Decrease in Covid-19 breaches on construction sites

A 41% decrease in the number of Covid-19 breaches occurring on construction sites over a three month period has been reported by the The Building Safety Group (BSG). The report is based on 4,400 independent site inspections which were carried out between 1st June and 31st August 2020.

The decline in breaches is attributed to more companies adapting to new working practices on construction sites, such as social distancing. It is expected that this trend will continue in the future as the industry becomes more accustomed to operating under the restrictions imposed by the coronavirus.

BSG safety advisers reported that the most common types of Covid-19 ‘non-compliances’ during the last three months have included:-

  • management and operatives have not followed social distancing guidelines
  • welfare facilities on site have been inadequate with insufficient cleaning regimes
  • insufficient segregation in the canteen and too many people
  • insufficient hand sanitizing stations on site
  • PPE not available when needed
  • Site Operating Procedures outdated, found on site

Site Operating Procedures are produced by Build UK and published for the whole industry by the Construction Leadership Council. They were first published on 23rd March as the UK went into lockdown in a bid to help construction sites stay open safely.

BSG managing director Stephen Bell said: “We are pleased to see that Covid-19 breaches have fallen since we began risk assessing companies’ prevention measures to counter the coronavirus. Although we expect this downward shift to continue, now is not the time to become complacent so it is vital that our industry remains vigilant and continues to follow government Site Operating Procedure (SOP) guidelines”.