The Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning has fixed the timing for construction, demolition and maintenance works in residential and commercial areas to minimise disturbance to the public.
The schedule is included in the guide issued by the Ministry recently on “special requirements for work sites to curb damages resulting from maintenance, construction and demolition”.
The guide was released on the World Day for Safety and Health at Work observed on April 28.
“Actually there is no need for any restrictions on working hours as long as the work is not going to affect any one. But in practice we have found that most people and employees in the private and government sectors, hospitals, schools and commercial facilities have been affected directly or indirectly,” said the guide.
“This has made it necessary to fix the timing so that the work can be carried out inside the cities,” it added. The new guidelines have been issued in line with the existing laws and regulations and in consultation with contracting companies, said the document.
In residential and mixed areas (that house both residential and commercial facilities) timing for construction works is fixed from 6.30am to 6pm from Sunday to Thursday. The work hours on Saturday is from 8am to noon and from 2pm to 6pm. No work is allowed on Fridays and the Eid holidays, unless in exceptional cases.
In commercial areas, work can be carried out round-the-clock from Saturday through Thursday. The timing for Friday is from 10.30am to 1pm and no work is permitted on the first day of Eid.
Besides the regular working hours, there are “quiet hours” when the work can be continued without any noise or disturbance. This is from 2pm to 3.30 pm in all work sites from Sunday to Thursday and from 10.30am to 2pm on Fridays and Saturdays.
For work sites located near the school, the “quiet hours” are from 7am to 1pm and during the prayers for sites close to the mosques.
Before starting work near the schools, the contractors must notify Supreme Education Council (SEC) besides the municipalities concerned about site hoardings.
Before starting work, the contractor must conduct a study about each work site in terms of equipment and distributing space for various purposes like machineries, gathering workers and storing material.
The contractor must take the necessary measures to assure the safety of workers and pedestrians as well as the neighbouring facilities.
It is not permitted to store material at a work site that is meant for another site.
Fences must be installed at the work site as per specifications from the municipalities concerned.
A special permission from the municipality is required to use part of the sidewalk for fences. However, they must leave a space of not less than 1.5 metres for pedestrians in case the project is fully closed.
It is not permitted to break any sidewalk, undertake excavations there or remove any barriers without prior approval of the authorities concerned.
The contractor must appoint a supervisor for occupational health and safety inside the work site and abide by the related regulations.