Lynne was recently on a zoom webinar hosted by Ian Edwards for Engage, where these window masks were discussed. Handy for anyone with students who need to lip read.
Not that it helps us a great deal, but I wrote to the Health & Safety Executive recently, this was their response:
‘Thank you for contacting the Health and Safety Executive with your enquiry regarding COVID-19 measures in the workplace.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a public health issue and the Department of Health & Social Care (DHSC), working closely with Public Health England (PHE) and the devolved administrations, is the lead Government department for the UK response. You can get up-to-date information about the situation in the UK and guidance for the public on the risk from Coronavirus on the government’s website.
Under The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, employers have a general duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of their employees at work. HSE considers that if an employer is following the relevant PHE guidance for their sector in terms of controlling the public health risks, they will be taking reasonably practicable precautions to control workplace risks.
As we emerge from this time of unprecedented disruption, it is important for business to resume but only where it is safe to do so. For the foreseeable future, workers should continue to work from home rather than their normal physical workplace, wherever possible. All workers who cannot work from home should travel to work if their workplace is open. Sectors of the economy that are allowed to be open should be open, for example this includes food production, construction, manufacturing, logistics, distribution and scientific research in laboratories. Social distancing measures must be maintained.
Sector specific guidance to support the introduction of measures to reduce the risk from coronavirus in the workplace have been published on the GOV.UK website Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19)
Your employer must carry out a risk assessment that addresses the risks of Covid-19 to inform decisions and control measures. There is a duty on employers to consult their employees, and unions where applicable, as part of the risk assessment. Involving workers in this helps build trust and confidence that all reasonably practicable steps are being taken to reduce risks of coronavirus, so that people can return to work safely.
HSE is not offering permissions or authorisations for work to commence. It is for the employer to determine whether the work is captured by the business closure requirements and carry out the appropriate risk assessment. This includes the self-employed where their work is with or near other people.
Employers must carry out a risk assessment that addresses the risks of Covid-19 to inform decisions and control measures. There is a duty on employers to consult their employees, and unions where applicable, as part of the risk assessment. Involving workers in this helps build trust and confidence that all reasonably practicable steps are being taken to reduce risks of coronavirus, so that people can return to work safely.
Social distancing is, of course, not possible for driving schools but individual or business-run driving schools (for cars) should still undertake risk assessment to identify risk controls to cover:
• Instructors who may be in the shielded or vulnerable etc category
• Instructor actions if they or members of their household are exhibiting symptoms
• Gathering relevant information (in line with the two points above) about the learner driver before the lesson – with a view to accepting or rejecting a lesson.
• Measures to clean the touch points of the car between learner drivers
• Plotting routes so that opportunity to wash hands can be maximised – but still direct learners to wash hands before entering the vehicle
• To drop off one learner before picking up the next
• Making sure vehicles are well-ventilated to increase the flow of air, for example, by opening a window where possible
HSE has published guidance for Working safely during the coronavirus outbreak and sector specific guidance is available ont the GOV.UK website Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19)
Coronavirus (COVID-19): latest information and advice in relation to Health and Safety at work is available on our website.’
Q&A from Monday’s webinar – these are the unanswered questions.
As I book for my candidates will the DVSA email to me with the dedicated link? We will ask DVSA and get back with an answer but we assume it goes to the person whose email address they were given.
Why can’t we specify a pupil email so they get copied in when we get the booking emails from DVSA? We have asked about this in the past especially for the result of a test after it went digital but we will ask again.
Where can we get the toolkit that was mentioned?
It’s already on the website separately under training resources as we have given out resources each week during the training and Monday evening webinars. We will put it altogether and place on the website for you to use any part of it you want to. It includes risk assessments, guidelines, suggested letters etc. Thanks again to all those of you who have helped contribute to it.
Can we see the 5 tests please?
The 5 tests from the government are in the letter all ADIs received:
That’s why any easing of measures must meet the government’s 5 tests. These are:
1. Protect the NHS’s ability to cope.
2. A sustained and consistent fall in the daily death rates from COVID-19.
3. Reliable data showing that the rate of infection is decreasing to manageable levels across the board.
4. Be confident that the range of operational challenges, including testing capacity and PPE, are in hand, with supply able to meet future demand.
