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Shutting down your construction site at Christmas

by constructaquote - 1 June 2016


It is important construction sites are secured over the Christmas period to help reduce incidents of theft and any accidents which could involve the public.

With the Christmas shut-down period quickly approaching, many construction sites across the country are left uninhabited over the festive season.

Have you successfully secured your site?

Despite constructaquote.com’s discovery in a 2014 survey that many construction workers will choose to work over the Christmas period, many will shut-down their site in order to make the most of the welcome festive break.

Preventing potential financial loss

Making sure your site is as secure as possible during the Christmas shut-down could prevent financial loss resulting from damage or thievery.

Christmas is usually the longest period of closure for any one construction site meaning that it’s essential that they are left safe and secure.

Assess the safety risk

Every construction site is different, so evaluating site risk is important. One way of doing this could involve determining whether your site is low, medium or high risk.

For example, if your site is located in a densely populated area such as a city centre, it is likely that your site would be considered a higher risk than those located in more rural areas.

You should also consider whether or not the project is high-profile or large-scale and therefore more likely to attract the attention of passers-by.

The higher the risk the greater measure of security you may require, such as:

• Alarmed fencing

• Security cameras

• Heavy duty locks

Keep valuables out-of-sight

In order to make sure that your construction site isn’t subject to people “helping themselves”, you may want to ensure that all precautions are taken prior to the Christmas shut-down, including:

• Removal of expensive equipment and items from the site

• Storage; if you are unable to remove keep items shielded from view (locked containers/locked buildings/alarmed compounds)

• Locking all vehicles and plant within a secure compound/ secure storage area

• Taking all hand tools offsite

• Displaying emergency contact numbers on fencing signs

Consider the weather

Temporary structures such as scaffolding, fencing, trenches and excavations could be at risk of collapsing in the midst of wintry weather – it could be considered essential that you make them as secure as possible before shutting down for Christmas, by:

• Using warning sign posts near trenches and excavations

• Covering unfinished roofs etc. with tarpaulin

• Ensuring that loose materials are removed from scaffolding

When putting security measures in place it is also worth considering the potential losses with regards to profit, tools, materials and working days. Being prepared for any potential set-backs could prevent prolonged damages.