The No. 1 factor to consider when creating a site access plan is safety. Construction projects in remote locations are particularly challenging to plan for because you must transport heavy equipment, building materials, and workers to the site for the duration of the project—and it must be done safely from day one.
By creating a solid site access plan, you can help ensure that construction starts on time, site access is executed on budget, and team members have safe access. However, you must always be prepared for the unexpected, especially when working with challenging site conditions.
Potential Hurdles to Site Access Planning
Even the best-laid plan can be thwarted by on-site realities. When this happens, it can mean anything from minor setbacks to devastating project delays. Some of the complications that might arise on a construction and clearing project include:
Unknown permitting requirements and fines for environmental penalties
On-site injuries and preventable mistakes
Lack of access to materials or labor
Natural disasters and inclement weather
Although you can’t predict the future, you can be prepared for some of these common (and sometimes avoidable) issues.
How to Prepare for the Unexpected When Access Planning
When making your construction site access plan, build in contingency strategies (and funds) for factors that you might not be aware of right away. Use these four tips to help you avoid potential pitfalls and be prepared for them if they do arise.
1. Hire the right professionals and do thorough research.
You don’t know what you don’t know, but you can make a genuine effort to find out by doing thorough research about the site, the permits required for construction and site preparation, and so on. Although every project is different, some of the steps you can take to get the lay of the land include:
When you need specialty work done, always hire qualified professionals such as surveyors, civil engineers, and environmental experts. The more information you have about a site, the more prepared you will be to access it safely and in compliance with regulations.
2. Train your crew and subcontractors.
Make sure the team that is working on-site understands the local environmental regulations, OSHA standards, and any other relevant protocols. Because of crew turnover and teams made up of subcontractors, this often means training or refresher courses at the beginning of every project or even at every phase. Although it requires an investment in resources, it’s well worth the effort to keep crews safe and avoid potential fines. In fact, OSHA claims that an effective training program can save $4-6 for every $1 invested.
3. Build relationships with suppliers and subcontractors.
Anyone who has ever experienced an emergency leak in their home knows how valuable it is to have an existing relationship with a plumber. The same concept applies at a larger scale. When you already have contracts in place with suppliers and vendors, it’s much easier to bring them in when necessary.
4. Have a contingency plan for natural disasters and inclement weather.
When bad weather strikes, deadlines still loom. Have a plan for dealing with hurricanes, storms, droughts, and other weather conditions that could potentially affect site access. Be proactive with stormwater protection, culverts, erosion control, and other measures to help keep your site accessible in almost any circumstances. This is when having strong relationships can be beneficial, especially if you need a rapid response.
Implement Safe Site Access Solutions with YAK ACCESS
When you’re faced with a challenging construction site in a remote location, turn to YAK ACCESS for a single-source access solution. We can implement every step of your construction site access plan, from clearing land to traversing wetlands, while complying with all relevant environmental regulations. Our highly trained crews have seen it all, and we have the specialized equipment to get the job done safely and efficiently.
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