LOWCOUNTRY HOME TRADES MAKE SAFETY TOP PRIORITY
Businesses in the Lowcountry remain committed to safety during the coronavirus pandemic. Even though many restrictions in the state have been lifted, companies that offer services to homeowners have taken steps to make sure both their employees and customers stay safe.
Going paperless is one modification that is gaining traction with local businesses. EAC Heating & Air has instituted paperless transactions, which its customers are embracing. The company’s technicians wear masks at all times and gloves when working inside homes.
“We are doing our best to be respectful of all our customers and practicing social distancing as much as possible,” EAC Heating & Air said on its website.
Sectioning off the area of the home where work will take place is another common practice. N-Hance Wood Renewal’s technicians are instructed to wear gloves, maintain safe distances from customers, section off the kitchen upon arrival and sanitize work areas.
“We believe adhering to these precautions will enable our team to continue to deliver N-Hance services in a responsible and healthy way,” N-Hance said on its website.
Another safety practice involves holding meetings virtually rather than in person. American Wood Reface is offering free virtual consultations via online video conferencing tools.
The company’s employees disinfect touched surfaces frequently, wear masks at the customer’s request, place floor-to-ceiling plastic around the job area and clean thoroughly at the end of each shift.
A simple but important step companies can take is to remind employees to avoid physical contact among themselves and with customers—even when social norms normally dictate it. In addition to outfitting its employees with masks, gloves and hand sanitizer, Gochnauer ACH has adopted a no handshake policy.
“We want to continue to serve you with excellence and an abundance of caution,” the company said on its website.
Whenever possible, businesses are limiting the number of customers inside their premises at once. Distinctive Granite and Marble encourages private appointments in each of its four showrooms, and in addition to sanitizing its trucks, tools, equipment and materials regularly.
“In our showrooms, fabrication facilities, and in your home, your safety is our highest priority,” said Andrea McGilton, Distinctive Granite and Marble’s chief operating officer.
Business owners realize that customers have different levels of concern about the virus. Tim Wilhite, who with his son Matt owns Howell-Chase Heating & Air Conditioning, takes this into account.
“We instruct our guys to be conscious when talking to customers. What is their comfort level?” Wilhite said.
Howell-Chase technicians wear masks, gloves, and disposable shoe covers when they go inside customers’ homes.
If workers are visiting your home, Consumer Reports recommends a few steps to ensure everybody’s safety:
- To avoid contact, ask in advance whether documentation can be done without exchanging paper or writing implements.
- Ask the representative on the phone what the company mandates that its service workers do when entering the home to maintain a 6-foot distance. You also could ask to have the service person call or text you before arriving to go over precautions.
- Plan how you’ll direct the person through your home, and where to suggest tools are placed.
- Have hand soap and cleaners ready.
- During the visit, stand 6 feet back.
- After the visit wash your hands again. And clean where the contractor was working. Ideally, clean 6 feet around the worker’s path.