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Oregon construction safety task force seeks to protect crews amid COVID-19

PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Seeking to increase job safety awareness and to help protect workers against the COVID-19 pandemic, a joint task force has published free resources for the construction industry.

The resources provided by the COVID-19 Joint Construction Safety Task Force include a safety checklist, best practices, and photographs, according to a news release.

They are available online:

Best practices:  http://www.oregonbuildingtrades.com/covid-19-safety-best-practices/

Safety photographs:  http://www.oregonbuildingtrades.com/covid-19-safety-photographs/

From April 15 through May 7, groups of five to seven task force members, assisted by an Oregon OSHA consultant, visited nine job sites in Portland, Hillsboro, Lake Oswego, Salem, Eugene, Oregon City, and sites in Eastern and Central Oregon to assess job safety practices addressing COVID-19 and to make recommendations for improvements.

The task force is a partnership of union and non-union industry professionals, with support from Oregon OSHA. The group meets twice a week to monitor health information and government guidelines, and to collect data and information. It will continue to coordinate job site visits as long as Oregon Gov. Kate Brown’s “Stay Home, Save Lives” executive order is in place.

“The construction community recognizes the need to work together across all areas of development to protect our workers, the public and visitors to our job sites,” said Mark Long, CEO of the Oregon Home Builders Association. “It is gratifying to be part of a group of industry professionals committed to bending the curve of the COVID virus while contributing to Oregon’s economy.”

“We depend on the skilled pipe-fitters and plumbers working for Charter on our project sites and fab shops,” said Cordell Tietz, president of Charter Mechanical. “It is critical that we have a safe environment for our employees, so they can continue to take care of our customers’ needs. This crisis has presented new challenges to all of us, and it’s been important and rewarding seeing our industry come together to keep people working safely and completing critical projects.”

Task force members:

For general questions about the construction task force, contact Mary Ann Naylor at Oregon Tradeswomen, MaryAnn@tradeswomen.net


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Arielle Brumfield

Arielle Brumfield is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Arielle here.

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Comments

3 Comments

  1. I have been to numerous construction sites- I looked through the safety photographs- I didn’t see any photos of people having their temperature taken- no proof of lunch/break rooms being separated for social distancing requirements- I didn’t see any documentation requiring masks for those times when “social distancing” is not possible- and there are numerous times when two people are required to share a boom lift !

    So what’s the point of this criticism ? Same as always- to rattle the cage of Oregon OSHA and demand that they do better ! Construction companies have been gifted the opportunity to carry on business as usual- yet anyone in the industry knows that Oregon jobs are being poached by outsiders- who don’t always give a damn about Oregon standards. Therefore- Oregon OSHA and Michael Wood need to raise their game !

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