Skip to main content


Designers Knowledge Base

Including falsework, formwork, reinforcement, concrete compaction and temporary loading conditions.


In specifying the use of concrete in his design the designer should be aware of, and assess the risks from, the following principal hazards.

Some principal hazards and risks

  • dust generated by scabbling, drilling, chasing, blowing out pours etc
  • noise and vibration caused by work with vibrators, scabblers etc
  • falls from height caused by working on scaffolds, formwork etc
  • collapse of formwork, false work or permanent structure caused by fresh concrete loading
  • contact with moving plant such as cement mixers, pumps, dumpers etc

Possible design considerations

Working with concrete on construction sites is therefore a hazardous operation and designers must give due attention to this when specifying the use of concrete. Consideration should be given to:

  • The location of a safe place for mixing with sufficient space for batching or is ready mixed concrete readily available within easy reach of the point of placement?
  • If special concrete mixes are specified can they be supplied locally?
  • Will the concreting be carried out at ground level or will it be at a height or at depth
  • A safe method of construction should be determined, and, if it requires a specific method of build, information about this must be passed to the principal contractor
  • Information concerning relevant stages in the life of the concrete such as use, maintenance and demolition must be passed on for inclusion in the health and safety file
  • Steps should be taken to specify the casting of such details as chases or holes in order to remove the hazards of drilling and cutting them later
  • Wherever possible consider off site fabrication to minimise concrete operations on site