Construction welfare: Toilets and washing

This page tells you what you need to provide for construction workers in terms of toilets and washing facilities.


Toilets need to be adequate for the work. There are two main types:


Place washing facilities next to the toilets and any changing rooms. They should include:

Sinks / washbasins need to allow workers to wash their hands, face and forearms properly. Check the sink size and tap location allow this. Some portable toilets only have a hand sanitiser and a small sink.  This is inadequate unless other suitable washing facilities are nearby. Portable toilets with bigger sinks and hot / warm water are available.

Hand washing should not generally take place in the same areas you use for eating and drinking. It is particularly important to provide washing facilities separate from eating and rest areas where you are exposing workers to hazardous substances like cement, lead or micro-organisms. This is to control the risk of contamination.

Common issues

There are some issues common to both toilets and washing facilities:

If you are using chemical toilets, BSI standard (BS6465-1-2006) recommends one plastic toilet to seven persons working a 40-hour week. However, you will also need to take into account how frequently they are serviced / emptied. Chemical toilets are usually serviced / emptied weekly as part of a hire contract. You may need to have this done more regularly or hire more units depending on use.

Updated 2023-04-11