It can be hard to keep up with everything your workplace needs to be doing to stay safe during COVID19. Master Plumbers has compiled a toolkit of useful guides and factsheets to help you do the right thing when it comes to your worksites, employees and customers.
Unless an exception applies, face coverings should be worn when you leave your home for one of the four reasons:
- shopping for food and supplies,
- recreation or exercise,
- medical care and caregiving,
- and study or work - if you can’t do it from home.
This includes travelling on public transport, in a car with people outside your household, or if you are driving for work purposes such as if you are a delivery driver.
A face covering needs to cover both your nose and mouth. It could be a face mask or shield.
Even with a mask, you should keep 1.5 metres distance between you and others.
A cloth mask should fit securely around the face, specifically covering the nose and the mouth areas. The mask should fit snugly on your face and be secured by ties at the back of your head or ear loops. If you are using a mask with ear loops, you can use a plastic clip or tie to join the ends together at the back of your head to make sure it fits snugly on your face.
Make sure that your mask does not have holes or any unfiltered one-way valves. This can result in breathing out the virus if you have coronavirus (COVID-19).
Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, or use hand sanitiser that is made up of over 60% alcohol, before putting on your mask and after taking it off. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth at all times and store used cloth face masks in a plastic bag until you have an opportunity to wash them.
Surgical mask (single use)
- Before putting on the mask, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, or use a hand sanitiser that is made up of over 60% alcohol.
- Check for defects in the mask, such as tears or broken loops.
- Position the coloured side of the mask outward.
- If present, make sure the metallic strip is at the top of the mask and positioned against the bridge of your nose.
- If the mask has:
- ear loops: hold the mask by both ear loops and place one loop over each ear
- ties: hold the mask by the upper strings. Tie the upper strings in a secure bow near the crown of your head. Tie the bottom strings securely in a bow near the nape of your neck
- dual elastic bands: pull the bottom band over your head and position it against the nape of your neck. Pull the top band over your head and position it against the crown of your head.
- Mould the bendable metallic upper strip to the shape of your nose by pinching and pressing down on it with your fingers.
- Pull the bottom of the mask over your mouth and chin.
- Be sure the mask fits snugly.
- Don’t touch the mask once in position.
If the mask gets soiled or damp, replace it with a new one.
Ensure they are properly designed to cover the sides of the face and below the chin. Reusable face shields should be cleaned and disinfected after each use. Disposable face shields should only be worn for single use. Ensure you follow the instructions as per manufacturers guidelines.
A cloth mask can be washed and re-used. It should be washed after each time you use it and before you put it back on. It is a good idea to have at least two, so you always have a clean one available.
Carry a paper bag or zip lock bag with you to carry clean masks and keep them clean.
Single use masks are for single-use only and should be disposed of responsibly in the rubbish bin.
It is important that you wear your face covering when at work, but some people may require short breaks from wearing their face covering. When you do so, ensure you are not near other people, and follow this advice when removing your face covering:
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand sanitiser containing at least 60% alcohol.
- Don’t touch the front of the mask or your face.
- Carefully remove your mask by grasping the ear loops or untying the ties. For masks with a pair of ties, unfasten the bottom one first, then the top one.
- If your mask has filters, remove them and throw them away. Fold the mask and put it directly into the laundry or into a disposable or washable bag for laundering. Single use surgical masks should be disposed of responsibly.
- Clean your hands again.
Only a short break should be required.