COVID-19 Business Reopening Plans

COVID-19Now that you and your business have survived COVID-19, how do you reopen?  What are the considerations for your office, manufacturing plant, industrial shop, retail store, or any other type of business?  You have to include the bricks and mortar, personnel, customers, vendors, clientele, patients, and umpteen other things.  There is a lot to consider.  Take a deep breath, and Environmental Safety Consultants, Inc. (ESC) will get you through the process.

As you are more than well aware of, COVID-19 has been, is currently, and will continue to be a moving target.  We learn new things about it every day.  The message is obvious, stay tuned in and keep learning!  Monitor new information and developments from federal, state, and local governmental agencies.  Listen to reliable media sources (the emphasis is on reliable!).  Finally, prepare a Business Reopening Plan.  This should take a lot of thought and preparation.  It should be gut wrenching.  It should be more painful than your Business Plan.  However, like your Business Plan, it should be a living document.  As new information and data become available, revise your Plan – add, delete, or modify as required.

COVID-19 SickWhat are the concerns or considerations to address in your Business Reopening Plan?  First things first – what is the goal or objective of the Plan?  That is quite simple – to make sure no one entering your business facility comes in with the COVID-19 infection, or leaves with it.  You do not want your business to become a source of the virus.  You want to keep everyone as healthy as possible.

To meet the objective, you have to understand how it is spread.  Surely, you recall how that has changed over the last few months.  We went from “it comes from touching contaminated surfaces, then your eyes or nose” (even though they said from the start it is in respiratory droplets) and “there is no need for masks” (which I never believed as a Certified Industrial Hygienist, CIH, typically focused on exposure via inhalation) to “masks should be worn”, because?  Because it comes from respiratory droplets!  And of course the type of mask is important.  Are you trying to protect yourself or others?  What about the eyes?  The eyes have still not been fully addressed.  And now the CDC says not to worry about surfaces!  That is enough to make your head spin.  That is why you have to monitor the developments and recommendations.

So what should be included in your Plan?  Following are a few items to include:

  • Deep Cleaning & Disinfection before Reopening
  • Daily Cleaning & Disinfection after Opening
  • Heating, Ventilation, & Air Conditioning System On? Clean? Add Air Purification Device?
  • Requirements before Allowing Entry by Employees, Customers, Vendors, Visitors, etc.
  • Sign on Front Door & All Entries
  • Sign in Foyer or at Front Counter
  • Sign-in Log requiring Detailed Information
  • Supplies at All Points of Entry – Hand Sanitizer, Disinfectant, Masks, Gloves, Infrared Thermo Gun, etc.
  • Social Distancing Details & Aids such as Lines on Floor, Plastic Partitions, Proximity Devices, etc.
  • Shifts – Staggered? Four Day Week?

So there is an overview of COVID-19 Business Reopening Plans.  If you need any assistance, Environmental Safety Consultants (www.escflorida.com) is here.  We have the credentials and experience to prepare your Plan, review your Plan, or provide consultation on your Plan.  We are a Florida-licensed Engineering business with a Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH, Board for EHS Credentialing, www.EHSCredentialing.org formerly American Board of Industrial Hygiene, www.abih.org) which is critical for your Plan.  We also have degreed, experienced technical professionals on staff.  We are just a telephone call (800-226-1735) or an e-mail away (escinc@verizon.net).  Contact us today!

What is Lead?

Environmental Safety Consultants (ESC) has been in the lead field for twenty years which is nothing compared to the 8,000 plus years of lead use by mankind.  So what is lead?  It is a natural element mined from the earth and is malleable, blue, and a heavy metal.  Malleable means that it is pliable or able to be hammered or pressed permanently out of shape without breaking or cracking.  Any fisherman who has pressed small lead weights on a fishing line, knows how easy the weights are to open and close on the line.  Lead was historically discovered as a byproduct when silver was being smelted.

Lead has been mined, smelted, and used to make products for thousands of years.  Some of the first products were artifacts and money.  The reported oldest artifact discovered was an Egyptian statue which was made 8,000 to 9,000 years ago.  It was also used to make rods and money used in the Middle East.  The Roman Empire used lead for its aqueducts and pipes which distributed potable water to the citizens.  Other uses have been in solder used on potable water pipes, X-ray shields in walls and aprons, collectible figurines, printing presses, shotgun pellets, glazing on pottery, and on an on.

what is leadThe use of lead greatly increased over time, especially after the industrial age began in the 1800’s.  It was a versatile element with unique physical and chemical properties.  Its uses appeared endless.  It is soft and easily worked.  It was rolled into sheets and pipes and was combined with other metals.  It was used in the construction industry for roofing, paints, flashing, electrical conduit, and pipes conveying drinking water and sewer.  And do not forget it was used in gasoline supposedly for anti-knock in automotive engines, although with its introduction, cars no longer lasted a lifetime!  From all of these uses, tons of lead were released to the environment.  Fortunately, it was banned from gasoline in the 1970’s, which eliminated a big portion of the environmental load.

Along with the many uses of lead, production greatly increased over time.  As this occurred, certain exposures were found to affect human health.  This occurred both in workers producing the lead and related products and in consumers who were using or were around lead products.  As this became known, agencies began addressing the hazards.  That included the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), and the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD).  But that is a subject of another blog.  Stay tuned!

So there is an overview of lead.  If you need any more information, Environmental Safety Consultants (www.escflorida.com) can assist.  We have the credentials and experience to answer your questions and steer you in the right direction.  We are a Florida-licensed Engineering business and are licensed by the U.S. EPA in Lead Based Paint Inspections and Risk Assessments.  ESC also has a Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH, Board for EHS Credentialing, www.EHSCredentialing.org formerly American Board of Industrial Hygiene, www.abih.org) which is critical for lead work.

We are just a telephone call (800-226-1735) or an e-mail away (escinc@verizon.net).  Contact us today!