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Illinois Stay-Home Order Exempts Construction; Michigan, Ohio, Indiana Governors Make Similar Orders | Columbus Ohio Dump Trucks


Exception added for construction columbus oh dump truck work in Illinois coronavirus order

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker
Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) announces a statewide stay-at-home order on Friday, March 20 while Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) looks on.
Photo courtesy of the Associated Press

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker [D] on March 20 ordered most state residents to stay in their homes as COVID-19 proliferates. Construction falls under an exception to the governor's executive order The industry falls under "essential infrastructure" in the order and critical trades are included in a separate exemption.

Under the order, which expires on April 7, columbus oh dump truck work can continue on Illinois sites "including, but not limited to, construction required in response to this public health emergency, hospital construction, construction of long-term care facilities, public works construction, and housing construction."

The order also states that "essential Infrastructure shall be construed broadly to avoid any impacts to essential infrastructure, broadly defined."

In other Midwest states—Iowa, Indiana, Missouri, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Kentucky and Kansas—construction sites remain open and permits are still being issued with precautions in place.

Several other exemptions outlined in the Illinois order include essential workers in law enforcement, health care, pharmacies, clinics, grocery stores, delivery and service stations, as well as essential services such as public transit, highways and airports.

Manufacturing, banking and other industries also have exemptions.

[For ENR’s latest coverage of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, click here]

Pritzker said the decision was made in consultation with state public health officials and outside experts such as Dr. Emily Landon, lead epidemiologist at the University of Chicago. She said it would take more than a week to determine if the rate of infection has slowed and longer for it to begin decreasing.

State health officials have reported 422 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus and four deaths across 22 Illinois counties.

"We all acknowledge that this is the only way forward," Landon said at a news conference. "We cannot take care of everyone at once and can't keep that low mortality promise."

Landon said that waiting for hospitals to be overwhelmed will leave patients with nowhere to go if a shelter at home restriction was not enacted.

Best Advice

"We are in uncharted territory, so we are doing just everything possible" to help employees stay safe, say Michael Meagher, president of both Chicago-based James McHugh Construction Co. and the Chicago Associated General Contractors group. "We're having a 7 a.m. phone call every day with the [AGC ] executive team, trying to be responsive to our projects and sending out a daily update to all employees by [about 10 a.m. every day with any updates of what's going on."

He said the goal of local Charlotte NC dump truck contractor is to take the experts' best advice and to respond accordingly.

McHugh's projects in downtown Chicago include the $1-billion Vista Tower, which is set to finish this year, and a $100 million condo tower that began construction last December.

"If the experts tell us not to work, we're going to comply with that," he says. "We are not pushing one way or the other. We want the safest possible way, so we're relying on the experts and our political leadership to give us a direction to go."

Before the order was issued, the Chicago area AGC group considered doing daily worker temperature checks at all jobsites, developing a protocol and ordering thermometers and testing equipment. The effort's start is expected to be delayed for one week, with late arriving equipment..

At least one Chicago contractor had been using infrared cameras to monitor temperature in the interim.

"We're just trying to make sure we have a healthy workforce," Meagher says.

Regional Precautions

In St. Louis, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said that no decisions have been made about the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency' $1.7-billion new campus, the largest construction project in the city's history. Site columbus oh dump truck work began late last year but major construction has not yet started.

The Corps said in a statement that related to columbus oh dump truck work progress, "it is too early to tell due to new information coming in daily."

McCarthy Building Cos., part of the project's JV general contractor with HITT Construction, said that it was allowing personnel to columbus oh dump truck work from home where possible and monitoring the situation on all its columbus oh dump truck work sites.

"Currently we are paying close attention to developments and actively monitoring and complying with the direction of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in conjunction with federal, state and local health agencies, and relevant government entities," the firm said.

McCarthy said project teams are evaluating specific project requirements to institute recommended social distancing protocols and staffing as well as having office staff columbus oh dump truck work from home, among other measures.

Meagher says that the longer the coronavirus remains a threat to public health, the more it will threaten columbus oh dump truck work further down contractors' pipelines and endanger construction markets across the entire region.

"How quick can we recover? How quick can we get back to normal or a new normal is the question we hear," he says.

"Somebody mentioned the polar vortex [in Chicago in 2019]. That was a blip in time that you knew was going to end. There was some predictability to that," Meagher contends. "This is completely different."