Keep the Industry Building – Construction COVID-19 Guide
Construction During COVID at a Glance
- Open houses are prohibited as of 11:59 pm, Monday (11/16) view press release
- Construction activity is allowed under Phase 2 Guidance from the Governor’s Office.
- All construction is allowed
- Requires Jobsite Hazard Analysis to be performed
- A copy of the COVID-19 Exposure Control, Mitigation, and Recovery Plan must be available on each job site during any construction activities
- A site-specific COVID-19 Supervisor should be designated at every job site to monitor the health of employees and enforce COVID-19 job site safety plans (does not apply if single-family residential job site with 6 or fewer workers)
- Weekly tool box talks shall be preformed to explain protective measures in place
- Workers are able to perform tasks with less than 6-foot interaction distance require higher level of PPE*
- Individuals working alone not required to wear a cloth face covering or mask.
- Be sure to always keep a face covering or mask at-hand, to use during an unexpected encounter with another person.
- Hand washing or sanitizing station(s) should be provided on each jobsite to ensure frequent and adequate hand washing
- Housekeeping schedule shall be maintained – should include frequent cleaning and sanitizing of frequently touched surfaces and/or shared tools. View a list of approved disinfectants for COVID-19
- Temperature and symptom screening can be done at home and reported to the employer
- Employees are required to stay home or be sent home if they feel or appear sick
- A visitor’s log of individuals visiting a site is not required
- Gloves and eye protection at all times is not required (however, eye protection is required for tasks under 6 feet of distancing)
- Limit of one trade on-site is not required but is highly recommended
- *Review L&I’s “Face Coverings, Masks, and Respirator Choices” to plan for appropriate PPE
- Looking for Phase 2 real estate and mortgage guidance? ⇒ Access
- Looking for Phase 2 office guidance? ⇒ Access
- Official DOSH Directive (updated 12/22/20) ⇒ Access
Need PPE? We have you covered.
Have employees with COVID-19?
You must notify Clark County Public Health within 24 hours if you suspect COVID-19 is spreading in your workplace or if you are aware of 2+ employees who have a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case within a 14-day period.
Workplace Safety & Health
Employers must ensure social distancing for employees and customers, frequent and adequate employee hand-washing, and that sick employees stay home. Employers must also provide basic workplace hazard education about coronavirus and how to prevent transmission in languages best understood by employees.
- Face coverings (AKA masks) are important for reducing the likelihood of transmission of COVID-19. Watch a training video on how to properly put on and take off a mask.
- Employers must provide employees masks free of charge. The employer must immediately replace an employee’s mask if requested, or if it becomes contaminated, wet, dirty, damaged, or when recommended by the manufacturer.
- Which mask is required is entirely dependent upon the task being preformed and the environment in which the task is performed. Learn which mask is required for which task.
- Face shields alone are not a suitable substitute for face coverings and masks unless working alone. However, face shields with a cloth extension or in combination with face coverings are acceptable.
- Bandanas are not an appropriate face mask as respiratory droplets can still be spread. Review acceptable face masks (and which tasks require which mask) here.
- If opting for use of a respirator, don’t forget that initial and annual fit testing is required. Further guidance on respirator use for reducing COVID-19 exposure can be viewed here.
- While working alone, during breaks, and while proper social distancing is maintained, employees may lower a mask for full breathing capabilities.
- It is not appropriate to remove face coverings based on the temperature. Removing face coverings is not an effective way of reducing body temperature. Regular protective measures to control heat stress must be implemented, such as drinking plenty of water, frequent breaks in a cool area, and scheduling work during cooler parts of the day.
- Employees with a medical or disability issue, who are requesting accommodation, must provide their employer with an accommodation statement from their medical professional specifying that a face covering or mask should not be worn due to their present health condition. Employers cannot just allow the employee to work without a mask with no other mitigations or accommodations.
- Businesses must post prominent customer and/or employee mask policy signage at entrances of buildings and jobsites, and they should be in the language of their main customer base and/or employee base.
- Workers traveling together in a vehicle should maintain 6 feet of social distance; however, transporting multiple workers in vehicles for up to 1 hour per trip would be a considered a medium-transmission risk and must therefore wear non-cloth disposable masks. View all the steps and conditions of employees traveling in a vehicle together.
- Curious about myths regarding cloth facial coverings and how to debunk those myths? View the 5 Common Myths.
