As states reopen and begin to see an increase in positive COVID-19 cases, it’s important to maintain and reinforce some simple polices construction participants can implement to keep construction and infrastructure projects moving forward. In the construction industry, where workers may work hand-in-hand and share the same equipment and tools, project owners and employers should emphasize the need to implement and follow simple protocols that will increase jobsite safety and limit the spread of COVID-19.
It is believed COVID-19 spreads mainly from person-to-person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Therefore, to the extent possible, construction participants should encourage workers to increase personal space to at least six feet and promote the use of masks to cover an individual’s nose and mouth. It’s also important that workers continue to use normal control measures, including personal protective equipment such as gloves and protective eyewear and that employers properly train workers how to put on, use, and remove protective clothing and equipment.
Instituting temperature checks at the start of a shift, limiting in-person group meetings, and sanitizing tools that are shared are low cost and effective measures that may help to reduce and prevent the transmission of the virus. Most importantly, project owners and employers need to reinforce the need for laborers to report safety and health concerns and require people displaying COVID-19 symptoms to stay home.
Although these simple steps are not guaranteed to eliminate positive cases of COVID-19, if properly implemented and followed, they are likely to reduce the spread of the virus, keep construction projects moving forward, and limit the financial exposure of the construction company. If you have any questions about how to keep employees safe on the job site, please feel free to reach out to the experienced construction attorneys at Sandberg Phoenix.