The importance of following all PPE requirements and protocols

First, I want to thank you for the work you are doing whether on the frontlines, in the field, or working from home supporting our crews and the traveling public.

"COVID fatigue" is real with regards to all the precautions and protocols in place both at work and outside of it. I cannot stress enough that your safety and the safety of others is something we take seriously and expect that you will too. It is important to reiterate the need to abide by our COVID-19 safety practices and to make safe, healthy choices at work as well as when off duty.

If your work assignment has you out on a job site, working alongside your crew or working with the public, it is required and expected that you wear the proper PPE in the proper manner and adhere to the current COVID-19 job site requirements (pdf). These requirements include physical distancing, properly wearing face coverings and sanitizing vehicles (wipe-in/wipe-out). Masks are proven to reduce the spread of COVID. If you are looking for the appropriate type of face covering depending on which task you are performing, check out our LNI ETool for mask guidance. And, just like other pieces of safety equipment, such as hard hats or work zone signs, these are required as part of your job – they are not optional because the safety of you and your co-workers is vital to our agency and our state. If you have any questions about these requirements, please review the linked documents in this email or ask your supervisors.

Of equal importance is that all staff should be answering questions daily from the ReadyOp and letting your supervisor know if you feel ill. If you are sick or COVID positive, do NOT come to work. If you are sick and in close contact with others, our ability to operate could be seriously compromised. If you work in ferries, an entire WSF watch could get sick leading to cancelled sailings, or a maintenance worker getting sick could diminish winter operations to the communities we serve and live in. And none of us want to be responsible for exposing a co-worker who then becomes seriously ill or worse. Again, if you are sick or COVID positive, do NOT come to work.

We each play an important role in keeping ourselves, our co-workers and our families safe. This pandemic starts and frankly ends with the individual actions of us all.

We care about your safety and the safety of your co-workers and families, thank you for your help to stop the spread of this virus.