Singapore shuts sites for ignoring distancing rules

Singapore yesterday took action against 21 workplaces, including construction sites, for ignoring safe distancing rules designed to stop the spread of Covid-19.

It was only the first day of the new enforcement operation, and it resulted in 13 workplace shutdowns and eight warning notices, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said.

A photograph MOM took of a construction site showed workers jammed together in a communal rest area.

As well as construction sites, inspectors called in on factories, shipyards and offices.

Closed sites must put distancing measures in place before they can reopen.

MOM praised some companies for implementing safe distancing measures and other precautionary measures such as temperature screening.

Singaporeans have been told to work from home where possible.

Where that is impossible, employers are asked to provide physical spacing of a metre apart for workstations, meeting rooms, rest areas and other congregation points.

They should cut duration and proximity of physical interactions, stagger working hours, defer non-critical work events, and split shifts.

Employers should also clearly communicate and explain the safe distancing measures, MOM said.

Although affected early in the pandemic, Singapore has kept the number of confirmed cases relatively low, at 558 as of today, with two deaths so far.

Image: ©GCR, illustration by Denis Carrier

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