Skipton companies reopening following the lifting of coronavirus restrictions could get a visit from the council and safety inspectors.
Craven District Council says it's working with the Health and Safety Executive to perform spot-checks and ensure that businesses are COVID-secure.
Spot checks and inspections are being carried out via calls and visits to all types of businesses to check they have put the correct measures in place to manage the risk from coronavirus. This includes businesses that have continued to operate throughout the pandemic, those that have recently reopened and those due to open in the coming weeks.
Councillor Richard Foster, Leader of Craven District Council, said: “We know how hard local businesses have been working to operate as safely as possible in these very difficult times. Together with the HSE, we will be talking to local businesses and visiting and inspecting sites across Craven to understand how they are managing risks in line with their specific business.
“All businesses should have COVID-secure measures in place. It is a legal duty for businesses to protect their workers and others from harm and this includes taking reasonable steps to control the risk and protect people from coronavirus.
“We advise employers to work with their employees when implementing changes, to help increase confidence with workers, customers and the local community. As changes come throughout the next few months and businesses reopen, our responsibility is to make sure that all measures continue to be taken to keep workers and members of the public safe.”
Angela Storey, Director of Transformation and Operational Services at HSE, said: “As we come out of lockdown, we are continuing to work with local authorities to check businesses are COVID-secure and providing guidance and advice where needed.
“Our spot checks and inspections support the cross-government work in helping employers and employees that have worked throughout the pandemic and those returning as lockdown measures ease. All workplaces are in scope for spot checks which means businesses of any size, in any sector can receive an unannounced check from HSE or an inspection from Craven District Council to check they are COVID-secure.
“If you are contacted by the HSE or Craven District Council, please engage with us. By checking businesses have measures in place to manage the risks, we can benefit the health of local communities as well as support the local and national UK economy.”
The COVID-secure measures businesses should have in place include:
- Risk assessment: every workplace should have a COVID risk assessment. Update it to reflect any changes in legislation or guidance that may impact your work activity
- Social distancing: where possible you should keep people two metres apart. If this is not viable, keeping one metre apart with risk mitigation is acceptable
- Cleaning, hygiene and handwashing: keeping your workplace clean reduces the potential for coronavirus to spread. It is a critical part of making and keeping your business COVID-secure.
- Ventilation and air conditioning can help reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus
- Talk to workers: provide information about providing support and maintaining control measures.
- Working from home: provide the equipment they need, keep in regular contact and discuss their wellbeing
- Vulnerable workers: talk to staff, provide information and consider the risk to workers who are particularly vulnerable to coronavirus – putting controls in place to reduce that risk
For further information on how to manage the risk of coronavirus in different business sectors please read the government guidance at gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19
More guidance can also be found on Craven District Council’s website at cravendc.gov.uk/coronavirus