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Scaum enquiry
Just a quickie.......
We still have no coherent response from Scaum relating to the placement of their HS publication within all site huts (if your lucky enough to have ANY welfare facilities at all that is) and would welcome at least an acknowledgement that we exist.It would go without saying that it would help no end if unit managers were to stand up and help us out here......

..knowledge without action is insanity and action without knowledge is vanity..(imam ghazali,ayyuhal-walad)
I dont think any communication with SCAUM is actually neccessary as in the manual it says

"I wish this publication every success and commend it to the attention of all those involved in archaeological studies

Sir E J Cullen
Chairman, Health and Safety Commission

"This edition of the manual is the first to be issued in non-hard copy format on CD-ROM. SCAUM Committee hopes that members and others who use the document will find that this is a helpful development, enabling copies to be produced as needed by organisations and placed in the locations where they can be of greatest use: on site, in laboratories and stores, in public access areas, and in offices. SCAUM believes that copies of the document should be readily available for consultation by all levels of staff working within archaeological organisations".

I think these statements from SCAUM are unambiguous.

Peter Wardle

Thankyou sir! Extremely good stuff.Small problem assistants can`t afford waterproof laptops.....

..knowledge without action is insanity and action without knowledge is vanity..(imam ghazali,ayyuhal-walad)
Your message implies that you have had an incoherent response, which is better than no response at all. The last communication I had from SCAUM was in January 2003. A parcel arrived containing an empty brown ring binder with 'Health and Safety in Field Archaeology' on the spine. The accompanying letter reads...

Dear Colleague
In the next few weeks you will be recieving a copy of the SCAUM Health and Safety manual on CD. Enclosed is a folder for you to use should you wish to produce a hard copy.
Yours sincerely
pp. John Walker

Nothing at all happened in the next few weeks... or months... or indeed ever since. I suspect my SCAUM membership is long-since lapsed in the intervening three years so anything that was sent out by them may not have been sent to me.

We have since just got on with it anyway, and developed a more comprehensive approach to Health and Safety, using external consultants and web-based system of risk-assessment. Each individual member of staff has their own H&S and Personal Development folder for which they are responsible so the idea of having one in the site portaloo is kind of redundant.
Now that I would be interested in looking at further

Another day another WSI?
We use a commercial web-based system called Target 100 to produce relevant health and safety documentation including risk assessments and checklists. Each field officer is responsible for producing their own risk assessments using this system, which are updated regularly during the lifetime of the project.

Every staff member has a folder which contains generic H&S information (rules and regs relating to excavation, for example, working in historic structures, ornithosis, manual handling guidance etc. etc.) plus copies of risk assessments for all the sites and activities which they are personally involved with. Also any other information which is relevant (for instance contractors' risk assessments or notices, ground contamination reports etc.). The responsibility for issuing this information, and ensuring that proper mitigation (eg. PPE and/or safe systems of working) is in place, lies with field officers and myself. The responsibility for [u]reading it and acting on it and using the PPE supplied</u> lies with each and every individual member of staff.

We have had this in place in its current form for about eight months now and it seems to work. We are going to review it shortly and overhaul procedures where necessary (should have done a six month review but it has slipped down the list a bit). Feel free to email me off list if you want any more info.
If SCAUM really believe it should be "readily available for consultation by all levels of staff working within archaeological organisations", perhaps they should make it cheaper and more accessible? Or have a website with it available to download? I asked about buying it at the IFA Conference, but it was ?40 just for a CD, which seemed a bit excessive to me.
This seems to be the catch... to join SCAUM costs 40 quid and you get a free CD... OR don't join and pay 40 quid for the CD...

I was tempted to buy it and then 'accidentally' put it on a non secure section of my website... Wink

but I would rather that SCAUM made the info more available... and anyway... is it not a bit out of date now??

I like the Target system... by the way

Another day another WSI?
The reality is that the SCAUM manuals Employment Practice 2004 which is 287 pages long and the Health and Safety Manual which is 212 pages long are free to members. Membership of SCAUM is UKP 40 per year. Both documents have been produced by specialists in the field. For forty pounds I would say these are exceptionally good value and are "must haves" for management.

The CD format is very useful in that it can be searched.

The point is that the SCAUM manual is specific to archaeology so things such as grid pegs are included.

The Target system in contrast costs ?1000 per year for a company with five employees.

Peter Wardle
Just to answer Peter's point on costs. I am not able to disclose the costs of the deal we have, suffice to say that it does represent good value for money. We find Target 100 is cost effective, and we share it with other departments within a larger Museum. I am not sure where Peter's figure of five employees comes from; Target 100 website says costs 'less than ?1000...for up to 20 employees', our archaeology team currently has 12 employees.

The Target system is an interactive system of checks with detailed reporting options. We have found it very useful and has saved time and money in producing H&S documentation. It is more than just a manual. However I take your point about specificity to archaeology, we have had to make a number of modifications to the system. Grid pegs I am well aware of having been present in South Yorkshire when the 'man with two arseholes' was himself somewhat modified.

However this is a bit of a red herring. Whether you chose to use an 'off the peg' system like the Target one we have chosen, or the SCAUM manual... or whether you devise your own system from scratch is not the point here. The original theme of this thread was the availability of H&S material to all staff and its usefulness. I think we have achieved this by having individual H&S folders for each member of staff as described earlier.

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