82pc remediation complete: Accord
Some 82 percent of overall remediation works have been carried out until January 1 this year in garment factories under the Accord, a platform of over 200 European clothing retailers and brands formed mainly to strengthen workplace safety.
A total of 127 garment factories have already completed all kinds of remediation or repairing suggested by the Accord engineers during preliminary inspections between 2014 and 2015.
Of the 1,600 member factories under the Accord, 699 have executed 90 percent of remediation works by January 1, according to data from the Accord.
The retailers and brands signed a five-year legally binding agreement in May 2013 after the Rana Plaza building collapse mainly to strengthen workplace safety by fixing loopholes concerning structural, fire and electrical aspects. The progress rate of Accord factories in installing fire detection and prevention systems increased to 41 percent in the last three months from 31 percent in the preceding period, the Accord said in a statement on Friday.
In the fire safety remediation process, 96 percent of factories removed lockable and collapsible gates and 41 percent installed fire detection and prevention systems, it said.
In case of common electrical safety, 70 percent of lighting protection system installation and 80 percent of adequate cable and wiring works have been completed so far in the factories, it said. Adequate cable and wiring refers to all electrical remediation related to safe use, support and protection of cables.
So far, the Accord approved 56 percent of Detailed Engineering Assessment (DAE), 66 percent of load management systems and 61 percent of drawing plans, added the inspection, remediation and monitoring agency.
In October 2017, the Accord fire engineers participated in a testing and commissioning training programme with international fire engineering firm Jensen-Hughes.
It included visits to 40 Accord factories to test whether fire detection and prevention systems are properly installed and commissioned. Since then, a further 127 factories completed installing the systems.
The last three months saw a 6 percent increase in the number of Accord factories using adequate cable connections and wiring in comparison to the preceding period.
The same was for the adoption of a load management plan. Load management prevents overloading certain parts of a building, which can otherwise cause cracks and even the structure to collapse.
The Accord presented its programme to involve safety committees in identifying and addressing safety issues at factories it covered at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) forum on due diligence in the garment and footwear sector in Paris on January 31.
Some 181 safety committees completed the Accord training to address and monitor health and safety issues at their factories.
Regarding its next step, the inspection agency said 107 brands and retailers have so far signed the 2018 Transition Accord, covering over 1,200 of the current factories.
On February 2, the 2018 Transition Accord Interim Steering Committee agreed on the annual fees for running the Accord activities for June 2018-May 2019.
It was further agreed that signatories to the 2018 Transition Accord may choose to list their suppliers in any of the categories of home textiles, fabric and knit accessories.