Current Affairs
Construction site managers worried that they might lose their jobs

A manager at a construction site who has spoken to TVM has expressed his concern that despite his long experience in the sector, with the new building and excavation regulations which are being proposed, he might lose his livelihood.

Aaron Chetcuti, who has been working as a site manager for the last two years, has proposed for the Buildings Regulations Office to be strengthened so that it can start training site managers who are not certified.

Chetcuti has been working in the construction industry for the last 12 years. He has worked as a builder and as an assistant when it comes to lighting, water services and tile laying.

Two years ago he began working as a site manager with a private developer, and with the proposed amendments to the building and excavation regulations which now stipulate new obligations, he is afraid that he may lose his job, despite his experience in various aspects of the job.

“What is going to happen to those who are not qualified in these things? Are they going to lose their jobs, especially site managers with private developers, since they have to be appointed by the developer?” asked Chetcuti.

In the Bill outlining the amendments which have been published for public consultation, it is stipulated that apart from an architect, every site needs to have a site manager. It proposes that the site manager should either be the architect himself or another architect, or a person who is competent and enjoys the trust of the architect.

“Now if the architect does not know you, since the site manager is appointed by the developer, how will he know if you are competent or not?,” says Chetcuti, who does not have any certificates to show that his competence.

Mr Chetcuti said that the law which obliges the developer to have a site manager came into effect in 2007, but it did not specify what competences one requires to ensure that the development was taking place according to the regulations and the directions of the architect. He said that it is impossible for one to obtain the skills or certification overnight. He was therefore proposing obligatory training.

“The BRO has a list of all the site managers, while architects are certified and there is no need to send for them, so you just need to send for those who are not certified and make them do a course, starting with a basic course and allowing them the opportunity to keep advancing,” he explained.

Aaron Chetcuti said that if the proposed amendments come into effect they will create more confusion over who is responsible.

Contrary to developers and architects, site managers are not organised in an association and Mr Chetcuti estimates that there are more than 500 of them.

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