It is not legal to refuse to work unless health and security risks emerge. A carpenter crew recently assessed that the renovation work on a building was so dangerous that they had to stop working.
“We arrived at the roof where plywood was lying unfastened. We lifted one board and had a look from the sixth floor where we stood and all the way down to the basement. The opening was 60x60 centimetres. We drew the line and decided to climb down until matters were sorted out”, Søren Kantstrup from the carpenter crew explains.
CHILLED BASEMENT INSTEAD OF SHED
Right from the start there were problems at the building site. The first problem was to get a proper shed instead of a chilled basement. The construction management was hard to convince and thought that Søren was whiny when he proclaimed:
“We are located in Denmark. We are in Copenhagen. The year is 2018 and everybody needs to comply with the working environment regulations.”
Søren Kantstrup was elected as working environment representative but was never invited to the safety meetings. He only participated in one full meeting.
FREE FALL FROM ROOF TO BASEMENT
One day Byggefagforeningernes Sikkerhedspartujle (the safety patrol from the union) paid a visit and reprimands were given. It led to slight changes: the demolitionists started to wear dust masks. But proper fencing was still not in place which three carpenters discovered one day when they got up on the roof.
“Several plywood boards were lying unbolted. We lifted one board and had a look from the sixth floor where we stood and all the way down to the basement. The opening was 60x60 centimetres. We drew the line and decided to climb down until matters were sorted out. We descended the building and contacted our company to let them know that we were going home. They gave us the green light.”
The construction site ended up being inactive for a whole week until matters were sorted out and everything had been properly supported.