(4-min read)

Ever feel out of your element? Whether you’re at an awkward party or a fancy art gallery, we’re all felt a bit off in our environment. Such may also be the case for visiting a construction site as a non-construction professional. Whether you’re getting a firsthand look at the construction of a new home or possibly your new office, there are specific safety protocols you should know before showing up to a build. Follow these tips to increase your likelihood of leaving safely.

1. Consult Your Guide on Your Being There

If someone has invited you to tour an active construction site, you will want to check with them to make sure this is appropriate. Some individuals will invite non-construction workers to sites on a whim without the authority to do so. This can spell trouble as this person likely has not cleared the idea with the crew on site. Clearance allows for safety to go bother ways. Not only will the crew members know to keep an eye out for a visitor, but you’ll know you’re in safe hands.

2. Wear Appropriate Safety Gear

After you have consulted your guide, you will likely be told and/or provided with the essential safety gear you will need to don during your tour. Some of this gear will probably include a hardhat, safety glasses, and possibly a visible vest or hearing protection. Don’t skimp on any of these. Not only are there legal and regulatory reasons for wearing these, but your safety is of the utmost importance to your hosts.

3. Wear Appropriate Clothing

We realize that an invitation to visit a construction site can come at the last minute, but if you have ample notice, please don the appropriate clothing. This means long pants and boots. Open toes, high heels, and sandals lead to unwanted exposure to workplace elements for your feet that can lead to definitely unintended injuries. Depending on your guide’s requests, you may need to obtain steel-toed boots. Again, when in doubt, consult your guide. If the invitation was at the last minute, inform your host or guide of your current apparel and ask if they feel it would be appropriate. Rescheduling your visit can give you additional to arrive better prepared.  

4. Don’t Wander Off

It can be tempting to want to see the progression of every nook and cranny of a new build, especially if this is your new home or office. Please, resist the urge to stray too far from your guide. Unfinished areas, unsecured materials, and fully operational tools can prove to be significant hazards to those unacquainted with construction site protocol. Wandering off may also be an unpleasant and even hazardous surprise to workers on the site. 

5. For the Love of Bob Villa, Don’t Touch Anything

I know it may be tempting to touch, tap, or knock on objects on a construction site. Don’t. Some materials may be completely unsecured, wires may be live, or paint may be wet. Just assume that all of this is so as you make your way through the construction site.

6. Treat the Site Like You’d Want Others Treating Your Work Place

Don’t let the sawdust, power tools, and materials fool you — this construction site is a place of business no different than your office. Because this is the case, you need to treat it just as you would expect a stranger to treat your office. While this may be your conference room or kitchen one day, for now, it is the workplace of the construction crew. Please treat it accordingly until they’ve officially handed it over to you or your organization.


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