Construction hoarding is temporary fencing used to secure a job site. Fencing may be required by law for safety reasons in some areas and is also used by contractors in others to limit theft and liability. A variety of construction hoarding products are available, ranging from webbed plastic for very temporary barriers to solid panels used to offer security for several years on a large or complex location. Firms specializing in temporary fencing can install, maintain, and remove hoarding for construction companies that do not want to handle this personally.
Typically, construction hoarding is tall enough to be difficult to climb or jump over. Some designs have holes to allow people to see into the job site, while others are solid. Gates provide access, and can be locked when no one is present at the site. If there are special security concerns, a guardhouse may be established to allow someone to monitor the location.
Some construction hoarding designs add creativity and visual interest to the basic security. These include panels printed with information about the construction project or the location; panels might be printed with maps, for example, or leasing information on a new apartment complex. Companies preparing for lengthy projects might sell ad space on their construction hoarding. Landscaping features are typically not added because they could be damaged by ongoing construction activities.
From a safety perspective, construction hoarding keeps unauthorized personnel out of a site, which reduces the risk of injury. People without hard hats, safety training, or awareness of hazards on site like pits and sharp objects won’t be exposed to danger if they can’t get onto the site without an escort. This can be an important liability issue, as construction firms are responsible for injuries incurred on site. To reduce the risk of suits from people who wandered onto a site and were injured, a company may secure it with hoarding to keep people out and provide clear legal evidence of a reasonable effort to prevent unauthorized access.
Contractors can also be concerned about theft and loss. People may enter a job site to steal building materials or equipment, especially expensive products like copper cladding. As a building goes up, it can be difficult to fully secure, creating openings for people to get inside and vandalize the structure or take building supplies. The construction hoarding limits access and makes it difficult for people to enter a site without being noticed.