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Engineering services bodies develop coronavirus site safety guides

Engineering services sector bodies the Building Engineering Services Association (BESA) and the Electrical Contractors’ Association (ECA) have collaborated on two new guides to help contractors to manage coronavirus-related issues on site.

The new guides provide sector-relevant guidance for engineering and building services contractors working across construction and FM in two specific areas:

  • ‘Specific Environments’ (where there may be higher risk of COVID-19 transmission); and
  • ‘close proximity working’ (less than 2m).

The new guides, which are are freely available to the wider industry during the current crisis have been drawn up with the support of a Covid-19 Expert Panel made up of BESA and ECA safety practitioners. The panel is also helping ECA and the BESA to provide informed, practical comments on site health and safety issues to the government and industry bodies who are generating overarching guidance in this area.

BESA Health & Safety Advisor Rebecca Crosland said: “It is imperative that there is further guidance out there to help keep the industry safe.

“The health, wellbeing and safety of everyone on site must be a priority during the COVID-19 health crisis. Businesses must exercise their duty of care under legislation to ensure all workers are protected and ensure that any critical information related to their health and safety is communicated clearly and then implemented.”

Paul Reeve, ECA’s CSR Director and a member of the CLC’s working group on site safety measures said: “The CLC SOP is an overarching industry document, but it refers to the need for sector guidance. These two guides are the start of joint ECA and BESA activity to produce more detailed, sector-relevant information that’s desperately needed by many engineering services contractors.

“They aim to help with the practical management of coronavirus-related issues on site, which may include the challenges associated with doing essential work in closer proximity than 2 metres.”

The guides are available on both the BESA and ECA websites:

GN1 – https://www.thebesa.com/media/837763/final-gn-1-special-environments-and-ppe-eca-besa-2.docx

GN2 – https://www.thebesa.com/media/837762/final-gn2-covid-19-and-engineering-services-guide.docx

GN1 – https://www.eca.co.uk/downloads/business-support/health-and-safety/coronavirus/draft-covid-19-and-engineering-services-guidance

GN2 – https://www.eca.co.uk/downloads/business-support/health-and-safety/coronavirus/draft-covid-19-and-engineering-services-guidan-(1)

Comments on the new guides from across the industry are welcomed.

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