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News Alert


What Happened?

During the installation of floor deck, an operative stood on a pack of double span sheets that had been landed with little or no bearing at one end. As the deck operative stood on the end of the last three sheets, they upended and both he and the sheets entered the net. Due to the angle and weight of the sheets, they punctured the net and landed on the concrete floor below. The operative that had fallen into the net, then fell through the hole created, onto the floor below.

Thankfully he sustained very minor injuries and was able to continue working, however this could have been very serious. The net was subsequently checked and confirmed as both compliant and within test.

On Site Action / Learning

Where any packs loaded out are found to look similar to the photos below (insufficient bearing and/or trapped ends) you should stop work immediately and undertake the following:

  1. Inform both your line management and the on-site client representative of the issue.
  2. Agree the best course of action with your line management and the Client. This may be one of several options which could include repositioning pack with crane/forklift and/or additional control measures on site.
  3. Where necessary, the contract team should undertake a site specific risk assessment and method statement addendum of additional control measures that are being adopted.
  4. Work is not to resume until ALL parties are happy that work can be undertaken safely.




Off Site Learning / Action

When despatching packs from the supplier or when receiving packs on site, ensure that individual sheets are stacked on top of one another such that they are vertically aligned.  This means that when they are landed by the steel erector, they can be visually checked to ensure they have sufficient bearing on the steel.

3rd April 2020 – Coronavirus Update

Further to the statement issued by UKMDA last week relating to metal decking and stud welding operations during the Covid-19 outbreak and the associated risk assessment, as noted, UKMDA met today to review the possibility of our members returning to construction sites whilst ensuring the safety of their workforce and associated people.

The committee reviewed site operating procedures (including CLC/Build UK’s) and the UKMDA Risk Assessment, including further possible controls that members and associated parties had identified.

The committee also agreed to produce a UKMDA Site Checklist in order to identify measures taken by Clients and Site Controllers which may assist our Members in returning to site. This will be published shortly.
UKMDA and it’s Members remain committed to returning to sites as soon as it is safe to do so.
To achieve this, our Members are working to identify, by site specific risk assessment, sites on which work can continue whilst ensuring the safety of the workforce. They will be contacting their clients directly to discuss their proposals.
UKMDA will continue to meet every Friday until further notice.



Further to the statement issued by UKMDA last week (see Here ) relating to metal decking and stud welding operations during the Covid-19 outbreak and the associated risk assessment (see Here ), as noted, UKMDA will be meeting on a weekly basis every Friday until further notice, (with the exception of 10/4/20, which will be held on 9/4/20 instead) in order to review the possibility of our members returning to construction sites whilst ensuring the safety of their workforce and associated people.



Following the statement issued by the UKMDA on 25th March 2020, the members met virtually to discuss their off and on site activities with a view to seeing if the industry can work safely during the Covid-19 outbreak.  A risk assessment for these activities has been created which considers the Government advice on social distancing, as well as site practicalities such as manual handling and use of equipment.

As well as considering the health of Metal Decking and Studwelding operatives, the UKMDA were concerned about the health of others affected by their works, as well as the operatives’ families, many of whom are “key workers”.

Upon completing the risk assessment, which is available to download from the image below, the UKMDA Members concluded that they have no option but to cease works on site due to health and safety grounds.

The UKMDA Members will be meeting virtually over the coming weeks as the likelihood and risk profile changes in order to review up to date government and industry advice.  Any changes will be published on the news pages of the UKMDA website.


Site Safety for Metal Decking, Thru-Deck Stud Welding Operations During the Covid-19 Outbreak

The Board of the UK Metal Decking Association (UKMDA) has reviewed the Build UK/CLC document Site operating procedures – Protecting your workforce Found Here and the government information Full guidance on staying at home and away from others Found Here and its implications on metal decking and thru-deck stud welding operations in line with Health and Safety Regulations and law.

We have concluded that our members cannot continue to operate on sites as these procedures cannot be adhered to for the following reasons and they cannot comply with Health and Safety Law and Regulations:

The 2m rule cannot be adhered to in the following critical metal decking and stud welding operations:

  • handling short metal decking sheets of less than 2 m (2-man operation)
  • Joint lifting of long metal decking sheets as required for effective manual handling. (2-man operation)
  • Measuring and cutting sheets around columns and notches (2-man operation)
  • Correcting cover widths of sheets and fixing in place (2-man operation)
  • holding trim in position for fixing (2-man operation)
  • holding flashing in position for fixing (2-man operation)
  • cutting trims for corners (2-man operation)
  • offloading stud barrels for stud welding operations from stud welding rigs (2-man operation)
  • installation of safety nets from footed ladders (2-man operation)
  • rescue of a faller into a safety net (requiring close physical contact)
  • lifting of large safety nets when they are folded up (2-man operation)

Furthermore, with metal decking and stud welding operations being very specialist in nature, our Members workforce are not local to the sites they operate on. This necessitates the operative taking accommodation in hotels and guesthouses local to the sites they are working on, and they use restaurants and public houses to obtain meals. These are no longer available due to the Government enforced closures. The workforce is therefore having to travel excessive distances to site, often many hours, increasing road safety risks.

The UKMDA has therefore agreed that it is no longer possible to safely provide metal decking and thru-deck stud welding on UK sites until the strict restrictions that currently imposed by parliament for social distancing (2m) are removed or reviewed for construction work.

We understand that this will present issues on sites, but the safety and welfare of our members workforce and their families has to be paramount in these unprecedented times.

We thank you for your understanding.


