Due to Coronavirus safety precautions remaining unclear, not posted at job sites, often ignored, or simply not possible, workers are increasingly expressing worry about their safety during this pandemic with some even walking off the job. Some reports are coming in of workers testing positive for COVID-19 and spreading the disease to co-workers. Safety guidelines being adhered to are more important now than ever.
Per Chicagoland Associated Contractors, the following are some jobsite recommendations:
- Do not have large group meetings of more than 10 people at a time and stay six feet between each person
- Allow non-essential personnel to perform work and communicate remotely whenever possible
- Discourage hand shaking and other contact greetings
- Place posters that encourage staying home when sick, cough and sneeze etiquette and hand hygiene at entrance to your workplace and other areas where they are likely to be seen
- Do not congregate in lunch areas
- Do not share tools or any multi-user devices and accessories such as iPads, laptops, hand-held radios, computer stations, etc.
- Limit the exchange/sharing of paper documents by encouraging use of electronic communication whenever possible
- Do not share personal protection equipment (PPE)
- Sanitize reusable PPE per manufacturer's recommendation prior to each use
- Utilize disposable gloves where appropriate and instruct workers to wash hands after removing gloves
- Provide routine cleaning of doorknobs, keyboards, counters and other surfaces
- Instruct workers to change work clothes prior to arriving home and wash clothes in hot water
- Utilize disposable hand towels and no-touch trash receptacles
- Request additional sanitation/disinfecting of portable toilets
- Clean surfaces of all interior of vehicles in use
Supervisors should ask the following questions to all employees prior to entering the jobsite. If they answer "yes" to any, they should be asked to leave the jobsite immediately. Anyone asked to leave should not return to work until 24 hours after they no longer show signs of a fever with no medication:
- Have you, or anyone in your family, been in contact with a person that has tested positive for COVID-19?
- Have you, or anyone in your family, been in contact with a person that is in the process of being tested for COVID-19?
- Have you, or anyone in your family traveled outside of the U.S., within the last two weeks?
- Have you been medically directed to self-quarantine due to possible exposure to COVID-19?
- Are you having trouble breathing or have you had flu-like symptoms within the past 48 hours, including: fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, runny/stuffy nose, body aches, chills or fatigue?
All employees should be instructed on how to do the proper handwashing hygiene:
- Clean hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Soap and water method is preferred if hands are visibly dirty
- Provide soap and water and alcohol-based hand rubs in the workplace. Ensure that adequate supplies are maintained. Place hand rubs in multiple locations or in conference rooms to encourage hand hygiene
Editor's note: This is, indeed, a confusing time for the construction industry. DataBid is working tirelessly to report and distill the news that can help you and your company make the right decisions and keep you up to date on the constant changes as they are made. We hope our coverage brings some clarity amid all the confusion.
Posted by Judy Lamelza