Safety as a Priority: People Playing a Role in Site Analysis
When customers are looking for a location for their next facility, there are several factors that figure into the equation. Now, especially in light of the recent COVID-19 pandemic, people are at the forefront of that decision making process.
“COVID-19 required everyone in the industry to become even more agile and flexible to accommodate the new normal,” says David Hird, PE, director of engineering services at Gray.
Safety and accessibility are two major factors in the site analysis process, and these have become more complicated with the added need for figuring in employee and visitor flows, due to COVID-19.
When it comes to facility, food & beverage facilities already, naturally, require a high level of hygienic design because of the inherent risks involved and the need to protect the products being produced. The COVID-19 pandemic has taken that need to a new level and added increased pressure on companies to provide a safe space for production, but also for those who are charged with working inside these facilities.
“We implement facility design strategies to not only mitigate the presumed risks of an operation, but now add another layer of stringent design principles to mitigate the pandemic and potential future pandemics,” says Amanda Arnold, assistant design manager at Gray. “The design of these areas has changed to better meet sanitation and safety goals.”
One of the ways companies are addressing this new paradigm is through technology. With the use of cameras to view both the products and the people, companies can help ensure safety and security of their facilities.
“Technology has provided a variety of options to keep food, people and facilities safe via a combination of video and physical validation,” says Tyler Cundiff, president, Food & Beverage Group, Gray, Inc. “Utilization of cameras in conjunction with well-planned security access and control measures can provide an opportunity for dual confirmation.”
To learn more about how facilities are staying safe during the new post-COVID-19 era, check out more of this story at Food Engineering.