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Isle of Anglesey County Council


Public Protection COVID-19 FAQs


Social distancing

Businesses open to the public – must take steps to ensure social distancing of customers; this could include but not limited to - limiting the number of customers in the shop, marking 2m intervals on the floor and displaying posters.

Employees – where employees are unable to work from home, employers must where possible ensure social distancing measures are in place; this could be but not limited to, adjusting shifts to minimise peak times at changeover, ensuring 2m between workstations, use of protective screens, contactless payment. Where given the nature of the work it is not possible to ensure social distancing, e.g. personal care, a risk assessment must be undertaken and all reasonable steps must be taken to minimise contact, reduce risks and ensure appropriate PPE is provided in accordance with World Health Organisation guidelines.

If you have concerns that a business is disregarding Social Distancing requirements, you can report it to the local authority by emailing ehealth@anglesey.gov.uk  or to the police by calling 101.

In the first instance you should raise your concerns with your line manager, if you are still concerned you can report it to the local authority by emailing ehealth@anglesey.gov.uk

Scams

Coronavirus is a worry for us all. Unfortunately, there are fraudsters and scammers who want to profit from our fears and steal your money.

Say NO to cold-calling strangers               

They may offer to shop, get your meds or disinfect your home. They may be selling cheap sanitisers, face masks, virus testing kits or remedies. They could be collecting for a Covid-19 vaccine or offering loans to help you. Say NO.

Where possible ask family, friends or neighbours (that you have known since before the Pandemic) If this is not an option or they too are isolating, contact Isle of Anglesey County Council on 01248 750057 option 4, to access the local support system in your area, lines are open 7 days a week 10am – 4pm.

Keep your personal details PRIVATE      

Don’t give personal information to anyone calling, texting or emailing you claiming to be your bank, energy company, local authority or other supplier. Don’t open email attachments from strangers. Don’t click links in emails to ‘update/confirm details’. Criminals use tricks to steal your details and money.

Be WISE to fake information and services

Fraudsters are setting up new businesses. Fake coronavirus websites to steal personal information from your computer, fake refund services for cancelled holidays and purchases, fake or overpriced sanitisers and face masks, fake virus testing kits and miracle cures. Don’t trust them.

Contact your bank, on the telephone number on your card or in person in your local branch.

Report it to Action Fraud – by calling 0300 123 2040 or online https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/

If you’re not sure who to trust, or you need further advice call Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline - 0808 223 1133

Pricing

Although on occasion’s price rises may be justified, it is important that they are not being used unfairly to take advantage of the current pandemic merely to increase profits. It’s important to report overpricing in both shops and in online marketplaces. If you come across examples when shopping, it’s worth making a note of the price, the shop, the product and the date.  If shopping online consider taking a screenshot of the listing, including the price, the seller name and the date. 

Please report any concerns or complaint regarding overpricing of goods associated with the COVID 19 pandemic, either by calling the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 08082231133 or by visiting the CMA (Competition and Markets Authority) website at https://www.coronavirus-business-complaint.service.gov.uk/ to report a business. If you have concerns about the pricing practices of a retailer on Anglesey you can report to Anglesey Trading Standards via safonaumasnach@ynysmon.gov.uk

Although there is no current legal cap on prices, limiting the amount of profit that can be made, Regulators are monitoring price increases for possible profiteering. If identified as a problem, the CMA will advise Government to consider taking direct action to regulate prices by introducing new laws. Price fluctuations are caused by supply and demand, however, any profit margins on products, at retail or wholesale level, should remain consistent with the profit margin before the pandemic. Significantly increasing your prices and profit margins at this time may be deemed an “Aggressive Practice” under Regulation 7 of the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) Chief Executive Andrea Coscelli has said: “We urge retailers to behave responsibly throughout the coronavirus outbreak and not to make misleading claims or charge vastly inflated prices. We also remind members of the public that these obligations may apply to them too if they resell goods, for example on online marketplaces."

Please report any concerns you have in relation to your supplier/wholesaler effecting price hikes which you consider to be unfair or profiteering to CMA (Competition and Markets Authority) on their website at https://www.coronavirus-business-complaint.service.gov.uk/

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) - masks etc.

