Following the announcement of the third national lockdown, which recently come into force in the UK, site operating procedures for the construction industry have been revised.
The changes from version 6 to the new version 7 of the site operating procedures are almost in detectable. However, there is an updated guidance on self-isolation and shielding, and the removal of the requirement to display a QR code in site canteens.
A spokesperson for the Construction Leadership Council, which publishes the guidance, said that the previous requirement for QR codes was introduced for all restaurants and cafes, including workplace canteens, to track visitors. However, construction site visitors are tracked on entry, and so never required a secondary check-in at lunchtime.
Build UK has also updated its flowchart on the actions to take if a worker has COVID-19, or needs to self-isolate to reflect the latest Public Health England (PHE) guidance, which requires employers to contact the PHE if they identify five or more cases within 14 days.
Separately, the Builders Merchants Federation has also updated its branch operating guidelines. The 21-page document entitled: ‘Branch Operating Guidelines during COVID-19 Version Four,’ sets out guidelines and additional precautions for builders’ merchant staff in England and Northern Ireland to follow when operating. There are separate regulations/guidance in place in Scotland and Wales.
Essentially, overall, the advice remains the same as before – work from home if you can, wash your hands thoroughly, and keep your distance from others.
With regards to masks, Site Operating Procedures V7 says that they are not generally needed on-site. They need to be worn only when working in enclosed spaces where social distancing is not always possible, and where you might come into contact with people you don’t normally meet.
In line with government guidance on premises providing hospitality, face coverings must be worn in canteens except when seated at a table to eat or drink.
To download the Site Operating Procedures V7, click here.
The Branch Operating Guidelines during COVID-19 Version 4 can be downloaded here.