Pinnacol Assurance does just one thing and does it better than anyone: provide caring workers’ compensation protection to Colorado employers and employees.
With the COVID-19 pandemic forcing businesses to adjust their operations, your employees may take on new duties and face new hazards, such as being exposed to the coronavirus.
Instead of guessing which new hazards your business may stumble upon, it’s vital to use a job hazard analysis (JHA) to lay out the new potential risks your employees may face. JHAs allow you to identify workplace safety and health hazards before they occur and to implement strategies or controls to eliminate or reduce the hazards in order to prevent injuries and illnesses.
Performing a JHA also shows you care about and value your workers during these uncertain times.
What does the process look like? You start by breaking a job into individual tasks. Then you determine how the coronavirus and other hazards could impact your worker during these tasks. Take, for example, the job of a grocery store cashier:
Task: Scanning groceries
Hazard: Customer coughs or sneezes while standing in the checkout line.
Hazard control: Install a sneeze guard between the cashier and the customer in the checkout lane.
You can use our job hazard analysis worksheet to document the sequence of tasks for each job, identify workplace hazards, pinpoint when and where they occur, and implement preventive measures to avoid them.
Addressing on-the-job hazards
During a COVID-19 outbreak, it may not be possible to eliminate the hazard. Employers should select and implement controls from the hierarchy of controls that are the most feasible and effective for eliminating or reducing potential exposure to the coronavirus. These controls consist of engineering controls, administrative controls and personal protective equipment.
Here’s how the solutions might play out in industries where employees interact with the public:
Engineering controls physically remove the hazard or isolate employees from the hazard.
Examples: Install a drive-through window for customer service. Install a barrier, such as a sneeze guard, between the employee and the customer.
Administrative controls change the way people work.
Examples: Delivery drivers can avoid directly handing packages to customers, instead leaving them outside offices or homes. Sales staff can replace face-to-face meetings with virtual communication and implement telework.
Use personal protective equipment
Examples: Cashiers can wear gloves when handling cash and credit cards from customers. Construction workers can have their own personal protective equipment and ensure that it’s properly marked and stored separately.
Find more resources to help you adapt your business operations and schedule a free virtual safety consultation at covid.pinnacol.com.
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