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Essential Facility Requirements for UK Construction Sites

Employee welfare is an important component to running any sort of operation. Whether it’s in an office or on a construction site, workers have certain welfare rights that need to be upheld by their employers. However, when it comes to working on site, there are a few stipulations that make it unique from other lines of work due to the inherent dangers that the job presents.

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations, which cover the overall health and wellbeing of employees working in construction, extended its rulings in 2015, granting increased protections to workers in the industry. These rules, if not followed to the letter, can lead to costly legal battles and even prosecution. However, after a damning survey by Unite found that around a fifth of the sites they saw failed to meet workplace welfare requirements, it became obvious that this is a genuine issue that many in the industry face.

With this in mind, it’s really important that you’re completely clued up on what is required of you if you are running a construction project. As we’ve worked with many construction companies in need of quality toilets or temporary buildings for their sites, we at Manchester Cabins know a thing or two about improving a team’s welfare when at work, which is why we’ve decided to put together this handy list for you to ensure that you’re remaining compliant to regulations.

Adequate toilets

Just like in an office space or hospitality business, construction sites are required to ensure there are adequate toilet facilities for workers to use. When it comes to sourcing quality toilets for your project, they are split into two categories; flushing and chemical.

For larger, more time-consuming projects, flushing toilets are always going to be the best bet. Connecting them to your mains water and drainage systems, this option can mean that your construction is well suited to cater to your team. If there isn’t a chance to connect to the mains, there are toilets with their own in-built water supply and drainage tanks that can act as suitable substitutes.

On the other hand, for smaller sites or projects where flushing toilets cannot be sourced, chemical alternatives may be the way to go. Also known as ‘plastics’, portable chemical toilets are commonly used at the very start or end of a project and use a variety of chemicals along with fragrances and in order to both sanitise the space and mask the smell.

Whichever you believe works best for your site, don’t forget to invest in enough units for all of your workers; this should include male and female facilities in order to cater to everyone. You will also need to ensure that the toilets are emptied regularly and kept sanitary. Luckily, a quality portable toilet supplier like Manchester Cabins will offer a comprehensive emptying, cleaning and restocking service with their products, meaning you can focus on your project.

Washing facilities

When it comes to jobs that create a bit of a mess, construction is pretty high at the top of the list. When you’re working with mucky materials and substances like paint and mortar, you and your team will likely end up being pretty dirty by the end of your shift. Because of this, you’ll need washing facilities to ensure that you and your workers can clean up once you’re finished on site.

Usually set up next to the toilets and changing rooms, these washrooms should have a clean supply of hot and cold water, adequate ventilation and sinks that are large enough for employees to wash their face, hands and forearms.

If your construction project is working on a site that deals with toxic substances or hazardous materials, you may also need to supply more substantial forms of washing facilities to ensure that your workers are safe from the threat of contamination.

Changing rooms and lockers

Just like toilets and washing rooms, you’ll need to have a dedicated space for your team to get changed in. Due to the nature of construction work, it’s likely that employees will have their own personal protective gear that they will need to get changed into in order to stay safe when on site.

With this in mind, it's important that you have a changing room to allow your workers to don their PPE. This will usually be a cabin that will need to split into gender-specific changing spaces in order to provide a certain level of privacy. You will also need to supply a space to dry wet clothes; racks and electrical heaters are the usual choices.

Aside from changing, your team will also need a space to store their stuff so that it’s safe from would-be criminals. This means you will need a place to lock up belongings and assets. Lockers are especially useful for this, however, you’ll also need a cabin that isn’t easy to break into or vandalise - our anti-theft cabins are a perfect solution for this.

Hydration points

As construction work is a physical job, it’s important to ensure that everyone is able to stay hydrated as this can lead to serious health concerns. Dehydration not only leads to illness and fatigue, it reduces concentration, something which is essential on a hazardous construction site. Because of this, you’ll need to supply your team with adequate drinking water.

This can be done via drinking fountains, water coolers or communal taps. Of course, being connected to the mains will always be the best way to ensure your team is properly hydrated, however, any form of consistent water supply will be needed. If not connected to the mains, take extra care ensuring that your water is fresh and completely safe to drink.

Break rooms

The UK isn’t particularly well-known for its great weather and for construction workers out in the rain, it’s nice to be able to get some respite from the elements for a while. It’s also a legal requirement to supply some form of rest room for your team so it’s definitely important to consider investing in a dedicated break cabin during your project layout plans.

Like any break room, you’ll need to invest in things that will be helpful in giving your team a chance to have a rest. This should include things like adequate seating and tables for your team to sit and grab lunch for their breaks along with microwaves and catering urns for warming food and drinks. It should also be properly heated in order to keep it warm during those especially cold days on site.

Other facility additions

Aside from the legally required additions for worker welfare, there are a range of other things you will likely need to ensure that your project runs smoothly. For example, for larger sites, you may need to invest in an office cabin in order to create a central base of operations for the job and to keep up to date with the paperwork. Luckily, there are a range of options to choose from in this respect, with cabins fitted with power and wifi capabilities.

It’s also a good idea to invest in proper security measures in order to protect your assets and your team. This can come in the form of entry controls, perimeter fences and a whole host of other alternatives.

Looking for toilet or cabin facilities you can rely on? Get in touch with Manchester Cabins today

Ensuring that you and your workforce are looked after when on the tools is essential not only to remain on the right side of the law, but also to ensure everyone is happy and healthy while at work. As we’ve already mentioned, proper toilet and sanitary conditions are a huge part of running a positive building site, which is why you need to work with a professional supplier to make sure you’re properly looking after your team.

Here at Manchester Cabins, we have been supplying customers with an extensive range of temporary buildings for close to four decades. Offering everything from serviced toilets to robust anti-vandal containers to ensure your valuables are kept safe when on site, you can rest assured that our team can help yours when planning your next site layout.

We understand that a construction project needs to run like clockwork in order to minimise potentially costly delays, which is why we ensure that our container deliveries and pick-ups are timely and efficient. If you are still not completely convinced, our association with a range of accredited institutions such as NEBOSH and CHAS, should highlight our commitment to offering our customers the best possible service.

If you would like to learn more about how Manchester Cabins can help supply your next event or construction site, get in touch with one of our friendly advisors today on 0161 684 3333 or visit our website for more information.

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