How Are You Surviving? Ways the Glazing Industry Has Adapted to the COVID-19 Pandemic

By Craig Carson

In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, how are you doing? Our local market
in Denver has continued construction without delay. However, there have been precautionary steps taken at jobsites.

We have seen gate checks for body temperatures, mask requirements and requests that workers wash their hands and use sanitizer. With all of the general contractors enforcing some regulation for testing and prevention at their jobsites, the number of  cases where someone has contracted the disease is low. I do not have exact figures, but the “eyeball” test says that it is a small percentage.

Mask Options

The typical mask that started out as a copy of what you see on medical TV shows (and is still available) has turned into an industry by itself. Many custom designs have hit the market, such as newer generations of the surgical mask made out of washable cloth or, my personal favorite, the neck gaiter face scarf. I find that one the most comfortable to wear with my beard. And apparently I am not alone as our workers have asked for this style and our safety manager has had custom logoed ones made up for our crew.

New Procedures

The general contractors have had a mixed bag for access to their offices. Some will conduct meetings only by video conference, while others will allow you to visit their offices to discuss projects with the proper personal protection of masks being worn and using hand sanitizer when entering. All of this is getting to be regular and normal as we now have been fending off the virus that causes COVID-19 for at least five to six months, depending on where you get your information.

Recession and Rebound

One side effect of the times is the decrease in travel that we have seen nationwide. This has severely hurt the hospitality and restaurant sections of our economy and employment. In addition to the severe economic impact on the workers, I personally know of three hospitality projects that were set to start construction this summer  and have since been put on hold. The lending institutes are pulling back their financial backing for these since the hotels are operating at lower occupancy levels.

I heard a bit of encouraging news when Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors, said she believes this small recession, caused by the pandemic will likely rebound to pre-concern levels in the first part of 2021. I’ve noticed that our leaders can either talk us into a recession or talk us out of one. In my opinion, we need to follow those who are pushing for economic recovery rather than those that are trying to make political statements that damage the recovery for their personal or party gains. After all, there are many success stories on people and businesses that have been affected by COVID-19, adjusted to meet the obstacles and are expanding and adding jobs to the economy. Let’s be one of them and move forward.

Craig Carson is the director of preconstruction for Alliance Glazing Technologies Inc. in Littleton, Colo.

To view the laid-in version of this article in our digital edition, CLICK HERE.