COVID-19: We are all aware of steps being taken to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Most of this advice is about avoiding large gatherings, maintaining good personal hygiene, avoiding non-essential meetings and minimising close contact with others. This is all good advice.
You are essential: As part of the COVID-19 response, some workers can stop working or work from isolated locations. For essential services workers, such as healthcare and utility staff, work has to continue for the wellbeing of the greater community. The provision of safe drinking water and removal of wastewater is an essential service. It’s the most important part of the preventive public health system, protects the environment and provides water for fire-fighting and other essential uses. So, your role is essential to maintain the lifeblood of society.
Keeping you safe: As we know, the top priority for water utilities is keeping staff safe at all times. This guidance note provides some simple advice for improving the safety of ourselves and our co-workers and for helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19 virus at work. Some of us can work in an isolated location, such as from home, and that home may not be set up for working safely. We need to make those workspaces safer in that context. In addition, some of us need to physically get to and from work sites and work in offices, depots, at treatment plants, on sites and at field locations. This guidance provides advice for water utilities on keeping staff safe whilst continuing with that essential work.