Coronavirus: Hinkley nuclear plant steps up workers' protection

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Social distancing in the canteen at the Bridgwater Hinkley campusImage source, EDF Energy
Image caption,
Social distancing is also being done at the campus canteen

The company building a new nuclear plant in Somerset has stepped up protection for its workers during the coronavirus pandemic.

EDF's move comes on top of extra measures already in place and includes moving site workers from local accommodation to two campus sites at Hinkley Point C.

Bus pick-up stops for workers in Bridgwater will also cease from Monday.

EDF said the safety of the community was of "paramount importance".

Workers who have been using bus pick-up stops, will instead be collected and returned to EDF's secure park-and-ride locations where "social distancing measures are being supervised".

The company said pick-ups from village locations outside Bridgwater would also be "phased out as quickly as possible".

Image source, Reuters
Image caption,
The new measures include moving site workers from local accommodation to two campus sites at Hinkley Point C

Nigel Cann, from EDF, said: "The safety of the community we operate in and our remaining workers on site is of paramount importance.

"We are listening and adapting to feedback to help us improve wherever we can and we are closely following government and Public Health England advice."

Measures the company already has in place include reducing the number of workers from 4,000 to about 2,000 to "enforce better social distancing".

Body temperature checks were also introduced at site gates and meeting rooms have been converted to create additional areas for breaks to give extra space between colleagues.

Image source, Reuters
Image caption,
Existing measures include body temperature checks at site gates

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