OSSGA, following the lead of a number of our member companies, has decided to opt for virtual meetings and suspend in-person activities for the time being. All committee/board meetings will be conference calls – dial in instructions will be sent in the next few days. We will not be holding any meetings or training at the office in Mississauga. Hopefully this will not be for a prolonged period of time, but we will keep you posted as to when in-house meetings will resume.
Many of you have also asked about the operations of your pit and quarries.
The following two links may be helpful:
Workplace Safety North has several resources related to pandemic preparedness for businesses. Visit: https://www.workplacesafetynorth.ca/news/news-post/pandemic-preparedness-business
The Canadian Manufacturer and Exporter’s pandemic guide which was developed during the SARS epidemic (and updated in 2009) provides Canadian businesses with the information required to prepare a continuity plan to mitigate the potential effects of a pandemic. Visit: https://cme-mec.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/CME_Pandemic_Guide_Eng_2009Final.pdf
For now, most aggregate sites are operating with only limited staff as the season as not begun in earnest. That said, we have already heard of some innovative practices including splitting lunch shifts to ensure that staff have more room in the lunch facilities, and are in less contact with their fellow employees. We have also heard of companies taking this time to do complete inventories of their parts, etc. in the event that there are supply chain disruptions.
In an effort to keep everyone up-to-date as this situation evolves – we encourage members to contact OSSGA with any updates that you hear. Email Sharon Armstrong about any relevant closures, work stoppages, etc. Visit ossga.com/coronavirus for updates.
Aggregates and the Ontario Government
OSSGA's Executive Director Norm Cheesman recently spoke with the Minister of Transportation who is canvassing industry stakeholders on how the crisis will impact them. Norm advised her that the aggregate business is currently at its slowest period of the year, but that we are about to ramp up production for the spring and summer construction seasons, and any delays will impact the entire construction supply chain. We will continue to liaise with government as this situation develops.
Health & Safety
The Infrastructure Health and Safety Association (IHSA) has a number of resources related to COVID-19, including workplace posters and safety talks. Visit: https://www.ihsa.ca/alerts/COVID-19
In the news:
Daily Commercial News offers articles on impact of coronavirus on construction sector: Click here.
Build UK and the Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA) have said the UK construction industry is set to become ‘dramatically and severely affected’ from Coronavirus
“Construction sector firms and industry organizations are responding aggressively to the coronavirus threat as companies scale back in-person interactions and groups create new ways to both learn from and counsel members.”
OSSGA will continue to monitor and assess new developments pertaining to COVID-19 closely and work with our members, partners and all levels of government to provide support to Ontario business.
Visit ossga.com/coronavirus for updates, links to news articles, etc. and again, if you have ideas or information to share with the membership, please forward to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.