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Subchapter 7. General Industry Safety Orders
(a) Scope. This section applies until February 3, 2025.
(1) This section applies to a workplace covered by section 3205 if three or more employee COVID-19 cases within an exposed group, as defined by subsection 3205(b)(7), visited the worksite during their infectious period at any time during a 14-day period, unless a California Department of Public Health (CDPH) regulation or order defines outbreak using a different number of COVID-19 cases and/or a different time period, in which case this section applies when the number of cases at the worksite constitutes an outbreak under CDPH's definition.
(2) This section shall apply until there are one or fewer new COVID-19 cases detected in the exposed group for a 14-day period.
(b) COVID-19 testing.
(1) Immediately upon being covered by this section, the employer shall make COVID-19 testing available at no cost to its employees within the exposed group, regardless of vaccination status, during employees' paid time, except for returned cases and employees who were not present at the workplace during the relevant 14-day period(s) under subsection 3205.1(a).
(2) Employer shall then make testing available on a weekly basis to all employees in the exposed group who remain at the workplace.
(3) Employees who had close contacts shall have a negative COVID-19 test taken within three to five days after the close contact or shall be excluded and follow the return to work requirements of subsection 3205(c)(5) starting from the date of the last known close contact.
(c) Face coverings. Employees in the exposed group, regardless of vaccination status, shall wear face coverings when indoors, or when outdoors and less than six feet from another person, unless one of the exceptions in subsection 3205(f)(2) applies.
(d) Respirators. Employers shall notify employees of their right to request and receive a respirator for voluntary use under subsection 3205(g).
(e) COVID-19 investigation, review, and hazard correction. The employer shall perform a review of potentially relevant COVID-19 policies, procedures, and controls and implement changes as needed to prevent further spread of COVID-19 when this section initially applies and periodically thereafter. The investigation, review, and changes shall be documented and shall include:
(1) Investigation of new or unabated COVID-19 hazards including the employer's leave policies and practices and whether employees are discouraged from remaining home when sick; the employer's COVID-19 testing policies; insufficient supply of outdoor air to indoor workplaces; insufficient air filtration; and insufficient physical distancing.
(2) The review shall be updated every 30 days that this section continues to apply, in response to new information or to new or previously unrecognized COVID-19 hazards, or when otherwise necessary.
(3) Any changes implemented to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 based on the investigation and review, which may include: moving indoor tasks outdoors or having them performed remotely; increasing the outdoor air supply when work is done indoors; improving air filtration; increasing physical distancing to the extent feasible; requiring respiratory protection in compliance with section 5144; and other applicable controls.
(f) Ventilation. In buildings or structures with mechanical ventilation, employers shall filter recirculated air with Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV)-13 or higher efficiency filters if compatible with the ventilation system. If MERV-13 or higher filters are not compatible with the ventilation system, employers shall use filters with the highest compatible filtering efficiency. The employer shall use High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) air filtration units in accordance with manufacturers' recommendations in indoor areas occupied by employees for extended periods, where ventilation is inadequate to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
(g) Major outbreaks. If 20 or more employee COVID-19 cases in an exposed group, as defined by subsection 3205(b)(7), visited the worksite during their infectious period within a 30-day period, the employer shall do the following while section 3205.1 applies:
(1) The COVID-19 testing described in subsection 3205.1(b) shall be required of all employees in the exposed group, regardless of vaccination status, twice a week or more frequently if recommended by the local health department with jurisdiction over the workplace. Employees in the exposed group shall be tested or shall be excluded and follow the return to work requirements of subsection 3205(c)(5).
(2) The employer shall report the outbreak to the Division. This subsection does not limit the employer's obligation to report employee deaths, serious injuries, or serious illnesses when required by subsection 342(a).
(3) The employer shall provide respirators for voluntary use in compliance with subsection 5144(c)(2) to employees in the exposed group, shall encourage their use, and shall train employees provided respirators for voluntary use, as set forth in subsection 3205(g).
(4) Any employees in the exposed group who are not wearing respirators required by the employer and used in compliance with section 5144 shall be separated from other persons by at least six feet, except where an employer can demonstrate that at least six feet of separation is not feasible, and except for momentary exposure while persons are in movement. Methods of physical distancing include: telework or other remote work arrangements; reducing the number of persons in an area at one time, including visitors; visual cues such as signs and floor markings to indicate where employees and others should be located or their direction and path of travel; staggered arrival, departure, work, and break times; and adjusted work processes or procedures, such as reducing production speed, to allow greater distance between employees. When it is not feasible to maintain a distance of at least six feet, individuals shall be as far apart as feasible.
1. New section filed 11-30-2020 as an emergency; operative 11-30-2020. Emergency expiration extended 60 days (Executive Order N-40-20) plus an additional 60 days (Executive Order N-71-20) (Register 2020, No. 49). A Certificate of Compliance must be transmitted to OAL by 10-1-2021 or emergency language will be repealed by operation of law on the following day.
2. New section refiled with amendments 6-17-2021 as an emergency; operative 6-17-2021 pursuant to Executive Order N-09-21 (Register 2021, No. 25). Exempt from the APA pursuant to Government Code sections 8567, 8571 and 8627 (Executive Order N-09-21). Emergency expiration extended 60 days (Executive Order N-40-20) plus an additional 60 days (Executive Order N-71-20). A Certificate of Compliance must be transmitted to OAL by 1-13-2022 or emergency language will be repealed by operation of law on the following day.
3. New section refiled 1-5-2022 as an emergency; operative 1-14-2022 (Register 2022, No. 1). A Certificate of Compliance must be transmitted to OAL by 4-14-2022 or emergency language will be repealed by operation of law on the following day.
4. Editorial correction of History 5 (Register 2022, No. 9).
5. Emergency filed 1-5-2022 extended an additional 21 calendar days pursuant to Executive Order N-5-22. A Certificate of Compliance must be transmitted to OAL by 5-5-2022 or emergency language will be repealed by operation of law on the following day.
6. New section, including amendments, refiled 5-5-2022 as an emergency pursuant to EO N-23-21; operative 5-5-2022 pursuant to EO N-23-21 (Register 2022, No. 18). Pursuant to EO N-23-21, a Certificate of Compliance must be transmitted to OAL by 12-31-2022 or emergency language will be repealed by operation of law on the following day.
7. Certificate of Compliance as to 5-5-2022 order, including repealer of former section 3205.1 and renumbering of section 3205.2 to 3205.1 with amendment of section heading and section, transmitted to OAL 12-20-2023 and filed 2-3-2023; amendments effective 2-3-2023 pursuant to Government Code section 11343.4(b)(3) (Register 2023, No. 5).