Category Archives: construction site

Are You Providing Adequate Site Facilities?

With so much to think about when you’re planning work at a new construction site, it can be easy to forget about the basics. But one of the things you should always keep front of mind is whether your site meets the legal requirements for workplace welfare facilities.

At Suttie Site Services, we understand you’ve got a lot to think about, which is why we’re put our heads together to list the top welfare facilities you should consider before your team starts on a job:

 

  1. Toilets and washing facilities

Offering enough toilets and washing facilities like basins should be a prerequisite of any work site. The HSE states that workers should not have to queue for an unreasonable length of time, that all doors should be lockable and that where possible there should be separate cubicles for men and women.

 

Other things to think about include: ensuring you have disabled facilities as well as an adequate supply of toilet roll, sanitary bins, enough soap and a way of drying hands. For particularly dirty work, showers may be required[1].

 

  1. Drinking water

All sites should ensure that staff have an adequate supply of drinking water that is free from contamination. It doesn’t matter whether that is supplied through bottles of water, a fountain or through a mains supply – as long as it is easily accessible to everyone.

 

  1. Changing facilities

If your employees are doing work that means they need to get changed into specialist workwear, providing enough changing rooms is essential. These should provide a means for hanging clothes and ensure the privacy of all users.

 

  1. Rest facilities for pregnant or nursing mothers

If it is ‘reasonably practicable’ for you to do so, you may need to provide a room for pregnant or nursing mothers to rest or nurse. If you are unsure about this, it’s always worth checking in with the Health and Safety Executive.

 

  1. A place for meal breaks

Workers should have a suitable, hygienic place that they can use during meal breaks, which needs to be clean and situated where food won’t get contaminated.

 

Construction sites do not always have facilities and you may need to draft in specialists to set them up. At Suttie Site Services, we offer a range of temporary electrics and plumbing that may be useful in your quest for welfare facilities. What’s more, we work with tried and tested suppliers to deliver you the best site solutions, every day of the year. To see how we can help, please contact our expert team.

[1] http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg293.pdf

Keeping Your Construction Site and Staff Safe This Winter

With dark nights, threats of snow and gale force winds, winter is truly upon us. And with the winter conditions comes an increased risk of construction site accidents which can be disastrous, costly and even fatal.

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If you run a construction site, there are various things you can do to protect your business, staff and bottom line this season. Here, we’ve put together a list of the top

Carry out a daily risk assessment

Winter weather is particularly unpredictable, and waking up with a thick blanket of snow or frost is not uncommon. Therefore, it’s important that you or a member of your team does a thorough site risk assessment at the start of each working day, and if necessary preventative measures are put in place.

Make sure your staff are trained on winter illnesses

If your team is outside for long periods of time, they can be at risk for illnesses like pneumonia, hypothermia and frostbite. Make sure you give your staff thorough training on winter illnesses and what they can do to protect themselves, such as wearing the right personal protective equipment (PPE) and flagging things that might cause potential problems.

Encourage staff to swap settings

If your team is working on a building project that is part inside and part out, encourage them to swap settings occasionally to let their other team members warm up. If possible, try and offer them hot drinks on their breaks or encourage them to go to a café.

Use the right products

Each year, slippery scaffolding causes hundreds of accidents and fatalities. Keep your scaffolding safe by using de-icing products and grit, and make sure your team are wearing the correct boots with a good level of traction on.

Train vehicle users on winter driving

If your workers are using vehicles like cranes, diggers or pickers, make sure they know how to operate them in wintery conditions. Menaces like snow and ice can easily cause freak accidents, and it’s often these types of vehicles that play a part.

Provide the right PPE

HSE statistics reveal that autumn and winter see the highest number of slip and trip accidents. This is because of the increase in wet, muddy, icy environments and darker days. Providing your team with the correct safety footwear that features enhanced slip resistance can help protect them. Furthermore, other PPE like thermal coats, gloves, hats and work trousers can go some way in protecting them against the perils of the cold weather.

Protect your site too

It’s not only your workers who are more at risk during the winter months, your site is too. That’s because darker nights mean potential intruders can move around undetected, or even take shelter. Putting up site hoarding can be a very effective way of protecting your site and its contents, and scaffold alarms can be a good deterrent to trespassers who might not be afraid to brave the icy planks.

If you are looking to bolster your construction site security, or have any questions on the site or security services we provide, please call: 0844 241 5300.

