Factors driving the aggregates industry today
Despite large advances in technology and safety procedures in recent years, the aggregates and quarrying industry remains a dangerous environment with 12 times the fatality rate of the UK all industry figure. This is mainly caused by contact with heavy machinery. Therefore, health and safety is a key driver in the industry, highlighted by a number of high profile schemes currently being rolled out by the HSE.
The resurgence in the construction industry and strong outlook due to planned infrastructure spending, coupled with continued UK economic recovery mean production demand on the industry is increasing rapidly. Delivering process efficiency, better maintenance management and achieving production targets are vital to companies in the sector.
The industrial environment
The pressure to achieve high levels of production while maintaining a spotless H&S record can lead to a challenging workplace. Added to this is the practical reality of a harsh working environment, making maintenance difficult and machine failure a regular occurrence. Process control is the focal point, so factories, quarries and production plants must consider this very carefully. Modern day processes must incorporate data handling, a high level of automation, strict scheduling and rigorous safety controls.