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Bashir, A M, Suresh, S, Proverbs, D and Gameson, R (2011) A critical, theoretical, review of the impacts of lean construction tools in reducing accidents on construction sites. In: Egbu, C and Lou, E C W (Eds.), Proceedings 27th Annual ARCOM Conference, 5-7 September 2011, Bristol, UK. Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 249–58.

  • Type: Conference Proceedings
  • Keywords: accident causation; construction sites; lean construction tools; safety
  • ISBN/ISSN: 978-0-9552390-5-2
  • URL: http://www.arcom.ac.uk/-docs/proceedings/ar2011-0249-0258_Bashir_Suresh_Proverbs_Gameson.pdf
  • Abstract:
    A number of studies have identified lean construction practices as a strategy for minimising the overall cost and duration of a project by eliminating non-value adding activities and obstacles to a reliable workflow. Although several studies suggest that the Japanese lean production system exposed workers to poor safety conditions and excessive stress in the manufacturing sector, advocates of lean construction argue that the application of lean construction tools could minimise accidents on construction sites. However, there is little or no empirical evidence to support this assertion. A review and synthesis of the literature on lean construction principles and tools reveals a number of ways in which lean can positively impact upon health and safety initiatives on construction sites. The review identifies how their application could improve safety by addressing factors such as poor work methods, physical and mental inability of workers, poor communication and poor planning among other causes of accidents identified by several studies. The review demonstrates the relevance of lean construction tools to key causes of accidents. It concludes by presenting a potential link between the lean construction tools and key causes of accidents, to aid the development of a conceptual framework to empirically investigate this relationship. This study can contribute to developing strategies that can promote improved safety on construction sites.