April 6, 2020
The Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety issued new guidance for all construction sites designed to stem the spread of COVID-19. Contractors and other industry employers must develop exposure control plans for the virus that encompass social distancing, symptom checking, hygiene, decontamination procedures, and training.
L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti indicated the Department could cancel job inspections or shut down construction sites where they find instances of failure to comply with the new COVID-19 guidelines. He told the L.A. Times, “The deeper we abide by these rules, the quicker this can be over. These are not ordinary times. Everyone has to keep making these temporary sacrifices for the common good.”
The new construction site guidelines include:
1. Practice social distancing by maintaining a minimum 6-foot distance from others.
2. Preclude gatherings of any size, and anytime two or more people must meet, ensure a minimum 6-foot separation.
3. Provide personal protective equipment, such as gloves, goggles, face shields and face masks as appropriate for the activity being performed.
4. The owner/contractor shall designate a site-specific COVID-19 supervisor to enforce this guidance. A designated COVID-19 supervisor shall be present on the construction site at all times during construction activities. The COVID-19 supervisor can be an on-site worker who is designated to carry this role.
5. Identify “choke points” and “high-risk areas” where workers are forced to stand together, such as hallways, hoists and elevators, break areas, and buses, and control them so social distancing is maintained.
6. Minimize interactions when picking up or delivering equipment or materials, ensure minimum 6-foot separation.
7. Stagger the trades as necessary to reduce density and maintain minimum 6-foot separation social distancing.
8. Discourage workers from using other workers’ phones, desks, offices, work tools and equipment. If necessary, clean and disinfect them before and after use.
9. Post, in areas visible to all workers, required hygienic practices including not touching face with unwashed hands or with gloves; washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use of hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, cleaning AND disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces such as workstations, keyboards, telephones, handrails, machines, shared tools, elevator control buttons and doorknobs; covering the mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, as well as other hygienic recommendations by the CDC.
10. Place wash stations or hand sanitizers in multiple locations to encourage hand hygiene.
11. Require anyone on the project to stay home if they are sick, except to get medical care.
12. Have employees inform their supervisor if they have a sick family member at home with COVID-19.
13. Maintain a daily attendance log of all workers and visitors.
For comments, questions or concerns, please contact Dennis Kaiser