HFR Solutions CIC was recently approached by CEMEX UK, a leading supplier of cement, ready mix concrete, aggregates, concrete block paving and concrete blocks to the construction industry, to provide a stand-by emergency response team with rescue capabilities for their 24-hour cement manufacturing and operations plant based in Scunthorpe during a recent site shutdown.
HFR Solutions CIC was recently approached by CEMEX UK, a leading supplier of cement, ready mix concrete, aggregates, concrete block paving and concrete blocks to the building materials industry, to provide a stand-by emergency response team with rescue capabilities for their 24-hour cement manufacturing and operations plant based in Scunthorpe during a recent site shutdown.
Approximately 150 to 200 contractors were on site undertaking various maintenance tasks ranging from refractory work, scaffolding, mechanical maintenance and electrical work to industrial cleaning. Work also comprised of internal brickwork, realignment of the kiln and maintenance tasks on approximately 13 confined space locations.
Initially, the project scope and CEMEX’s expectations required HFR Solutions to deploy an experienced emergency response stand-by team to take a holistic and proactive approach to site-based health and safety, safety behaviours and capabilities, providing emergency response at the scene of any incident and confined space rescue. As the project progressed, the scope increased to incorporate the monitoring of safe systems of work, provide safety talks, issue daily safety reports and make site safety recommendations.
HFR Solutions provided a total site-based emergency response solution which included;
- Immediate response at the scene of any incident or emergency
- Highly trained and fully equipped rescue personnel
- Delivery of training exercises in restricted confined space areas
- Provision of initial medical response
- Safety inspections prior to any work being undertaken
- Production of risk assessments to support on-going tasks
- Support for existing documented emergency response procedures and evacuation plans
- Support for the site-based CEMEX team to maintain the highest levels of safety during the shutdown period
Testing Response & Rescue Exercises From Restricted Areas
The first emergency exercise involved responding to an unconscious and unresponsive casualty in the Cement Mill Chamber. The second emergency rescue exercise involved medical response and technical rescue from the Cooler Grate, where the casualty suffered a stroke and lost feeling in their lower leg. In both scenarios, the HFR Solutions emergency response team enacted the casualty rescue and plan effectively and in a safe and controlled manner.
John Armson, Head of Emergency Response, HFR Solutions CIC comments, “Our excellent rapport with the client along with a thorough understanding of the site layout allowed our emergency response specialists to reach, access and provide immediate response to all parts of the CEMEX site during the shutdown. The presence of our team assisted the CEMEX management team in the promotion of their positive safety culture and to ensure all health and safety procedures were followed, moreover, effective lines of communication with all site-based personnel were maintained at all times.”
The importance of De-Briefs & Communication
During the exercise de-briefs, and as part of an on-going improvement process, any learnings from both exercises were factored into future updates of CEMEX’s rescue plans and procedures.
As with any large location, such as CEMEX’s site in South Ferriby, it was essential that the HFR Solutions Emergency Response team set up an effective two-way radio system between themselves and CEMEX’s Incident Controller, to ensure they were able to respond immediately to any incidents at various areas of the site, whilst contract work was being undertaken.
Stuart Blackburn, Maintenance Planning Administrator, CEMEX comments, “HFR Solutions provided our cement plant with first aid cover and rescue services including a site vehicle complete with various pieces of rescue equipment during a 4-week major overhaul of our Kiln 2, this included advice regarding our current safe systems of work and assistance with the emergency rescue plans required for our confined spaces. The team provided hourly site safety walk arounds with feedback into the daily meetings including two confined space rescue demonstrations.”