The government should invest in formulating complete guidelines for the scaffolding industry in the country to avoid accidents and fatalities in project areas according to the Malaysian Occupational Scaffolding Association (MOSA).
Its president Datuk Dr Saravanan Karrupayah said local scaffolding services and training needs credible systems, standards and guidelines.
He said the MS 1562, the current scaffolding standards, were adopted from foreign sources with little adaptation for local use.
Saravanan said many construction-site accidents in the country last year happened partly because there is no complete system and guideline that is tailored to the Malaysian scaffolding industry.
The association wants more research to be undertaken.
The government should also invest in research and development (R&D) to formulate the guidelines to ensure sound working environment for general labourers who work on scaffoldings, he told The Malaysian Reserve (TMR) recently.
“We do not have a comprehensive system in place, only a set of standards which were totally adopted from international standards, which is not enough,” said Saravanan, who is also Group CEO for integrated scaffolding firm MKRS Group (M) Sdn Bhd.
MKRS is a pioneer scaffolding company with an annual revenue of RM40 million. A Petroliam Nasional Bhd vendor, MKRS also serves UEM Group Bhd, Lafarge Malaysia Bhd and Vale Minerals Malaysia Sdn Bhd. MKRS also opened a dedicated scaffolding training institute last year.
Meanwhile, Saravanan said MOSA is willing to conduct research on the related technology but needs to be funded by the government.
“We are willing to initiate the R&D process. The government should come forward to do this as it benefits all industries,” he added.
MKRS ED and certified scaffolding industry trainer Datuk Mohamad Ridza Illias told TMR that a complete set of regulations will ensure compliance with estabished safety standards.
“The framework should also include a set of well-defined guidelines including competency training and inspection,” he said.
“Incorporation of an effective and efficient regime in the implementation of scaffolding engineering services and industrial competency-based training will ensure an accident free area,” he said.