Words from the EDA President: Safety firstPublished 29/6, 2020 at 12:53
‘Safety’ seems to be one of the most repeated words lately, along with ‘health’.
In fact, we have almost replaced ‘best regards’ with ‘stay safe’ in our messages and emails during the last few months. For the demolition industry, safety has always been and will always be present in every project, every work day and every conversation as prevention is the key to any activities we carry out.
White overalls, face protection and respiratory masks are not new for our industry due to the special measures and procedures to protect not only workers from hazardous substances (such as silica dust, asbestos, PCB, lead, radioactive materials etc.), but also the environment and the public at large. For this reason, from the beginning of the pandemic scenario created by the Covid-19 virus, the EDA’s motto has been ‘Safety First’, in order to protect the health of our workers and their families, and following the advice of public authorities, to prevent the spread of the disease.
The EDA and its national associations have been encouraging the construction industry to follow all the recommendations and implement the protective measures proposed by health organisations, most specifically those coming from national or regional authorities. The association is also encouraging the European Commission and the EU member states to provide direct support to employers in order to allow for a future of our sector and the construction industry as a whole.
The evolution of the pandemic and the current situation in each member state is different (in many countries, construction works have been reopened whilst always adopting strict safety measures). What we all have in common however is that it is necessary for all the stakeholders in the industry to be open to negotiations to reschedule projects, without endangering the health of the workers and of society in general.
The picture in the demolition sector is confusing and varies from country to country, but we want to do our bit to shed light on an uncertain future. EDA is preparing a specific report about the impact of the Covid-19 on demolition companies to show an overview at European level and country by country of how the pandemic has affected sites and companies.
It is my belief however that from bad situations such as we are experiencing, it is possible (and very positive) to get something good from them. During a crisis it is essential to come together to face the current difficulties and those that may come. For this reason, I am especially proud of the EDA family as I know that by joining forces, we can help each other.
In the past two months of confinement that almost all of us have experienced, the EDA Board of Directors has held several videoconferences; in the same way we have held meetings with our colleagues and friends from NDA (USA). The exchange of information and experiences, in short, cooperation, is one of the pillars on which we rely on to get out of this situation in better conditions than we entered.
The EDA was founded in 1978 and is the leading platform for national demolition associations, demolition contractors and suppliers. The EDA has a strong focus on developments in Europe, which are of interest to the demolition industry.