COVID-19 antigen rapid testing to be made mandatory for construction industry, including non-dorm workers
SINGAPORE: COVID-19 antigen rapid tests will be made mandatory for the construction industry, including all non-dormitory workers as well as visitors to construction worksites, said the Building and Construction Authority (BCA).
The new rules will also apply to construction account workers currently on rostered routine testing working in non-construction worksites on projects such as renovation, minor works or repair and redecoration works, said the BCA in a circular dated Saturday (Aug 7).
In May, on top of rostered routine testing, BCA introduced antigen rapid testing as a pilot programme at construction sites to screen workers not living in dormitories.
A COVID-19 case was recently detected at one of the pilot sites, which allowed the worker to be quickly isolated without compromising the safety of the workplace, BCA said.
“Even as we seek to open up and live with COVID-19 as an endemic disease that is here to stay, we have to continue to break chains of transmission to keep our people safe,” said Minister of National Development Desmond Lee in a Facebook post on Sunday.
The mandatory testing will be implemented from Aug 20 for construction sites with a project value of more than S$3 million and at construction supply works premises.
For small construction sites with a project value of S$3 million or less and construction account workers outside of construction sites, the testing will be implemented by Sep 3.
The antigen rapid test kits will remain free-of-charge for a limited time only, BCA added.
“I urge all employers to implement ART as soon as possible and place your order for test kits early,” said Mr Lee.
“For workers across the built environment sector, please get your COVID-19 vaccination as soon as it is offered to you.”