COVID-19 pandemic: OSHA releases guidelines for oil and gas industry
Washington — OSHA has published COVID-19-related guidance intended to help employers in the oil and gas industry reduce exposure among workers, including personnel in the subindustries and those whose tasks “make up the broader oil and gas industrial sector.”
The guidance includes a table with examples of tasks and associated risk levels, along with examples of engineering and administrative controls. Additionally, the agency addresses cloth facial coverings, safe work practices, personal protective equipment, and OSHA “flexibilities” on PPE requirements and prioritization during the pandemic.
Among the agency’s recommendations:
- Defer work requiring close contact with others, if possible.
- Configure communal work environments so workers are spaced at least 6 feet apart.
- Stagger workers’ arrival, break and departure times.
- Ensure adequate ventilation in work areas to help minimize potential exposure.
- Encourage workers to wear face coverings to prevent the potential spread of the virus.
“Employers with workers engaged in the oil and gas industry should remain alert to changing conditions and implement infection prevention measures accordingly,” OSHA states.