Yes! This is a complex area of legislation. There are various strict safety standards which must be met before putting such an item on the market in the UK. Depending on the nature of the product it will fall within the remit of different regulators: ‘Medical devices’ – intended to protect others from the wearer-are regulated by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), Personal Protective Equipment for the employees including Healthcare workers (protecting the wearer) or hand sanitisers deemed to be biocides are regulated by the Health and Safety Executive, whilst Personal Protective equipment supplied to the general Public or hand sanitisers which are deemed cosmetic products fall within the remit of the Office of Product Safety and Standards and the local Trading Standards Service. Each product and regulator has their own standards and procedures to ensure compliance, and anything to protect from Covid19/coronavirus must be approved by the World Health Organisation.

As such if you are based on Anglesey and considering diversifying please seek advice & guidance before doing anything by contacting tradingstandards@anglesey.gov.uk

Although the UK government are now advising the public to use ‘face coverings’ (not surgical masks or respirators) on public transport (where social distancing is not possible), the Welsh Government advice remains the same that face coverings are not required for the general public.

Cloth Face coverings can however be made and sold by anyone, they must;

  • Cover from the bridge of the nose to under the chin
  • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
  • Be secured with ties or ear loops
  • Include multiple layers of fabric
  • Allow for breathing without restriction
  • Be able to be washed and machine dried without damage or change to the shape

However, face masks (surgical and respirators) are Personal Protective Equipment, are regulated and must comply with the relevant safety standards and approved before placing for sale in the UK, to ensure they provide the right protection.

As such you can make simple ‘face coverings’ but not ‘face masks’.

However, it is important that individuals wearing cotton face covering are aware that they only offer little protection against the wearer spreading the virus and should be washed after use. Such coverings do not replace the need for washing hands and are not as effective as social distancing for preventing the spread of the virus, so should only be used as last resort where social distancing is impossible.

It is very much appreciated that everyone wants to do their part and help as much as possible in this pandemic. However, healthcare workers need masks of a certain standard to protect others and themselves.

Although cotton masks may offer limited protection for others from the wearer, this is not sufficient for healthcare workers. There is a risk that if individuals wear cotton masks they may think that it offers more protection than it actually does and become complacent, reducing hand washing or allowing used masks to be in contact with other surfaces, thus increasing their risk of contracting or spreading the virus.

Care is needed to ensure you use the approved design for BCUHB which details material and print specifications, instructions and standard operating procedures to try to ensure consistency. A full face shield it offers protection from splashes or particles, given the Covid 19 virus is spread predominantly through droplets of saliva, it would offer a level of protection. WHO guidelines (Infection prevention and control during health care when COVID-19 is suspected Interim guidance 19 March 2020) recommend that Health Care Workers wear face shields to protect mucous membranes from contamination. There are various organisations that coordinate the production and donation of these face shields, it is recommended that you contact such an organisation to ensure you are manufacturing to the correct specification.

PPE should only be used as a last resort, where the work cannot be done from home and social distancing is not possible. Once you have undertaken risk assessments and made all reasonable social distancing adjustments, identify the jobs which will require PPE. In the first instance check the World Health Organisation Guidelines to determine what type of mask/ apron etc you need for the type of work involved. It is important that you get the right type of protection for the identified risk, not all masks are the same.

Where possible try to use an established supply chain, if they were supplying PPE before the pandemic they are more likely to have stock which complies with the UK Safety Standards. Try to avoid suppliers that have only started up recently in response to the pandemic, as there are a lot of criminals looking to profit from public fear.

Detailed guidance for businesses on PPE for Covid19 is available from the Office of Product Safety and Standards:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/879498/Guidance-for-businesses-ppe-regulations-version-2.pdf

COVID tests

There are a variety of tests available but it is important to consider what they test for.

Antibody testing offered by some companies, will confirm whether or not the individual has developed antibodies for the virus, thus suggesting that they have already had the virus. However, the World Health Organisation has advised that as yet there is no evidence to support that individuals who have developed antibodies are then immune, and as such they could still catch it again.

Alternatively, NHS tests undertaken at hospitals or official test centres, test for the presence of the virus . If you test positive for the virus, you are required to self-isolate to prevent spreading to others.

As such it is likely that an individual could test negative for antibodies and positive for the virus, as the antibodies have not yet been developed in response to the virus.

