Press Releases
DOLE stops commercial building project

 

Cebu City, Philippines.  The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE-7) yesterday issued a work stoppage order against the project manager and the owner of a 4-storey commercial building project located on A.S. Fortuna Street Corner Governor M. Cuenco Avenue, Cebu City. 

DOLE-7 OIC-Regional Director Cyril L. Ticao, in a statement, said that Primeview Resources, Incorporated, project manager and Zummerphil Construction were ordered to stop all their operations and activities within the project site until all noted deficiencies under the Occupational Safety and Health Standards (OSHS) are corrected. 

Earlier, the DOLE-7 Head noted of a fatal accident report received by the Department on 19 March 2018 involving a laborer who fell from the fourth floor of the building to the ground and died 

Victim, Joseph Luna, 24 years old, native of Planta Poblacion, Toldedo City was said to be among a group of workers removing the plywood formworks when the incident happened. 

“In the Occupational Safety and Health Investigation or OSHI that our labor inspector conducted at the project site, we found out that the plywood formworks that the victim attempted to remove were suddenly detached from the wall causing him to lose his balance and fell on the ground floor head on,” explained Ticao. 

The victim, at the time of the incident, did not have any full body harness, a personal protective equipment, which according to Ticao, could have saved the former’s life while working at heights. 

The investigation showed further that the building had no catch net, debris catcher and independent lifeline. 

“This is another unfortunate occurrence in the construction industry. We want to make it clear, though, to all safety officers and safety practitioners in every construction site that it is their duty to make sure that all unsafe conditions in the area are eliminated,” he said, adding that with the latest incident, it would appear that the DOLE, together with its social partners, still has a lot to work on insofar as religiously observing safety and health standards in the workplace is concerned. 

During the investigation, management failed to present its DOLE approved Construction Safety and Health Program (CSHP) prompting Director Ticao to comment on its laxity and negligence in implementing safety and health rules within the worksite exposing all workers to imminent danger. 

The CSHP, he clarified, is a set of detailed rules to cover the processes and practices that shall be utilized in a specific construction project site in conformity with the OSHS. Said program, he added, must be at the worksite at all times and should be in accordance with safety and health rules, and other orders and pronouncements issued by the DOLE. 

Other violations noted under the OSHS were the following, namely: No construction safety-trained safety officers present during the incident and investigation; No Philippine Red Cross-trained first aider; No hard barricade installed on all edges including the staircases; No personal protective equipment such as hard hats, safety shoes, uniform, among others; No incident report using the DOLE prescribed form; No Philippine Construction Accreditation Board (PCAB) license; No TESDA NC II for skilled workers; and no safety orientation for all workers especially those working at heights. 

“When we conduct an investigation at a construction site, we check not only the compliance on safety and health but also management’s adherence to the General Labor Standards or GLS. In this case, we found out that there was still no financial support extended to the family of the victim. This is definitely one of the things to be discussed during mandatory conference,” revealed the Regional Director. 

Respondents, according to him, would be called for a mandatory conference today at the Regional Office. Other GLS violations that would also be talked about would include the following, namely: Non-coverage and remittance of SSS, Philhealth, and PAG-IBIG; Underpayment of wages; Non-payment of overtime premium pay, regular holiday pay, special holiday pay, and thirteenth month pay; and non-presentation of employment records such as pays lips or payroll. 

“We would be furnishing the office of the building official or OBO-Cebu City copy of the work stoppage order. And as agreed in our previous meeting, the building permits of construction projects within Cebu City issued with a WSO by the DOLE would also be cancelled by the OBO,” Ticao finally said. 

 

 

End//LSenarlo-Taniza 

For more information on this report, you may contact Luchel Senarlo-Taniza, Regional Labor Communication Officer at telefax number (032) 266-2792 or you may send an email at dole_centralvisayas@yahoo.com


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2018-03-21
ATTY ALVIN VILLAMOR
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