Coronavirus impact in UAE: What construction firms in Dubai are doing amid outbreak

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It is business as usual for hundreds of construction workers across the UAE, however, in compliance with the precautionary measures put in place by the government of Dubai, companies are adopting all possible steps to keep their health in check.

Azmi Ahmed, business development and contractual manager at Dubai based construction company – Bharat Construction, said the company has safety officers at all the three sites to monitor the precautionary measures the workers have been advised to take when onsite.

” We have 120 construction workers spread across three sites. To keep a check on their health and well-being we have deputed safety managers who see to it that the workers are maintaining the required physical distance between each other while working on sites. We have given masks and gloves for their protection that they have to wear at all times apart from keeping sanitizers around them. The safety officers also keep telling the workers to wash their hands after every half an hour or so.”

Ahmed added that body temperature scanners check the workers temperature before they enter the site and when they leave the site.

He added that even after the workers reach their labour accommodations, they are required to take a shower and disinfect their clothes using the prescribed disinfectants.

“We are taking all measures as per the UAE law as well as the WHO advisory because we know this is a very delicate situation. God forbid if even one of the workers’ get this virus, it can easily spread to many more as they stay together in the labour accommodations,” Ahmed added.

Captain Amjad Chouwdhry, who runs a construction company Al Mehr Contracting with 265 construction workers, believes that apart from supplying the workers with gloves and masks, they also need to be educated on the subject of the Covid-19 so they take care of themselves and their friends responsibly.

“Apart from giving our workers gloves, masks and sanitizers, I personally have conducted awareness sessions at the labour accommodations where the workers were given adequate information about the coronavirus, how it spreads, what it can lead to and how can we protect ourselves from it. We have also issued guidelines for them to maintain distance from each other at all times, while eating or working and given them demos as to how and why they should wash their hands for 20 seconds at least to get rid of any contamination.”

Capt Amjad said that all the workers have to get their body temperature checked twice a day before coming to the site and at the time of leaving the sites. As a special allowance, Capt Amjad has also taken upon himself to provide free food for his workers for two months for the time being.

Some other guidelines, he said the workers have been advised to follow are to drink warm water, and apart from washing their hands should also try and wash the inner portions of your nose a couple of times a day. ” We have also urged them to keep their rooms clean, open their windows to let fresh air in,” he added.

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