the fact that the same subject will be covered more comprehensively at the upcoming NFDC meeting.)

This lead to another excellent free-ranging discussion, which covered funding, training and insurance provider protocols.  Time constraints precluded more expansive conversation, but there will be further opportunity for similarly enlightening dialogue at the next regional meeting, to be hosted by Peter Reilly of Reigart on the 20th of May.

Author: Stephen McCann MIDE