19 May 2020 – As part of the efforts of the Romanian authorities to contain the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic, on 16 May new measures regulating the performance of activities at workplaces, in open-space offices and at tourism accommodation facilities were published in the Official Gazette.

Order 3577/831/2020 providing measures ensuring the compliance of activities carried out at the workplace with occupational safety and health conditions during the state of alert

Under this Order, all public and private employers must implement, inter alia, the following measures during the state of emergency:

  • Employees who remained at home and/or worked from home/teleworked during the state of emergency and those who were technically unemployed are to be retrained on occupational safety and health requirements; such trainings will be provided during the normal work schedule;
  • Decide which activities can be continued and/or adapted and implement the necessary measures to resume and/or continue the activity, including measures for telework or work from home, which may remain a priority;
  • Display at the entrance to and in the most visible places within the premises the mandatory rules of conduct for the prevention of the spread of Covid-19 applicable for employees and for all persons accessing the premises; inform employees, mainly by electronic means, of the risks of infection and spreading the virus, of the protection measures and social distancing rules applicable within the premises, and of the rules for managing situations if employees or others having access to the workplace display Covid-19 symptoms;
  • Have the option to provide personal protective equipment against the spread of Covid-19, depending on the type of activity;
  • Have the possibility to establish a work schedule for employees working indoors (especially employees in vulnerable groups) in a manner that reduces direct contact between them as much as possible, depending on the type of activity; However, this should not affect the duration of the normal working schedule;
  • Employers with more than 50 employees may impose staggered work shifts, ensuring a difference of at least one hour at the start and at end of the working shift in tranches of at least 20% of the employees, without affecting the duration of the normal working schedule. The measure is also applicable if more than 50 employees having different employers work at the same premises;
  • Appoint a person responsible for checking the body temperature of all persons entering the premises and ensure the verification of employees' temperatures at the beginning of the work shift and whenever it is necessary during the work shift;
  • Place disinfectant dispensers at the entrance to the premises, as well as in each workplace sector and disinfect heavily used areas;
  • Prohibit access of all persons with Covid-19 symptoms to the premises;
  • Grant staggered lunch breaks, observing the distance of at least 1.5 metres between employees and arrange the workspace in a manner that ensures this distance between employees.

All public and private sector employees are required to follow, inter alia, the measures below:

  • Comply with all occupational health and safety rules/other instructions established by the employer to prevent the spread of Covid-19;
  • Wear protective masks to cover the nose and mouth at the workplace;
  • Accept the verification of their body temperature at the entrance to the premises, at the beginning of the work shift and whenever they return to the premises;
  • Immediately notify the employer if they show Covid-19 symptoms at the start or during the work shift.

Moreover, the Order provides a series of special measures applicable in the event that an employee is suspected/confirmed with Covid-19 infection:

  • Employees with respiratory symptoms and/or fever higher than 37.3°C and/or an altered general condition, with symptoms that appeared during the work shift, will be immediately isolated from the rest of employees and sent home/to health facilities;
  • Persons who the employee with suspected/confirmed Covid-19 symptoms came in contact with for more than 20 minutes and who were closer than 1.5 metres without wearing a mask will be informed and should be isolated at home for 14 days.

Order 1731/832/2020 providing measures for preventing contamination with Covid-19 infection and ensuring the performance of economic activities in accordance with health and safety requirements

This Order provides, inter alia, a series of recommendations regarding the performance of activity (i) in open-space offices and (ii) at tourism accommodation facilities.

1. Regarding activity in open space offices:

  • Employers will impose staggered work shifts in order to avoid congestion and to limit the number of employees present at the same time in the same premises;
  • Employers will verify employees' body temperatures on a daily basis at the start of the work shift; employees with a temperature above 37.3°C should be sent home, with the indication of consulting a doctor. Employees with respiratory infection symptoms should not be allowed in the workplace;
  • Employers will arrange work spaces in a manner that ensures a minimum distance of 1.5 metres between employees working in front-to-back and back-to-back desks and face-to-face desks will be separated by shields that are disinfected daily;
  • Employers will grant staggered lunch breaks, observing the distance of at least 2 metres between employees;
  • Employees will wear protective masks that cover the nose and the mouth;
  • Employees will be isolated at home if (i) they have respiratory infection symptoms and (ii) they have come into contact with a suspected or confirmed case of Covid-19 infection.

2. Regarding the activity of tourism accommodation facilities:

  • Hoteliers will take protective measures against Covid-19, offering more attention to guests' accommodation and related services and to inter-personal interactions (guest-guest, staff-guest and staff-staff), and hotel staff will strictly observe basic measures to protect against the spread of Covid-19;
  • The management will develop an action plan tailored to the situation and implement it in accordance with the recommendations of local and national public health authorities in order to prevent Covid-19 infection, to manage Covid-19 infection cases and to mitigate the impact among clients and staff.

In addition, temporary restriction measures for certain activities are provided:

  • Restaurants, bars, coffee bars and candy shops inside hotels will not be open, but room service can be used;
  • Playgrounds specially designed for children, as well as fitness centres, saunas, indoor swimming pools and other similar places inside hotels will remain closed;
  • Elevators will be used only if strictly necessary and only by a maximum of two people at a time, provided that they wear protective masks.
  • The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.