In a past post, we discussed guidelines for portable restrooms in construction sites, specifically the ANSI/PSAI Z4.3-2016 – Sanitation – Nonsewered Waste-Disposal Systems – Minimum Requirements standard, which is applicable to sanitary waste disposal systems that are not connected to a sewer or septic tank. This document is useful in places of employment, such as construction sites, but also wherever these waste disposal systems may be in use, such as with “porta-potties” at events.
Alternatively, ANSI/ASSE A10.25-2017 – Sanitation in Construction – Construction and Demolition Operations is exclusively applicable for all construction and demolition job sites, being purposed with assuring that employees are provided with adequate potable (drinkable) water, general hand washing, and sanitary toilet facilities.
While not necessarily an issue that people enjoy to have occupying their thoughts, mustering up sufficient toilets for any workplace is of prime concern, as they are the only suitable means of assistance for personnel in carrying out certain sanitary needs. For maintaining safe and clean sanitation, both standards offer similar guidelines for the ratio of toilets to workers that must be provided. As specified in Table 1 of ANSI/ASSE A10.25-2017, there should be 1 toilet seat and 1 urinal per each 10 workers.
In addition, the ANSI/ASSE A10.25-2017 standard details recommendations for potable and non-potable water, as well as for hand washing facilities, offering a standard approach to handling the unique sanitation interests that come with construction and demolition work.
The above guidelines are from voluntary consensus standards, but Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations address the issue of toilets and sanitation at construction sites as well. However, these requirements are far less aggressive. OSHA 29 CFR 1926.51, much like ANSI/ASSE A10.25-2017, sets a minimum number of available lavatories depending on the amount of workers at the site, but the law calls for 1 toilet seat per every 20 workers, with some variation as the number of employees grows.
However, when it comes to sanitation, safer practices are ideal, and for this reason, voluntary consensus standards are more stringent in this recommendation.
ANSI/ASSE A10.25-2017 is part of the ANSI A10 series of American National Standards, which have been developed by the Accredited Standards Committee on Safety in Construction and Demolition Operations. With a general focus on construction safety, ANSI A10 standards serve as a guide to contractors, labor, and equipment manufacturers, encompassing a range of topics beyond sanitation, including guidance for personnel hoists, temporary construction elevators, scaffolding, and other systems, equipment, and policies to mitigate hazards.
More than 30 of the ANSI A10 standards can be acquired together as the ANSI/ASSE A10 Construction Package.
ANSI/ASSE A10.25-2017 – Sanitation in Construction – Construction and Demolition Operations is available on the ANSI Webstore.