BMTA Newsletter BMTA Newsletter - Spring 2020 | Page 14 CORONAVIRUS AND CALIBRATION Neil Morgan Managing Director Chamois Metrology Ltd. SAFE WORKING LABORATORIES Monday 23 March 2020, Government Directive. “From this evening I must give the British people a very simple instruction - you must stay at home….people will only be allowed to leave their home for the following very limited purposes:…… travelling to and from work, but only where this is absolutely necessary and cannot be done from home”. We provide calibration services to all type of industries – do we go to work tomorrow or not? Who can advise us? How can we work safely and protect our employees? What additional measures The µ-CTE do we has need three to modes take? of This operation is a situation – bulk emissions many business owners must have found themselves in after this announcement. testing, surface emissions testing and permeation testing – which means it can be used for a variety of investigations. For Chamois Metrology it was increasingly evident in February that we were heading for a pandemic. Human to human Instruments such as the Micro-Chamber/Thermal Extractor™ transmission was proven and with the mainly unchecked movement of people around the globe it meant this was (µ-CTE™) can be used for the rapid screening of VOCs ‘when’ not ‘if’. We as a business decided to act and put various measures in place at the beginning of March. released from a material. Initial Pre-Lockdown Measures Regular staff awareness training about the virus, its progress, symptoms and mitigation. Increased hygiene measures, especially hand hygiene. Signage of mitigation measures. Purchase of stocks of sanitising products and sanitising stations. Issue of personal sanitation products for use outside of the workplace for all employees. We wanted to get staff into the mindset of living with and hopefully mitigating this virus threat within the workplace. Hand hygiene and not touching your face had to become instinctive. Peoples interactions were considered, and actions taken. All customer site visits and visits by customers were put on hold. All staff that could work from home were to do so. This reduced staff density in the workplace by 28%. New distancing and handling regimes were implemented for all incoming items. We wanted to avoid the small risk of possible virus import (and export) in relation to all delivery personnel and contaminated surfaces. All goods in are now quarantined for 24 hours prior to receipting in. Staff attendance and assurances A clear directive was given to all staff, if you feel ill with ANY symptoms, DO NOT come to work. Phone your supervisor. The same instruction is given if staff felt ill at work – they would be sent straight home. Absolutely no unnecessary risks. We were aggressive in mandating 2 weeks home isolation for any member of staff with symptoms or if they had any close associations with anyone with symptoms. Are we an essential business? After the stay at home directive we had to decide whether we were an essential business. Should we continue? We felt somewhat let down by the lack of directive from Government (BEIS) and relevant industry bodies as to whether our activity was considered essential. We had to make this call ourselves. We contacted various customers and simply asked whether they considered that we were essential to them. Primarily this included utility service providers, oil and gas production and distribution, pharmaceutical and medical. It was clear that we had to continue to provide our services and to do so in the safest way possible.