- Mask Mandate in Espanol ⇒ Access
Create a Plan to Protect Workers
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recommends companies develop a plan to protect employees and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Access the free online COVID-19 Exposure Control Planning Tool to develop a plan and conduct a job hazard analysis.
Set up a Safe and Healthy Workspace for Teleworking ⇒ learn more
General Workplace Requirements ⇒ Access
- COVID-19 claims will not impact a business’s experience modification factor and claim-free discount (if applicable).
- Losses for allowed COVID-19 claims will not be included in the retro adjustment calculations.
- If an employer continues to pay an employee while their business is closed during a coronavirus quarantine or to maintain the employee’s salary on an open claim, the hours don’t need to be reported if the employee is not actually working.
- For more information, visit L&I online or contact your account manager at L&I for answers about your account at 360-902-4817.
Paid Sick Leave
- Workers can use accrued paid sick leave for any physical illnesses, injuries, or other health conditions. They can also use accrued paid sick leave to care for family members who have physical illnesses, injuries, or other health conditions.
- If a business is shut down by a public official in connection to COVID-19, employees are able to use accrued paid sick leave.
- Businesses cannot require an employee to work from home instead of using their accrued paid sick leave. However, employers are encouraged to let staff telework when the nature of their work allows it.
- An employer may require employees to leave work if they believe an employee has been exposed to COVID-19. However, employers cannot require employees to use paid sick leave to cover this absence. It’s a worker’s choice when to use their accrued paid sick leave.
- If an employer lays off someone or reduces hours, employees are likely eligible for unemployment insurance through the Employment Security Department.
- Employers should be clear when laying off employees, clarifying whether the layoff is permanent or temporary. When disputes come up over who is entitle to paid sick leave during closures related to COVID-19, L&I may consider a variety of sources to determine if the individual is still considered an employee.
- Workers can use accrued paid sick leave if their child’s school or place of care is closed for a health-related reason. Schools that are operating through online instruction only are considered “closed” for the purposes of paid sick leave law. Schools operating through a mix of online and in-person instruction are also considered “closed” during those times when the worker’s child is unable to receive in-person instruction from the school due to health-related reasons.
Miscellaneous Business Information
- Labor & Industries will not cite businesses for expired training and certifications that expired as of February 28, 2020 or later. However, companies are required to provide initial training to employees prior to start of new tasks ⇒ Learn more
- Expired CESCL re-certifications no longer receive a grace period due to COVID-19 since training has been successfully transitioned to an online format. Find an online CESCL certification and re-certification course here.
- COVID-19 Prevention in Construction and Related Industries – L&I Safety and Health Requirements and Guidance
- Stop the Spread of Germs Flyer
- COVID-19 Jobsite Safety Fact Sheet Flyer (English/Espanol)
- COVID-19 Scenarios and Benefits Flyer ⇒ Find out if employees are eligible for Paid Sick Leave, Unemployment Insurance, Paid Family Medical Leave or Industrial Insurance)
- Tool Box Talk Template ⇒ Access
- COVID Jobsite Safety Plan Template ⇒ Download
- COVID Job Hazard Analysis ⇒ Download
- Construction COVID Training Powerpoint ⇒ Download
Not Complying Could Mean Fines.
While Labor & Industries prefers to educate companies on the requirements of the Safe Start Business Guidelines, repeat offenders may face fines of more than $10,000 and eventual loss of their business license. Further, industry-wide offenses could result in an industry-wide shutdown. Let’s remain vigilant and continue to follow the proper guidelines.
We’re always here to help you navigate these hoops.
- We’ve curated a collection of COVID-19 specific webinars that you can watch on-demand anytime ⇒ access
- Should you need some advice, contact our office at 360-694-0933.
- If you have further questions regarding workplace safety and would prefer to talk to a Labor & Industries representative, call 1-800-4 BE SAFE (1-800-423-7233).
- If you have other specific questions on how you can maintain a safe and healthy workplace, contact a DOSH consultant near you for a free, no-risk consultation.
- For the most updated content on phases and re-opening requirements and guidance ⇒ visit Govenor Inslee’s COVID-19 website
- Washington State Coronavirus Response (available in 20+ languages) ⇒ visit website
- Information for Employers ⇒ visit website
- Labor & Industries Coronavirus Outbreak Resources ⇒ visit website
- Division of Occupational Safety and Health COVID Powerpoint ⇒ Download
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ⇒ visit website
COVID-19 Toolbox Talk Videos
English and Espanol