Getting back to work in construction may look a little tricky given the current circumstances surrounding the Pandemic, but with a little planning and thought it can be done. Perhaps the most prevalent ways of transmitting the disease would be through Welfare and as a Client you are required to provide a minimum standard.
Schedule 2 of the CDM2015 Regulations give explicit details on what must be provided to the contractors. Within a COVID-19 environment, where any one of your contractors might be incubating the disease, certain extra precautions should be put in place.
Stagger events, such as lunch breaks between work gangs so that the various gangs don’t intermingle unnecessarily.
A regime of cleaning touch points should be put in place. Door handles, microwave door handles, light switches, toilet seats, taps, etc.
Try and widen any ‘bottle-neck’ routes and create a 1 way system. It would be beneficial to mark on the ground 2m spacing gaps where people wait for a service i.e. toilet, welfare cabin etc. Where a 2 meter ‘social distancing’ rule cannot be maintained in a room, then restrict numbers of people that may enter. Design the room so it has a 1 way system. Where this is not possible, then restrict numbers.
Position chairs outside so that they’re 2m apart and side on, rather than facing each other.
Enforce an hourly regime of washing hands and the wearing of gloves. Employ the use of mobile sanitation units on the site near where each gang is working.
TOILETS / SHOWERS
In toilets the use of paper towels should be used rather than hand dryers as this would reduce the need to touch activate or maintain the hand dryers. Both showers and toilets are to be cleaned regularly.
CHANGING ROOMS / DRYING ROOMS
No items to be kept overnight in lockers or rooms, these should be removed at the end of the day – or ensure that lockers are assigned to individual personnel.
Public transport may be an issue for cross contamination, so avoid it. Car parking space may also be an issue if everyone is taking their own vehicles as car-sharing should be avoided. If car sharing cannot be avoided, then ensure plenty of ventilation and limit the number of passengers per vehicle.
Provide individual small bottles of water rather than providing a large cannister of water to share. This will greatly reduce the chances of cross contamination. Ensure contractors are aware of their own bottle and not to share water. It would be better for contractors to bring their own water bottles and decant the water from the bottles into their own.
There will be an element of bio-waste so a separate bin should be provided for masks and gloves. These should be taken away at the end of the day or secured and stored away.
Ensure objects are easily identifiable to individual people or gangs : colour code and tag them.
It should also be emphasised that the taking off of gloves can be very hazardous if done incorrectly. Some training may be required in how to do this in a safe manner.