Outside, the work goes on despite COVID-19
LONDON, ONT. -- From construction crews to garbage collectors, the outdoors remains a workplace.
While COVID-19 has halted many non-essential indoor jobs, those who work outside keep moving.
Some, including Dillion Goos, perform vital tasks. He is a City of London garbage collector.
“If we were to stop doing our jobs, I think that would become a bigger problem for the city (amid COVID-19),” he tells CTV News.
Goos says he and his colleagues are “making sure we wipe down the truck.” He says they also have a good supply of protective equipment.
As they make the rounds in the city, Goos says he is impressed with how residents are abiding by the new normal. People are social distancing around him and ensuring all trash is sealed inside garbage bags.
But at some city construction sites, social distancing isn’t always being practiced.
CTV News noted a few cases where construction workers stood side-by-side.
In some U.S. cities, including Boston, construction sites have been shut down to protect workers, but many in the Forest City don’t see the need, yet.
“If you were working with a bunch of people, maybe people who have been out of the country, and they had a big crew with more than a few people, then maybe,” says Jay Klassen, a general labourer working at a south London construction site.
Still, Klassen says his brother works at a north London site where the supervisors are pondering a total shutdown.
A site supervisor, who spoke off camera to CTV News, says he’s doing his best to ensure workers have sanitizers, masks and other safety equipment to stop the spread of COVID-19. He says he’s also reduced the crew inside a new home under construction from 10 to just three.
All are being told to “keep two-metres between them and others,” he says.
The supervisor, who also owns the small construction company building the home, says he’s further concerned work will soon dry up, if not for the virus, but for the economic hardships it has caused.
He says site civic inspections have halted, preventing most sites from advancing to the next stage.
CTV News contacted the City of London to discuss what options were left for contractors and builders.
We were provided a link to a list of city building services which outlines their current status and program contacts.