Basic Health & Safety / General Stressing Awareness


To provide a general awareness of safety issues relating to work in a prestressing environment


This unit should be delivered in conjunction with the specific unit relating to the employees’ job role it is not aimed at training in isolation for any of the above. However, there are some employees where the PS1 unit might be taken as a stand-alone unit.  Examples are office personnel who are required to access factory floor.


At the end of the course the participant will be aware of both the company’s and the individuals’ responsibilities in relation to the Health & Safety at Work Act and relevant statutory provision:


  1. Background to Prestressing

    • Live end

    • Grillage plate

    • Dead end

    • Grips

    • Barrel

    • Multi-stressing

    • Wedge

    • Piab system (crane and pulleys)

    • Jack

    • Abutments

    • Prestressing

    • Tendons

    • Pre-tensioning (prior to multi-tensioning)

    • Button heading

    • Calibration

    • TDS

    • Isolation

    • UTS

    • Extension

    • Hazardous area

    • Ferrule

    • Deflected strand

    • What happens if a wire flies -video

    • High level of stored energy

  1. Types of Hazards Associated with a Prestressing Plant
    1. Non-Machinery – these relate to the environment in which the work is carried out and the hazard/ risks associated with each of the following:

      • Wire breakages – what could happen?

      • Damage to abutments

      • Problems associated with wires and coils

      • Button end malfunction/damaged

      • General housekeeping

      • Oil on beds

      • Hand tools/equipment (PUWER regulations)

      • Slips, trips & falls

      • Slippage on barrels of wedges

      • Manual handling

      • Noise

      • Accidents, injuries and occupational diseases

    2. Machinery

      • Overstressing - use of jacks

      • Lock-off systems

      • Multi stressing

      • Hot work on or near strand/wire

      • Machines used in stressing/manufacture/moving machinery

      • Hazards associated with work at live stressing end (factory specific)

      • Noise

      • Vibration whole body, vibration white finger (vwf), tools associated with this.

      • Guarding of machinery

      • Why use guards?

      • Different types of guard including dead end/live end guards

      • Rules around guarding including Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (1998)

  2. Danger of Exclusion Zones

    • Exclusion zones during stressing – live end & dead end absolute

    • Rules for access to stressed beds

    • Specific areas to be avoided

    • Rules around using a platform to cross a bed

    • Position of personnel to include operatives and visitors when prestressing operations are underway

    • Authorisation

    • What to do when hearing or seeing the audible & visual warning system

    • Rules for visitors to site

    • Safety around wire payout area

    • Safety around wire management area

  3. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

    • To raise awareness of the PPE required by the site rules and any relevant requirements in relation to Risk Assessment or Safe System of Work (SSOW)

    • Importance of wearing, maintaining and storing PPE correctly

  4. Risk Assessment (RA) & Safe Systems of Work (SSOW)

    • Awareness of Risk Assessment and SSOW

    • Legal responsibilities

    • Where the RA and SSOW are kept (site and job specific)

  5. Safe Access (entry) & Egress (exit)

  6. Warning Audible and Visual
    1. Work in Progress

      • What the sirens mean

      • The post stressing ‘amber’ period

    2. Power Failure

      • What to do if power fails

      • Considerations - is the bed stressed, part stressed

      • What to do


This module is assessed by means of a written test.