Build UK releases advice for keeping safe on worksites

Build UK releases advice for keeping safe on worksites

ARTICLE · By Timber Trade Federation · 24 March 2020

Construction sites must follow Public Health England’s guidance on social distancing to help enhance the safety of workers and minimise the risk of spreading COVID-19.  

Build UK and the Construction Leadership Council released a guide on Site Operating Procedures to help keep workers safe and minimise the risk of spreading the virus.

This guidance is intended to introduce consistent measures on sites of all sizes in line with the Government’s recommendations on social distancing.

The key points are:

  • Site workers should always be two metres apart from each other, as per government instructions, including in the canteen.
  • Start and finishing times should be staggered to reduce congestion and contact.
  • All site workers are urged to drive or cycle to work and avoid public transport, if possible.
  • Fingerprint scanners and other security systems that require touching should be disabled.
  • Reduce the number of people in attendance at site inductions and consider holding them outdoors wherever possible.
  • Re-usable PPE should be thoroughly cleaned after use and not shared between workers. Single use PPE should be disposed of so that it cannot be reused.
  • Stairs should be used in preference to lifts or hoists.

Enhanced cleaning procedures should be in place across the site, particularly in communal areas and at touch points including any surfaces or equipment regularly touched.

The guide adds: “If an activity cannot be undertaken safely due to a lack of suitably qualified personnel being available or social distancing being implemented, it should not take place… if a site is not consistently implementing the measures set out here, it may be required to shut down.”

Most of these procedures are relevant to any business where working from home is not possible. They should be heeded by any businesses choosing to remain open to support the construction industry at this time.

You can download the full guide from the Build UK website.