NUI Galway wins HSA Third Level 'Safety in Design' National Competition

Monday, 4 April 2011

A team of students from NUI Galway have won a Health and Safety Authority run competition aimed at undergraduate teams from construction related degree programmes in third level institutions. At the final held recently in the Ashling Hotel in Dublin, six short-listed teams battled it out to win the first prize of €3,000 with Sligo Institute of Technology awarded the runner-up prize of €1,000. Other teams which made the final included students from UCC, GMIT and Carlow IT. The NUI Galway winning team was made up by Kevin Carney from Frenchpark, Co. Roscommon, Grant Deeney from Ballaghaderreen, Co. Roscommon, and Shane McHale from Ballina, Co. Mayo. The students from different disciplines worked together to take on the role of giving expert advice on remedial repairs, traffic management and long-term maintenance of a bridge that suffered structural damage as result of a bridge strike. Various challenges had to be addressed including examining the impact of design on after-care maintenance, site-specific risk assessments and preparing traffic management plans. Dr Jamie Goggins, Chartered Engineer and Programme Director for BSc in Project and Construction Management at NUI Galway, said: "We would like to congratulate Kevin, Grant and Shane on winning this competition organised by the Third Level Initiative Group of the Health and Safety Authority. The aim of the competition fits very well with the ethos of our undergraduate degree programmes in construction related programmes – to provide an environment where undergraduate students can collaborate and work together to enhance, develop and embed their knowledge and understanding of various aspects of engineering and construction. Furthermore, this competition provides a platform for students to work in multidisciplinary groups, which is an experience that we value and promote in our undergraduate degree programmes." Chairperson of the Health and Safety Authority's Third Level Initiative Group (TLIG), Dr Anne Drummond, said, "In the world of work, collaboration and working with colleagues from other disciplines is essential to problem solving as well as being the safest approach. This competition has clearly illustrated to both students and judges that engagement and teamwork with their colleagues is a rewarding experience for students, and one that can deliver a safe and effective product."
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