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A new study examined the safety impact of various methods of constructing homes and concluded that panelised construction reduced construction site health and safety risks by as much as 20%.

The study by the Advanced Industrialised Methods for the Construction of Homes Innovation Project (AIMHC) found that homes built using panelised construction methods were faster, safer and had a lower carbon footprint than traditional brick and timber-built homes. Panelised systems prefabricate elements of the home off-site, including floors, walls and windows.

The study examined how different building methods affect risks of various categories, including falls from height, trips, slips and material handling and lifting. The researchers found that panelised construction lessened risks in these categories. It reduces the need for manual handling and working from heights, and more work is done in factories, which may have better health and safety management than construction sites.

In a statement, the Project Director of AIMHC, Stewart Dalgarno, said:

"It is gratifying to see that the crane erected panelised MMC methods, championed by AIMCH reduce safety risks and hazard exposure by 20% on site."

Half of the construction site deaths are caused by falls from heights. Panelised construction methods use cranes to erect panels on site, and this reduces the number of workers required to work at heights. Panelised construction does not eliminate all health and safety risks, however - workers still need to wear hard hats, hi-vis jackets and other PPE (personalised protective equipment), but the study suggests that it does reduce accident risks.

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