We're constantly monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic as it evolves in Manitoba. With that, we've updated our COVID-19 and the Construction Industry resource document.

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WHAT IS CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)?

Coronaviruses are a family of viruses transmitted between humans and animals. COVID-19 can cause illness ranging from a very mild, cold-like illness to a severe lung infection. Symptoms can include fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, muscle ache, headache, and difficulty breathing (shortness of breath). The World Health Organization advises that symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after being exposed.

HOW IS COVID-19 TRANSMITTED?

If a person carrying the virus sneezes, coughs, or exhales, respiratory droplets are released into the atmosphere and they may quickly land on nearby surfaces and/or another person. A worker may then touch contaminated surfaces or objects and then rub their eyes, nose, or mouth before washing.

The virus can be transmitted by:

• Breathing in droplets in the air that are generated when people cough or sneeze.
• Close contact with other people (e.g. shaking hands or hugging).
• Touching contaminated surfaces and then touching the face, mouth, or food.
• Touching a contaminated surface and then touch another surface may cause the virus to transfer from one surface to another.

People who have been infected with COVID-19 may not exhibit any symptoms for up to 14 days but can still transmit the virus during that time.

Symptoms of COVID-19 include:
• Fever
• Cough
• Difficulty breathing
• Sore throat
• Sneezing

Shared Health Manitoba has developed a self-assessment tool to help people determine if they need further assessment for COVID-19. It is available here.

KEY PREVENTION STEPS:

• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are frequently touched.
• Cover your cough or sneeze with your elbow or a tissue. Throw tissue in the trash.
• Stay home if you are sick.

AT THIS TIME, THE FOLLOWING SAFE WORK PRACTICES ARE RECOMMENDED FOR CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS:

• Do not permit anybody to enter a worksite if:

  • They or a member of their household have travelled outside Manitoba within the past 14 days.
  • They or a member of their household have exhibited symptoms of COVID-19 in the last 14 days.

• Do practice rigorous physical distancing:

  • Ensure that all workers are able to maintain at least a two meter distance from one another at all times. If this does not allow you to complete a job safely, then the job should be delayed.
  • Manage schedules to prevent groups from congregating. Try to minimize unnecessary physical proximity between workers — consider staggering breaks so people don’t congregate in one place at one time.
  • Do not participate in any group meetings in which you are not able to maintain the recommended two-meter distance from participants. Do not hold or attend any event with more than 10 participants.

• Use technology, such as phone, Skype, or Zoom to avoid in-person meetings.
Communicate and rigorously practice personal hygiene protocol.

• Post and provide information on recommended personal hygiene protocol and proper hand-washing procedures.

• Ensure that hand-washing stations and hand sanitizer are available for all workers.

• Frequently disinfect high-touch surfaces (i.e. doorknobs, handles, control panels) and eating areas with antimicrobial cleaners or bleach (one part bleach to nine parts water).

• All workers should change their clothing and remove their shoes immediately upon arriving home.

A complete list of detailed best practices for COVID-19 is available on our website. If you need guidance for performing work in occupied spaces, an additional, specific resource document is also available.

For more info and guidance on responding to COVID-19, visit the Health Canada or Province of Manitoba websites.

We’ll be here for you through every step of this pandemic. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at safety@constructionsafety.ca or 204-775-3171 in Winnipeg or 204-728-3456 in Brandon.