Sweet-Orr’s core promise is to deliver Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) workwear that guarantees the safety of those who wear them. To clarify, the essential workers around the world. Now, with COVID-19 there’s a new challenge facing us, ensuring that we maintain higher standards of safety. We’ve been in the international PPE sector since 1871. So, Sweet-Orr is all too familiar with designing workwear solutions that work. We design our garments for low, medium, and high-risk environments. It should go without saying, but this level of alertness should apply to all working spaces. So, in short, all working environments could take some notes on how to keep their employees safe. Here are 3 things you need to know in the new PPE world post-COVID-19 in South Africa – and the entire world.
Wash Your Hands And Clothes
It’s a message we’ve all become used to hearing and reading, “Wash Your Hands With Soap And Water For 20 Seconds.” Like your mask, which you need to wash after every outside venture. In the same vein, we’d recommend that you wash your PPE workwear regularly. We know that PPE garments requiring frequent washes are a pain, but now is the time to stick to good habits, even when they don’t look like they are in dire need of it.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), for a normal wash, you don’t need to follow any new methodologies. But before you just go about mixing your dark and light colours in whatever heat water you feel like. We want to clarify: “Following the washing instructions on the garments means your workwear will maintain its rigidity and protective properties. It’s important to note that certain specialised workwear items can only be washed a particular number of times before losing their intrinsic properties. Please refer to the care instructions on your garment and we’d recommend keeping a count of washes and holding extras in storage. Specialised items should also have a single worker using them to ensure there’s no cross contamination. Certain garments you can wipe down, before doing so please refer to the workwear’s clothing label for additional information. .” So, make sure to follow the washing instructions on your apparel.
An example of this would be if you are washing your The Continental Two-Piece Overall – Royal Blue, you should do so in a hot wash at 60℃ and iron when it is dry. However, when clothes are in contact with an infected person, these recommendations do change dramatically. Items will need to be washed separately from the family/partners, and in a warm wash, then ironed. There are other facts to consider, which you can read, here. But for now, we’d recommend providing at least two outfits for your employees to rotate. *Note: Due to the evolving nature virus cleaning tips may change. Example: Wearing masks.
New COVID-19 Protocols
Certainly, one of the biggest new challenges for employers is ensuring they keep to the mandated government guidelines for their staff. The guidelines also outline how employers who require employees to return to work need to equip their staff with the proper PPE. It should go without saying, this regulation means a lot of South Africans will be working from home. That is to say, if they weren’t already during level 4 and 5. But this remote-working situation, or solution, is generally available to office jobs.
The majority of service, production and manufacturing industry workers will need to be on the working floor. Thus the need for engineered solutions to slow the spread, eg: masks and perspex shields. Consequently, there are a number of innovative decontamination stations being rolled out across the country. But the best method to ensure your work environment is virus-free is to insist that employees with any COVID-19 symptoms must quarantine themselves at home. And while there are loads of new engineered solutions, whichever solution you select is bound to interrupt the workflow. In turn, this will affect how your staff prepares for their workday and how they don their workwear.
The Importance of PPE Clothing Going Forward
Sweet-Orr believes our work is important, especially when it comes to our specialised workwear. In the post COVID-19 world, we should not understate its importance. After all, we know it’s the only way to get the economy going and keep South African workers working. The world of PPE is going to have to change, and we’re ready for it.