So your bid has been accepted and you’re going to be starting a new construction project. You’ll have to think about logistics, planning, materials and equipment rentals for the life of the project. It’s a lot to think about and getting the portable restrooms for your construction site may not be the first priority on your list. However, portable restrooms are an easy way to increase productivity on your construction site. Not providing portable restrooms for your construction workers can decrease productivity, create an unsafe working environment, and is against OSHA regulations in most cases. This means that having proper portable sanitation on your site can save you money and headaches down the line.
Increasing Productivity with Portable Restrooms
Throughout the life of a construction project, loss of productivity can mean a lot of wasted money in the form of overtime pay, additional labor costs, and keeping rental equipment longer than anticipated. To reduce these additional costs, you need to make sure that your construction site is running as efficiently as possible.
Neglecting to provide portable restrooms for your construction workers can easily decrease productivity. If you don’t provide portable restrooms for your workers, they’ll have to leave the job site to use a restroom at a nearby business or convenience store. You not only have to take the travel time into account, but your workers may also get distracted or stop to get something to eat. If you provide portable restrooms directly on your construction site you may have an increased upfront cost, but you’ll save that money by keeping your workers around. They’ll quickly get back to work after using the restroom and get their work done faster.
Calculating Cost of Portable Restrooms vs. Productivity Losses
If you do the math on productivity loss versus the cost of providing portable restrooms, you’ll quickly realize that it pays to rent portable restrooms. Imagine that you didn’t provide restrooms on your job site and you’ve directed your workers to use a convenience store up the road. It might take them 5-10 minutes to get to the store, and them it may take then another few minutes to use the facilities. While at the convenience store, he or she may decide to get a snack or glance through magazines, which could mean another 10-15 minutes out of their day. Then another 5-10 minutes back to the job site, and this one restroom trip could cost you anywhere from 15-30 minutes while this worker is still on the clock.
That’s just for one restroom trip too. Workers will more than likely take several of these trips throughout the day, and may take these breaks more frequently if they get to leave the job site.
Taking all of this into account, say you have one employee on your job site, and this person makes $30.00 per hour. If this person takes 3 bathroom breaks a day and averages 20 minutes per bathroom break, this would mean a loss in productivity of one hour a day. In a week this could mean five total hours, which would cost you $150 in productivity loss just for that one employee for that one week. If you multiply this by 10 employees on the site, this would be roughly $1,500 in productivity loss per week. This is probably higher than the cost of renting one portable restroom for your job site.
Portable Restroom Regulations on Construction Sites
Providing portable restrooms for your construction site will not only save you time, but it will help you easily meet your OSHA regulations for restroom availability for your workplace. OSHA or The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is an agency of the United States Department of Labor. Congress established the agency under the Occupational Safety and Health Act.
According to OSHA Title 29 CFR. 1926.51(c)(1) states:
(c) Toilets at construction jobsites. (1) Toilets shall be provided for employees according to the following table:
Employers must provided prompt access to toilets for its employees, that is, toilets that are sufficiently close so that employees can use them when they need to do so. It must take employees less than 10 minutes to get to the toilet provided.
Renting portable restrooms for your job site, and ordering the proper number, is the easiest way to ensure OSHA won’t be knocking on your job trailer with a fine. Regulations state that it can’t take employees more than 10 minutes to get to the toilet provided, but by getting portable restrooms right on the job site you’ll not only make sure that you’re meeting standards, but also that you workers are back to work quickly.
Portable Restrooms and a Safe Construction Site
OSHA regulations do require you to provide access to toilets for your workers. Non-compliance may earn you a fine, but it could also be putting your business, workers and communities at risk. By not providing easy access to sanitation, your workers may relieve themselves in the areas surrounding the job site. This could cause health issues for the people that live around that community. If community members see this bad behavior, it could also give your company the reputation for disrespecting the areas in which you work. By providing restrooms on site, you can help the loss of future business that this could cause.
Failing to provide adequate sanitation for your workers can also create an unsafe work environment. On May 13th, 2014 Andrew C. Lane was working for a gutter cleaning service. The only toilet option that was provided for Andrew and the members of his team was a bucket that was placed in the back of their truck. This “toilet” was right next to a power washer that was releasing carbon monoxide. Lane’s team members found him dead in the back of the truck. Not only was this bucket “demeaning, debasing and dehumanizing”, but also it created a hazardous work environment for all of the employees.
At the end of the day, providing portable restrooms for your construction site is a win-win. You’ll increase productivity and save money over the long run. You’re also providing a safe working environment and keeping your company in good standing with your community. Be sure to order the correct number of portable restrooms for your workers to avoid fines from OSHA and your workers will be productive and happy.
On Site Companies is a portable restroom provider for both construction and special events. If you have more questions about portable restrooms, or you’d like to order one in the Minneapolis / St. Paul, Rochester MN, Mankato MN, or St. Louis MO area, please reach out to us through phone at 1.800.210.8407 or email at email@example.com.