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Barbour EHS is an online subscription service providing access to essential legislation, guidance and practical tools to help keep you compliant.
February 2, 2021

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COVID-19: Adapting workplaces and protecting workers

The European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) has published guidance which aims to help employers and workers to stay safe and healthy in a working environment.

When lockdown’s ease and people begin to return to work, they will find that workplaces have changed significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic.

For that reason, EU-OSHA is providing advice on risk assessment and appropriate measures such as minimising exposure, resuming work, coping with absences and managing workers working from home.

Workers’ involvement and taking care of those who have been ill is also included as well as information and further links for many sectors, occupations and countries.

The guidelines include examples of general measures, which depending on the particular work situation, can help employers achieve an appropriate safe and healthy work environment when undertaking or resuming activities.

It is noted that while vaccination will in time lead to the relaxation of measures, it is not clear to what extent, or when, ‘normal’ work activities will resume. It is highly likely that certain measures will remain in place for some time or be reintroduced at some point to avoid future increase in infection rates.

The COVID-19 crisis is putting pressure on employers and workers as a result of having to implement new procedures and practices in a very short time or having to suspend their work and business activities. In this context occupational safety and health offers practical support for resuming or maintaining work and contributes to suppressing transmission of COVID-19.

The guidance can be found here.

Sleep and Fatigue: Director’s Briefing

Fatigue is common amongst the population, but particularly among those working abnormal hours, and can arise from excessive working time or poorly designed shift patterns. It is also related to workload, in that workers are more easily fatigued if their work is machine-paced, complex or monotonous.

This free director’s briefing contains:

  • Key points;
  • Recommendations for employers;
  • Case law;
  • Legal duties.
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