Coronavirus outbreak declared at DVLA contact centre

Public Health Wales has declared a coronavirus outbreak at the DVLA contact centre in Swansea.

It comes as 62 positive cases have been confirmed at the centre since December 1. It means that since September 1, a total of 352 coronavirus cases have been identified amongst DVLA staff.

As a large employer this is inevitable as the numbers of cases in the community increase and staff also have links outside the workplace, Public Health Wales said.

Public Health Wales has met with Swansea Council, Swansea Bay University Health Board and the Health and Safety Executive regularly to assist the DVLA with managing the impact of coronavirus in the workplace.

Testing facilities have already been deployed by Swansea Bay University Health Board to the site from Monday, December 21 until Wednesday, December 23 for staff working at the contact centre.

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Siôn Lingard, consultant in health protection for Public Health Wales, said: “Public Health Wales can confirm that NHS Test Trace Protect has been responding to 62 confirmed cases of Coronavirus in employees at the DVLA contact centre in Swansea Vale since December 1.

“We are all working in close collaboration with our partner agencies and our priority is to reduce the number of cases in this workforce.

“We would like to encourage all staff at the contact centre to take up the offer of testing available on the site until Wednesday, December 23.

“Finding cases early is key to reducing transmission and risks to those around you. But workers in any workplace may be at risk from infection in social or household settings.

“We remind members of the public in Wales that under tier 4 of Welsh Government’s tiered response to coronavirus everyone has a vital role in preventing the spread of Coronavirus.

“They can do this by always observing social distancing guidelines, washing hands regularly, and adhering to the new restrictions.”

Under the new restrictions, people must stay at home, except for in exceptional circumstances.

People should not visit other households or meet other people they do not live with and people who have no choice but to go to work should follow precautions.

Mr Lingard continued: “We remind the public that the more people that you mix with, the higher the risk of both transmitting and contracting coronavirus.

“If you or a member of your household develop a cough, fever or change in sense of taste or smell, you must self-isolate immediately and book a free coronavirus test.”

WalesOnline – Swansea