TAMPA, Fla. — The City of Tampa is having 20 medical practitioners, mostly nurses, check in on 52 major construction sites to make sure health safety guidelines are being followed.
The spot checks follow guidance issued by the city that call for social distancing, hand washing stations and limited access to job sites, among other things.
“We just wanted to ensure that there was heightened awareness and visibility for these really essential elements of protection,” said Carole Post, City of Tampa Administrator for Development and Economic Opportunity.
The medical practitioners involved in the temporary spot check program visit some of the most well-known construction sites in Tampa, like Water Street, Midtown and The Heights, often.
“We trained them and now they visit sites two to three times a week and they’re checking for compliance with the guidance materials,” said Post.
While some construction sites were meeting, and even exceeding, the city’s guidelines, others needed improvements. However, Post says the purpose of the program is to raise awareness, not issue fines.
“They’ve met the challenge and where we found some less than ideal scenarios, when the inspector revisited, the situation was resolved,” said Post.
The spot checks began on April 10 and are expected to run through May. However, Post says the program could be shortened or extended.
The city is paying for it now, but Post says the cost will eventually be split between the 52 contractors.
“For them to get to continue construction during the Safer-at-Home period, was certainly a privilege for them and for their business model so we expect to get full cooperation on that front,” said Post.
Post says there are also programs available for smaller construction sites.