While the COVID-19 pandemic is a realiy that everyone must now live with, there are many ways to minimize the transmission of the virus–if not totally prevent it. Mindanao Container Terminal (MCT) prioritizes the safety and health of its personnel, partners, and service providers, which is why the Company–along with the entire ICTSI Group–have gone to great lengths to implement safety procedures and protocols for everyone’s protection.

MCT’s new HSSE Manager Klenn M. Albarracin is encouraging employees to do their share in making the workplace a safe environment for everybody. Since February of last year, MCT has been implementing changes to improve the monitoring of employees’ health. In addition to that, the work environment also has undergone critical changes to comply with stringent sanitation and proper physical distancing requirements.

“We can’t ignore the risks and dangers COVID-19 presents to all of us. As we have now learned, no one is exempt from getting infected. We have consulted with safety experts, the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases, and the Department of Health for recommendations on keeping MCT safe for everyone who walks through our doors,” said Roberto Locsin, MCT General Manager.

He adds that the Company initially implemented work-from-home arrangements for key positions to ensure continuity of operations during the early stages of the pandemic. During that time, MCT made quick changes to the workplace environment so that the building will be ready for the “new normal” once everyone has returned.

Albarracin, for his part, noted that the Company chose to err on the side of caution when it comes to the protocols and guidelines they have put in place. As an example, MCT prohibits individuals who a) have been overseas in the last 14 days and b) have been in contact with someone who may have been exposed to the virus/have fever and other flu-like symptoms, from entering the terminal premises.

In addition to accomplishing health declaration forms and constant wearing of approved PPEs, MCT has also implemented temperature screenings for all persons entering the company premises. The customary footbath, sanitation stations, barriers, and dividers can also be seen across the facility.

“We promote physical distancing and therefore ask to limit close personal interactions and try to reduce the number of employees within a common workspace. To emphasize it, we displayed directional arrows within the building,” Albarracin notes.

He adds that MCT also continues to promote good personal hygiene practices and increased disinfection and cleaning of all workplaces and offices every two hours, especially the common touchpoints and areas like doorknobs and handles, handrails, tables, chairs, stairs, among others.

More importantly, the Company also took the time to brief and orient employees about these new guidelines, safety rules, and health protocols.

Mr. Albarracin stressed that the execution of all these programs requires behavioral change, “which is one of the hardest things to generate, both in ourselves, our team members, and within the organization. We will focus on how to actually do things based on plans and with resilience so we can achieve our goal of keeping MCT a COVID-free terminal.”

Additionally, MCT’s safety teams are constantly monitoring developments and quickly adapting to the new Department of Health and World Health Organization guidelines.

“The health and safety of our employees, customers, and partners remain our number one priority. We are working hard to make sure that we minimize the risks related to the spread of COVID-19,” concludes Albarracin.