x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Comics and videos give tips on construction site safety

Comic strip characters are drafted in to teach construction workers about safety on the job through animated videos.

The comic strip features the mishaps of Achmet and Farik.
The comic strip features the mishaps of Achmet and Farik.

ABU DHABI // Comic strip characters have been drafted in to teach construction workers about safety on the job through animated videos. The 12-part series, released next week, will be dubbed into a number of languages including Arabic, Hindi, Bengali, Urdu and Malayalam. In some camps, depending on the ethnicity of the workers there, videos will be supplied in Tagalog, Nepali, Sinhalese and Tamil.

They have been produced by BuildSafe UAE, an organisation that acts as a clearing house for safety information from 28 companies and regulatory bodies. The cartoons are based on a comic strip produced by BuildSafe and feature characters such as Raoul, a senior supervisor with 30 years' experience and very good knowledge of health and safety. His adventures are with Achmet and Farik, respectively a construction worker and apprentice, who have a rather poor grasp of safety on work sites.

The comic strips tell of near misses when Farik and Achmet work together, and how Raoul helps them. The videos cover areas including occupational health, evacuation, electrical safety and working at heights. "The presentation also highlights lessons learnt and ways we can improve the next phase of health, safety and welfare awareness distribution," said Elias McGrath, the group administrator of BuildSafe UAE.

"Some small to medium companies are unaware of what the safety procedures are." The videos will be shown on buses and in labour camps. Some companies are planning to install televisions in places where workers wait for their transport as well as resting areas and canteens. The material is aimed at any organisation in the construction business, including subcontractors and regulatory bodies. sbhattacharya@thenational.ae