5. Be confident that any adjustments to the current measures will not risk a second peak of infections that overwhelms the NHS.
The 5 tests on the PCS union website are:
1. No wider return until communities are safe.
2. Workplaces must only be for essential work.
3. Workplaces must be safe places.
4. Staff must be individually assessed.
5. Outbreaks must be controlled.
Is it fair to say anyone who hasn’t yet booked a test won’t get one this year? There will certainly be a backlog of tests this year but what we don’t know yet is how many examiners will return or if testing will follow the format we have now. There may be tests on more than 5 days for example to help catch up. Otherwise it’s probably a statement we would want more information on before we agree it’s the case. It will become clearer as we get more information through.
Can you clarify the term key workers please? The gov.uk website lists the following critical workers who can apply for an emergency test:
• health and social care
• education and childcare
• key public services
• local and national government
• food and other necessary goods
• public safety and national security
• utilities, communication and financial services
Currently health & social care workers are getting priority, anyone else is being placed on a list for when examiners become available.
What is Exclude UK? ExcludedUK is for all those people who have fallen through the cracks of Government financial assistance. We know that a lot of ADIs are in this category, so would strongly suggest you join this group which is lobbying for help. They describe themselves as an inclusive alliance for the excluded and say that they are ‘creating a collective platform for those excluded from UK Government Corovavirus support schemes in order to protect livelihoods and help rebuild the economy.’ This is their website address. They also have a Facebook group.
My pupil has been advised they are on a list for a key worker test, does that mean they will get one? Probably they are in a queue in effect for when an examiner is available so they are in the system. It’s hopeful they should. We are hearing some come in at short notice as well.
Your thoughts on Perspex divider screens please. Originally we were told the DVSA wouldn’t be using them, problems mentioned were with glare to the left, not being able to reach across to controls and issues if an airbag went off. Also how do we know how much protection from the virus these are? We need to see what the new standard operating procedures are saying NJC cannot be the expert in this we can only advise and pass on information. If they turn out to be acceptable and safe and covered by insurance then we will pass that information on. Currently there are mixed messages on this.
The information on testing from an ADI working at a site was: Anyone can have a COVID-19 test and ADIs are having them in some areas. The information on anyone having them came through to thee testers last Thursday 11th June. Go to the GOv.uk site to book. You don’t need symptoms you just sign up on the website.
If measurements for social distancing change to 1 metre we still can’t do that so will it stop us working? It’s more about staying safe and putting measures in place if we can’t socially distance. It doesn’t mean it will stop us altogether but it’s why we seem to be later going back than a lot of people. Dentists, hairdressers can’t either just as a couple of examples and so they have put PPE in place and procedures to follow. Our understanding though is the work for dentists is very limited and will be for some time. Sorry we can’t answer this any more fully we don’t have the full information.
Can we extend the times of these webinar sessions? We have in the past to over an hour, if it helps we could.
Stop Press! We recently posted information about a produce thought suitable for people with allergies. On further investigation, the Dew hand sanitiser for sensitive skin does not contain any alcohol so would not kill the virus.
Thanks to Audrey Russell of the Aberdeen group for sending in this risk assessment document, and some guidance notes. If anybody would like to use them, they are welcome to.
Our Scottish members can register for the next Scottish webinar on 26 June at 11am. It would be appreciated if only people living in Scotland attend this webinar.
If you would like to join the ADINJC there is more information on our website.
Whilst our newsflashes are normally a benefit of membership of the ADINJC, during this national emergency we want to share information as widely as possible, so please feel free to pass this on. We are stronger together.
The NJC continues to be dedicated to help you in these challenging times and we hope you and your loved ones stay safe and healthy. Please feel free to contact us for help and support.
ADINJC’s helpline is 0800 8202 444
The Secretary’s number is 07855 453414
HMRC Helpline: 0800 0159 559
Citizens Advice Bureau – https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/health/coronavirus-what-it-means-for-you/
You can sign up to receive Government updates on Coronavirus relating to driving tests here.
The ADINJC is a national association run by ADIs on a not-for-profit basis. We work tirelessly to inform, represent and support our members, and to promote the interests of our profession.