PTS COVID-19 – Safety Policy

Purpose

The purpose of this procedure is to insure employees, clients, contractors and visitors are provided and understand the requirements for social distancing and PPE during a declared infectious disease epidemic or pandemic, such as COVID-19 crisis.

Scope

All PTS Advance employees that work on company or client premises are to receive training in “Covid-19”. When work is performed on a non-owned or operated site, the operator’s program shall take precedence, however, this document covers PTS Advance’s employee and contractors and shall be used on owned premises, or when an operator’s program doesn’t exist or is less stringent.

Key Responsibilities

Managers and Supervisors

  • In coordination with the Safety Manager/Designated Manager, develop and implement annual COVID-19 awareness training
  • Make sure adequate supplies of products designed to meet the applicable specifications
  • Reinforce the requirements and importance of social distancing and PPE
  • Provide proper instruction to entire workforce as needed to ensure the intent of this instruction is being met as they apply to certain circumstances
  • Manage and update this policy as needed

Employees

  • Follow all requirements set forth by this policy. Seek guidance from Supervisor or HSE Manager for unusual situations such as:
    • This policy cannot be applied
    • Following this policy would worsen the risk or situation

Procedure

Social Distancing

All PTS Advance employees and contractors are always expected to maintain social distance (greater than 6 feet) from all other persons whenever practical. This includes, but is not limited to driving, shops, offices, field work and common areas such as hallways. This is a universal requirement set forth by CDC.

Personal Protective Equipment

It is important employees and contractors understand that social distancing is the primary prevention tool. Surgical masks, alternative face coverings and gloves should be used with proper hygiene which includes, frequent hand cleaning and other everyday preventive actions. At any time that social distance cannot be maintained, all persons within the 6 feet of space will wear a surgical mask or alternative face covering. Surgical masks or alternative face coverings are to be worn whenever any person is in any situation where he or she may come in close contact with another individual even for a short period. Whenever a person is not in a securely isolated situation where they can control their contacts, masks or alternative face coverings are to be worn properly covering the nose, mouth and surrounding areas of the face.

This includes:

  • In any room or enclosed area when other people are present
  • Workers are not required to wear a surgical mask or alternative face covering if they are alone in a personal office but must put them on when others enter
  • When driving with other people in a vehicle
  • When working or walking through common areas such as hallways, stairways, elevators or work facilities
  • When working with others that are within 6 feet (including outdoors)

Application

The following illustrates typical work situations and the required PPE and social distance application. When in doubt, wear the required PPE.

  • Working less than 6 feet apart from others inside (single offices, driving alone ) or outside (working completely alone and away). Person must be able to control close contact from developing unexpectedly.
    • Maintain social distance
    • No mask or face cover or nitrile gloves or other special PPE are required when alone
    • Hand hygiene- wash hands with soap/water or use a sanitizing gel after contact with common surfaces and before any grooming, eating or other such activity as a general precaution all day
  • Working in an office, control room or lab within 6 feet of others (includes brief scenarios such as restrooms and copier rooms)
    • Surgical mask or alternative face covering
    • Gloves- depending on need to contact common surfaces
    • Hand hygiene- wash hands with soap/water or use a sanitizing gel after contact with common surfaces and before any grooming, eating or other such activity as a general precaution all day
  • Driving in vehicle together
    • Surgical mask or alternative face covering
    • Hand hygiene- wash hands with soap/water or use a sanitizing gel after contact with common surfaces and before any grooming, eating or other such activity as a general precaution all day
  • Working in the field together within 6 feet
    • Surgical mask or alternative face covering
    • Work gloves or nitrile gloves
    • Hand hygiene- wash hands with soap/water or use a sanitizing gel after contact with common surfaces and before any grooming, eating or other such activity as a general precaution all day
  • Security screening for temperatures of entering persons with 6 or more feet of social distance
    • Surgical mask or alternative face covering
    • Work gloves or nitrile gloves
    • Hand hygiene- wash hands with soap/water or use a sanitizing gel after contact with common surfaces and before any grooming, eating or other such activity as a general precaution all day
  • Dealing with asymptomatic visitors
    • Surgical mask or alternative face covering
    • Work gloves or nitrile gloves
    • Hand hygiene- wash hands with soap/water or use a sanitizing gel after contact with common surfaces and before any grooming, eating or other such activity as a general precaution all day
  • Symptomatic person exiting facility
    • Surgical mask or alternative face covering on the symptomatically ill person
    • Surgical mask or alternative face covering on the supervisor or person exiting the individual
    • Maintain social distance and exit the person right away
    • Work gloves or nitrile gloves
    • Hand hygiene- wash hands with soap/water or use a sanitizing gel after contact with common surfaces and before any grooming, eating or other such activity as a general precaution all day
  • Screening for temperatures of entering persons with less than 6 feet of social distance
    • N95 respirator or higher
    • Nitrile gloves
    • Hand hygiene- wash hands with soap/water or use a sanitizing gel after contact with common surfaces and before any grooming, eating or other such activity as a general precaution all day

