What to expect
before, during and after production.
covidSAFEproductions.com is the largest and leading industry provider of Covid19 safe sets, stages, and productions, providing trained and certified Covid Compliance Officers across the nation.
This should answer many of your questions and understand what is required to keep everyone safe and comply to resume production.
We are contracted by the Producer or Production Company. Our fee for the Compliance Officer(s) is based upon the size and type of the production consistent with typical Department Head rates. Each Compliance Officer(s) follows the pay structure that the rest of the Union crew does such as: day minimums, meal break(s), OT, DT, Short Turn, benefits, and a higher medical allowance because of being in high risk position. The Officers are paid directly by us. We have AHJ powers and responsibilities, authorized by L.A. County, and follow multiple protocols from multiple agencies and organizations.
A condition to all productions and permits is requiring 1 Covid Compliance Officer on each production for every 25 people.
In some cases where a local certified Compliance Officer is not available, or on location shoots, there may by travel, housing and/or per diem rates involved.
We charge a weekly Covid Compliance Kit fee, which includes: laptop, printer, educational materials, signage, scanner(s), etc. There is also a charge for specific expendable medical supplies such as masks, gowns, gloves, sanitizers and wipes, and non medical supplies like blue tape, paper, toner cartridge(s), and batteries,
The Compliance Officer(s) sole and only role is Covid precautions, enforcement and documentation. This a new position. it does not include or replace the Set Medics position & responsibilities.
We do not provide legal or medical advise or provide insurance or guarantees. We are a vendor for the Producer, Production Company or Studio who is responsible for any/all insurances, illnesses and/or legal action consistent with industry standards.
Our Company and Compliance Officers require written release of liability.
We should be involved in scouting locations, production meetings to set expectations to the other Department Heads informing them of protocols, prepping crew the day before the shoot, shoot days, and wrap.
There are modifications that need to be made to the set/stage ahead of time.
Medical and other supplies need to be ordered and received in advance.
In the past a production is like a mini thriving city with lots of activity and people coming and going. Until the pandemic is over, these behaviors need to be modified.
Precautions and compliance will take extra time.
It may be assumed that the location is clean, however if it has been vacant for any duration, or not thoroughly cleaned since the last use, the set/stage should be cleaned and sanitized prior to the start of production and use.
Only active essential people are allowed on set. Those who can work or observe remotely, must. This might mean people who can view activities by FaceTime or Zoom, should. Those who typically come and go often, may need to set up work areas on the set, but far from the main activity. Crew not actively working are encouraged to wait off set, in an outdoor, climate controlled 'base camp', social distanced and not in contact with others. Visitors are not allowed.
Wireless equipment should be used as much as possible to help social distance everyone.
Faces masks may give some people the feeling of overheating. Air-conditioning which is normally set to accommodate stage lights, needs to now be set at lower temperatures to keep the crew cooler. There should be a specific cool station area for anyone feeling the onset of heat exhaustion.
When possible, windows and doors need to be open and fans need to be set up to exchange air. During shooting one or more people may need to assigned the sole responsibility to keep windows, doors open and fans on between takes.
There needs to be adequate hand washing stations (portable if necessary), paper towels and trash cans with lids operated by foot pedals. Crews should be encouraged to wash their hands frequently. Someone should be responsible to keep these areas clean.
Biohazard equipment is not required.
There needs to be an abundance of known hand sanitizing locations and places for sanitizing wipes to be available.
There needs to be space for educational signs to be visible, such as near call sheets as well as signs posted throughout the set.
Where possible, there needs to be single direction walkways.
The Compliance Officer will need 3-5+ hours prior to the first day to verify items, hang signage and set up.
While there is no mandates or guidelines for physical (swab) testing, we recommend everyone being tested at a qualified testing facility, prior to production, every 14 days, and at the conclusion of production. Depending on the size of the production, a mobile testing service might be applicable.
Prior to each day:
Each person entering the set / stage / production must be emailed a "wellness form" within 24 hours of the visit and either return it via email or in person, EVERYDAY. Your Legal Department can provide the form or you can use/adapt forms we have in the links section of this website. Returning crew can use the same form, but can only return the next day's form within 24 hours of their call time (i.e. they cannot sign 7 of them and send it in for the week).
