40 employees working at the Rauma shipyard have tested positive for coronavirus – the majority of cases discovered through random testing commissioned by RMC
Since 17 September, 40 coronavirus cases have been discovered in company commissioned testing among those working at Rauma Marine Constructions’ (RMC) shipyard, with 34 of the 40 cases discovered this week. Due to these new cases, RMC has implemented – alongside its network partners and health officials – immediate actions to prevent further infections.
The cases have been located to a specific section of a ship under construction at the shipyard and they include mainly employees from network companies. As a precaution, the approximately 200 people working on this section of the ship will not be performing any work at the shipyard this upcoming weekend. Those not placed under quarantine by the health officials will be tested next Monday. Those receiving a negative test result may return back to work.
In order to prevent further infections, RMC has, in collaboration with the Rauma city health officials, significantly increased random testing. There has been an increase in random testing conducted at the Rauma shipyard testing station for the past week, both concerning RMC’s own personnel, as well as personnel from the network companies. In addition, those who have been fully vaccinated have also been tested. Furthermore, on Thursday, September 23, RMC offered its premises for the shipyard health officials to conduct vaccinations for the employees of the network companies.
”We take the occurred infections extremely seriously and in collaboration with the authorities, want to ensure that there will be no more cases. Thanks to the previous successful collaboration with the authorities, we are well prepared to react quickly to infections occurring at the shipyard. We will now monitor the situation very carefully for further measures,” says Jyrki Heinimaa, CEO, Rauma Marine Constructions.
Over 2,600 random tests conducted by mid-September – six infections detected
Since March this year, RMC has conducted random testing as a safety precaution both to its own employees, as well as the employees of its network partner companies. Prior to this week’s cases, over 2,600 tests had been conducted on those working at the shipyard, from which there have been six confirmed cases of infections.
Heinimaa emphasises the importance of testing, especially in light of the ongoing situation.
”Random tests have provided us with nearly a real-time view of the coronavirus situation at the shipyard, which has remained calm before this week. The model for testing has helped us also to react quickly to this situation since the cases were discovered at the company’s own testing station. We have been able to quickly extend testing to a specific section of the shipyard’s personnel, which we hope will help to calm the situation.”
All employees in the network companies may choose to visit the testing station located outside the shipyard gates to get tested on their own initiative if they are asymptomatic. If a person coming in for work has even the slightest of symptoms, they will be directed straight to occupational healthcare.
Other strict security measures also still in effect
The RMC shipyard has maintained strict safety precautions since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak in order to prevent infections. Following the cluster of cases detected in February 2021, RMC immediately introduced an enhanced security plan, which is still adhered to.
All those working at the shipyard and who are asymptomatic will be tested randomly and the ones arriving straight to work at the shipyard from abroad will be required to show a negative test result. The employees of the network companies will be divided into teams concerning accommodation, transportation and work at the shipyard. This will allow that all employees potentially exposed to the coronavirus can be quickly traced in order to be placed under quarantine. Furthermore, facemasks are obligatory at the inside facilities of the shipyard and at the ship under construction.