Manage the risks for health and safety that remains in the construction phase

The work environment risks that has not been eliminated during the planning and design will remain in the construction phase. Unforeseen risks can also arise. The work with preventing accidents and occupational illness must therefore continue throughout the whole construction project. Here you find information about how to work during the construction phase in order to minimize the risks.

Carry out risk assessments for all works

Every employer or self-employed worker must assess the risks that their work can cause for their own share and for others at the common construction site.

It is important that one carries out a new risk assessment before every new task or before every new environment where construction work will be conducted.

The employer should also inform the construction site’s building work environment coordinator for the construction phase (Bas-U) of the risks that their own work can entail. Bas-U need to know about all risks to be able to coordinate the different contractors´ work. Information about work with certain risks will be used by Bas-U when updating the work environment plan, if such is required.

The employer should also make sure to inform employees about the construction site’s common risks and regulations that are described in the work environment plan.

Knowledge for the work

Staff with a variety of different competence is necessary on a construction site. Many of the works that are conducted, and the work equipment that is used, entails great risks for accidents or ill-health if the right knowledge is lacking.

The Swedish Work Environment Authority has, with the help of the partners within the construction sector, developed regulations and trainings.

At the construction site, requirement of documented knowledge is common for they who are:

  • Crane operators
  • Excavator operators
  • Lifting device operators
  • Forklift truck drivers
  • Underwater divers
  • Scaffolders
  • Asbestos decontaminators
  • Load couplers

More information about training requirements can be found through the building industry’s cooperation partners.

The Swedish Construction Federation website, opens in new window

The Association of Swedish Earth Moving Contractors (ME) website, opens in new window

The Federation of Swedish Innovation Companies, opens in new window

Byggnads (Swedish Building Workers’ Union website), opens in new window

Seko (Swedish Union for Service and Communications Employees) website, opens in new window

BYN (Byggbranschens Yrkesnämnd) website, opens in new window

Check equipment and installations

At the construction site, several different types of equipment and installations.  Fire appliances, alarm systems, electrical wiring, junction circuits, traffic devices, safety nets and warning lights, among other things, should be regularly checked and maintained. If a shortcoming that could entail serious danger for safety and health is discovered during the checks, work should immediately be stopped.

Safety rounds at construction sites

At a construction site it is particularly important with regularly safety rounds, since the workplace changes constantly and fast and new risks arise easily. The frequency of the safety rounds need to be assessed with regards to the amount of risks, number of people and the area where work is conducted.  When the construction phase is most intense with many persons working at the same time, there can be a need of a daily safety round. Otherwise it can be sufficient with a round once a week. It can be effective to sometimes go safety rounds aimed at certain work or equipment. It is appropriate that the safety rounds and protocols include both preventive measures and remedial measures.

Fix the risks

When risks are identified, the most important work remains – to prevent the risks. Risks at the workplace can be prevented by different measures but one should at first hand try to find measures which

  • minimize the risks as much as possible
  • are close to the source
  • protect several persons instead of just one

Sometimes the possibilities for how the work can be carried out are limited, because so many employers work side by side at the construction site. It is therefore very important that every employer informs Bas-U about the risks specific to their work, and their need for special preventive measures. It is Bas-U that coordinates the performance of the different work and the possibility of it being carried out safely. The employer should therefore turn to Bas-U if there is anything that is unclear.

Here you can read more about how to prevent risks with construction work:

Common risks in the work environment during building and civil engineering work

Common operations with risks during construction work

Here you can read more about what employers can do to prevent risks:


Work with the work environment

Last updated 2023-12-20