Rauma shipyard organises mass testing for COVID-19 – After quarantine, return to work is only possible in full health

2.3.2021

Rauma Marine Constructions will continue to restart production in phases at Rauma shipyard this week. Authorities have placed around 800 shipyard production workers in quarantine due to possible exposure to the coronavirus. From Monday to Wednesday, RMC and health authorities are organising mass testing for RMC and network company employees, who are in the final stage of their quarantine. The testing will be done at the parking area outside the shipyard. After quarantine, you can only enter the shipyard with a negative test result and no exposure. This new policy is stricter than official instructions.

Production will be restarted at Rauma Marine Constructions’ shipyard this week. Production was run down on Friday, 19 February, after a cluster of coronavirus infections was detected among people working at the shipyard. Authorities tested everyone working at the shipyard and placed those with COVID-19 in isolation and those who had been exposed in quarantine.

This week, employees who are in the final stage of their quarantine will be tested again. RMC will organise a testing facility at the parking area outside the Rauma shipyard where authorities will conduct the testing from Monday to Wednesday. Safety measures will be strict.

“We want to help health authorities to avoid overburdening testing facilities, so we will offer the parking area outside the shipyard for mass testing. The people to be tested will arrive in cars, in predetermined groups that have been given time slots. They will wait for their turn in the car and can only leave the car when permission is given. After the test, each person will return to their accommodation in the same car group and wait for results there,” explains Jyrki Heinimaa, CEO & President of Rauma Marine Constructions.

Heinimaa emphasises that the network companies have been excellent partners for RMC in the planning and implementation of testing arrangements and that the cooperation has run smoothly.

Return to work is only possible in full health

Mass testing has revealed new cases where the transmission has occurred in quarantine, outside the shipyard. According to Heinimaa, new infections were to be expected, and health authorities have stated that more cases are likely to be found. Additional testing will help ensure that only those in full health return to work.

“Previously, self-quarantine as defined by official instructions was considered a sufficient measure before returning to work. Now, people who have been placed in official quarantine will be tested again to make sure that only those who are in full health will be released from quarantine and can return to work. People who test positive will be isolated, and their teammates will be placed in a new quarantine,” Heinimaa says.

In addition to the testing conducted by health authorities, RMC will begin to measure the body temperature of employees arriving to the shipyard for testing or work, using a thermal imaging camera. According to Heinimaa, measuring body temperature is part of the company’s new, stricter safety plan.

Production will be restarted in phases at the shipyard this week, and RMC has given its network partner companies strict safety instructions. For example, employees will arrive at work and take breaks in turns. Moreover, employees will be divided into separate teams that will share accommodation and work, take breaks and commute together. Everyone entering the shipyard must wear a mask, and mask wearing will be enforced.

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