4 Tips on How to Prepare Your Workplace to Protect Against COVID-19 Exposure

Date of post: April 23, 2020   By: LINC Systems

We're closely monitoring updates around the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak to ensure the safety and health of both our customers and staff. As we do, we will continue to offer helpful resources to help you improve your own current COVID-19 response plan.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) together with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19. The recommendations include information on:

  • Symptoms of COVID-19
  • How COVID-19 spreads
  • Steps employers can take to reduce worker exposure
  • Basic infection prevention measures
  • Tips for developing policy for coronavirus identification and isolation
Click here to view the full OSHA report.

Who are At-Risk Workers?

Coronavirus is extremely contagious, and of particular concern to those over 65 or those with underlying medical conditions. But workers of any age are at risk of occupational exposure.

  • Healthcare workers
  • First responders
  • Grocery store workers
  • Janitors
  • Delivery drivers
  • Laboratory personnel
  • Pharmacists
  • Morgue workers
  • Medical transport workers
  • Retail workers
  • Those who work with the general public

OSHA Recommends These Workplace Controls in the Fight Against COVID-19

We thought the information that OSHA and the DOL provided was helpful and may help other essential businesses operate safely during the pandemic. While it may not be possible to eliminate the COVID-19 risk in your workplace, here are some ways you can reduce exposure through a series of simple, yet effective controls.

Engineering Controls

Engineering controls like the ones below can minimize the risk of exposure to COVID-19 without having to rely on worker behavior:

  • High-efficiency air filters
  • Increase ventilation rates
  • Install physical barriers like sneeze guards
  • Use drive-through or curbside pick-up
  • Specialized negative pressure ventilation

Administrative Controls

Employers can use their authority to decrease risk exposure through changes to the work environment that include the following:

  • Request sick workers stay home
  • Minimize contact among workers and customers
  • Alternate shifts
  • Stop nonessential travel
  • Create communication plan
  • Update safety and health training plan
  • Train workers on proper PPE usage and disposal

Safe Work Practices

Employers can implement administrative controls that improve safety and hygiene in standard operating procedures that include:

  • Provide resources and tips to promote personal hygiene
  • Require regular handwashing or alcohol-based hand rubs
  • Provide sanitizing wipes
  • Post handwashing signs in restrooms

Use Personal Protective Equipment(PPE)

Personal protective equipment like masks, respirators, safety gloves and face shields can help minimize the risk associated with contracting COVID-19, but it’s important to remember that PPE should be the last line of defense. Mitigate danger by removing/reducing the risk prior to assigning PPE. Then, follow these general protocols:

  • Select appropriate PPE for worker and occupational hazard
  • Train workers on PPE use
  • Regularly inspect, maintain and replace PPE
  • Properly remove, clean, store and dispose of PPE

Your health, safety and well-being are our top priority. There's a lot going on in the world today, but LINC Systems is here working on ways to address your business and safety needs. If you have any questions or would like to schedule an on-site consultation for your pneumatic tool program or set up regular service, please click here to contact us. Or, give us a call at 800-513-9918.