OLYMPIA, WA (KPTV) - The state of Washington has started to ease some restrictions put in place to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
During a press briefing on Friday, Gov. Jay Inslee announced that construction projects once put on hold could resume. The announcement came with new guidelines to help limit any spread of the virus.
For several weeks, construction sites across the state had sat vacant because of an order banning construction work from happening.
“We have found a way to safely allow low risk construction that is underway to resume,” Inslee said.
The new requirements include:
- Existing projects must have a safety plan to maintain physical distancing, adequate PPE and a COVID-19 supervisor.
- Construction companies must have a comprehensive COVID-19 exposure, control and mitigation plan.
- The governor says companies must post written notice of work to be done at the job site and maintain a healthy and safe worksite.
“No job site may operate until the contractor can meet and maintain all of these requirements,” Inslee said.
The news was welcome among those in the construction industry.
“When you are waiting for it and it happens, there is disbelief, so one hand, you are preparing for the worst and get the excited news,” Ginn Group CEO Patrick Ginn said.
Ginn's company had put projects on hold.
“Very excited though, for us we have almost 90 pending home sales that were coming into this, so that is 90 people that need homes to move into,” Ginn said.
Ginn adds they will be working cautiously, going job by job to ensure they are following the new guidelines.
“Going through our safety plan and going through our training and making sure our vendors are staffed and trying to do an orderly roll out,” Ginn said.
The company is working to resume some projects on Monday.
As for other restrictions put in place, Gov. Inslee said they are taking things one step at a time.
“I just can’t repeat enough that if we push that green button to soon a lot more people are going to die and we are pushing this one just when we can to be safe,” Inslee said.
Inslee added that over the next few days, they are going to be looking at restrictions surrounding elective surgeries and outdoor recreation. No decision had been made on lifting those restrictions.
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