HEALTH AND SAFETY

In line with our corporate EHS Policy, KPIs are identified with targets established and reviewed annually to monitor our EHS performance. This ensures that we achieve a consistently high EHS standard across the organisation.

Beyond caring for our direct employees, CDL also prioritises the health and safety of our workers at our construction sites and commercial. All workers at our construction sites and properties managed1 by CDL are protected under CDL’s stringent health and safety management policies and procedures.

Due to our excellent WSH performance and leadership, CDL continues to be recognised as a long-serving bizSAFE Mentor2. In 2020, we successfully migrated to ISO 45001 occupational health and safety management system standard from OHSAS 18001. We will continue to leverage industry best practices to ensure that occupational health and safety is maintained at their highest levels.


1 Workers at our managed properties are contracted to provide maintenance, cleaning and security services.
2 bizSAFE Mentors are organisations that have demonstrated excellent WSH performance and leadership. As a role model, a bizSAFE Mentor shares good practices and nurtures bizSAFE Enterprises in their WSH, guiding them as they progress in the programme.

CDL’s Approach to EHS Risk Management

EHS Working Committee. All CDL employees are represented in the EHS Working Committee through their department representatives. Staff can highlight their concerns, including WSH issues, directly to the EHS team in CDL. Initiatives and activities planned by this committee are part of a continual process to ensure and promote the health, safety, and well-being of all employees. The committee convenes at least once annually to review and discuss CDL’s approach to health and safety management.

EHS Working Committee members undergo risk management training to lead risk assessments for their respective operations. They also attend refresher sessions periodically to keep abreast with new developments.

Hazard Identification, Risk Assessment and Risk Control. CDL conducts hazard identification, risk assessment and risk control exercises across our corporate office, and 100% of our managed buildings and construction sites, in line with ISO 45001 management system requirements and local legislation.

As part of CDL’s risk management process, the trained EHS Steering Committee is tasked to lead these exercises within their department for routine and non-routine activities, and also conducts cross-departmental reviews occasionally. In consultation with the EHS department, the members recommend risk mitigation methods that commensurate with a hierarchy of controls for identified hazards.

As employees who conduct site visits and inspections are exposed to slip, trip and fall hazards, we strive to improve our safety and precautionary measures by adopting industry best practices.

Responding to Incidents. Apart from the periodic reviews, any organisational changes, the occurrence of incidents or employee feedback would trigger ad-hoc reviews of our risk controls. By applying robust risk controls, we are pleased to report that in the year under review there was no hazard that posed a risk of high-consequence injury1.

CDL has established an incident investigation and reporting procedure to promptly respond to health and safety incidents. When employees raise incident reports, an experienced group of personnel will investigate to determine the root cause of the incident and identify corrective and preventive actions.

As our employees’ safety is of utmost importance, employees are actively reminded to not engage in any unsafe work and to report any unsafe working conditions to either their representative or directly to the EHS department so that the issue may be resolved quickly and effectively. CDL views these as valuable feedback to drive safety enhancements in the workplace, and ensures that employees can provide input without fear of reprisal.

Training. In 2020, CDL’s EHS team organised a series of internal WSH Awareness Workshops and trainings to raise awareness of occupational health and safety issues amongst employees. These virtual sessions were attended by more than 160 employees, covering almost 40% of staff strength at our corporate office in Singapore. Topics covered included health and safety-related trends, legislative requirements, reporting of incidents, and safety issues on and off-the-job.

This forms part of CDL’s educational efforts to inculcate a holistic safety mindset in our employees. Real-life incidents are used as discussion material for employees to gain a better understanding of existing and predicted risks within their work activities. Apart from their annual training, in 2020 employees were provided with quarterly reminders on relevant health and safety topics, such as good ergonomic practices and safety tips to observe during WFH arrangements.

Total Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) at Corporate Office

CDL places occupational safety and health at the forefront of our business processes. Since 2003, we have maintained our OHSAS 18001 certification that demonstrates our commitment to a holistic occupational health and safety management system. In March 2020, the previous OHSAS 18001 was migrated to the latest ISO 45001 standard3. It provides robust guidance for our integrated EHS Management System that covers 100%4 of Singapore key operations. In 2020, there was zero fatality, high-consequence injury5, and occupational disease involving our employees in our corporate office. There was no reportable injury that occurred within the CDL corporate office premises. By proactively tracking and taking accountability for reportable incidents, it helps to create awareness on the importance of a safe and healthy workplace to prevent future occurrences. CDL also implements a reporting system for near-miss and off-the-job incidents to promote a more holistic safety culture among our employees.

3 OHS management system standard was revised in March 2018. The publication of ISO 45001:2018 has since replaced OHSAS 18001.
4 100% of key operations (Corporate Management, Property & Facilities Management and Project Management Services) are covered under our health and safety management system.
5 A high-consequence injury is a work-related injury that results in a fatality or in an injury from which the worker cannot, does not, or is not expected to recover fully to pre-injury health status within 6 months.
6 This incident involved a corporate office staff but occurred at a construction site. For consistency, it is reported under corporate office.