Surgical masks are not the same as N-95 respirators. N95 are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for certain circumstances, ask your supervisor when you are unsure. Alternative face covering refers to a garment (other than a surgical mask) that is cloth like fabric without holes. It is permissible to remove a surgical mask or face covering to eat, groom or wash. However, this must be done when others are not within 6 feet.

Contact Tracing

People in close contact with someone who is infected with COVID-19 are at higher risk of becoming infected themselves, and of potentially further infecting others.

  • PTS Advance employees and contractors will notify supervisor and HSE Manager of a confirmed case within 24 hours of confirmation
  • The supervisor will then work with infected employee to develop a list of all close contacts and work areas frequently visited up to 2 days before symptoms appeared
  • Supervisors will ask and document
    • Date of onset of symptoms
    • Date of COVID-19 testing
    • Date of results
    • Last day worked
    • Work areas frequented (work areas, building, offices When entering a machine or vehicle that, vehicles and rest rooms)
    • Supervisor will then provide the list of names to the Operations Manager and HSE Manager

Guidance on Case Management

  1. Employee has COVID-19 symptoms outside the workplace
    1. Worker should not return to the facility and shall notify his/her supervisor
    2. Before returning to work the employee shall have at least 72 hours (three full days) of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fever and other symptoms have improved
    3. The employee shall confirm to their supervisor that the above standard has been met
  2. Employee has COVID-19 symptoms in the client’s workplace
    1. A lead person or employee shall immediately remove the symptomatic worker from the rest of the workforce
    2. PTS Advance will notify the employees supervisor within the client company as soon as possible, all area where the employee has been working will be provided at this time
    3. Once the employee has been cleared by a medical professional then the standard return to work policy will be placed into effect
    4. PTS Advance shall isolate the office trailer, vehicle or any other area with “Danger Do Not Enter” tape. This area will be closed until a cleaning crew has finished with the area
  3. Confirmed COVID-19 Case
    1. If PTS Advance is notified that an employee has tested positive for COVID-19 and the employee has worked at any Client Sites in the 14-day period prior to the date the test result came back. The client will be notified prior to the confirmation of a positive test, so the area can be marked and cleaned accordingly. Once confirmation of a positive test is received, the client will be notified immediately and provided the following information.
      1. The PTS Advance employee’s name
      2. Date and time of the potential exposure
      3. The nature of the potential exposure
      4. A list of close contacts
      5. Any other information that is necessary for the client to evaluate the potential exposure of all other employees

