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Show full transcript for 5 steps to working safely video
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The government has designed practical actions for businesses to take based on 5 main steps.

The first step is to carry out a COVID-19 risk assessment.  Before restarting work you should ensure the safety of the workplace by carrying out a risk assessment in line with the HSE guidance.  You need to consult with your workers or trade unions and share the results of the risk assessment with your workforce.

The second step is to develop cleaning, handwashing and hygiene procedures in your workplace.

You should increase the frequency of handwashing and surface cleaning by encouraging people to follow the guidance on hygiene and by providing hand sanitiser at various points around the workplace, in addition to washrooms.

Frequently cleaning and disinfecting objects and surfaces that are touched regularly will reduce risks, as well as having enhanced cleaning for busy areas, setting clear use and cleaning guidance for toilets and by providing hand drying facilities, either paper towels or electrical dryers.

The third step is to help people to work from home. You should take all reasonable steps to help people work from home by discussing home working arrangements and ensuring they have the right equipment, for example, remote access to work systems, including them in all necessary communications and looking after both their physical and mental wellbeing.

The fourth step is to maintain 2m social distancing, where possible. Where possible, you should maintain 2m between people by putting up signs to remind workers and visitors of social distancing guidance. By avoiding sharing workstations you reduce the risk of cross-contamination.  The use of floor tape or paint to mark areas to help people keep to a 2m distance. Arranging one-way traffic through the workplace if possible and switching to seeing visitors by appointment only, wherever you can.

The fifth and final step is where people cannot be 2m apart to manage the transmission risk. Where it’s not possible for people to be 2m apart, you should do everything practical to manage the transmission risk, by considering whether an activity needs to continue for the business to operate and keeping the activity time involved as short as possible.

Using screens or barriers to separate people from each other and changing desks to be back-to-back or side-to-side working whenever possible, ensures less direct contact.

Finally, staggering arrival and departure times and reducing the number of people each person has contact with by using ‘fixed teams or partnering’ will further reduce risks, by not coming into contact with as many people at work.