You may already know, from as early as the 1980s, construction has been the industry with the most number of workplace fatalities. In July 2019, HSE releases the annual UK workplace fatality report of the year 2018/19, which revealed 147 workers died as a result of a workplace injury between April 2018 and March 2019 BIM Coordination. And among these 147 deaths, safety gaps in the Construction Industry is responsible for losing 30 lives; shocking isn’t it?
Although the report also indicates that there has been a sharp reduction in the fatality numbers since 1981, we believe it can be reduced further; fatality can easily be avoided! How you ask? Obviously by avoiding ‘The Fatal Four’ causes of deaths at construction sites.
Injuries and death also put a dent in the construction company budget. The estimated costs of fatal and nonfatal workplace injuries were a whopping £15. 0bn in 2017/18. One thing is clear from these stats that the construction industry in the uk is struggling to ensure construction site safety! And the construction industry is seeing whopping figures in both injury frequencies and cost. The good news is Building information Modelling can provide a promising solution to all construction worries, including construction risks!
BIM, the Trump Card!
Building Information Modelling technology improves the quality of building planning, design and construction methods. Detecting clashes between building trades and solving those in the design stage itself is making the construction site safer. Relying on structural BIM services, architectural BIM services make it easier to identify possible collisions and mitigate those clashes before the construction begins. Through the use of sensing technology work-site fatality and injuries relating to being struck by moving construction vehicles can be reduced significantly.
Pre-fabrication and off-site fabrication: The Model-driven approach is making it possible for general constructions to rely more on pre-fabrication of building components off-site in a controlled factory environment.
Scenario Planning: Structural BIM Services enable us to construct a building component virtually before the construction begins, which makes it possible for the general contractor to explore several what-if scenarios and avoid evident risks later on while working on the construction site. On a BIM model contractors can look at different sequencing options, hoisting alternatives, site logistics and obviously can get an idea about the cost associated with all these! A BIM model can rightly guide contractors to predict hazards. By now we all know that BIM stands for building information modeling though it’s easy to dismiss it as just a new software for MEP modeling faster and to extract drawings more easily. In truth, there is a lot more the MEP design element of the project than simply the modelling phase. As MEP (mechanical, electrical and plumbing services) are at the heart of BIM any conscious construction manager would be wise to produce MEP drawings from a real 3d model as this is the only way to reliably manage clashes and generally handle the complexity of coordinating MEP with the architectural and structural direction of the project. This is known as MEP Design and 3d MEP Coordination.
In practice, MEP is not just about modeling the components the various disciplines involved require. This is because in any moderately complex scenario, quality MEP Design Services, properly implemented, can insure the client that the drawings delivered will be workable by the contractor without costly subsequent changes. Such changes are a typical occurrence on a worksite, primarily stemming from fabrication difficulties that can easily arise. In this sense a BIM approach is, again, the only obvious choice. But implementing MEP design requirements isn’t often straightforward.
Different use case scenarios impose significantly different requirements, often mandatory by local laws and regulations but in any case aligned with best practices, focused on delivering an efficient and ergonomic building. Specialists providing MEP Design Services will have all the know-how required to compute the sizing and distribution of MEP equipment and will insure compliance with any regulations. What they can’t do is know in advance how exactly will everything fit together, especially for a project that is at least moderately complex. Complexity can come from the size of the project but also the future use of a facility can generate complexity. At this stage, MEP 3d Modeling becomes important and BIM modelers will step in and work on data provided by the MEP design team. It’s here where much can be gained from close interaction between the two factions. As the model progresses, innovative, more ergonomic and/or often more practical solutions can take shape and save the client money and construction time by adjusting the design to account for the actual spatial constraints. Such constraints can suggest the relocation of piping or clustering HVAC equipment alongside other installations when shafts are over-sized, for any reason, and many more similar core design decisions. In some cases the most effective 3d MEP Coordination solution is achieved when the MEP Design Engineering team collaborates with the MEP 3d Modeling team closely.
Given the complexity of MEP and the deep specialisation that it requires, outsourcing is a valuable tool for design specialists and consultants especially as collaboration under a BIM work environment is becoming increasingly more frictionless. It’s seldom that an MEP design firm will have the market conditions to justify investing on in-house MEP modeling resources and in some cases even an extensive Design Engineering team. In this scenario outsourcing becomes the norm although too often this is limited to a narrow, local talent pool while significant costs can be saved by searching globally. Also when looking locally, the outsourcing ends up being split between MEP design and MEP BIM services. Here, fragmentation is something that can end up costing valuable time, and subsequently money, on the part of the managing party. In this scenario it becomes evident that the best practice would be to rely on a specialist that can handle both MEP Design Engineering and MEP 3d Modeling. In this way any gap between design and modeling is closed and any problems can be solved in an iterative fashion. The same iterative process that will also ensure quality MEP Coordination on site. Having both departments working together enables all the benefits mentioned above. Having a competent and all inclusive service provider outsourced brings yet another set of benefits.