We will require a rooster / call sheet with each person's name on it the day/night before.
As a general rule of thumb, if there are any questions about precautions, think, what would the most conservative and protective, and that should be the precautions you follow.
The Production Coordinator, UPM, or similar person should include the Wellness Form, and Set Protocols with each Call Sheet, each day.
The Covid Compliance Officer is the first in and last out. He/she will need to arrive 1-2+ hours, pre-call time, depending on the size of the production, before any other crew arrives. This time is used for cleaning, making sure washing stations are ready, there are hand sanitizers in various locations on the set in abundance and preparation for the crew to arrive to be screened. This includes very early calls for hair,, makeup and wardrobe. Talent, if alone in their trailer, can arrive when they want. Producers, writers, etc. can work in a production office at any time, if alone. Time also needs to be considered for cleaning and preparing shuttles, if applicable.
If shuttles are used, shuttle capacity can be no more than 1 person per bench seat and windows must be opened to exchange air.
As mentioned above, each person entering the set/stage, must have received a Wellness Form, signed and returned it to us (email preferred) within 24 hours of each call time, or deliver it in person, EVERYDAY.
For organizational purposes, and this will be listed on the form, the signed Wellness Form should be sent to wellnessform@covidSAFEproductions.com. The subject should state: production name, last name, first name, and the date it is for (i.e. if sent the night before, it should have the following days date)
Call times need to be staggered. The Department Heads or UPM can coordinate that. No more that 7 people every 10 minutes can be screened, per Compliance Officer. We will work as fast and effeciently but the check-in and screening does take time.
Crew arriving early should wait in their (air conditioned) vehicles and try to stay as cool as possible, till their call time.
At their call time, 7 people can wait in an outdoor, temperature controlled, holding area, socially distanced, wearing their own masks. Large groups will not be allowed to congregate near any entrances or the screening area. If people are waiting in direct sunlight, they may get warm and not pass the skin temperature test.
There needs to be a specific and private area to screen each person and protect each person's privacy and confidential information. One by one they will be checked in, confirmed they have submitted their wellness form, body temperature checked, and rooster signed. Any person with a skin temperature of 100.4 or higher, will be asked to rest for 10 minutes then checked again. If their temperature is still 100.4 or higher, they will not be admitted, no matter who it is and the Producer and/or UPM will be notified.
It is suggested that you have extra crew, or contigency plans in case people are not allowed to enter.
Each person entering will be asked to store their personal fabric mask for the day, or dispose of their disposable mask and wear a production provided disposable mask. Each person passing the screening will receive a wrist band specific for that day only. A new mask will also be provided after 8 hours.
Anyone re-entering the stage/set, will be required to take a body temperature reading, including after meal breaks.
While not required for everyone, we do encourage everyone to wear working gloves as much as possible. Those working with controls are encouraged to wear Nitrile gloves (also provided by the production) as much as possible along with using sanitizing wipes on their equipment frequently (i.e. once per hour).
This process of 7 people being screened every 10 minutes will continue till all crew has been screened and allowed to enter.
Once everyone has arrived, we will require a 3-5-minute group Safety Meeting to remind everyone of the safety protocols. If some crew has started their work, there will need to be a brief work stoppage for everyone. This meeting can be combined with any other safety or production announcements.
Masks are required 100% of the time. There is a 30 second rule. The only exception will be for camera talent that may doff (remove) their mask within 30 seconds of starting filming, and should don (wear) it if more than 30 seconds will pass between takes. As soon as active filming is over, talent should don their mask within 30 seconds of the scene being over. During blocking and/or rehearsals, talent should be wearing their mask.
During breaks or meal, people may doff their masks while actively eating or drinking. Actively meaning within 30 seconds of eating or drinking. Relaxing after a meal, masks are required.
The proper wearing of masks includes the chin, mouth and nose are covered.
Doorways should be propped open or have foot levers to open, avoiding high touch surfaces like a pull handle or door knob.
Appropriate wipes should be used on frequently used equipment. Once equipment is used, it should be sanitized before returning to a storage area or case.
Tools, writing instruments, equipment and such should not be shared by individuals or departments.
