Choosing the right scaffolding is critical for a safe and effective worksite. It provides workers with a stable, rigid foundation to access areas of construction, repairs, and cleaning within commercial and residential projects. A quick search for “Plymouth Scaffolding” presents you with a wide range of companies and services. Which of these provide the best safety, affordability, and speed for your projects?
In this article, we will be looking at:
- What scaffolding services to consider
- The things you should look for in a scaffolding company
- Factors to avoid with these companies and services
We will give you a thorough run-down to help you determine how to choose the best Plymouth scaffolding companies in the area. Let’s take a look and help you make a more informed decision:
Looking at Plymouth Scaffolding Services
There are several factors to consider when sourcing ‘Plymouth scaffolding’ services in the area. These often include:
- Budget and size of project
- Types of scaffolding
- The deadline for your project
- Building design
- Health and safety
- Recommendations and reviews
Scaffolding is a temporary but necessary set of equipment to allow workers to do their job in a safe environment. It comes in a variety of materials and design:
- Steel framework and wooden planks
- Fiberglass and aluminum
Smaller structures benefit from cheaper materials (bamboo and aluminum). For high-rises, and to cover all aspects of safety, it’s the steel framework that will be sought.
Scaffolding is broken down into three elements:
- Standards – The vertical rods to hold the weight and provide structure
- Ledgers – The horizontal rods to increase stability
- Transforms – The horizontal and perpendicular rods to add support
There are different regulations throughout the World in safety protocols. Yet, most protocols are widely adopted such as the cross-over in OSHA from the United States and the UK’s Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
Now that the groundwork has been laid, let’s take a moment to go further into the important factors of Plymouth scaffolding services. Let’s find the best, possible company for your commercial and industrial needs.
Finding a Plymouth Scaffolding Company: The Important Factors
Safety (which will be covered) should always be a top priority when considering scaffolding for a construction project. There is no sense in endangering the lives of the construction crew (and bystanders) to save money or hiring someone in a hurry to rush your job. When jobs are rushed, corners can be cut and this can lead to potential issues.
There are many other factors to consider other than health and safety as a priority. Here are several other points to consider when negotiating Plymouth scaffolding services for your project:
Scaffolding isn’t a one-size fit all solution. It depends on the size of the project, time constraints, and the need with the flexibility of the design.
Consensus points that a supported scaffolding system is the most effective for your budget. These types of setups can be reused for many years and are quick to setup for most occasions.
Other options include:
- Adjustable designs
- Suspended design
If the budget permits then adjustable designs are the best option for scaffolding due to their flexibility. The higher flexibility increases workflow. This is worth considering when mitigating costs of materials vs man-power.
Types of Scaffolding
There are several types of scaffolding to fit the needs and requirements of the construction project. The common types include:
- Single scaffolding
- Double scaffolding
- Cantilever scaffolding
- Suspended scaffolding
- Trestle scaffolding
- Steel scaffolding
- Patented scaffolding
Which would you use? It depends on the materials being worked and the size of the project. It’s best to consult the company and lead. Yet, it’s very likely that steel scaffolding is what you’ll use the majority of the time.
When choosing scaffolding for a specific building design consider:
- Size of the building
The earth around the building may be soft which makes it difficult to setup specific forms of scaffolding. Likewise, tall-rises many stories high would use up plenty of materials which would better be suited for suspended scaffolding.
The shape of the building also plays a factor. Oddly-shaped buildings or those limited by space may need adjustable scaffolding to fit around recesses and projections. Tight alleyways and compact commercial areas may not allow for larger installations.
It’s also worth noting the conditions of the space such as the quality of the building material and unexpected, severe weather. If the building is listed, old or prone to damage, alternatives will be needed to be considered so as not to cause any further damage to the structure.
A professional Plymouth scaffolding provider will adhere to your needs by considering the building design and consider the need of restorative works to old buildings without further stressing the structure.
Safety is Paramount!
There are many possible points of failure in the construction of scaffolding. This is due to the interconnected standards, ledgers, and transforms. Safety should begin at a material level.
Safety Should Begin at a Material Level.
Materials should pass inspection if the scaffolding reaches great heights. A professional scaffolder should be called in to give it the all-clear.
Other safety elements that should not be considered “add-ons” include guardrails, stabilizers, and the proper documentation and instruction to pass on to the workers as training materials.
The actual design of most scaffolding projects is basic because of guidelines through standards and practices. Yet, don’t allow the ease of its setup fool you.
Elements such as the terrain, access, and design of the building need a keen eye and set of experience to keep the materials within reason but allow flexibility throughout the construction.
When hiring an experienced scaffolding company you’re not only gaining access to the equipment but also their knowledge of risk assessment. This ability to identify and document risks will aid in gathering the necessary documents to move forward with the construction.