Official advice is that if you have symptoms you should self-isolate for 7 days (and the rest of the household for 14 days). However, key workers are now able to be tested by NHS for the presence of the virus, so that you know if you do indeed have the virus and need to isolate.

Excess waste

No. We ask people to be considerate, as many people are at home, some who may be ill at home and self-isolating. Should bonfires get out of control, it would add to the enormous pressure on our emergency services. The general consensus and common sense approach is to recycle as much as you can. The bin contractors will take a reasonable amount of surplus recyclable waste if separated appropriately in clear bags.

Current advice about the Waste Management Service on Anglesey can be accessed on the Council’s website and is updated regularly. Look for ‘Covid-19 (Coronavirus) information’ on the home page and look under ‘Waste and Recycling’.

Whilst the Council’s Amenity Site is still closed, as an alternative, you should consider using a “licensed waste carrier” to get rid of your excess waste.  Beware of rogue traders advertising on social media. If you need to check if the waste carrier is licensed, you may contact National Resources Wales (NRW) on 0300 065 3000 or enquiries@naturalresourceswales.gov.uk

If a fire is out of control and a risk to life or property – call the emergency services on 999.

Smoke emitted from premises so as to be prejudicial to health or a nuisance can be classed as a statutory nuisance. If you are unable to resolve issues with neighbours, persistent problems can be reported to the Environmental Health Section by completing the online report form.  Please follow the link Bonfires to report via AppMon or email ehealth@anglesey.gov.uk

Further advice about statutory nuisance can be found on these pages: What is statutory nuisance? and How to deal with a statutory nuisance

While this regulation change enables councils to re-open sites, each local authority will use its own discretion to decide when it is safe to do so in line with the situation in their area.

No dates have yet been agreed on by Anglesey Council, and any reopening would be centred on strict conditions and social distancing guidelines.

Officers are developing a cautious and gradual approach to bringing services back to normal over the coming months. However, any decision to reopen these sites or buildings must be right for Anglesey and its communities. The health of residents and our staff will come first and foremost in our thinking and planning.

Members of the public will be kept updated with further information published on the County Council’s website before opening dates are agreed.

Pest control 

In order for rats to establish on your property they will need 3 things

  1. Food (bird food, pet food, spilt food, overflowing bins, dog faeces etc.) -  Remove all food sources, limit pets if fed outside to a certain time and remove the dish until next feeding time
  2. Water (ponds, water dishes for birds and pets etc.) - Were possible remove anything which may collect or hold water or overturn so that they cannot collect water
  3. Shelter (Over grown and cluttered gardens can provide excellent cover for the rats to move freely) Try keep the edges of your garden as clear as possible as Rats do not like crossing open ground unless they need to (food etc.), they much prefer edges or overgrown shrubs were they can freely roam unnoticed away from any predators

If you remove as many of these as possible and they will naturally move on, check that they have not already established by looking for any burrows usually around borders/edges

Scratching noises

  1. Try access were you are hearing the noises, this may require lifting floorboards etc. and check for droppings, sometimes the noises can be mistaken for birds trapped or nesting in loft
  2. Vacuum any droppings and check in a day or two to see how many rodents are present (small amount typically one or two large amounts several)
  3. Try find any access points and block, Rats need the size of a 10p piece and Mice about the size of a pen
  4. For one or two Rodents use a trap any more than one or two it is recommended to place rodenticide safely and according to the instructions (these can be bought in local hardware stores, farm shops and some high street shops and supermarkets etc.) 
  1. Try to access where you are hearing the noises, this may require lifting floorboards etc. and check for droppings, sometimes the noises can be mistaken for birds trapped or nesting in loft
  2. Vacuum any droppings and check in a day or two to see how many rodents are present (small amount typically one or two large amounts several)
  3. Try find any access points and block, Rats need the size of a 10p piece and Mice about the size of a pen
  4. For one or two Rodents use a trap any more than one or two it is recommended to place rodenticide safely and according to the instructions (these can be bought in local hardware stores, farm shops and some high street shops and supermarkets etc.)

Contact your Environmental Health department for further advice and also your Pest Control contractors for additional visits. Businesses on Anglesey can email ehealth@anglesey.gov.uk