The CDC and OSHA Recommend the Following Measures to Keep Construction Professionals Safe
What is happening with COVID-19 is unprecedented. It has affected just about every economic sector – including the construction industry. While there are many questions to be answered in the weeks, months, and years to come, today we do know some ways to protect people in the industry. Learn what the CDC and OSHA recommend construction professionals do to stay safe.
The History of Guidelines
The CDC issued guidelines for homes, workplaces, and schools in late March but did not release guidelines for construction sites until several weeks later. They did release guidelines on April 20, and OSHA released essentially the same guidelines the following day, but these were still not clear. For example, how could construction continue when workers were to stay at least six feet away from each other? For this reason, it took a little interpreting to determine exactly what should be done.
Measures That Are Likely to Help Protect Employees in the Construction Industry
There are a number of things that can be done to help protect those working in the construction field. These include:
- Create a strict policy that workers stay home if they are sick
- Train workers to properly put on, wear, and remove protective clothing and equipment
- Allow workers to wear masks
- Continue with all normal safety measures – other safety hazards do not disappear
- Advise all workers to avoid physical contact with anyone
- Direct all persons on the site (employees, contractors, visitors, etc.) to leave at least six feet of distance between one another
- Maintain social distancing inside work trailers
- Ensure workers have access to soap and hot water for handwashing or, when not available, provide alcohol-based hand rubs with a minimum of 60% alcohol
- Use cleaning chemicals approved by the FDA from List N or with a claim on the label that it is effective against coronavirus
- Take steps to encourage workers to report all safety and health issues they witness.
As is true of any workplace, the best things that those on a construction site can do include staying away from one another and increasing sanitation. If possible, find ways for workers to work independently, or at least six feet between them.
Nothing is Perfect but You Can Plan for Contingences
One of the most frustrating aspects of this issue is that most in the construction industry could not have imagined this exact situation. This is not something that could have been adequately planned for. Even when the above protocol is followed to the letter, it is still possible for someone on the workforce to get COVID-19 and then pass it on to someone else.
At ECL Software our thoughts are within everyone whose life is being affected by COVID-19 – which is just about everyone in the world. While we cannot provide medical advice we can provide software solutions that help you just do it once. Call us at 800-625-5972 if you would like a free demo.