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Pandemic Prompts New Construction Safety Guidelines

Posted on May 11, 2020

Construction workers are back on the job in Pennsylvania, with new safety protocols to protect them from COVID-19, according to an article in TribLive. Governor Tom Wolf opened construction sites on May 1 with requirements for increased precautions and an onsite pandemic safety officer to enforce those new protocols.

The new rules require workers to wear masks and remain at least six feet apart unless a task requires closer contact, such as with team lifting, reported an article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Work is limited to four people at the site for projects that are 2,000 square feet or less. One worker may be added for every additional 500 square feet.

There also are requirements to routinely disinfect high-touch areas and install hand washing stations at building entrances, break areas and trailers. The state also issued guidelines on staggering shifts and limiting tool sharing. Any worker exhibiting possible signs of COVID-19 will be sent home, according to both articles. Companies are required to appoint a pandemic safety officer to oversee that these rules are being followed.

“We recognize that the construction industry is vital to Pennsylvania’s economy, and may operate safely with stringent guidance in place,” said Governor Wolf. He left open the option for local governments to include additional safety restrictions.

Despite these and other safety precautions in place, accidents on construction sites do happen. If you or a loved one has been injured in a work accident and would like to speak to a Philadelphia attorney with a winning record in construction accident cases, you should contact us to discuss the details and explore your legal options.