July 14, 2021
Re: Communicable Disease
1) PURPOSE AND SCOPE A communicable disease is an illness caused by an infectious agent or its toxic product that can be transmitted in a workplace from one person to another. This Safe Work Procedure details the measures required for staff to protect themselves from respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19, while conducting fieldwork during general projects that are not specifically related to COVID-19.
2) UNDERSTAND THE RISK Preventing communicable disease involves taking ongoing measures to reduce the risk of communicable disease transmission in the workplace. It also involves implementing additional measures when advised to do so by Public Health during periods of elevated risk. The level of risk of certain communicable diseases, including COVD-19, may increase from time to time or on a seasonal basis. This may occur at a local or regional level, or within certain workplace. Hand washing is extremely important
3) REDUCE THE RISK STAY HOME IF YOU ARE SICK If you become sick at work Workers who have symptoms upon arrival to work or become ill during the day should promptly separate themselves from other workers, inform their supervisors and go home.
Personal Hygiene/Cleaning Depending on the communicable disease, it’s possible for people to become infected if they touch contaminated surfaces and then touch their nose, mouth, or eyes. The most reliable way to prevent infection from surfaces is to wash your hands. Washing your hands often and practicing good hand hygiene will reduce the chances of getting or spreading germs. Washing your hands with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds is most effective. This is because soap actively destroys the surface of some viruses and a soapy lather really reduces the number of germs left on your skin. Alcohol-based hand rubs can be used to disinfect your hands when soap and water are not available.
Other things to consider:
4) FACILITY, VEHICLE AND EQUIPMENT Cleaning and disinfecting surfaces can also reduce the risk of infection. Cleaning with products containing soap or detergent reduces germs on surfaces by removing contaminants and decreases risk of infection from surfaces. When confirmed or suspected communicable disease cases are low, cleaning once a day is usually enough to sufficiently remove germs that may be on surfaces and help maintain a healthy facility. Disinfecting kills any remaining germs on surfaces, which further reduces any risk of spreading infection. You may want to either clean more frequently or choose to disinfect (in addition to cleaning) in shared spaces if the space is a high traffic area or if certain conditions apply that can increase the risk of infection from touching surfaces:
If there has been a sick person in your facility within the last 24 hours, you should clean and disinfect the space.
What Needs to Be Cleaned : High-touch surfaces should be cleaned at least once a day. In higher traffic areas can be cleaned more frequently or disinfected in addition to cleaning.
Clean High-Touch Surfaces: During periods of communicable disease events, you may need to clean high-touch surfaces at least twice a day or as often as determined is necessary. Examples of high-touch surfaces include: pens, counters, shopping carts, tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, stair rails, elevator buttons, desks, keyboards, phones, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
Protect Yourself and Other Cleaning Staff
Disinfect Safely When Needed If you determine that regular disinfection may be needed
Ventilation: For all activities that take place indoors, basic principles of good indoor air quality include supplying outdoor air to replenish indoor air, thereby removing and diluting contaminants that naturally accumulate in indoor settings, especially in well-sealed buildings.
5) PROMOTION OF EMPLOYEE VACCINATIONS Chapman Burner & Heating Service Ltd. recognizes every employee’s right to determine their own health choices and will not mandate employees to be vaccinated nor discriminate against employees who choose not to vaccinate.
Reasons to get Vaccinated
1. Vaccine-preventable diseases have not gone away: The viruses and bacteria that cause illness and death still exist and can be passed on to those who are not protected by vaccines.
2. Vaccines will help keep you healthy: Vaccines can prevent short term illnesses and prevent long term chronic disability or increased risk of cancer depending on disease.
3. Vaccines are as important to your overall health as diet and exercise: Like eating healthy foods, exercising, and getting regular check-ups, vaccines play a vital role in keeping you healthy. Vaccines are one of the most convenient and safest preventive care measures available.
4. Vaccination can mean the difference between life and death: Vaccine-preventable infections can be deadly. Example: Every year in the US, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, approximately 50,000 adults died from vaccine-preventable diseases.
5. Vaccines are safe: Potential side effects associated with vaccines are uncommon and much less severe than the diseases they prevent.
6. Vaccines will not cause the diseases they are designed to prevent: Vaccines contain either killed or weakened viruses, making it impossible to get the disease from the vaccine.
7. Young and healthy people can get very sick, too: Infants and older adults are at increased risk for serious infections and complications, but vaccine-preventable diseases can strike anyone. If you are young and healthy, getting vaccinated can help you stay that way.
8. Vaccine-preventable diseases are expensive: Diseases not only have a direct impact on individuals and their families, but also carry a high price tag for society as a whole.
9. When you get sick, your children, grandchildren, and parents may be at risk, too: Adults are the most common source of pertussis (whooping cough) infection in infants which can be deadly for babies. When you get vaccinated, you are protecting yourself and your family as well as those in your community who may not be able to be vaccinated.
10. Your family and co-workers need you: Millions of adults get sick from vaccine-preventable diseases, causing them to miss work and leaving them unable to care for those who depend on them, including their children and/or aging parents.
6) PROGECT PREPARATION:
Rescheduling non-essential work. Any work that can be rescheduled to a time in the future when an outbreak occurs will be rescheduled.
Practicing good hand hygiene. Our employees will need to wash their hands regularly, and particularly after touching commonly used surfaces, like doorknobs or handles, railings, and elevator buttons. We will need access to soap and water at regular intervals throughout the project. Gloves will be used as needed.
Staying home if sick. Our employees will not attend a project site if they are not feeling well. Although Chapman Burner can mobilize people to a variety of locations to manage workloads and respond to customer needs, even a minor illness may result in project rescheduling.
Updating this procedure as necessary. This document will be updated as new recommendations and requirements are brought forth by established authorities. Employees of Chapman Burner will work within the bounds of the regulatory bodies at all sites.
Office and Vehicle Cleanliness. Chapman Burner will protect its employees and others by regularly cleaning and sanitizing high-use surfaces in the office and in company vehicles. Guidelines Outside Working Hours. It is anticipated and expected that all Chapman Burner employees will follow all relevant and required social distancing protocols both at work and outside of work.
Talk to vendor contacts about the following:
7) WHILE ON-SITE The methods to prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses are the best measures staff can take to protect themselves from communicable disease. These include:
Rental equipment must be disinfected before delivery by the supplier (see Project Preparation above).
Chapman Burner-owned equipment must be disinfected by Chapman Burner staff after use, according to the following procedure:
Disinfect equipment by wet-wiping using one of the following:
When using these products, employees must:
It should be noted that even when handling equipment that has been disinfected, good hand hygiene procedures are required.
This document was prepared by reviewing currently available scientific evidence and expert opinion. This document is subject to change as new information becomes available.