The Abu Dhabi Municipality has launched an annual award to recognise construction firms and workers that have excelled in the fulfilment of all requisites of occupational safety and health standards.

The Golden Helmet award, which was launched on Monday, is intended to reduce accidents and work-related injuries at construction sites and to promote environmental, occupational safety and health standards in the construction industry.

The award initiated by the municipality's environment, health and safety department will be given to the construction and contracting firms that have maintained the highest safety and health standards for workers and also the workers who have shown the highest compliance with safety and security measures.

Dr Huda Al Salmi, director of the environment, health and safety department, said: "The award aims at promoting occupational safety and health standards in the construction sector, by reducing occupational accidents and injuries and strengthening the culture of safety. This award aims to create areas of competition among construction companies, which will help differentiate occupational safety and health and strengthen partnerships with the private sector."

She said these awards will motivate contractors, consultants and developers to take measures to protect the life, health and safety of workers.

"The municipality is making efforts to ensure an appropriate and healthy environment for all workers. We call upon all construction firms to comply with the requirements," she said.

Al Salmi noted that the awards will be divided in different categories. The first one will focus on the occupational safety and health performance of the firm while the second category will be for the application of best practices at the construction sites.

The award criteria will be based on a set of general and technical guidelines that will be used by the Abu Dhabi Municipality in reviewing and evaluating the applications.

Winners will be selected by a specialised committee from the municipality.

The municipality has called on all construction and contracting firms to participate in the award.