Current Precautions

  • All employees shall wash their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use hand sanitizer with at least 70% alcohol if soap and water are not available. Always wash hands when they are visibly soiled and after removing any PPE.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Bring foods and beverages from home when possible. Do not share water bottles.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow. Throw used tissues in the trash and immediately wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer containing at least 70% alcohol.
  • Clean AND disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces such as workstations, keyboards, telephones, handrails, and doorknobs. Dirty surfaces can be cleaned with soap and water prior to disinfection. To disinfect, use products that are appropriate for the surface and meet CDC requirements.
  • Avoid using other employees’ phones, desks, offices, or other work tools and equipment, when possible. If necessary, clean and disinfect them before and after each use.
  • Practice social distancing by avoiding large gatherings and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible.
  • All employees shall comply with all federal, state and municipal guidelines and postpone working at any client site if within the last 14 days they have:
    • been diagnosed with COVID-19
    • traveled internationally in the past 14 days
    • been exposed to an individual diagnosed with COVID-19
    • have had close contact with a person suspected of direct exposure to COVID-19
  • Maintain communications with PTS Advance employees, contractors and clients for workforce readiness and availability and share the client’s precautionary measures for COVID-19 with PTS Advance employees before they report to the client.
  • All non-essential travel for employees has been canceled until further notice.
  • Encourage staff to telework, particularly individuals at increased risk of severe illness.
  • Conduct all meetings via conference calls or video conference when possible. Do not convene meetings of more than 10 people (or less depending on local health regulations).
  • Prompt identification and isolation of potentially infectious individuals is a critical step in protecting workers, customers, visitors, and others. We mandate self-isolation for any symptomatic personnel.
  • PTS Advance employees who have signs and symptoms per CDC – (fever, cough, or shortness of breath) should notify their supervisor and stay home.
  • If a PTS Advance employee is confirmed to have COVID-19 infection, we will inform fellow employees (and clients if the employee worked at their site) of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace but maintain confidentiality as required by law. The fellow employees should then self-monitor for symptoms (i.e., fever, cough, or shortness of breath).
  • Ensured hand hygiene supplies are readily available in all client work sites.
  • Increased frequency of cleaning with disinfectants recommended for coronavirus.
  • Train employees on frequent and thorough handwashing, sanitizing, as well as coughing and sneezing etiquette.
  • Where required additional PPE will be issued employees based on the hazard

Definitions

  • Social Distance
    • 6 feet as the minimum acceptable physical distance without PPE Precautions
  • Face Covering
    • A surgical mask or alternative face covering
  • Hand Hygiene
    • Washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. The use of hand sanitizer when soap and water are not readily available

Appendices

Surgical Mask Guidelines

Donning a Clean Surgical or Procedure Mask

  1. Perform hand hygiene
  2. Remove the mask from the package in a clean environment
  3. Position mask with folded layer and ear loop fasteners on the outside of the mask
  4. Pull ear loops around the ears- avoid handling the inside portion of mask
  5. Secure nose piece comfortably over bridge of nose
  6. Put the mask on over both ears and fan the mask down under your chin to cover your nose, mouth and chin and pinch the nose secure

Wearing a Surgical or Procedure Mask

  1. Wear the mask or take it off- do not pull it down over your chin or neck, loop it around one ear and dangle  it, wear it on your arm, etc.
  2. Avoid touching the mask when it is on your face- the outside is considered contaminated and you do not want to spread contamination around on the mask or to and from the mask or to the inside

Doffing a Surgical or Procedure Mask

  1. Remove gloves first and perform hand hygiene
  2. Remove the mask by the straps
  3. Take it away from your face and dispose of or store properly
  4. Perform hand hygiene

Storing a Surgical or Procedure Mask

  1. Remove the mask
  2. Inspect the mask for contamination
  3. Fold the mask so that the inside surfaces are folded in together
  4. Ensure the strings or loops are not in between the inside surfaces that are folded into each other
  5. Place the folded mask into a clean labeled baggie and fold or zip the bag closed
  6. Perform hand hygiene

Re-using a Stored Surgical or Procedure Mask

  1. Perform hand hygiene
  2. Remove the mask by the strings, ear loops or edge and remove carefully
  3. Unfold carefully and do not touch the exterior or interior surfaces
  4. Don and wear the mask as you would a new mask
  5. Perform hand hygiene

Design and Use of Alternative Face Coverings

  • The alternative face covering should tightly enclose the area around the nose and mouth, from the bridge of the of the nose down to the chin and extending onto the cheeks beyond the corners of the mouth, so no gaps occur when talking or moving
  • The alternative face coverings is made of material that is tightly woven but breathable and made from washable material
  • The alternative face covering should be tolerant of expected amounts of moisture from breathing
  • Alternative face coverings should be donned and doffed per usual CDC protocol to avoid contamination
  • Alternative face coverings should be kept clean and should be changed when saturated from condensation build up from breathing, or after a gross contamination event
  • Dirty and clean face coverings must be housed in separate, clearly labeled containers to prevent cross contamination
  • Launder and machine dry alternative face coverings regularly as recommended

Individuals should be careful not to touch their eyes, nose, and mouth when putting on or removing an alternative face covering, and perform hand hygiene immediately before putting on and after removing face coverings.

Additional Information

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