COVID-19 Protection Framework – Construction Protocols

30 Nov 2021

The construction industry across New Zealand is looking forward to getting back on the tools with the revised COVID-19 Protection Framework intended to manage the spread of the virus and keep workers safe. 

Industry leaders came together once again to work hard on revising the previous COVID-19 Alert Levels to the COVID-19 Protection Framework (otherwise known as the traffic light system) which specifies public health and social measures to be taken, says Site Safe chief executive, Brett Murray. 

“We’ve been here before and worked closely with industry and government to produce this framework, which has also involved working with the Construction Sector Accord.”   

The framework is more flexible than the previous Alert Levels and provides a pathway out of the lockdown giving vaccinated New Zealanders more freedom from 3 December 2021. 

“The framework is built around a traffic light system of Green, Yellow and Red, with different levels of control depending on the colour. It offers the stability businesses need to plan for the future.”

Key elements of the traffic light system are the ease and simplicity of each colour level, resources and guidance available to businesses. 

Other key elements of the COVID-19 Protection Framework 

  • Site entry inductions, record keeping, contact tracing and limited numbers will continue.
  • Site operations should include COVID Response Plans and cleaning guides.
  • Worker interacting face-to-face while operating must wear face coverings.
  • Site meetings and room ventilation should be based on the traffic light system.
  • Physical distancing and vaccination certificate measures should be taken to ensure the safety of workers and business continuity.
  • Supporting resources such as posters, signage, checklists and more will be available making it easier and faster for businesses to introduce information. 

The protocols allow construction businesses flexibility to operate at all levels of the traffic light system but will need to implement additional controls if vaccinations certificates are not required on-site. 

With the shift to the new traffic light system, the government has released its My Vaccination Pass for people fully vaccinated. 

“We want our members and industry to get back to work safely and quickly. People who are vaccinated will enjoy several freedoms that unvaccinated people will not,” says Murray. 

Delta is here and not going away, and while no country has been able to eliminate Delta completely, New Zealand is better positioned than most to tackle it because of our high vaccination rate, and the in-built safety measures of the traffic light system, like the use of vaccine passes, says prime minister, Jacinda Ardern. 

Information on how to get your vaccination pass can be found here.

The COVID-19 Protection Framework – Construction Protocols is available on the Site Safe website here