BIM for Safety Planning - Reduced Risks and Liabilities, Increased ROI

Feb 23, 2015 -- BIM Services are popularly used for project scheduling, cost estimation, lean building design, improved facility management and much more. However this information loaded 3D model can also help developers reduce the risk of accidents, and thereby reduce the liabilities and loss of life and property on the construction site.

The more complex and big a construction project, the more prone it is, to accidents and risks. Accidents seem to happen where they are the least expected and they cause a lot of damage to life and property. Such accidents are extremely common in the construction industry.

Equipment malfunctioning and crane collapses are also very common, and can cause a lot of damage at the construction site. Till date, the ‘big blue’ accident is well remembered in the history of construction. It happed so that the crane operators working for the project – the miller park in Milwaukee, had to move the largest piece of rooftop for the stadium. The weight of this piece was estimated 423 tons. When it collapses it cause a lot of damage, several injuries and three fatalities.

According to the bureau of labor statistics, a roughly 815 lives and more than 200,000 non fatal injuries and illnesses are caused every year at construction sites. Well one cannot altogether stop accidents from happening, but it is definitely in human hands to reduce the chances of accidents that happen due to human negligence often in the form of overloading, using faulty machines or due to lack of machine operation knowhow and training.

Using Revit BIM Services, fatal accidents and loss of life and property on a construction site can be vastly reduced with advanced safety planning and higher coordination. How? Read on to know

5 ways to use BIM for Safety

  1. Prefabrication:  BIM can be very effectively used for prefabrication. Now as most of the fabrication is done offsite, the involved risks also reduce. The space requirement and safety measures that need to be implemented and the related slip ups, trips, fall etc are reduced.
  2. Risk analysis: BIM can be used to analyze spatial requirements and safety hazards that can happen due to clashes, roof and floor penetrations etc. For example if a highly inflammable raw material is stored on site, too close to where welding activities are done then it is high risk condition, where there are optimum chances of fire. Identifying this concern and implementing safety measures by shifting either the storage silos or the site area where welding is done can resolve the issue and hence make the onsite environment safe and less prone to risks and accidents.
  3. BIM coordination: Advanced construction sequencing and analysis allows firms to manage site logistics and layout.
  4. O&M planning:The spatial coordination and O&M activities during the facility management phase are also prone to safety hazards. Using BIM and Virtual design and construction - VDC efficacies, teams can optimize a facility for better and faster maintenance.
  5. Validating safety provisions: Building information modeling can be used by safety managers to validate whether the implemented safety provisions are met or not.

 BIM allows you to stay within your budget constrains:

It all about profit and loss for a business, and hence, it is important to estimate how much costs will be incurred across the design, development and construction of a building. Everyone wants a project to be executed within budget, and the trick is to use BIM to calculate the estimated project costs.

Now there are a lot of accrued costs if there is lack of safety and accidents happen on-site. An accident or a conflict on site means a lot of liabilities, rework, often redesign and a lot of alterations. A lot of material also goes waste. Besides the construction schedules also suffer and get delayed. All these accrued costs and the cascading effected can be avoided by indentifying the potential risks and devising ways to eliminate these risks and liabilities, hence eliminate the resulting wastage of time, money and resources.

To conclude, we can say that BIM produced safety analysis reports can be viewed by analysts and safety measures can be devised accordingly. These measures are further analyzed and validated thereby implemented. This ability of 4D BIM helps create a safe, less risk prone, and low liability environment across the site and the various construction activities. These benefits translate into higher ROI and hence have resulted in wide acceptance and adoption of BIMfor safety promotion on site.

About Author:

Bhushan Avsatthi is a is an assistant director at Hi-Tech Outsourcing Services; He is a consultant, BIM expert and a green building advisor with more than 15 years of industry experience.

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