The COVID-19 pandemic is having a major impact on every aspect of aviation, including residential noise mitigation programs (RSIP). Many airport-sponsored RSIPs across the country have paused efforts due to coronavirus concerns. However, some airports have recently resumed their programs with assistance from the Jones Payne team, developing protocols that meet federal, state and local guidance to limit the spread of COVID-19.
Inside access to residences is limited to homes that are not occupied by owners or tenants who are considered in high risk groups. The goal of every visit that Jones Payne undertakes is to reduce risks to both homeowners and our team members. One way our team achieves this is by conducting “virtual” assessments, where existing conditions information is documented with the help of the owners themselves inside their homes.
When it is necessary for teams to enter properties during design, acoustical testing or construction, Jones Payne staff and team members wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to protect themselves and occupants. Jones Payne PPE includes masks, gloves and shoe covers. Team members have hand sanitizer readily available, wipe down all surfaces that have been touched, and remove any trash or other items used during visits. To reduce the length of time that teams are inside properties, homeowners are asked to perform set-up activities, such as opening blinds/shades, moving obstructions in front of windows, and opening interior doors to limit “touch points” during the visit. Homeowners cannot be in contact with team members and must either self-isolate in a space or vacate the home during visits.
To instill confidence that Jones Payne is mitigating risks at each home, our safety protocols are shared with homeowners and occupants prior to scheduled visits. These procedures, coupled with consistent communication, have produced successful results. Approximately 85% of participants have agreed to allow these programs to continue services. The ability to continue noise mitigation work greatly helps our airport clients meet their noise compatibility goals despite the challenges that COVID-19 brings.
The Jones Payne approach is grounded in the firm’s mission of Building Livable Communities Through Integrated Solutions. “We have and will continue to put the health and safety of people first. Every visit is different and unique, and what is feasible and appropriate for any one visit will depend on each homeowner and the unique characteristics of each home”, says John Hansen, President and Chief Executive Officer.
The Jones Payne team, working closely with its airport clients, constantly monitors the evolving situation and adapts its efforts and responses, as necessary. All protocols currently in place conform to the recommendations and mandates of the US Centers for Disease Control as well as state and local departments of health.