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MOM Imposes Penalties on 191 Construction Worksites for Poor WSH Practices

  1. Falling off buildings, being struck by falling tools and debris, and falling through scaffolding structures. These were the common risks that workers faced at some of the worksites that MOM inspected under Operation Sunbird.
  2. Launched last month, the three-week long operation targeted the construction sector, focusing on formwork, work-at-height and lifting operations. This proactive enforcement operation was initiated in light of the fatal accidents during the lead up to the Chinese New Year festive period last year. Investigations into those accidents showed that contractors were rushing construction to keep up with project schedules and had disregarded key Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) procedures then.
  3. Of the 214 construction worksites inspected, 191 had contraventions under the WSH Act. These worksites received 272 Notices of Non-Compliance (NNCs) and 147 fines totalling $156,000. Six worksites were also issued with Stop-Work Orders (SWOs).
  4. Mr Chan Yew Kwong, Director of MOM’s Occupational Safety and Health Inspectorate said, “Our inspections found that the majority of worksites had WSH contraventions, the most common of which were open sides of buildings or work areas that were not barricaded, failure to install guard-rails and toe-boards and failure to provide safe access to scaffolding. These hazards should have been addressed by carrying out proper risk management and putting in place the preventive measures to eliminate or mitigate risks. We remind all occupiers of their duty to ensure the safety and health of their workers, and not to cut corners in the interest of meeting project schedules.”
  5. Minister for Manpower, Mr Tan Chuan-Jin said, “The outcome of Operation Sunbird shows that some contractors are still not placing emphasis on the safety and health of their workers. MOM has received feedback and observed that some companies chose to take the easy way out by cutting corners in safety to meet project deadlines. Such an attitude is irresponsible and unacceptable. Tight schedules should not be an excuse to put workers at risk. Deadlines must be met, but never at the expense of our workers’ lives and wellbeing.”
  6. MOM will continue to carry out regular worksite safety inspections, and urges employers, contractors and occupiers to ensure the safety and health of their workers. Members of the public who are aware of poor WSH practices can call the MOM safety hotline at 6317 1111 or email to report these practices. All tip-offs will be kept strictly confidential.
  7. The public can also provide feedback on WSH matters through the Snap@MOM mobile application. Launched in April 2012, the app is supported by both iPhone and Android mobile phones and can be downloaded from the App Store / Google Play Store. All photos uploaded to through Snap@MOM will be sent to participating workplace occupiers for implementation of safety measures.