The announcement means the national fire protection and detection specialists, who are part of NYSE-listed global business Tyco, become the second major contractor to mandate the use of this anti-entrapment solution since the launch of the SkySiren®.
This follows the move by construction firm Skanska UK to mandate the use of additional entrapment protection on all boom-type (3b) Mobile Elevating Work Platforms (MEWPs). This mandate covers all relevant equipment used by both its sub-contractors and its employees across the approximately £1.3 billion worth of work it completes each year.
Like Skanska, the mandate to be issued by Tyco will also be applicable to all boom-type MEWPs used by its supply chain.
Earlier this Spring, Nationwide Platforms provided Tyco with the SkySiren® for the first time when the system was fitted to equipment involved in fire protection work on the ongoing construction of the Pembroke Power Station. This application demonstrated that the SkySiren® can act as a key safety feature whilst using powered access equipment, especially outside of traditional construction sector projects.
Designed to react to any pressure applied on a “sensitive horizontal bar” located at approximately waist height, the SkySiren® has been created to both stop the movement of the machine immediately in a crushing situation, whilst simultaneously alerting colleagues to the incident with an emergency alarm and flashing light.
The SkySiren® has been designed to be retro-fitted to all booms, including the vast majority of CE and ANSI certified boom lifts already on the market. Nationwide Platforms believe it should be utilised as an added safe-guard for work being completed in confined spaces, such as between racking, steel work or pipe systems just as would be commonplace with fire protection tasks.
Since its launch, the SkySiren® has already received the Construction Health and Safety Group (CHSG) Beaumont Safety Trophy and has contributed to Nationwide Platforms receiving the Contribution to Safe Working at Height accolade at the International Awards for Powered Access (IAPA).
In addition to this, the system has been used on some of the UK’s largest and most prestigious projects, including Heathrow T2B, Crossrail and the Scottish Hydro Arena.
Brian Whittle, Project Director and QEHS Champion, and Steve Leigh, Director – Contracting, from Tyco, said: “Safe working is the most central tenet to any of our work, regardless of the nature or challenges posed by a project. Having worked with Nationwide Platforms to find safety solutions in the past, we’ve always been interested in finding the latest methods of working that truly represent best practice. Now, after seeing the product for ourselves, we are now pleased to take the opportunity to mandate the SkySiren® and provide what could be a critical safeguard to access equipment users on our projects.”
Nationwide Platforms’ Executive Director – Business Development and Key Accounts, Mick Ledden, said: “The issue of entrapment is a pertinent one for all businesses working at height and as a market leader we place a great deal of emphasis on our responsibility to help find workable best practice solutions for all end-users.
“The SkySiren® represents years of development and testing that have gone to help make an anti-entrapment safeguard a reality that can be made available to the broadest audience of end-users. As a consequence, we are proud to be able to work with Tyco to help deliver a safety solution that can work for the benefit of their workforce and for their supply chain.
“This collaborative approach between our two companies is not uncommon and it was Tyco’s pioneering approach to best practice that led to the development of safety and productivity enhancing Material Handling Attachments, such as SkyRak® and SkyHandler®, which are also included in the BlueSky Range of solutions.”
Further major contractors are expected to announce anti-entrapment mandates through 2012, with the SkySiren® set to undergo trials in the North American powered access market in the coming months.