An experienced Plymouth scaffolding provider may also have a network of recommended laborers, channels, and resources to improve safety and streamline the construction project.
What were to happen if the scaffolding takes a tumble? What about many construction materials damaged?
It’s not only your workers but those that may have been harmed passing through or living in the area. Then consider the property damage on the construction site or neighboring areas.
It’s required that a company has liability insurance for their employees. Likewise, public liability insurance is also a legal requirement.
Document everything. Ensure the scaffolding provider (and your business) has filed the correct paperwork and offer the appropriate insurance.
The construction market continues to grow. Already by the first quarter of 2017, it rose by 0.2% which may not seem like a lot but this translates to hundreds (to thousands) of new small and large projects.
Consider the scheduling of not only the scaffolding being constructed but the access to professionals. A single day could disrupt tight schedules and set many projects back by weeks or even months!
Theft is a very real problem with construction sites. Doubly so with the many metal materials which could be scrapped.
Security should be a consideration if the liability falls on your end. It would be wise to dedicate a watch guard day and night throughout the construction to stop any malicious types that may be eyeballing the scaffolding materials.
These cover the basics but we’d love to hear other considerations you may have in mind within the comment section!
Now let’s talk about a very real side of things when sourcing the Plymouth scaffolding services. The questions and answers about…
Choosing By Recommendation
You may have contacts in the industry that have worked with the company before or that have prior knowledge. If the company is local, it’s easy to find out information. There are a couple of ways that you can find out more just by doing a bit of online research:
It is quite staggering to see the hoops that companies have to jump through to get good industry standard accreditations. They are not just handed out to everyone. The NASC, for example, ensure that its members pass thorough checks before being awarded this particular accreditation. These stringent checks mean that only the best companies, that tick all of the boxes when it comes to health and safety and quality of work, are approved by them. These accreditations also take a lot of time and money so those that are serious about their reputation will take the time to get these stamps of approval.
Word of Mouth and Recommendation
There is no stronger recommendation than that of existing or previous clients. Check out their reviews on platforms like Facebook and Google. A quick online search will tell you lots about about. Plymouth Scaffolding company and what their online brand is like. Simply by typing in the company name you can find out more about them. Look at their Google page, check them out on Facebook and see if they have an updated, informative website that is kept up to date.
What to Avoid when Sourcing Plymouth Scaffolding Services
Not Every Company is the Same.
Yes, there are regulations, training, and protocols to follow but one should be vigilant in doing their due diligence. This is the important research to find a provider that covers all basis for your construction and safety needs.
Sales are Sales.
Some larger companies employ sales people to take their customer enquiries. These sales people have been given a script to maximise their potential. These individuals don’t always necessarily understand their products or services. This can be hazardous when comparing what’s promised and what’s delivered. You will know when you are talking to a sales or admin person and not someone who is involved on the coal face of the project so to speak.
Here are some items to consider to help you avoid certain Plymouth scaffolding services that may place your design and works at risk:
A Lack of Safety Monitoring
Monitoring should be in place for a dedicated individual to scan and record the construction and on-going usage to act on any troubling factors in design. This is usually carried out by a site surveyor or site surveyor, someone who oversees the project and the team. A good company will ensure that all of their staff have the appropriate safety training.
A Lack of Care
Scaffolding is erected and transported many times before it’s retired; ensure the equipment is up-to-code and quality by requesting buy dates, history, and examinations for weak spots.
A Lack of Procedure
New hires may not exhibit the same level of respect when working on these structures; proper training is essential to keep everyone safe. Ask about the team’s training and the experience that they have.
A Lack of Responsibility
How did the scaffolding company handle a past accident? What insurance and care did they provide for their workers? How transparent are they about the safety and design?
At times these accidents may be caused by worker fault while others stem from faulty equipment and materials. If you are unsure about the validity and experience of a scaffolding company, then don’t take the risk. Safety is the up-most importance.
New service providers offering lower rates could be skimping the essentials. Older companies should come vetted, too. Learn as much as you can about a company to avoid any catastrophic catastrophes.
Final Thoughts and Recommendations
Sourcing Plymouth scaffolding services should take all aspects of health and safety into consideration. Not only in the professionalism in the design and materials used but also that workers conform to legal obligations.
We welcome you to consider Drake Scaffolding Services Ltd.
Our 25 years in business covering commercial and industrial scaffolding services in the Plymouth area is unmatched.
We provide a wide selection of contract scaffolding for a number of businesses, building contractors, and private clients. Take a look at our gallery and get in touch 0n 01752 719515 to find out how we can help bring stability, safety, and speed to your next project. We are happy to answer any questions you might have.