Why the housebuilding industry must balance getting back to work with safety

July 08, 2020

With more than 86% of construction sites now estimated to have reopened in England and Wales, RSK Director Erika Taylor has told Housebuilder & Developer that the housebuilding industry must prioritise safety as it takes the first steps out of lockdown.

Erika said: “With more housebuilders planning their return to work and the housing market beginning to be re-energised, the priority for construction companies must now be to balance the safety of their employees and customers with restarting operations.

“The government has published rules to help businesses to operate safely during the coronavirus crisis. So, as housebuilders restart, they need to be seen to be sticking to the guidance, although this will not be easy on a construction site.”

Major housebuilders in the UK have indeed announced their plans to restart operations and re-open show homes and sales offices as restrictions in the UK are lifted. The recently-published guidance outlines what they need to do to ensure that workplaces are properly sanitised before reopening, and RSK has been on hand to help by providing COVID-19 decontamination services as the industry gets ready to restart.

“RSK has just worked with Avant Homes, which operates 52 construction sites across the Midlands, Yorkshire, the North East and Scotland, to step up protection for employees and customers as their operations begin to restart,” Erika explained. “Our specialist teams provided cleaning, decontamination and protection services for their construction sites, including portacabins, offices, canteens, meeting rooms, storage and drying rooms, welfare facilities and equipment such as forklifts. Avant Homes understood the potential risk and urgency, setting tight timescales to ensure that their sites were safe for their workforce. Show homes and sales units were also decontaminated.”


RSK has provided COVID-19 decontamination services for Avant Homes, which operates 52 construction sites across the Midlands, Yorkshire, the North East and Scotland

Unlike conventional deep-cleaning practices, RSK’s coronavirus decontamination and protection service utilises novel sanitising products that not only destroy pathogens on contact, but also protect surfaces from coronavirus for up to 30 days post-treatment.

“Good practice like this will give workforces and prospective buyers reassurance but, perhaps more importantly, will restore confidence to the housebuilding industry at a crucial time,” Erika concludes.

You can read Erika’s article in full on Housebuilder & Developer. More information on RSK’s COVID-19 decontamination services for Avant Homes can be found in our new case study.

If your office, facility, worksite, vehicles, plant or equipment require decontamination or sanitisation over and above usual cleaning practices, RSK can provide a professional decontamination service and lasting protection for up to 30 days throughout the UK and Ireland. Visit our dedicated Decontamination for COVID-19 service page for more information.

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Ryan Dunderdale, Senior Surveyor at Central Alliance, providing technical support and on-site training to datum plate install teams down in Bristol.

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