Last edited 07 Jul 2021

Safety in the construction industry


In terms of the built environment, the term ‘safety’ generally refers to the condition of being protected, or safe, from hazards and other undesirable events. As construction is one of the most dangerous industries to work in, the positive control and management of hazards and risks to achieve a sufficiently-high level of safety is very important, and is often a legal requirement.

From a safety perspective, a hazard is a condition with the potential to cause physical impairment or health consequences in people or other types of life.

Safety audits are carried out to assess health and safety processes on construction sites, considering; legislative requirements, industry best practice, and the contractor’s own health and safety management systems.

Construction companies use a wide range of safety practices as part of their safety management programmes, with an increasing emphasis on creating a safety culture throughout the organisation.

The term ‘safety’ can also be used to refer to how safe or protected against harmful events a building or structure is when it is in use. This can be in relation to extreme weather, earthquakes, security, operational failures or hazards, and so on.

For a full list of articles related to safety, see Health and Safety.

See also: Building safety.

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