Understandably many of us involved in providing Appliance repair services are concerned what impact the Coronavirus (Covid-19) will have on our businesses.
What is Coronavirus (Covid-19)?
COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by a new virus. Symptoms include fever, coughing, sore throat and shortness of breath. The virus can spread from person to person, but good hygiene can prevent infection.
What can we do to survive?
Gov.uk on 23rd March have issued the following guidance for Work carried out in people’s homes.
Work carried out in people’s homes, for example by tradespeople carrying out repairs and maintenance, can continue, provided that the tradesperson is well and has no symptoms. Again, it will be important to ensure that Public Health England guidelines, including maintaining a two-metre distance from any household occupants, are followed to ensure everyone’s safety.
No work should be carried out in any household which is isolating or where an individual is being shielded, unless it is to remedy a direct risk to the safety of the household, such as emergency plumbing or repairs, and where the tradesperson is willing to do so. In such cases, Public Health England can provide advice to tradespeople and households.
No work should be carried out by a tradesperson who has coronavirus symptoms, however mild.
For more information, see guidance published 23 March 2020.
As an employers you have a duty of care to protect your work force, as a community we have a responsibility to provide an essential service to keep Appliances like refrigeration and cooking running.
Also, good hygiene is essential in beating this, so Washing Machines and Tumble dryers are to essential equipment especially for care givers.
Steps we can take
- Only book appointments for essential call outs. Refrigeration, Cooking and Laundry
- Set clear rules, explain to the customer that once they have opened the door they will have to move to a separate room and close the door and no one in the house including pets are to come within 2 meters of the engineer.
- Ask has anyone in the house had or are displaying symptoms currently. Or have you been in contact with anyone you know to have had or have displayed symptoms? If so it would be best to avoid the property. We don’t want to become a carrier.
- While in a property wear disposable gloves, under your work gloves.
- Sanitise first any area you are going to be touching.
- Do not accept cash payments, all transactions can be done online. Bank transfer etc.
- On completion of work sterilise work area again including your work gloves and tools used.
- On returning to your vehicle remove work gloves, dispose of disposable gloves and sanitise your hands. This way you keep your cab as a sterile area. (or as best as it can be)
Don’t take risks as you catching this, can put your own health, your families health and your customers health at risk.
We certainly don’t want to be a cause of escalating the spread of Covid-19.
And remember in the most part this is spread by direct contact.
The Chancellor has set out a package of temporary, timely and targeted measures to support public services, people and businesses through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19. For more information please go to the GOV.UK website. Useful Links for businesses:
- Support for businesses through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
- Support for businesses through deferring VAT and Income Tax payments
- Support for businesses who are paying sick pay to employees
- Support for businesses that pay little or no business rates
- Support for businesses through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
- Support for larger firms through the COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility
- Support for businesses paying tax: Time to Pay service
- Support for self-employed grant
The Small Business Minister and Small Business Commissioner are calling on the UK’s big businesses to speed up payments to their small business suppliers wherever they can to ease COVID-19 related cash flow issues. You can find more information here.