March 11-COVID-19 (Coronavirus) – Important Information

The Belt Railway Company of Chicago 

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) – Important Information

March 11, 2020

Dear colleagues,

Undoubtedly, you have been hearing a lot about COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in the media these days. Currently the epidemic risk is relatively low for the U.S. and Canada. However, it is important to be safe and properly prepared, both at the individual and Company level, for all possible scenarios. BRC has been closely monitoring the situation and have the current guidelines to share, which are designed to protect employees while maintaining business continuity.


General Information

The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) maintains a website with extensive information on all aspects of COVID-19, including information regarding situation updates, frequently asked questions, prevention & treatment, and a variety of other topics. The CDC website can be accessed at the following link:

Preventative steps

As a first phase, we have increased the frequency of cleaning of our regularly-used common areas, such as the General Office Building, Yard Offices, Locker Rooms, Break Rooms, etc. All locations will now be cleaned twice per day, double the previous frequency. We are also in the process of procuring additional hand sanitizer dispensers for our facilities and offices across the BRC.

Social distancing is also key:

  • Avoid group events or crowds.
  • Minimize face-to-face meetings with both internal and external parties by leveraging electronic means of communication when available.
  • If you become sick, including fever above 100.4°F and respiratory difficulties, stay home and inform your supervisor of your condition.

Travel precautions

  • Avoid travel. If you must travel, the guidelines below should be followed:
  • Avoid travelling to countries that have been identified as high risk by the Federal Government – the following links are helpful resources:
  • US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) COVID-19 travel advisories site
  • Avoid travelling if you are concerned about the quality of health care at your destination.
  • Avoid touching high-traffic surfaces when in airports, airplanes and hotels.
  • Wipe down your seat area, including armrests, eating tray, seatback pocket and video screen with a disposable disinfectant cloth.
  • Wash your hands and use hand sanitizer frequently.
  • Avoid proximity to people who appear to have cold-like symptoms.
  • Use utensils to avoid eating with your fingers.
  • Stay hydrated.

Hygiene best practices

  • Because preparing for COVID-19 is a shared responsibility, BRC is providing the following best practices as a reminder to guide you on how to protect yourself from this respiratory disease:
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. The proper way to wash your hands is for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating, after using the washroom and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • Use hand sanitizers that contain 60%–95% alcohol on a regular basis.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and throw the tissue away.
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects with disposable disinfectant cloths.

Staying in touch

BRC will communicate via email, the BRC Website and BTV any steps that we are taking to limit exposure or other pertinent updates.

In order to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19, everyone has a role to play. Much of what you can do is common sense and follows the instruction of public health authorities.

Thank you for your collaboration and stay safe.

Michael J. Grace