COVID-19 The Construction Sector at Alert Level Three - MBP Advisors + Accountants

New Zealand will move down to Alert Level 3 from start of business on Tuesday 28th April 2020. The change in the alert level will mark a shift from ‘essential’ business operations to ‘safe’ business operations, with many strict restrictions still in place. For the construction industry, this means a return to work, provided specific heightened health and safety standards can be strictly adhered to.

We have had a number of discussions with our building and construction sector clients in recent days and know this will be very welcome news. To ensure that the last month (soon to be five weeks) of lock-down have not been a very expensive waste, it is essential to follow the new industry guidelines.

Health & Safety Guidelines for Construction at Level 3

Last week, Construction Health and Safety NZ (CHASNZ) in conjunction with the joint government/industry Construction Sector Accord developed and released detailed construction health and safety standards and protocols for the residential, civil and vertical construction sectors.

Each construction site operating at Alert Level 3 (or level 2 when we get there) needs to have a Covid-19 Control Plan in place. The plan will guide how the principal or main contractor and contractors will manage work on site and the controls they will use to minimise the risk of Covid-19 transmission.

Responsibility for Administering COVID-19 Control Plans

The Covid-19 controls are over and above the existing health and safety plan requirements for residential construction sites. It is the responsibility of the site owner (the party responsible for overall site coordination) to ensure this plan is in place.

The site owner may be a client (e.g. in the case of a self-managed renovation); a group home builder; a project manager; or a small builder / contractor. There must always be a nominated person on site when work is occurring who is responsible for administering the Covid-19 management plan. This can be shared among multiple people from different contractors for an individual site if required.

Read the CHASNZ Protocols

The Covid-19 Health and Safety Protocols for Residential Construction Sites outlines the minimum standards to be implemented at residential construction sites. These protocols apply at Alert Level 3 and 2 and supplement the Covid-19 Standard for Operating New Zealand Construction Sites developed by CHASNZ.

Download and read the residential requirements for construction in Alert Level 3 here, and find out more about the requirements for other types of construction here.

Need some help getting your head around the new protocols? Book in a chat here.

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