Our Guide to Construction Site Security

Vandalism, equipment and material theft on construction sites are a major source of loss for building companies. And although insurance might offset some losses, you’re still sure to experience financial loss in the form of site downtime, production delays and the replacement of depreciated items with new equipment.

Making sure you have a watertight security plan for your construction site is the only way to ensure that your site and staff are well protected. At Suttie Site Services, we’ve come up with the top five ways that you can protect your site and profits.

  1. Have a plan

When you’re planning a major construction project, you’ll undoubtedly have several plans on the go simultaneously. But one of the plans that often gets overlooked is a job site security plan. Having a written security plan and policy specific to the job site is the only way you can ensure you have all bases covered. If you are unsure what needs doing, call in a professional to draw up a secure plan.

  1. Encourage site security awareness

If you have a weak link in your workforce that leaves your site open to intruders, it doesn’t matter how fantastic your security plan is. It only takes one member of staff to leave a gate open or not turn an alarm off to make your site a victim of a break in. Educate your workforce on site security and make them aware of all the protective measures you’ve put in place, so that they don’t accidentally slip up.

  1. Identify your valuable assets

Listing all your valuable tools and assets is particularly important and allows you to quickly notice if any are missing or damaged. If you do get broken into, it also gives you a clear list of possessions that you had on the job ready for insurance purposes.

  1. Invest in CCTV

CCTV is often used to enhance site security and can act as a deterrent to criminal activity. It’s always best to work out what type you will use at the site planning stage as it will determine which type of equipment is best for the job. CCTV images can be monitored on site or remotely, and most systems have an inbuilt speaker to allow a remote operator to issue commands, such as to warn intruders to leave a site.

  1. Invest in security fencing or a security officer

Aside from CCTV and scaffold alarms, investing in hoarding or an onsite security officer can be a fantastic way of bolstering security. Hoarding can help to hide any equipment that might be tempting to thieves, while having an onsite 24-hour presence is sometimes all you need to deter an intruder.

At Suttie Site Services, we offer a huge range of site security services. For more information please call: 0844 241 5300.

construction site hoarding

The Benefits of Construction Site Hoarding

The term hoarding doesn’t just refer to collecting up and storing lots of things. It also refers to a temporary fence that is put around a building when it is undergoing construction work or repair.

Construction site hoarding offers a number of benefits:

  1. Security

Each year, tens of thousands of building sites fall victim to thefts that results in huge financial loss and tool downtime. Site hoardings are a proven method of deterring intruders and are an absolute necessity for contractors. They can be installed in various ways – either as a continuous run or to provide a safe compound for a designated area.

For shorter term products, metal hoarding is usually the first port of call as it is quick to deploy, robust and easy to store. Other types of hoarding that are often used are post in ground timber hoarding and free standing timber hoarding.

  1. Keeping things under wraps

During the construction of something exciting, a developer may not want the world to see everything that’s going on behind the scenes. Hoarding can help to provide a visual barrier that stops exciting developments from being seen until you want them in the public domain.

  1. Provides advertising opportunities

Hoarding doesn’t have to look plain, it can provide the perfect backdrop for advertisements, images and words. Printed hoarding panels can be a point of interest, advertising business and showcasing what the development will look like once it is finished.

  1. Safety

In areas where safety may be an issue, such as where forklifts and lorries are moving around, barriers are key in making a construction site a safer place for the people working there and for any passers-by.

  1. Protects the line of vision for drivers

Having a construction site on full display can be distracting to anyone driving past. Hoarding can ensure that the landscape is clearer, and allows drivers to focus on the road.

 

While there are a host of benefits related to construction site hoarding, it is also important to consider its safety as well as functionality. Ensuring that you work with a reputable construction hoarding provider who adheres to the Health and Safety at Work Act (1974) and the Construction Regulations (2007) can help to prevent costly accidents as well as potential security breaches.

Why a Site Access Control System is Essential for Your Construction Site

 

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As an employer, you have the responsibility of protecting the health and safety of your staff, however long they are contracted to work for you. Working on a construction site, your staff are exposed to a higher level of risk. In addition, there are dangers to consider which could potentially affect the public:

 

  • Materials or tools falling outside the site boundary
  • Trenches
  • Moving plant and vehicles

 

By law you must safeguard your construction site from unnecessary risks. According to HSE, you’ll need to take the right precautions with boundaries, adjacent land usage and access to exclude unauthorised persons and improve the health and safety of your site.