Walkie talkies, ear pieces and accessories should be sanitized at the end of each day and never shared.
If talent is handling props, it is encouraged for them to provide their own. Props that are handled by multiple actors should be sanitized often and between takes. If props are supplied crew should wear gloves at all times handling props and use sanitizing wipes.
Only stylist and individual talent are to handle wardrobe. All accessories should be sanitized. Talent should arrive in their own wardrobe when possible. Used wardrobe should be bagged up individually by talent.
Time needs to be allocated for deliveries. Rental houses should pull and sanitize their own gear and cases. Delivery people need to sign a Wellness Form, be screened, wear masks, and follow the same procedures as everyone else. Delivery items should be sanitized upon acceptance and return.
For talent, alternative set ups and angles should be considered to maximize distance between actors and between crew. Consider limiting the number of extras. Remote casting should be considered.
Paperwork should be conducted digitally as much as possible, including digital signatures. If crew is using call sheets or shot sheets, they should not be shared.
Social distancing should be observed at ALL times. In the case of close contact like a cameraman and focus puller, they should distance as often as possible.
Those that need to observe monitors should be distanced or in a checker board fashion.
If not actively working, crew should be socially distanced outside in a base camp or a ventilated area. They should not be congregating with others from another production or other public members near the set/stage.
Craft Services should already be aware of their protocols. Buffet style serving is not allowed. Food should be pre-served in to go containers or individual serving containers. Food can be individually served if there is a barrier between the food and the public. Snacks like nuts or candy should be in individual pre-packaged servings or in small paper cups. During meals, everyone must also be socially distanced, i.e. 2 people seated at a 6' long table, one person on each end. 2 people can sit at a 6' or 8' round table. Condiments should be individual servings. Utensils should be individually wrapped and disposable.
Meal times should be staggered to reduce large quantities of people in any one location at a time.
If meals are served in another location, time needs to be planned for re-entry into the stage/set like the morning arrival. Meals should be in a controlled area and not in a general area like a cafeteria where crews from other productions can intermingle.
Throughout the day, the Compliance Officer will randomly take and document skin temperatures.
Throughout the day, the Compliance Officer will be randomly looking for non-compliant people/items, documenting and correcting as needed.
Non-cooperative people who refuse to follow the instructed protocols will be encouraged to comply. If they choose not to comply, we will try to involve their supervisor and/or they will be asked to leave. If they still refuse, we will ask for assistance from production. If we still face noncompliance, we will evoke our AHJ powers and shut the production down and notify the Film Commission and County Health.
If any person becomes positive and/or symptomatic: the set must be closed for a minimum of 24 hours, the person must be quarantined for 14 days and see a healthcare provider for testing and diagnosis, the set thoroughly cleaned by a professional company, all staff notified of a potential exposure, any/all "close contact" people will also be required to quarantined for 14 days, see a healthcare provider for testing and diagnosis. Close contact is defined as anyone who has been less than 6 feet away, or hasn't worn a mask near the person for a duration of 15 minutes or more. The Compliance Officer is not a medical professional able to give a diagnosis, but must follow protocols.
Specific guidelines need to be followed for anyone returning to set after showing symptoms or haven been diagnosed.
End of day:
As a Compliance Officer, our day does not end once the last person has left. We really are, first in and last out. Once the set/stage is clear, we require 30-60 minutes to clean and disinfect high touch areas. Additionally, LA County Health requires an independent cleaning crew to come in each night to conduct a thorough cleaning and disinfection.
Production Company Responsibilities:
Within 24 hours, the Production Company will receive all of the days signed Wellness Forms and any notes from that day. It is the Production Company's responsibility to store the physical and/or digital files in a secure manner as some details fall into a HIPPA status. These files are not for general access.
It is the Production Company's responsibility to notify all cast and crew immediately of possible exposure, including those who may have had exposure up to 14 days prior, whether they are or are not still part of the production.
It is the Production Company's responsibility to notify the local health department if more than 3 people have tested positive from any given production.
The virus can live:
- on glass - 4 days
- on plastic - 2-3 days
- on Steel - 2-3 days
- on cardboard/paper - 1 day
- on Copper - 4 hours
- in the air - 3 hours