Our Ref: HSR/2/6
Head Office Circular: NP/235/21
2nd July 2021
To: The Secretary
WORKING AT HEIGHT
Further to Head Office Circular NP/19/21, dated 2nd June, I wrote to Network Rail rejecting Network Rail’s approach as I did not believe this really took us any further forward.
I reiterated RMT’s position of reinvigorating working groups, per department: we had put a very simple request forward to reinvigorate working groups, per department - S&T, OHL, Off Track etc. To my understanding, none of the working groups have come to completion and the company has just pushed ahead with standards.
The company seemed to be suggesting that it basically holds high level meetings and not gets into the details of how people actually work on the ground; this approach has been previously rejected by RMT.
I further suggested that consideration of the national standard could be included in the individual departmental working groups.
Network Rail replied to me noting that further to a meeting with RMT on 17th May 2021 to examine the Business Process, Level 2 (NR/L2/OHS/022) Working at Height Standard, and then apply that standard to the track function, testing its application to the detail of how that work is undertaken, it had agreed to meet on 2nd July to test the controls set out for the Off Track function as required by the Work Instruction Planning and Delivering Safe Working at Height (NR/L3/MTC/SE0220) to examine in detail RMT’s request.
Your National Executive Committee (NEC), at its meeting on 29th June 2021, noted and adopted the following report from its Health and Safety Sub-committee:
We note the correspondence on file from Network Rail. The General Secretary is instructed to arrange a meeting of the Lead Officers and National Representatives prior to providing a response to the company.
Relevant Branches and Regional Councils to be advised.
I am acting in accordance with these instructions. A meeting has been arranged for 15th July.
Please bring the contents of this circular to the attention of relevant members.