Status Inspections Programme30 Jun 2023
This section represents the total number of inspections the RSC has conducted. The RSC inspection programme consists of Structural, Electrical, Fire & Boiler safety inspections. The RSC carried out 11,219 inspections during the RSC period starting June 2020 till June 2023 (among a total of 57,053 inspections by the safety initiative since 2014)
RSC engineers conducted 818 (Covered and Non-Covered Factory) initial inspections during the RSC period among the total of 7,220 initial inspections.
RSC engineers conducted 10,401 follow-ups and other safety inspections during the RSC period, among the 49,831 follow-ups and other safety inspections.
Following the initial inspections, the factory and the Brands are tasked with developing a Corrective Action Plan (CAP), which details time bound remedial actions (based on the severity of the findings) for completion. Follow-up inspections are conducted to monitor the remediation and verify that corrective actions have been completed correctly. Other safety inspection includes post-incident inspection, OSH complaints initial inspection, OSH complaints verification inspection, unannounced OSH complaint inspections, and inspections based on Safety Committee Walk Through. Each factory is inspected on average approximately once every eight months.
For the 1,711 factories currently covered by RSC, the following number of inspections have been carried out:
During the RSC period (from 1 June 2020 up to 30 June 2023)
- Initial inspections: 800 (at Covered Factory)
- Follow-up inspections: 6,266 (30% structural inspections, 38% electrical inspections, 32% fire inspections)
Total initial and follow-up inspections (since 2013 up to 30 June 2023)
- Initial inspections: 5,131 (at Covered Factory)
- Follow-up inspections: 35,670 (23% structural inspections, 39% electrical inspections, 38% fire inspections)
Special and Verification Inspections
In addition to regular follow-up inspections, RSC engineers also conduct special and verification inspections, including the following:
->Testing & commissioning verification inspections (T&CVIs) to verify that the installation of the fire detection and protection systems has been completed, as indicated by factories in their CAP. During this inspection, the engineers utilise specific guide sheets to ensure that all components of the system are functioning adequately. In an effort to increase the number of factories that ‘pass’ the T&CVI – meaning that the fire systems are found to be adequately installed to standard and fully functional, Pre-T&CVI on-site documentation and equipment reviews were introduced in May 2019 at factories. The goal of such a Pre-T&CVI on-site review is for the engineers to determine whether the factory is ready for a full functional T&CVI.
->Negative suction noncompliance related inspections. T&CVIs conducted in early 2018 revealed that approximately a third of covered factories had installed the pump of the fire protection/hydrant/ sprinkler systems using negative suction, which is non-compliant with the RSC inspection standard (NFPA). RSC engineers have since conducted visits at the covered factories to identify solutions to resolve the negative suction situation, such as installing a vertical turbine fire pump or changing the position of the water reservoir vis- à -vis the fire pump.
->Boiler safety inspections. Between 2018-2020 the Accord ran a Pilot Boiler Safety Programme at Accord-covered (now RSC-covered) factories. Initial boiler safety inspections conducted at 20 covered factories revealed significant boiler safety hazards, including non-compliant or missing boiler components/parts and a lack of proper certification. The boiler safety findings have been included in the factories’ CAPs. Boiler safety is being integrated in the RSC’s inspection and remediation programme, which means that all covered factories will receive boiler safety inspections.
The safety remediation is no longer monitored at factories in the following cases:
At supplier factories that have been made ineligible for business with RSC participating companies as a result of failure to participate in the RSC prescribed Safety Programme.
At supplier factories that are no longer covered under the RSC programme and have been transferred to the Government of Bangladesh.
The engineering, training and complaints-handling teams often work together to ensure that factory owners complete the remediation and that newly found safety hazards are corrected under the supervision of the factory Safety Committee.
The RSC is committed to inspecting each covered factory at regular intervals to make sure the remediation is on track and immediate life-threatening issues are remediated by the factories. But during the COVID-19 pandemic (2020 & 2021), the RSC couldn't continue its field operations at a regular pace. This caused RSC to improvise and come up with the inspection priority categorization. Inspection priority categorization aimed to make sure that all the covered factory get the RSC inspection fairly, with a focus on the cases that need the RSC’s most attention. With time the RSC inspection process has been constrained by the COVID-19 outbreak and strictly enforced lockdown across the country in recent months, many factories and associated Brands are keen to receive inspections to verify the remediated CAP items.
That is why on 31 August 2021 the RSC Executive Committee approved 3 new inspection prioritization categories based on which the RSC has been scheduling inspections since 5 September 2021.