As the stay at home restrictions are eased in England, the government has published ‘Covid-19 secure’ guidelines for construction businesses to operate safely as businesses get back up and running. The National Custom and Self Build Association (NaCSBA) has put together the following guidance to assist both individual self-builders and companies when undertaking building work:
Government guidance in England never called for building sites to be closed, as Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Alok Sharma pointed out in his 31 March letter to the construction industry. However, he acknowledged the need for safe working practices to underpin all decisions with regard to working on site.
In spite of this, many companies and individuals ceased working, either through a desire to stay safe or through an inability to operate during the crisis.
Business secretary Alok Sharma, commented: “This guidance provides a framework to get the UK back to work in a way that is safe for everyone.
“These are practical steps to enable employers to identify risks that Covid-19 creates and to take pragmatic measures to mitigate them.
“And as we are able to reopen new sectors of the economy, we will continue our collaborative approach working with a wide range of stakeholders, to provide guidance for additional workplaces.”
The guide from NaCSBA is intended to support self-builders and businesses about what practices they should be following to ensure they are operating safely. It is intended as a signposting document to support businesses and individuals in their decisions about how they return to work, and draws extensively on a range of industry knowledge. But ultimately, each site is the responsibility of the owners and/or main contractors.
The priority on any building site is people’s safety, which should be the first principle for all activity, and every decision should be weighed against this.
However, NaCSBA believes that with good practice building activity can and should continue, as it represents a valuable flow of work for the local and wider economy. Custom and self-build have a core role in helping the country to return to economic health, supporting Government objectives and providing a crucial supply of new homes.
Access the full guide here.