 

Restricting site access

Securing your premises by restricting access in and out of work hours, is crucial to protect the public from potential hazards and yourself from instances of theft or vandalism. If, as the contractor, you have possession of the site, you have an obligation to provide access to the principal and other authorised personnel. You’ll need to consider if there are any limits to their access in accordance with health, safety and security. When considering other staff, you should ensure that their access rights won’t interfere with the performance of their work or the project itself. Supervision will be necessary for authorised visitors as they are on site or visiting certain areas.

Setting site boundaries
Site boundaries should be defined by suitable fencing depending on the work environment.

It’s also a good idea to install fencing in secluded or low visibility areas to deter thieves after work hours. Separate entry and exit points should be set up for heavy plant and vehicle access to improve pedestrian safety.

 

Authorisation

In order to better control authorisation of staff and visitors, an access control system can be used to record exactly who has access to your site and to block unauthorised persons.

 

  • An access control system automatically links up with the data of your personnel. This will help to prevent the loss or damage to site assets and lower the risk of injury to staff and the public.

 

  • You’ll be automatically meeting legal safety and security requirements. This will protect you from liability should a health and safety or security incident occur.

 

  • At Suttie Site Services our systems can also be used for time and attendance, helping with overall project management.

 

We design, install and maintain custom access control system solutions for all construction sites. We can also provide proximity card access and biometric systems through finger prints, voice and facial recognition for increased site security. To find out more about securing your site with an access control system, you can call us on 0844 241 5300 to discuss your requirements.

Securing Your Construction Site against Theft

Crime at a construction site can be very costly for building firms. Vandalism and theft in particular can be an expensive problem for construction businesses, in some cases adding up to hundreds, thousands, millions or even billions annually. The most commonly stolen items include smaller equipment or materials such as power tools or bags of cement, however, theft of large plant machinery isn’t uncommon.

Power tools can be very vulnerable to theft as they are not only easy to carry in many cases, but can have a very high resale value to other builders that are looking to equip themselves as cheaply as possible, with little care to the victims of the crime. With this in mind, it’s essential for building site managers to take any steps that they can to secure their assets.

There are a few effective measures that can be put into place:

CCTV systems

CCTV

 

CCTV systems can be a highly effective solution for preventing building site crime. CCTV systems can be professionally monitored 24 hours a day from a central monitoring facility, so that the authorities can be notified should there be any evidence of trespassers on site. The presence of CCTV systems can also be a crime deterrent – criminals will always look to commit crime with as little risk as possible and are much less likely to target a site that is monitored at all hours of the day, even if there is nobody on site to stop them.

Man guarding

Whilst security technology can be useful and effective, in some cases, the presence of security staff on site is the most effective deterrent. Man guarding can be an extremely cost effective solution and allows for any actions against possible theft can be dealt with on site, without the need for someone offsite to be on call.

Alarm systems

Statistics suggest that home theft is much less likely for properties with visible alarm systems, and the same can be said for construction sites. An alarm system suggests the risk of getting caught, so in most cases, criminals will decide against trespassing.

If you have been affected by the financial strain of equipment theft in the past, or are simply looking to beef up your building site security, call Suttie Site Services today on 0844 241 5300 or fill in our online contact form to find out how we can assist you.

Preventing Construction Workers and The Public from Injury with Scaffold Alarms

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Preventing injury from scaffolding

It’s estimated that 65% of the construction industry work on scaffolds regularly. However, scaffolding is most probably the most dangerous place to work on a building site. Workers on scaffolding are required to work at height and an accident such as a slip or fall, will likely have much more severe consequences than if they were on the ground. Injury could also result from debris dropping from scaffolding or unsafe scaffolding collapsing.

Factors including insecure bracing, unsafe construction, insufficient materials, or lack of attention to safety regulations, could all contribute to a worker’s injury, as well as a member of the public’s. Claims.co.uk reports that there were 69 reported scaffolding accidents in which the victim’s recovery period was more than seven days, including 36 major injuries in 2014/15. The actual figure is expected to be higher. Accidents like these may have occurred during working hours, or they may have happened to people with unauthorised access to the building site.

Scaffolding might even serve as a means for people to gain access to a construction site, in order to tamper with the equipment, or commit theft or arson. In order to protect your construction site, your workers and the public from accidents and injury it’s extremely important to set the right safety and security measures in place.