Total WSH at Managed Properties

Facilities management and maintenance are vital in delivering prompt and reliable services to our tenants, customers and building users, impacting our assets’ operational efficiency that contributes to our bottom line. As such, we place great emphasis on guiding our facility managers and contractors to uphold safe, healthy and productive work environments for workers in our managed buildings. Additionally, CDL engages our contracted workers through monthly meetings to develop solutions to mitigate WSH risks and reiterate the importance of health and safety issues that affect our workers and tenants7. Tenants are also engaged to provide feedback on unsafe conditions, which are addressed promptly.

CDL has always prioritised risk management at our managed properties using our robust risk assessment system, which are led by our trained personnel in operational risk management. For every facility management assignment in our properties, suppliers are required to perform a risk assessment to mitigate safety risks, such as falling from heights that may result in bodily injury or even fatality. One key training in managing this hazard is the ‘Working at Height Course’, which is mandatory for both supervisors and workers. In 2020, risk management workshops were conducted to train and equip our operations managers on managing risks in their jobs.

For the year in review, there was zero fatality, high consequence injury and occupational disease involving the workers of our key contractors8 at CDL-managed properties. There were two reportable injuries sustained by our contractors’ workers which resulted in a loss of 20 man-days. We have identified the root causes of these injuries and implemented controls to prevent a recurrence. Further, we are working closely with the contractors to strengthen the risk control measures of their daily operational activities.

7 Our scope of control for tenants is limited to common spaces only.
8 Key contractors in our managed properties provide cleaning, security services and mechanical and engineering support. Working hours disclosed covers CDL employees and workers of key contractors only.

Total WSH at Construction Sites

With CDL’s longstanding commitment to workers’ WSH, we prioritise their health and safety through our robust policies and practices. Measures to manage and minimise high-risk activities include:

  • Implementation of robust risk controls, such as fall prevention plans and soil erosion prevention
  • Frequent briefings on fatigue, heat stress, hearing conservation and respiratory protection

For close to two decades, as part of the tender shortlisting process, we require all our builders to have an accredited health and safety management system, such as OHSAS 18001, ISO 45001 or at least bizSAFE Level 3 certification. We also actively engage our business partners on health and safety matters through risk reviews, covering the whole lifecycle starting from pre-construction to TOP attainment. CDL uses a customised EHS risk register for each project to identify and mitigate EHS issues right from the design stage. As part of our EHS Policy and Project Development Green Procurement Guideline, we actively review the type of construction materials and methods to be adopted to minimise EHS risks.

Each development site has a dedicated workplace environment, safety and health committee, representing all workers on-site, including members from the main contractor’s management, construction workers and sub-contractors. CDL’s Project Manager actively tracks workplace safety, health and environment issues at meetings conducted on-site every two weeks with our main contractors and workers’ representative(s), amongst others. Through this, we maintain close oversight of issues on-site, ranging from technical challenges to workers’ welfare. These meetings are also a platform for site coordinators to report unsafe work conditions and action plans for risk mitigation. Some of our sites further incentivise workers to identify and report risk, with the aim of raising overall safety awareness.

For every project development, we institute a monthly joint safety inspection that is carried out in the presence of the main contractor, sub-contractors, and site staff representing consultants and CDL. The inspection highlights safety infringements and promotes better working conditions. Since 2001, on top of regulatory-mandated audits, CDL also monitors the performance of the main contractor’s EHS management through our CDL 5-Star EHS Assessment.

In 2020, close to 1,500 workers construction workers worked at our development sites. There was no high-consequence injury, fatality and occupational disease at CDL’s construction sites.

As elaborated in our enhanced EHS policy in 2020, we will continue to work with contractors to ensure that dormitories and facilities are equipped with basic amenities and all necessary measures. This is to provide safe, clean, healthy and dignified living and working conditions at on-site or off-site workers’ housing, including commercial purpose-built dormitories and factory converted dormitories.

CDL 5-Star EHS Assessment and Awards

The Assessment and CDL EHS Excellence Awards have been instrumental in influencing CDL’s main contractors and consultants to monitor and improve their EHS performance.

Since 2001, the CDL 5-Star EHS Assessment—an independent audit tool to assess, measure, and improve the main contractors’ EHS management and performance, has been in place to ensure a comprehensive, audited, and appraised approach. All CDL main contractors undergo quarterly EHS inspections and audits conducted by an independent audit firm recognised by MOM, and are appraised on a scale of one to five stars. Results are then presented to the management and site supervisors of the contractors and project consultants during the quarterly CDL 5-Star EHS Seminars. These seminars additionally serve as an invaluable platform to promote sharing of best practices and peer learning to encourage better EHS performance amongst our builders.

Launched in 2005, the CDL 5-Star EHS Awards recognise main contractors who have excelled in the CDL 5-Star EHS Assessment over one year. The Awards comprise the CDL EHS Excellence Award and the CDL Workers’ Welfare Award, the latter of which was introduced in 2012 as part of our continuous efforts to align business practices with ISO 26000. To recognise exemplary workers who are role models for safe work practices and to inspire their colleagues to be more vigilant, the Safe Worker Award was launched in 2014. The CDL 5-Star EHS Awards ceremony was held virtually in 2020, with five out of seven development projects achieving the highest five-star ratings.