The British Aggregates Association overhauls the successful AOS Scheme & invites collaboration from the industry
The British Aggregates Association (BAA) proudly announces that its Assessment of Operating Standards (AOS) Scheme, an accredited third-party assessment of quarry operations, has successfully provided independent oversight of health and safety compliance at AOS member sites since, the first certificate was awarded in 2007.
The AOS Scheme has played a crucial role in ensuring regulatory compliance and promoting continuous improvement in health and safety standards within the industry.
The Scheme is not for profit and non-mandatory, however, participation in the scheme demonstrates dedicated measures are being taken towards achieving health and safety compliance and continuous improvements in standards.
Under the AOS Scheme, participating quarries undergo an assessment process against established criteria aimed at regulatory compliance. The scheme, being fully independent and accredited, provides a reliable oversight for health and safety practices in quarry operations.
Mike Tetley, HSE's Chief Inspector of Quarries, emphasised the scheme's significance, stating, "(The AOS Scheme) is set against established criteria aimed at regulatory compliance."
To ensure the AOS Scheme remains up to date with the latest requirements and industry standards, it recently underwent a comprehensive overhaul. This revision guarantees its continued effectiveness and includes appropriate references to both QNJAC and HSE guidance.
The revised scheme was then submitted to HSE for review, and we were honoured to receive a statement from the HSE who advocate that everyone should be involved in such a scheme.
Chief Inspector Of Quarries Mike Tetley
“The British Aggregates Association’s (BAA) Assessment of Operating Standards (AOS) Scheme provides independent oversight of the health and safety compliance at AOS members sites, set against established criteria aimed at regulatory compliance.
Whilst the AOS scheme is not mandatory for BAA members, HSE advocates participation in such schemes as they are designed to benchmark or improve health and safety compliance. Also, participation in the scheme demonstrates that proactive measures are being taken in achieving health and safety compliance as well as continuous improvement in health and safety standards.
Quarries achieving successful accreditation will have demonstrated a good level of health and safety compliance, which is an important element of the health and safety management system. It also compliments a requirement of the Quarries Regulations 1999, to review health and safety measures.”
As the sole provider of such a scheme within the industry, the British Aggregates Association welcomes the endorsement from the HSE advocating industry-wide involvement in the Scheme. The BAA looks forward to exploring opportunities for wider implementation and invites interested parties to contact Roy Bush, Hon FIQ, BAA Health and Safety Director, at email@example.com.
The scheme operates under the following process: once all assessment questions are answered, indicating compliance with the traffic light approach, and a 100% pass mark is achieved, the site is awarded a certificate valid for three years. Additionally, the site is automatically entered for consideration in the Quarry of the Year award.
The HSE holds a list of all certified sites, recognising those demonstrating a commitment to health and safety through proactive measures aimed at achieving compliance and continuous improvement in health and safety standards. By participating in the AOS Scheme, members also fulfil their legal obligation to review their health and safety measures.