Protecting your scaffolding with a scaffold alarm

Scaffold alarms provide 24/7 protection to deter unauthorised visitors and warn of any unusual and unauthorised activity which could lead to accident or injury:

  • Unauthorised or unusual activity will be detected by the alarm’s beams and PIR sensors. Our highly effective scaffold alarms use the latest technology to minimise false alarms, as they won’t be set off by rain, snow, birds and small animals. Any unauthorised movement detected will trigger the alarm sound and floodlights, to deter and expose any intruders.
  • If triggered, the alarm will also send warning to the people you choose – you, your monitoring station or your site security team.
  • We can also provide you with a log of alarm events so that alarm activations can be tracked and evaluated.

The National Security Inspectorate (NCP) Code of Practice requires construction sites to protect the entire first level of their scaffolding with detectors, including at the ends of the scaffold. How many you choose to have will depend upon the size and layout of the scaffolding, as well as the surrounding area and the nature of the site.

Always ensure that you have told your insurer that you have a scaffold alarm in place, in case an accident does occur. Having an alarm will demonstrate that you have taken measures to mitigate risks on your site.

For any advice on installing scaffold alarms, we’re here to help. We work across London and South East England to deliver high quality, reliable security systems and services to all kinds of construction environments. Call us today on 0844 241 5300, or contact us here.

 

What Temporary Services Do You Need for Your Construction Site?

For any construction site, no matter how big the project will be, before work can commence a number of important temporary services must be set up. As well as providing facilities for construction workers to make use of heavy machinery and tooling, temporary solutions must also be arranged for to allow for any on site admin, as well as toilet and washroom facilities:

Temporary electrical services

For any construction site, a constant supply of electricity is essential to allow for the delivery of the site project. However, it’s vital to ensure that all temporary electricity installations are fully tested and certified to ensure that they are fit for purpose and safe for use. Contact a site services specialist to ensure that temporary electrics are designed, supplied and installed to the highest professional standards.

For any construction site, there are a number of different areas that are likely to require temporary electrics, including storage containers, site offices, welfare units, hoists, site lighting and 10kva transformers.

Temporary plumbing services

For all construction sites, site welfare is of vital importance. Running water and means of waste disposal are needed to comply with health and safety regulations. Depending on the size of the construction project, its location and how long the work will take, plumping services and welfare facilities can include toilets, washing facilities, drinking water, water heaters, bip taps, stand pipes and silo connections.

By law, everyone working on a construction site must have access to suitable toilet and washing facilities, along with a place for preparing and consuming refreshments. With this in mind, it’s important to find an experienced temporary site services supplier to ensure that all temporary plumbing, from welfare cabins, to WC and sink waste, comply with health and safety regulations. Although a construction site is temporary, temporary plumbing services should be of the high standards that you would expect on a permanent site.

Hoists

A construction site may require a variety of hoist solutions that can be installed by an experienced site services team. For example, passenger hoists can be used to lift and lower passengers and materials to allow for work to be carried out at higher levels. On the other hand, gantry hoists and scaffold hoists are designed to lift and lower materials onto different levels.

Site lighting solutions

Site lighting is important for ensuring that workers and members of the public stay safe on and nearby a construction site. By lighting up the site, any potential hazards are more visible and can be avoided, reducing the possibility of injury. To ensure that the right level of lighting is provided, contact the experts.

If you are in need of assistance with all aspects of temporary site solutions, you can contact Suttie Site Services Ltd by calling 0844 241 5300.

How to Implement Construction Site Security

Construction sites are common targets for thieves because they often contain high-value tools and plant equipment which can be accessed more easily than you may think.

construction site security

If your construction site is unmanned or does not have sufficient security in place out of normal working hours, opportunist thieves could be allured by the quick profit they could make without being spotted. Even when workers are on site, not having the right security and access control in place could mean that anyone could wander in. This not only leaves you vulnerable to theft but also health and safety incidents which you may be liable for.

The threat of malicious damage or arson are also primary security concerns for construction sites, causing contractors and tradesmen to lose their valuable assets and in some cases a substantial amount of money.

In order to ensure that your construction site is fully secure and complies with industry health and safety regulations, it’s important to plan ahead and implement the most effective security measures. Here we have listed the key site security steps to properly secure your construction site and keep it safe for both workers and the public:

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For any more information about planning for security for your construction site, or to talk to us about our range of site security services, you can call us on 0844 241 5300 or use our quick contact form here.