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Dealing With COVID Safety and Emotion

6 May, 2020

The Associated Builders and Contractors of Wisconsin Safety Committee recently met online to discuss best practices for jobsites during Covid-19. They identified multiple best practices for those on a jobsite. Here are a few of their recommendations. 

1. Health quiz. Some contractors are asking the following questions of their employees each day before they begin work (and employees must answer no to be allowed on the jobsite):

  • Have you ever tested positive for COVID-19?
  • Have you experienced a fever, cough, or shortness of breath within the last 14 days?
  • Within the last 14 days, have you been in close contact with someone who has tested positive or experienced symptoms related to COVID-19?
  • Have you recently been to a country or area with known COVID-19 community spread (defined as a “hot spot”) or been in close contact with a person from these areas.

2. Masks. Employees who keep a social distance of 6 feet may work without a mask.

3. Respirator fit testing? An OSHA representative indicated that the testing should only be done if it is something that you have commonly done in the past. Using a cloth mask for COVID-19 would eliminate that scrutiny.

4. Social distancing and equipment sharing.  Meals are being eaten in vehicles. There is no sharing of containers or tools. Shared water jugs have been eliminated. Daily cleaning is done on all equipment. Job and safety talks are held outside with strict social distancing.

5. Planning for someone testing positive. If an employee tests positive, the jobsite will be shut down immediately and cleaned thoroughly by a professional cleaning team. Contractors may want to have a professional cleaning firm ready. No one will return to the jobsite for three days to err on the side of caution.

6. Fear on the jobsites. Some workers are hesitant or unwilling to be at work. Many contractors are not terminating employees with such concerns. Also commenting on risk concerns on the jobsite, Nolan Consulting wrote a blog this week on managing differing perceptions of risk related to COVID 19. "We have to manage culture in the face of significant differences in how people feel about the risk of spreading or getting the virus. I believe that these differences rival the political divisiveness that exists in this country. It’s about to get ugly in public. How will it show itself at work?" states Brain Nolan. He urges owners to create a culture that respects differences of opinions and "create an environment of acceptance."

To see the full article from ABC and more findings, click here

To read the Blog from Nolan Consulting, click here.


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