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Qatar tribune
The Public Works Authority (Ashghal) has been declared the overall winner of two International Safety Awards 2020 by the British Safety Council, in recognition of its commitment to keeping workers and workplaces healthy and safe during the 2019 calendar year.
Ashghal is one of the very few organizations to be crowned the overall winner in the following categories: "Wellbeing Initiative" for protecting its employees from the risk of injury and ill health at work, and "Best Team of the Year" for the Roads and Infrastructure project in West Muaither (Package 3) in recognition of its commitment to keeping its workers and workplaces healthy and safe in 2019.
In 2019 Ashghal succeeded in undertaking the health screening of 78,197 workers, or 96.5% of the entire workforce. The screening was to identify the three leading causes of mortality and morbidity: diabetes (High blood sugar), hypertension (High blood pressure), and high cholesterol (dyslipidemia/high level of fats in blood). Where any worker was identified with an abnormal result they were referred to a hospital, which is part of Qatars Ministry of Public Health network, where they were retested and given an individualised treatment plan, with medication if needed, and regular follow up. It is worth noting that this proactive health programme is one of very few of its type worldwide that is implemented in an infrastructure programme.
The Roads and Infrastructure Project in West Muaither (Package 3) began in January 2019 and achieved 1.2 million LTI free man-hours in 2019, with 770 employed by the main contractor, Boom Construction. The project covers an area of approximately 1,940,000 square metres, and aims at providing full infrastructure and utilities including telecommunication networks, potable water and electricity networks.
The Roads Projects Department, based on Ashghal strategies Project Affairs guidance, implemented within the project an effective H&S Management System, the core elements of which included leadership commitment and demonstration, pro-active risk identification and management process, training and competency enhancement programme and consultation and participation of all levels of personnel in H&S matters, in addition to setting up H&S objectives and monitoring their achievement for ensuring continual improvement, sub-contractor appointment and control and regular management reviews.
On this occasion, Engineer Yousef Al-Emadi, Director of Projects Affairs said: "We are delighted to be recognized once again by the British Safety Council. The double win is a testament to Ashghals commitment to Health and Safety and its leading position in the Qatari construction industry in terms of promoting awareness through targeted initiatives, and implementing best health and safety practices."
He stressed that these International Safety Awards are part of numerous awards won by Ashghal during the last few years. They are a result of well-implemented strategies set by Ashghals leadership and nurtured at every level across the organisation.
Engineer Yousef Al-Emadi, highlighted Ashghals ongoing wellness programme for health screening of workers which commenced in 2017. Eng. Al-Emadi added, "Having been crowned overall Wellbeing Initiative Winner in the British Safety Council 2020 International Safety Awards is a very pleasing endorsement of our vision to implement a proactive programme to improve the health and wellbeing of our very large workforce."
Eng. Yousef Al-Emadi thanked and acknowledged the excellent cooperation with the Ministry of Public Health, Qatar Red Crescent and Hazm Mebaireek hospitals, in addition to the contractors with their licensed medical teams at each work site.
Eng. Saoud Al Tamimi, Roads Projects Department (RPD) Manager, pointed out that this award comes in the context of the excellent performance in the Departments projects in the health and safety area. RPD has achieved an injury frequency rate of 0.08 in 74 million man hours out of which 43 million man hours were with no lost time injury (LTIs). He also said that these numbers match and surpass the international rates in similar projects indicates the efficiency of the implemented strategy.
Mike Robinson, Chief Executive of the British Safety Council, congratulated Ashghal on their success in winning two International Safety Awards with a Merit: "The British Safety Council commends Ashghal on their achievement. The award is in recognition of their commitment and efforts to keep their workforce free of injury and ill health. The vision of the British Safety Council is that no one should be injured or made ill through work anywhere in the world. Realising it requires more than legislation; people and organisations committed to health and safety make it a reality and inspire others to create workplaces that are a key force for good."
The International Safety Awards scheme has been recognising and celebrating organisations from around the world, which have demonstrated to the satisfaction of the schemes independent judges their commitment to preventing workplace injuries and work-related ill health.
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