May 17, 2023
Site Services

Explore new ways to provide drinking water on construction sites

For physically demanding jobs, drinking cool, clean water when it’s hot out isn’t just refreshing, it’s required. Ensuring that there is adequate drinking water on construction sites is essential, and required by our HSE obligation, to provide the safest environment possible for our workforce.

Developing a construction site water management plan isn’t difficult, but there are a number of factors that go into deciding the best way to provide drinking water onsite.

First, you must determine how much water you’ll need on site. To calculate that, you need to know the number of craft workers and the length of the project. Then, you need to factor in the OSHA recommendation for workers to drink at least eight ounces of water every 20 minutes when working in the heat.

For jobs that last longer than 2 hours, electrolyte-containing beverages such as sports drinks, are recommended to  be provided in addition to cool water.

There are a variety of ways to provide drinking water on construction sites, each with varying pros and cons. Choosing the right method depends on factors such as project length, scope, and craft peak, environment, and even Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) considerations.

Below are four methods that can be used to provide construction workforce hydration.

AMECO has provided indirect construction site services such as workforce hydration for more than 75 years. Contact us to learn more about setting up a construction site water management plan for your next capital construction or major maintenance project.


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Antiquated drinking water solutions
Water Bottles In Coolers

For jobsites with a small number of workers, a large cooler full of ice and water bottle

s may be sufficient. This makes for an easy hydration solution.


  • This is an easy DIY option.
  • Ideal for small, one- or two-day projects


  • You must ensure that you have enough water stocked in the cooler to last all day.
  • Large coolers are heavy.
  • Plastic bottles need to be collected for recycling offsite.
  • Loss of coolers.
Manually Fill Water Jugs

Another simple way to provide water to construction workers is to fill large 10-gallon water jug with ice and water and distribute them around the site. This allows workers to fill up their own water bottles, or you can provide paper cups.


  • An easy-to-manage option
  • Limits the amount of plastic waste


  • Distribution and collection are labor intensive and expensive on large scale projects
  • You must replenish water and ice throughout the day. In hot weather on sizeable projects, this can be a full-time job!
  • Workers are responsible for bringing their own refillable water bottle.
  • Paper cups create additional waste on site, and discarded cups can present a potential slipping hazard.
Modern drinking water solutions
Managed Construction Hydration Program with Jobsite Water Totes

For a larger jobsite, you can utilize a managed program where trucks deliver large totes filled with ice, bottledwater, and sports drinks to the site daily. This option surpasses simple coolers for large projects as the totes can be strategically positioned throughout the site and collected at the day’s end. AMECO takes care of the management and distribution, allowing the construction team to concentrate on the project.


  • Management of the program is hassle-free.
  • Daily delivery and pick up of totes
  • You’ll ensure enough water and sports drinks are available for the number of craft onsite.
  • Drinks stay cold and on ice all day in the specialized totes.


  • Plastic bottles must be collected for recycling offsite.
Fully managed Onsite Hydration program

For large projects where efficiency and ESG are considerations, choose a construction hydration program that offers a total solution by providing stationary water stations in common areas and totes for working at heights or in inaccessible areas. For large, complex construction projects a fully managed onsite hydration program makes the most sense. Programs like AMECO’s Workforce Hydration Site Services® bring cool, clean drinking water to the site.


  • Management of the program is hassle-free.
  • You have virtually unlimited drinking water available onsite in any location.

In addition to drinking water, AMECO’s Workforce Hydration program works hand-in-glove with the Industrial Relief Facilities & Wastewater Management program by providing restrooms with flushing toilets onsite.

An on-site, municipal-grade waste treatment facility processes the wastewater from the restroom facilities and treats the water up to EPA standards. The facility can recycle the treated wastewater back into the toilet facilities or utilize it for dust suppression or other construction applications, creating a “circular hydration economy” on the jobsite. Additionally, the facility eliminates the need for daily maintenance of portable chemical toilets.


Providing enough cool, clean drinking water on construction sites is critical. Contact AMECO to help you build a custom construction site water management plan that fits your project’s needs.


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