As the COVID-19 outbreak continues, in most areas, construction has been deemed essential. This means one of the biggest questions companies are now asking is how can we keep our team safe as they carry out these essential services? ABC is here to help get you some answers. Last week in an ABC webinar industry experts offered their advice and expertise on some specific concerns.
What We Know:
Construction projects fall into three broad categories:
- Projects which can and are permitted to proceed with an enhanced project safety plan to mitigate the COVID-19 risk per cdc.gov
- Projects which can and are permitted to proceed with a significantly modified project safety plan to mitigate the COVID-19 risk per cdc.gov
- Projects which cannot proceed safely or are not permitted to proceed and should be shut down temporarily until a new project safety plan is viable to mitigate the COVID-19 risk per cdc.gov.
OSHA Recording and Reporting of Cases of COVID-19
ABC National general counsel has written an article that covers the following questions:
- Is COVID-19 Considered an “Illness” Under OSHA’s Recordkeeping Rules?
- When Is a COVID-19 Case Considered Recordable?
- When Is a COVID-19 Case Reportable?
What ABC Recommends:
- Enhanced on onboarding/employee orientation to the new risk for all employees, ensuring all are aware of CDC guidelines
- Daily employee screening for symptoms
- Pre-task plans for working with CDC guidelines
- Daily toolbox talks educating the workforce on CDC guidelines and new concerns
- Provide increased handwashing stations (porta-potty companies usually provide hand sanitizer stations as well)
- Increase cleaning operations
- Keep distance between team members
- Eliminate large meetings
- Wipe down all tools daily
- PPE should be assigned to an individual – not shared
- Consider 100% glove use policy
- Eliminate shared food or water
What If a Jobsite Shuts Down:
- Draft a communication protocol for clients, consultants, specialty contractors, etc.
- Make security arrangements to make sure the job site is properly locked down.
- Make sure the job is left in a safe condition.
- Confirm those who can work from home have everything they need to do so.
- Create a remobilization plan for starting the project back up after the shut down concludes.
You can find a thorough shut down action plan from ABC National here.
- ABC National – COVID-19 Toolbox Talks & Action Plans
- OSHA – Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19
- Key OSHA Standards
- CDC – Guidance for Business Response
- Construction Coalition for Suicide Prevention – Tool Box Talk