waste advice from ZTERS

Ask Angela: Do I really need temporary fencing on my construction worksite?

Angela Phillips is a Senior Account Manager III at ZTERS Waste Solutions. She helps customers with some of their most challenging site service issues, and she answers your questions here on our website.

Hi Angela, We’re doing a small new build on a vacant lot. It’s not near a lot of foot traffic, but there are a couple of main roads and other businesses nearby. It’s also near a residential area. Is construction temporary fencing really necessary? What are our options?

Angela: Hey there, thanks for asking. This is a great question. First of all, it’s ultimately up to you and the ordinances in your area whether temporary fencing is required or not. So, check that first. However, if you’re near businesses and residences you may want to consider safety and liability risks if unauthorized people make their way onto your worksite.

You have a few options with temporary fencing for construction sites. Basic fence panels are often used on small, short projects like the one you described. The most common sizes are 6’ x 10’ or 6’ x 12’, and they come with stands that are weighted down with sandbags or concrete blocks. Temporary fencing panels are easy to set up. If you have a small job, you can probably install the fencing yourself with your crew.

Of course, we can always help you schedule delivery and setup. Some areas, especially on federal properties, require temporary fencing to be installed by union workers at prevailing wages. If you’re not sure whether that applies to your project, we’ll be able to find out and let you know.

When using fence panels, you may want to add an optional wind screen (also called privacy screen or scrims). If privacy or security are issues, you’ll probably be better off with a temporary post-driven chain link fence. But you can definitely add privacy screen to fence panels if you use heavy sandbags to weight them down. If you put wind screen on regular panel fencing, it’ll act as a sail…so if the wind kicks up you’ll find yourself with fencing panels flying all over the place!

Post-driven chain link fencing is the most common temporary fencing we see with our customers. This is when metal posts are sunk in the ground and chain link fencing is installed around the perimeter of the worksite. You can add privacy screen, or leave it uncovered. It’s best for projects that will go on for a while and where you want a little extra security on the site. It’s harder for unauthorized people to get through chain link than it is to move fencing panels.

With panels or post-driven chain link, you’re able to add vehicle gates and personnel gates. You can see there are lots of options, even if you have a small worksite. We can even help you order plastic orange safety fencing if you only need to temporarily fence off heavy equipment or electrical units.

If you’re not sure how much fencing you need, we’ve built an interactive fencing tool that’ll help you figure out how much to rent and where to position gates. Or, you can always give us a call and we’ll walk you though it. Good luck with your new building!