COVID-19 is unlike anything the world has seen or experienced before. This upper respiratory illness seems to be here to last for the foreseeable future and is forcing businesses to change the way that they operate in efforts to protect employees as well as clients/customers. Businesses all over the world are changing protocol and safety guidelines, from small businesses to larger ones such as airports, employees’ and clients’ safety is being taken extremely seriously.

Perhaps one of the demographics of people that are most at risk of contracting the COVID-19 virus at work is aircraft maintenance workers. Because aircraft workers work with large groups of people/in areas that hold large groups of people, they are at a much serious risk. This post will detail precautions that aircraft maintenance workers can take to preserve their overall health and to protect themselves from the COVID-19 virus.

If you are an aircraft maintenance employee who contracted the COVID-19 virus, you may be eligible for some financial compensation. Contact the law firm of Schwarz & Schwarz, P.C. at (215) 925-1200 to determine if your work-related injury qualifies you for compensation.

How Can I Protect Myself as an Aircraft Maintenance Worker?

As an aircraft maintenance worker, you should take some essential precautions to keep yourself safe from COVID-19. Because you are in a space that features large crowds, and people from all over the world, not only are you at a high risk of contracting COVID-19, you are also at risk of spreading it. Here is what you need to know when it comes to protecting yourself and others from COVID-19.

Pay Special Attention to Personal Hygiene

Paying attention to personal hygiene is perhaps the best way to protect yourself from the COVID-19 virus as an aircraft maintenance worker. Some ways to take extra care of your hygiene include:

  • Washing your hands regularly with soap and water for about 20 seconds
  • Using hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol
  • Remembering to clean hands after:
    • Removing any PPE (personal protective gear)
    • Putting on/removing your face mask
    • Touching frequently used surfaces such as a table, bathroom, or seat
    • Blowing your nose coughing, sneezing

Take Extra Daily Precautions

In addition to paying attention to your hygiene, there are some other impactful ways that you can protect yourself from the COVID-19 virus as an aircraft maintenance worker, such as: 

  • Be sure to maintain a 6-foot distance from others when possible and limit contact with people
  • Use gloves as much as possible but especially when touching surfaces that may contain contaminated bodily fluids
  • Make it a point to avoid touching your mouth, eyes, and nose

Additionally, depending on the kind of work you do as an aircraft maintenance worker, you will need to take even further precautions. Below are some recommendations based on your everyday work tasks:

Interior Work

  • Be sure to wear PPE gear such as gloves and a face mask
  • Do not use compressed air/water spray to clean because they may make infectious material airborne
  • Make it a point to review CDC cleaning guidance

Waste Handling

  • Utilize proper PPE such as gloves, mask/face shield, liquid-repellent coveralls, and rubber boots
  • Do not vent aircraft vacuum waste tanks
  • Follow standard guidelines and be sure to clean your hands/body often

Air Filter Replacement 

  • Avoid dropping/hitting the filter
  • Do not use compressed air to clean
  • Dispose of the used filter in a sealed plastic bag
  • Properly wear your PPE

Steps an Employer Should Take to Provide a Safe Work Environment

Your employer should also be taking vast precautions when it comes to creating a safe work environment for all aircraft maintenance employees. Employers should create a health and safety plan that includes things such as:

Detailed Sick Leave

Employees should encourage employees that are sick or are showing early signs of COVID-19 to stay home. Employers should detail criteria that employees will have to meet in order to return to work as well as provide information as to whom he or she should contact if he or she does contract the COVID-19 virus. 

Likewise, employers should create a plan that features flexible sick leave for employees so that employees are not penalized for calling out of work due to COVID-19.  

Up to Date Information to Keep Employees Informed

Keeping employees informed is crucial as an employer. Employers should designate someone responsible for all things having to do with COVID-19, and employees should be able to contact this person easily. Similarly, employers should provide employees with accurate COVID-19 information.

The Proper Sanitation Equipment

This is perhaps the most important thing that employers can do to keep their employees healthy. Employers must make it a point to provide their aircraft maintenance employees with the proper sanitation equipment; this includes:

  • Disposable disinfectant wipes
  • Soap, water, alcohol-based hand sanitizers, and cleaning stations
  • Tissues 
  • Proper PPE (personal protective equipment) such as masks, gloves, etc.

Stay Up to Date With the Latest COVID-19 Information For Aircraft Maintenance Workers 

To best stay informed and get the most information possible, talk to your employer and the person responsible for all COVID-19 concerns and questions. Be sure to ask copious questions about things you may not be sure about and things that you think may be able to be improved. Don’t hesitate to speak up if you believe that malpractices are occurring in your area of work in regards to the COVID-19 virus.

If you have addressed malpractices to your employer and were ignored or contacted the COVID-19 virus while working as an aircraft maintenance worker due to your employer’s lack of adherence to guidelines, you may be entitled to some compensation. Contact the law firm of Schwarz & Schwarz, P.C. at (215) 925-1200 to learn more.