New information from Transport Canada offers additional guidance on how truck drivers can identify and use personal protective equipment (PPE) in the fight against Covid-19.
The recommendations complement existing Federal safety guidance to protect drivers and limit the spread of COVID-19 in commercial vehicle operations, and answer questions about the PPE and cleaning supplies that drivers may use.
The details also go beyond the general advice to wash hands, regularly clean commonly touched surfaces, and keeping 2 meters away from other people.
Choosing and using masks
Respirators such as N-95 masks are still to be conserved for health care workers and others who care for Covid-19 patients, the document notes. Cloth masks or face coverings can reduce the chance others will come into contact with respiratory droplets, just like covering a cough with tissues.
While non-medical masks or face coverings are not PPE, truck drivers are encouraged to wear them when they can’t physically distance from others, and when maintaining the physical distance outside the vehicle may be difficult – such as when fueling or completing deliveries. They may also be instructed to use such masks by law enforcement, public health officials, or border officers.
Where to use gloves
Gloves are recommended when cleaning high-touch surfaces in vehicles, pumping fuel, touching service station door handles, or handling other vehicle fluids.
Soiled disposable gloves should be discarded in lined garbage receptacles, or stored in sealed disposable plastic bags until they can be properly disposed of if a garbage bin is not available, the document says.
Hand sanitizer should be used after that.
Cleaning your hands
Washing hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds is still seen as the preferred method for hand hygiene. But when that isn’t available, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with an alcohol concentration of 60-90% — at least 70% is best – will be the most effective.