Keeping Construction Sites Safe in the Summer Holidays
Here in the UK, school’s out and kids across the country are enjoying the long summer holiday. This year seems to be a bonus year for children as the sun has been shining just about every day, unlike many years when the weather turns rainy just as the summer holidays begin. While most kids are supervised closely these days during the long summer days with no school, there are still areas where kids play outside as they used to years ago. Not all families can find childcare while both parents work full time, so there will always be some youngsters who are left to their own devices to entertain themselves.
A group of children wandering round looking for “some action” are likely to find a construction site the perfect place to play if they can gain access. If there is scaffolding available to climb, kids are likely to climb it and access roof areas and other high points of the construction project. This is why site security, which is vital at all times of the year, becomes even more important during the school holidays.
Site security is just as important as the building activities and other work that goes on onsite. A building site that’s not secure will be prone to vandalism and theft, if not a bunch of kids looking to impress all their mates by posting photos of themselves on construction sites on Facebook and Instagram. An unsecured site that’s accessed by people who aren’t trained in the safety measures necessary could lead to injuries and even deaths. There have been several cases reported in the news of children entering construction sites to play on them and some of these have ended in tragedy.
The first step in ensuring site security is to carry out a risk analysis which can either be done in-house or through an external contractor who specialises in site security. All potential threats and hazards should be considered and then an assessment carried out of the likelihood and severity if they should occur. From these points, policies or further investments can be instigated in order to reduce these risks.
Next step is to secure the perimeter as this is where unauthorised people will enter. Secure fencing and gates should be installed and any temporary work sites can be protected with temporary hoardings. Fences and gates need to be checked on a regular basis to ensure that they are still secure – this is particularly vital when temporary fencing is used.
One of the best methods of ensuring site security is employing a security guard to be onsite during non-working hours. However, this is not usually possible so using a security service that carries out regular checks during non-working hours can be a much more cost-efficient option.
CCTV can act as a deterrent and is more economical than hiring a security guard or security service. However, the main drawback with CCTV is that it doesn’t prevent entry to the site, but rather acts as a deterrent and also provides evidence for incidents once they have occurred.
Signing in and signing out of a construction site is an effective method of knowing who is onsite at any given moment. It’s just as important that visitors to the site undergo the signing in/out process, as stringent management of all site entry points helps to increase site security overall.