More workers test positive at Bristol factory with Covid outbreak

The number of workers at an Avonmouth manufacturing facility which had an outbreak of Covid-19 at the weekend has increased for the fourth day running.

The cement manufacturing plant, which supplies Hinkley Point C, is owned by construction giant Balfour Beatty.

On Sunday (July 26) the company said 19 of its 90 staff had tested positive for the virus – and by Tuesday the number had risen to 28 employees.

On Wednesday the figure stood at 36 employees – more than a third of the site’s workers. But today (Thursday, July 30) Balfour confirmed the number has risen to 38.

The company, which said on Sunday it had shut the site until further notice, is using the NHS ’ Test and Trace app, which has so far shown no impact on Hinkley Point C’s main site.

It said it also carried out a “deep clean” of the facility at the weekend and was engaging with Public Health England and Bristol City Council over the outbreak.

The company said in a statement: “We have now taken the responsible decision to close the facility until further notice to reduce the potential further spread of Covid-19.”

It added: “We continue to engage with all those affected and remain committed to the health, safety and wellbeing of all those who work with and for us, as well as the general public.”

Balfour’s sites have remained open and operational during the pandemic in line with UK government guidelines.

Want Bristol news straight to your inbox?

Sign up to our daily newsletter using the box at the top of this article, read all about what’s involved here, or click here to see all of our newsletters

The company said health and safety measures had been put in place including enhanced hygiene and cleaning; daily briefings on Covid-19 practices including the controls around two-metre working; and temperature checks for all individuals on arrival at sites.

It is not yet clear when the Avonmouth supply site might reopen or what impact the closure could have on the work taking place there in the longer term.

The news comes as figures released by health science company ZOE reveal the prevalence of coronavirus in the South West has doubled in a month with figures returning to levels not seen since the beginning of June.

It is the only region outside London where this has happened and it comes as scientists from Cambridge University warn the West of England’s ‘R’ rate could now be at a median figure of 1.04.

According to the data released, it is estimated the South West had 2,500 active cases of coronavirus on July 27.

Back to: Home Bristol News

You may also like...