Occupational risk-man- agement services provider NOSA officially opened its thirtieth office in Southern Africa and launched its Working@Heights training academy, in Centurion, last month.
“The academy offers practical working-at-heights training and is the first of its kind in Southern Africa for the company,” says NOSA MD Justin Hobday.
“The Occupational Health and Safety Act specifies that all work done at an elevated position requires a fall-protection plan, which includes investment in equipment, training, procedures and methods to address relevant risks.
“These aspects form part of the Working@Heights solutions offered by NOSA, as our equipment and facilities are aligned with the stringent safety standards with which NOSA has become synonymous,” he states.
NOSA currently offers 50 safety, health, environment and quality courses, including the Samtrac safety management training course.
It also offers consulting services to assist in implement- ing NOSA- and International Organisation for Standardisa- tion-approved systems.
Further, it provides indus- try specialists through its certification partner, National Quality Assurance Africa to audit systems using the different NOSA protocols and certifications.
“The training solutions are extensive and suitable for any industry,” states Hobday.
NOSA provides HIV, lighting, ventilation and first-aid education and training.
The services offered at the Working@Heights training academy include the installation of life lines and advanced systems, as well as the development of fall-protection plans and the provision of Sector Education and Training Authority- (Seta-) accredited height safety training.
The organisation analyses the height-related risks of a company and then offers con- sultancy services, suggestion of possible controls to be implemented and a training programme to deal with the problem areas.
Audits are conducted according to industry standards and independent assessments are provided.
NOSA offers competence-based height-safety training courses, such as the one-day working-at-heights course, which is valid for three years and the one-day post-fall-arrest rescue and the post-fall-arrest self- rescue courses, which are valid for one year.
NOSA height safety specialist Anderson Cilliers says NOSA also offers courses to State-owned power utility Eskom, which are designed specifically to meet the needs of the electricity provider.
As part of its accredited height-safety training, NOSA developed confined-space entry and confined-space rescue training programmes, as well as the development of a fall-protection plan that incorporates hazard identification and risk assessment (HIRA) with all of these courses to start as part of the working at heights courses by January 2013.
The risk-management services include the fall-protection plans and covers all legal requirements and compliance, best practices, competent persons, height-safety unit standards, multiple inte- grated risk assessment and control level evaluation systems, as well as HIRA.
NOSA’s height and safety controls include a complete range of safety equipment, as well as inspection, servicing and maintenance services.
“Our aim is to provide our services as close as possible to our client base, offer one-stop solutions at competitive prices and continue the expansion of our product range to meet our clients’ needs. We also aim to provide integrated outcomes, including company standards, accredited quality training and the highest level of service,” Hobday states.
In May, NOSA was awarded two tenders by South African rail enterprise Transnet Rail Engineering (TRE) for the provision of working-at-heights solutions in the Bloemfontein and Koedoespoort regions.
According to Hobday, because TRE personnel are working on structures higher than 2 m from the ground, which includes overhead cranes, locomotives, gantries, wagons and spray booths, the contract requires the development and implementation of a specific working-at-heights solution and associated training.
TRE risk and safety GM Mirriam Tenyane says NOSA has demonstrated professionalism and has met Transnet’s expectations regarding the required services.
“We continue to receive high-quality service from NOSA at all times, which meets the regulatory requirements and, therefore, enables our organisation to ensure the risk of working at heights is reduced and injuries are eliminated,” she says.