AIHA Publishes COVID-19 Guidance for Construction Industry
A new guidance document, "Focus on Construction Health: COVID-19," is now available via AIHA’s Coronavirus Outbreak Resource Center. Developed by the AIHA Construction Committee, the document provides a practical plan for employers to protect construction workers from COVID-19. According to Bill Geer, CIH, who led the project team that developed the guidance, the new document will help construction companies identify potentially high-exposure tasks and determine appropriate and useful controls.  “COVID-19 presents an unprecedented and rapidly changing situation compared to other well-established construction health hazards,” Geer said. “New information about the spread of infection and the potential for effective controls continues to develop from many sources. This document is intended to provide a clear summary of abundant technical information that is relevant to construction industry employers and managers to guide their efforts.” The guidance focuses on the factors that affect workplace exposures to COVID-19 and addresses the types of questions that site safety officers, competent persons, construction managers, and superintendents may need to answer. The guidance document provides a seven-step plan for protecting workers on construction sites using the hierarchy of controls. The plan includes a Job Safety Analysis step to tailor precautions and controls to site-specific tasks and changing conditions. A resource section provides links to other existing guidance materials useful for construction.  "Focus on Construction Health: COVID-19" is a companion piece to the AIHA guidance document “Focus Four for Health: An Initiative to Address Four Major Construction Health Hazards” (PDF), which was also developed by the AIHA Construction Committee and published in June 2019. “Focus Four for Health” highlights the significant effects of health hazards on construction workers and businesses and provides practical steps for controlling them. Both documents complement the construction industry's long-running “Focus Four” safety program, which targets the top four traumatic injury hazards in construction: falls, electrocutions, struck-by injuries, and injuries resulting from workers getting caught in or between objects.  "Focus on Construction Health: COVID-19" is available for direct download as a PDF from AIHA's website. Additional COVID-19 guidance is available from AIHA’s Coronavirus Outbreak Resource Center.

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