Last edited 21 Oct 2020

Social distancing compliance marshal

COVIDMarshal.jpg

Contents

[edit] Introduction

Building sites can present a great number of risks to health and safety, both in construction and operation. There are many duties placed on those commissioning, designing, constructing, operating and demolishing buildings to control those risks.

In the aftermath of the coronavirus, health and safety responsibilities have prompted the emergence of a new role on construction sites - that of the social distancing compliance marshal (also known as the C-19 compliance marshal, coronavirus compliance officer or coronavirus champion). This person is responsible for supporting, verifying and enforcing post-pandemic health and safety requirements on construction sites.

[edit] Government guidelines

In response to the coronavirus pandemic, the Government has issued a series of guidelines entitled Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19).

On construction sites, social distancing guidelines apply to:

These guidelines can serve as the foundation for creating the position of a construction site social distancing compliance marshal. According to these guidelines, the marshal could:

  • Initiate hand washing (especially when workers arrive on site).
  • Oversee surface cleaning (particularly on security access control equipment and other devices that are frequently touched).
  • Monitor distances between people and reinforce the 2m rule (with barriers or designated one-way direction of travel systems).
  • Reduce team sizes (or set up designated fixed work zones).
  • Establish equipment rotations to minimise the need for several people to come into contact with tools.
  • Institute staggered site arrival and departure times.
  • Minimise travel on and off site.
  • Hold inductions and other meetings outdoors, whenever possible.
  • Alert workers about any changes to site procedures and become involved in developing communications programmes related to COVID-19.

In some instances, it may be appropriate for the social distancing compliance marshal to become involved in the creation of re-induction safety programmes for staff members who are returning to work.

[edit] Proactive and reactive duties

Based on government guidelines, the responsibilities of a social distancing compliance marshal generally fall into two categories: proactive and reactive. Proactive tasks are those actions that happen on a regular basis. This can include:

Reactive tasks are those that are required only in an emergency situation. These primarily occur when a worker (or workers) exhibit infection symptoms.

Social distancing compliance marshals should follow predetermined protocols to isolate the person in question. If infection is confirmed, contact tracing can be supported through the use of personnel logs and other records that track staff movements on site. As with other health and safety compliance measures, records must be kept of any reportable injury, dangerous occurrence or disease - including suspected cases of coronavirus,

[edit] Training requirements

As a new occupation, social distancing compliance marshals should complete a series of courses in order to be certified for the task. There are several organisations offering training in this area. Some courses are available in person and others are virtual.

An official course is offered through the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual). This approved qualification is called ETCAL Level 2 Award in the Responsibilities of a Social Distancing Compliance Officer.

The course trains students to anticipate what actions are necessary to protect workers as they return to site. In addition to monitoring social distancing, trainees are taught how to:

Students who complete the course successfully are certified as social distancing compliance marshals.

[edit] Additional details

Social distancing compliance marshals hold a specific role in the organisation. They should wear high visibility clothing that is suitable for a construction site. This can be in the form of a vest or jacket with appropriate identification so everyone knows who to approach if any coronavirus issues arise.

To be appropriate for the job and working conditions, reflective workwear should fit properly and meet safety regulations. As with other forms of personal protective equipment (PPE), employers should provide social distancing compliance marshals with suitable safety vests free of charge. Employers are also responsible for maintaining, storing and regularly checking and replacing damaged garments.

On larger sites, it may be necessary to designate several social distancing compliance marshals. In these instances, a lead officer should be selected as the primary point of contact.

[edit] Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki

[edit] External references

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