How to Modernise Your Construction Site
08/07/2019 in Security
Technology continues to develop at lightning speed, with new advancements being made every week. The smartest construction businesses continue to look for new ways to modernise their sites, investing in technology that will facilitate them in several areas, including security and worker health and safety.
Things can change rapidly, and what worked on your construction site last year may no longer be cutting it today, so it is important to assess the technology utilised on an on-going basis. For instance, some security measures are older and less efficient, whilst others may be affected by the changing seasons and need to be updated accordingly.
Here, we discuss the several ways in which a construction site can be modernised so that staff and valuables can be kept as safe and secure as possible.
Update your security
CCTV and lighting
Construction CCTV is one of the most important measures needed to protect against trespassing, theft, vandalism and arson, which is why it is wise to ensure your system is kept up-to-date. The latest technology offers excellent quality imaging and can monitor the site 24/7 via any mobile device, making it more effective than older CCTV systems.
That being said, even with the latest, state-of-the-art technology in place, without good quality lighting on-site, the footage captured may be of poor quality. It is, therefore, essential to check the lighting on site, ensuring it is capable of illuminating problem areas, particularly during the winter months when daylight hours are shorter.
Likewise, as the construction project progresses, you may need to alter the positioning of your CCTV cameras to avoid obstructions and blind spots.
A large number of construction sites in the UK are already making use of access control systems in order to prevent trespassers and unaccredited workers from entering the site. Many of these will be using card-based access systems, which only allow entry for those with valid, up-to-date CSCS SmartCards.
If you wish to modernise your construction site even further, it might be worth investing in biometric access control systems. This technology is, arguably, far more advanced and secure than the card-based systems or manual security checks, since it grants access to people via their fingerprint, making unauthorised entry near-impossible.
Wireless video detection is one of the latest security methods being utilised within the workforce. While traditional alarm systems typically notify site managers when the alarm is activated, they do not allow you to establish who or what triggered the alert.
Wireless detection, on the other hand, sends a video clip to an alarm centre, which will call for priority response from the police or a SIA security guard if necessary. This ensures a rapid response, which often affords enough time to stop a crime from occurring.
The fact that the systems are wireless also means they avoid the need for a landline installation, instead of running on 4G technology and battery power. The wireless systems are also weatherproof and can offer excellent performance all year-round, even in complete darkness, due to in-build infra-red lighting.
Other technological advancements
Modern safety training
Safety within construction sites is an ongoing concern, with worker deaths occurring far too frequently. Thankfully, there are several modern solutions to help make it easier to train and monitor construction workers, helping to reduce the number of accidents and deaths.
While still in the early stages, the use of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in construction has sparked interest in recent times, having already been utilised in some safety training and equipment operating scenarios.
For example, AR and VR can be used to demonstrate working in particularly hazardous work-site conditions, such as at height or on uneven terrain, in order to train workers in the necessary safety precautions without physically placing them in those situations.
Wearables are already being used within the construction sector to monitor both staff and the conditions they are operating in, with the aim of making the working environment safer. Technology has been embedded within clothing and personal protective equipment (PPE) to offer data-driven insights about health and safety risks.
Wearables can monitor the workers’ heart rate and skin temperature, as well as their location, to prevent accidents from taking place, by issuing early warning signs.
One example of where construction wearables have been utilised is in SolePower’s Smartboots, which uses RFID, GPS, motion sensor and biometric technology to monitor vital worker stats (for example, detecting when they are extremely fatigued), sense falls and alert wearers of unsafe conditions.
Investing in sensors across the construction site can help to monitor a range of aspects, such as noise levels, temperature and dust particles, which can improve health and safety standards by limiting worker exposure.
When deployed across the site, the sensors can warn workers when they enter a place where they are at risk of exposure. The data collected from the sensor technology can be used to analyse levels in order to try to minimise them and remain compliant with health and safety protocols.