UK Metal Decking Association Ltd

Tel: 07854 226251


UKMDA Releases Statement on Retentions – July 2018

UKMDA Statement on Retentions – July 2018

The UK Metal Decking Association considers the withholding of retentions on metal decking contracts to be unnecessary. As such, the industry does not accept the application of retentions.

Metal decking is effectively a shutter and would not be subject to defects or poor workmanship once the concrete has been poured and reached design strength.  After the concrete pour, it would not be possible to carry out any remedial work, therefore the holding of retention to cover any potential defects is not applicable to the works.

Accordingly, retention to cover any potential defects is not applicable to metal decking works.

UK Metal Decking Association Launches National NVQ

For the first time in five years, nationally recognised NVQ’s in Metal Decking and Stud Welding have been awarded through a brand new training and qualification scheme set up by the U.K. Metal Decking Association (UKMDA).
In 2013, ECITB withdrew the NVQ Qualifications, leaving the industry without an industry recognised way of formally qualifying the workforce, but after months of lobbying, the UKMDA stepped in to develop the National Occupational Standard with the support of CITB. The qualification enables holders to obtain a Blue Skilled Worker CSCS card in Metal Decking and Stud Welding.
Joe Gaughan, UKMDA Chairman awarded the first seven qualifications to the candidates and their company representatives in the beautiful surroundings of the Callow Hall Hotel, near Ashbourne, on Monday 11th June.

  • The first wave of Metal Decking & Studwelding NVQ candidates were:
    Viorel Caldare and Callum Gowland, from Durham Complete Decking Ltd, accompanied by Glen McDonald – Durham Complete Decking’s MD
  • Damien Nixon, David Holt, Stephen Dey, Dean Craster and Peter Bland, from Northern Steel Decking Ltd, accompanied by Carl Baxter, Northern Steel Decking’s Senior Contracts Manager

Tony Seddon, UKMDA’s Company Secretary says: “This is massive news for the construction industry. There’s been a huge hole in the metal decking and studwelding training sector for almost half a decade now and we are thrilled to have developed this excellent formal qualification, which sets a new standard for those working in this busy sector. It’s now up to the construction industry to get behind the NVQ, with support from UKMDA and CITB.”

UKMDA Chairman Joe Gaughan added: “We are very proud of what we have achieved since the association was launched in June 2015. This NVQ now means the industry has a formally recognised and thorough qualification and there is a career path for those entering the industry.”

Many more NVQ qualifications are in the process of being assessed and will roll out in coming months. For information on the NVQ and UKMDA training scheme, please visit or email

Initiative Launched to Tackle Mental Health Issues in the Construction Industry

Mental Health Issues in Construction

Mates in Mind aims to raise awareness, address the stigma of poor mental health and improve positive mental wellbeing in the UK construction industry.

Mates in Mind has an ambitious goal – to reach 100,000 workers in its first year and by 2025 to have reached 75% of the construction industry.

It is led by and for the industry in partnership with the Health in Construction Leadership Group and British Safety Council, as well as with other leading organisations and charities such as Mind, Samaritans and Mental Health First Aid England.

Mates in Mind helps to make sense of available options and support to employers.

Mates in Mind is a registered charity.

New Qualification Route for Metal Decking

New Qualification Route for Metal Deckingwin_20160804_113733

The UK Metal Decking Association (the single largest UK based specialist trade body for the Metal Decking and Studwelding industry) has teamed up with Training Qualifications UK to resolve a major problem that has faced the metal decking industry for a number of years.

Formed of the leading companies in the composite metal flooring and studwelding industry, UKMDA has worked with TQUK to develop a new robust and regulated qualification in Metal Decking and Studwelding which will help many skilled tradesmen to continue working on construction sites throughout the UK.

NVQ qualifications have now become a core stipulation for all skilled workers looking to ply their trade in a building and construction environment with metal decking being no different. They are also a pre-requisite in obtaining a trade-specific CSCS Card.

In terms of acquiring the correct metal decking and/or studwelding credentials to work on a construction or building site moving forward, you can undertake UKMDA Core Training, register for the NVQ and obtain a Trainee CSCS Card whilst you progress your NVQ, on completion of which you will be able to apply for a skilled CSCS card for Metal Decking Installer and/or Stud Welder.

More on the NVQ qualification with TQUK

TQUK Level 2 NVQ Diploma in Metal Decking and Stud Welding Occupations (Construction) (RQF)

The qualification comprises of several mandatory units including the preparing and operating of powered units, tools or pedestrian plant, machinery or equipment in the workplace and the safe handling, moving and storing of resources in the workplace.

And in addition to those, there are separate pathways aimed specifically at metal decking installation and stud welder operations. TQUK Managing Director Andrew Walker said: “We’re extremely pleased to assist the UKMDA in providing them with a qualification which the industry has been asking for.’

‘With NVQ qualifications becoming a core component for skilled workers, we’ve developed a wide range of Building and Construction vocational qualifications which we hope will help tradesmen in their pursuit of a career within the construction industry.’  

On working with TQUK, Tony Seddon, Company Secretary for the UK Metal Decking Association said: “ TQUK’s no nonsense approach to moving the qualification forward has been refreshing. We look forward to a long and fruitful relationship with them”

On what the qualification means to the UKMDA Tony said: “The metal decking and studwelding industry has been without a robust qualification route for several years. The NVQ will lead to a qualification at a nationally recognised level, which means the industry can finally move forward in qualifying the workforce. The UKMDA is delighted to have been part of this process and I am personally pleased to have seen the industry pull together for the common good.”

Click here for more information.