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Workplace social distancing advice published by HSE

27 July 2020

An online page dedicated to making workplaces meet Covid-19 requirements has been published by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

A major focus within this is the need to follow social distancing rules, designed to reduce the spread of the virus.

Social distancing should also be included in all business risk assessments to ensure that workplaces are "Covid-secure", says the HSE.

It also highlights the fact that there may be some differences in requirements between Wales, Scotland and England, but the HSE regulates in all three nations and specific advice can also be accessed on its website.

One of the essential elements is ensuring that workers and visitors to each workplace understands and complies with measures to meet the new requirements.

The HSE also provides links to government advice on the measures to follow in each specific type of working area.

General control measures include limiting numbers of people on site, use of floor markings, screens, barriers and signage to avoid close contact, frequent cleaning of equipment, maximum ventilation, provision of washing and hand sanitising options and working with landlords and facilities in multi-tenant sites to ensure consistency is delivered in all areas.

With increasingly more facilities reopening following the easing of lockdown restrictions, FMs and service providers have played a central role in transforming these to meet social distancing requirements.

Members of the PFM Editorial Advisory Board have been responsible for creating one-way entry and exist systems, the installation of screens and barriers and relevant signage in all areas, following the completion of risk assessments.

Many of these operations have been completed at short notice, following changing government advice, resulting in a high number of reports on the increased appreciation for the FM sector emerging as a result.

These are likely to continue as the UK continues to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic, with conjecture continuing on how to ease the restrictions if the virus continues to recede, or reintroduce them in the event of a second wave in the months ahead.

Those wishing to access the HSE social distancing advice page can do so here.

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