A construction site is an extremely valuable location. Not only is it valuable to the developer, in terms of what the construction will eventually become, it is valuable to the contractors because of their duty to employees and the assets that are stored on site. These could be vehicles, machinery, tools and, in the latter stages, fixtures and fittings installed ready for a client handover.
Security of construction sites, therefore, is a huge industry and one that is monitored and controlled by strict procedures and guidelines and a whole host of possible solutions. Security threats come in the form of the safety of people, property and the security of the site and buildings and therefore theft, vandalism and fire are frequent problems. Construction sites are left un-manned overnight, at weekends and often for longer periods if a project is put on hold, for example where a developer has run out of money or design considerations necessitate the project being halted.
Safety and security threats on construction sites
Construction site safety is therefore difficult to manage, because the site changes every day. There is movement all the time, and change is constant by the very nature of it being a construction site. So where you could walk one day, or drive a vehicle, or store something, you might not be able to the next day, so procedures need to change all the time, and somebody needs to be managing this, signing new procedures off and communicating them constantly.
A risk analysis will need to be completed at the end of each day to monitor inventory, shut-off procedures and storage. In this you will need to ensure that access is restricted where danger and hazards exist, signage is in place in these same areas, machinery and vehicles are shut down and stored safely, and any hazardous materials are stored suitably.
In carrying out construction site safety, there are a number of considerations and options available:
- Employ site security – manned patrols can be set-up at exits and entrances to monitor people on site, carry out walked patrols and implement health and safety procedures.
- Lighting – ensure lighting is adequate so that hazards and areas of restricted access are visible.
- Fire watch patrols – personnel can be trained to monitor the site for the after-effects of hot work or smoking procedures, as many fires only start after hours when areas have been left un-manned. Hot work permit systems and smoking policies should also be in place.
- Signage – ensure signage is adequate to highlight hazards and areas of restricted access.
- Barriers – ensure hazards and areas of restricted access have suitable physical barriers and these are checked frequently, as most likely these will need to be changed regularly.
- CCTV – a full CCTV system acts as a deterrent but also as a means of finding evidence of theft, vandalism or safety violations. It also enables remote monitoring where required.
- Alarm system – this can be linked to CCTV and other access control systems to raise alarms both on site and remotely.
- Safety checklists – a full and comprehensive checklist patrol should be undertaken and the site signed off at the end of each day.
Our safety and security services
The difficulty in managing the safety and security of a construction site is that many of the systems and infrastructure will be temporary, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have robust and coherent polices in place and working systems for things like fire extinguishers and lockout procedures for electrical work etc.
You can work with First Response Group in the setting up of a comprehensive construction site safety and security system, as we specialise in implementing robust temporary controls with a view to adequately managing a constantly changing situation. Start by taking a look at our temporary fire alarm systems for construction sites.
Get in touch today on 0330 124 5670 and we can help you protect your construction site.