Formula 1 factories and facilities are beginning to re-open, after a prolonged shutdown, with a modified way of working for team personnel.
Since Formula 1 returned from the Australian Grand Prix in mid-March there has been little in the way of activity due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In a bid to cut costs all relevant stakeholders agreed to move the 14-day summer shutdown period forwards to be taken across March and April.
That period had already been enforced by a couple of teams due to measures imposed upon places of work by the relevant authorities.
That 14-day period was extended twice and subsequently lasted for 63 days, with engine manufacturers also forced to close their doors for 49 days.
Several factories remained open for essential maintenance as well as for those involved in the construction of components and parts in conjunction with Project Pitlane.
With Formula 1’s anticipated 2020 season opener in Austria now just five weeks away team factories have re-opened, albeit under different conditions compared to how personnel left them in March.
On Monday Scuderia Alpha Tauri provided an explainer in how it is keeping its staff as safe as possible.
The team, formerly Toro Rosso, has its technical and administrative departments in Faenza, Italy, while its aerodynamics department and wind tunnel is located in Bicester, in the United Kingdom.
To begin with the return of staff is happening gradually, with a rotation system in place that allows some to work at home and others in the office, on alternate weeks.
Different work shifts have been implemented in order to ensure social distancing while there is a limit on the number of people permitted inside the building at any one time.
All personnel returning to its facilities must undertake a serology test, under medical supervision, in order to safeguard themselves and other personnel.
The test is carried out in a building with three separate entrances and exits, away from the main building, and is run by a qualified member of staff from an accredited laboratory.
If the test is returned negative then the person can return to work but if this comes back positive then further swab checks are carried out.
Should this be returned negative then they are approved to return to work but if it comes back positive then they must quarantine for 14 days as per the health regulations.
In addition AlphaTauri has implemented body temperature checks at the entrance to the factory, with advanced scanners connected to the clocking-in machines.
Staff who are required to be at the factory have also been told to carry out temperature checks at home, prior to making the journey in.
Its offices and production areas have been re-organised in order to facilitate social distancing, with hand sanitiser widely available, while face masks are mandatory and supplied to personnel.
Images courtesy of Scuderia AlphaTauri