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Governor Inslee Greenlights Re-Opening of Construction Projects That Meet Social Distancing and Other Required Safety Measures



On April 24, 2020, Governor Inslee signed an order re-opening construction projects that meet detailed safety requirements across all sectors (residential, commercial, public, etc.). Under Governor Inslee’s 30-point plan, work may only be resumed on any given project if they follow requirements found here, which include:

  • Social distancing of at least six (6) feet is maintained by every person at all times;
  • A COVID-19 exposure control, mitigation, and recovery plan is developed and posted at the site;
  • Detailed safety training requirements are met;
  • Water and sanitation is provided;
  • Daily attendance logs are kept;
  • Worker temperature check requirements, symptom monitoring, and incident reporting plans are followed;
  • Employer-provided personal protective equipment (PPE) is provided; and
  • A site-specific COVID-19 supervisor is designated and present at all times.

These requirements track Governor Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” Proclamation 20-25, and are in accordance with the Washington State Department of Health Workplace and Employer Resources & Recommendations.

This first phase of Governor Inslee’s plan to restart construction projects was formulated after industry discussions between the Governor’s office, industry groups including the Building Industry Association of Washington and Associated General Contractors of Washington, and several labor groups.

Governor Inslee’s order applies to re-starting existing projects only. Further expansion of the order to new projects has not yet been addressed.  Governor Inslee is expected to roll out subsequent phases to re-open construction for projects involving work where social distancing cannot be maintained, but the timing for those subsequent phases is currently unknown.

To ensure compliance with Governor Inslee’s order and for guidance with drafting necessary documentation, we recommend that contractors consult with their legal counsel.

In the end, this is a good start to getting state construction back up and running and we will keep you posted of further progress and updates in the coming weeks.

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