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Scaffolding Removed from Notre-Dame

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Scaffolding Removed from Notre-Dame

In lighter and happier news from the world today, work has begun to remove melted scaffolding from the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, France since the terrible fire nearly a year ago. 

Low-angle Photography of Notre-Dame | Scaffold | RG Scaffolding Birmingham

Some scaffolding was already encasing much of the 850-year-old famous cathedral when the huge fire broke out in April 2019, leaving the roof destroyed and the scaffolding tubes in tangled and melted mess.

Scaffold Removed from Notre-Dame

This week, workers and scaffolders were tasked with a delicate job of cutting the melted steel tubes away to build another complex scaffold structure over the fire-damaged building.

This is one of the riskiest operations during the restoration work as the process could quite easily damage the limestone walls supporting the priceless ceiling vaults.

4 months to complete

The job itself of cutting away the melted scaffold tubes is thought to take the scaffolders up to four months to complete. So, unfortunately, you might not get to see the famous cathedral in all her glory in the foreseeable future. With social distancing still in place, work could even last longer.   

The Risk Assessment

Here at RG Scaffolding Birmingham, our advice is to risk assess each part of the scaffolding and structures that you have up on site, and give consideration to the particular factors that may impact the stability.

The factors to be considered are:

  • Scaffold configuration – is it sheeted or netted? Or is it fully boarded?
  • Location – Where is the scaffold situated? Is it exposed to wind, or other conditions that could impact stability?
  • Environment – Are there any adjacent activities that could negatively impact the scaffold?

As long as the scaffolding remains safe and considered approach to periodic inspection can be demonstrated, this will usually be enough to satisfy the enforcing Health and Safety workforce.

Healthy Scaffolders, Happier workers

Construction and Scaffolding workers at most sites in the Birmingham region do not need overly special precautions beyond those already in practice to protect them from hazards. However, various combinations of any engineering and administrative controls, safe work practices, and PPE may be appropriate for workers.

“Infecting people can spread COVID-19 through respiratory secretions” mentions Ricki Grenfell, owner of RG Contractors, parent company of scaffolding and driveways in SolihullBirminghamWest Midlands.

Coronavirus in the Scaffolding Birmingham Industry

Basically, by coughing and sneezing, a person can spread the disease to another person, and within the construction industry – we are most likely among those to catch it due to being in close contact. Touching materials, such as, poles, ladders, tools, etc. means you are also more likely to catch COVID-19.

We know it can get rather sweaty wearing all the PPE, but avoid touching your face, eyes or mouth – as deadly bacteria can find itself in and again cause you to get COVID-19. This is a simple reminder – ‘WASH YOUR BLOODY HANDS!’

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