A chimney sweeps job involves proximity and close contact with several new or different customers each day. Some of these people will either have the covid virus, will be elderly or infirm and could be at increased risk from the infection.
It is our job as professionals to:
1, Safeguard ourselves and families
2, Safeguard our customers.
Covid 19 is an extremely serious condition as it spreads very quickly, has a high mortality rate and the ability to disrupt entire countries.
The following guide should be taken as additional precautions on top of the guidance and rules issued by the government. These will change day to day so follow mainstream media carefully and abide by the requirements.
Luckily as chimney sweeps, we already utilise excellent protective equipment’s however we are using it to guard against soot and not a contagion.
Here are the main bullet points that you should follow:
- MOST IMPORTANTLY if you are unwell or are experiencing any symptoms such as a fever or new cough: DO NOT go to work, stay at home and self-isolate.
- Ask the customer at the point of booking if they are self-isolating or if they have symptoms. If they do reschedule for when they are well or after their isolation period.
- Explain at the time of booking that you will meet them at the door wearing your PPE and they must keep at least 2 m away. Telling them in advance will build confidence that you will not infect them and prevent any scares.
- Risk Assess every job
- If a job is none urgent or can be postponed then it should be, rebooking during a lull in the outbreak makes the most sense. Perhaps in the summer prior to the new burning season? or when government guidance changes.
- Before you leave the cab of the van when arriving at the work address.
1, sanitise hands.
2, Put on new disposable nitrile gloves.
3 put on your clean P3 Respirator, ideally full face. If using a half mask, you will need goggles. A PAPR Full faced hood type respirator fitted wit a PR-SL cartridge is best practice as the face and head are completely covered and therefore protected
4 Put on disposable coveralls and overshoes.
- Exclude the customer from the working are abide by all social distancing rules!
- DO NOT eat or drink in a customer’s home
- Use only clean dust sheets
- Do not remove your PPE while doing any part of the job including taking payment and issuing certificates. It is sensible to change to a clean pair of gloves prior to this
- Ideally take payment forms which do not involve contact such as BACS. Contact with cash and coins are accepted high risk factors as the virus can live for extended periods outside of the bod
- When removing PPE after job completion and about to re-enter the van.
1, remove and bag coveralls and overshoes,
2. remove gloves,
3. wash hands in soap and water and put on fresh gloves,
4. remove mask and goggles,
5. sanitise mask and goggles using respirator decon wipes,
6. remove and dispose of gloves and sanitise hands with alcohol based hand sanitiser. Do not touch your face, eyes or mouth during the doffing process. Pack your respirator in a clean bag ready for use on the next job after cleaning
- Change respirator filters often and in accordance with manufacturers specification
- 7, Boil wash dust sheets and wash any protective clothing that is not disposable
These steps will not eliminate the risk completely but will greatly reduce it.
We believe that customers need to be reassured that they are not at additional risk from us. These simple steps will ensure our customers can stay warm and safe without the added worry of a chimney fire or carbon monoxide poisoning during these challenging times.
For consumers that are worried the above information can be used to question your sweep prior to their arrival or booking.
For the Chimney Sweep
For The Consumer
For The Environment