A construction site is a vulnerable location at any time, but particularly when left stationary and unoccupied for an extended period. There are many inherent hazards in a construction site, such as partially-constructed buildings, excavations and materials and equipment stored on site, and this is without the ongoing hazard of status and conditions changing every day and having to rely on robust safety and security controls which can suitably react to these changing circumstances.
Managing safety and security on a construction site is very much akin to hitting a moving target, and protecting a construction site over the Christmas period, therefore, is a challenging proposition which requires a fresh risk assessment and the input of the various stakeholders involved in the site. In addition to the normal hazards present in a construction site, the Christmas break presents various specific hazards because:
- The site will be left unoccupied for an extended period
- There is an increased possibility of public nuisance and unsociable behaviour at this time of year
- Weather conditions can be extreme and unpredictable
What controls can I implement to help protect my construction site?
Of course a construction site needs to be protected at all times, overnight and at weekends during normal work periods, but in the lead-up to the Christmas break, there are a number of dedicated controls you can consider to protect your site:
- Barriers – moveable barriers around hazardous areas and materials, plus perimeter bollards and barriers around the entire site can restrict access to authorised personnel only.
- Signage – adequate safety signage should be checked and addressed.
- Temporary CCTV – if you don’t have a permanent CCTV system in place, it is recommended to consider a temporary CCTV system to monitor the site around the clock, to act as a deterrent and to provide evidence where appropriate.
- Patrols – vacant property patrols can be deployed for this extended period where the site is unoccupied, but you can also consider out-of-hours patrols and specific construction site security systems. This includes specialist controls such as SmartSite detection, which provides real-time video verification of intruders, unsociable behaviour and unauthorised personnel on site.
- Access control systems – you can implement automated or manned systems which only allow access to authorised personnel.
- Shutdown checklists – it is expected that weekend shutdown procedures will involve a standard checklist of items that should be in place, checked and turned off. This should be extended to allow for the holiday period and the potential for extreme weather. So extra controls should be in place, and maybe you would consider removing materials and hire equipment from site for this temporary period, when ordinarily you would just leave it on site over a weekend. And what is left on site should be properly stored and protected to prevent theft and misadventure.
Construction site security management from security professionals
As mentioned above, a team of experienced and qualified personnel should undertake a thorough risk assessment of the site in the days and weeks prior to the Christmas shutdown, to allow for adequate controls to be arranged and implemented.
All of these controls, systems and personnel can be supplied by First Response Group. We have licenced security professionals who can carry out various site patrols and inspections over the Christmas period, and we can advise on and supply security, barrier, CCTV and access control systems tailored to your specific needs.
Contact First Response Group today and benefit from our years of experience in providing suitable and robust security systems for your construction site over the Christmas break.