As an innovative digital programme for verification of workers and building site projects for construction within the United Kingdom, V Site Pass are always keeping a close eye on government reports and protocol adjustments within the sector. Therefore, the current plans to initiate new legal regulations based on Dame Judith Hackitt’s report on the Grenfell Tower tragedy of 2017 are extremely significant, because the changes will be implemented to prevent such an incident occurring again. For the construction industry, this will have a major impact not only on how buildings are erected, but also on how projects can be managed to ensure that all compliance requirements are met. This is where V Site Pass can play a vital role, but before we delve into that, we will provide some background on Grenfell Tower and the Hackitt Report in order to explain how we can take the suggested “golden thread” one step further.
Why Grenfell Happened
Upon the investigation into the Grenfell Tower fire, it was determined that while a malfunctioning fridge freezer was the initial source of the fire, it was the flammable exterior cladding surrounding the tower block that led to the flames spreading. The latter revelation led to major public debate regarding how many other tower blocks throughout the United Kingdom were designed with the same cladding upon their construction. A government inquiry was announced shortly thereafter, and central to this was the Hackitt Report.
The Golden Thread
In May 2018, the Government officially published the Hackitt Report, which was followed by the Final Report of the Expert Group on Structure of Guidance to the Building Regulations in April of this year. Crucially, it is the key directives from the Hackitt Report which are about to become legal guidelines that the construction sector must adhere to. These include the creation of a new regulatory body for the safe construction and maintenance of buildings standing above 18 metres, known as the Building Safety Regulator (BSR), along with extended building control and increased requirements to ensure sufficient worker competence, deemed by Hackitt to be a major weakness within the industry. These two points both link into what has been described as “the golden thread”, which means that designers, contractors and building managers must maintain digital records of the structure’s entire construction process, from the initial design right through to the project’s completion and any subsequent significant refurbishments.
V Site Pass’s Role
V Site Pass can take Hackitt’s Golden Thread one step further by providing a full and transparent audit of all of the tasks delivered during a project, in addition to holding individual records for all workers to verify their qualifications, skill-set and competencies. Our digital audit can ensure that construction site Managers will be able to identify who completed which tasks and when, what active qualifications they possessed at the time to ensure they were legally compliant and competent. This is crucial for the construction industry moving forward, especially now that Dame Hackitt’s commentary will shortly become law. Going forward, there will be a requirement for building operators/management companies to hold key information and audit trails on the construction of a building. V Site Pass are perfectly placed to provide a solution that ensures this information is created during the construction process, and stored safely and securely for future reference.
To ensure public safety, the construction sector must learn from past mistakes and look to operate a safer working and building environment based on the recommendations and legal changes brought about by the Hackitt Report. Key to that will be an extensive audit trail and genuine worker verification to ensure full competency at all levels, which is why V Site Pass is acting upon Hackitt’s Golden Thread by offering this solution to ensure true peace of mind for all involved in construction site projects, and of course for the residents who will be occupying those buildings.
More information can be learned about the V Site Pass programme on our website at https://www.vsitepass.com/.