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ITC’s Continuing Response to COVID-19

Jul 10, 2020

The health, safety and well-being of our employees, customers and the communities we serve remains a top priority for ITC during these extraordinary times. As owner and operator of the high-voltage electric transmission grid, ITC has continued to provide reliable energy delivery throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. We have continued to serve our customers every day either on-site, in the field or working remotely. Through it all, we have maintained our high standards of safety and service.

We continue to work closely with industry leaders, local and state officials and customers across our footprint to coordinate pandemic response efforts. As part of these efforts, we have put in place a responsible re-entry plan to transition back to our offices/facilities in a safe, productive manner. We’re doing so cautiously, beginning with employees who need access to special equipment or perform other critical functions. The remainder of our employees will continue to work from home.


As we focus on a responsible re-entry, we will remain flexible and make adjustments as conditions warrant, without losing focus on our company’s important work: operating the high-voltage electric transmission grid to ensure the reliable delivery of energy to the communities we serve.

 

RESPONSIBLE RE-ENTRY

With health and safety as guiding principles, ITC is implementing a Responsible Re-Entry Plan that provides information, guidelines, processes, procedures and resources for the phased resumption of activities in our workplaces. We followed guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and federal, state and local authorities to prepare our re-entry plan. We will continue to monitor this external guidance along with internal factors including the availability of adequate COVID-19 protective gear, the ability of our facilities to safely host returning workers, and the adoption of, and adherence to, safe work practices.

Our plan describes a phased approach to re-entry, based on internal and external factors keeping in mind the safety and health of our employees. The timing for each phase will be based on data, not a timeline. All employees are required to complete a training program to ensure a consistent understanding of our re-entry protocols.

VISITORS and VISITS

As a precaution, ITC facilities will remain closed to visitors and the public until further notice. In those rare cases where a visitor is allowed to enter the facility, the visitor must complete a health screening survey and abide by all facility rules, including guidelines around face coverings, social distancing and hygiene.

ITC employees will continue to meet with customers, local, state and federal government officials, and other stakeholders through virtual means whenever possible.  We also have established guidelines for ITC employees to follow when considering in-person meetings with these external organizations at their sites. These guidelines include requiring employees to obtain prior approval from their leader before attending an in-person meeting, checking with the host organization on the protocols they have in place to keep their employees and visitors safe, ensuring they are comfortable with the host’s protocols before visiting, and following those protocols during the visit. ITC employees are required to wear a face covering, maintain proper social distance, and follow CDC guidelines for all such in-person meetings. In all cases, employees must comply with current state and local laws and travel guidelines.

WORKPLACE HEALTH and SAFETY

ITC has established general on-site requirements and precautions for all ITC facilities/worksites throughout its footprint. Employees must follow all prescribed guidance for personal hygiene, workspace sanitizing, potential sources of occupational exposure, and wearing and maintaining face coverings and other protective gear. The prescribed guidance applies to all ITC facilities/worksites whether company owned or leased. Compliance with local community restrictions also will be taken into consideration.

Employees are required to complete a daily home health screening within two hours before arriving at an ITC facility/worksite. This includes checking one’s temperature and answering questions related to health, close contact and travel. We have implemented testing and reporting protocols to respond to potential or diagnosed COVID-19 cases, including contact tracing and reporting. Depending on local requirements, we may implement testing of employees during periods of elevated risk, when symptoms become apparent, or as follow-up.

BUILDINGS and FACILITIES

In those rare instances when visitors will be allowed into ITC-owned offices/facilities, they can be assured that we have taken a number of measures to make these facilities safe. We have established specific social distancing protocols, enhanced handwashing facilities and availability of hygiene items.  We also have performed HVAC operational and preventative maintenance and installed enhanced HVAC filters, developed a comprehensive and frequent cleaning schedule for all common and high-touch areas and surfaces in our buildings, and established an intense facility cleaning protocol to be implemented if someone becomes symptomatic or is diagnosed with COVID-19. 

SUPPORTING RELIEF EFFORTS

Earlier this year, we distributed $500,000 in disaster relief funding to local food charities and mental health and substance abuse agencies across our seven-state service territory. The funds were distributed proportionally to agencies in ITC Great Plains, ITC Michigan and ITC Midwest. ITC employees have offered additional financial donations to these charities and other important causes, including creating and delivering personal protective gear to front line workers in our respective communities.


ITC will continue with our pandemic response efforts to provide continued reliable energy delivery and employee safety to our customers and the communities we serve. We are actively monitoring developments and will continue to provide updates to our stakeholders as needed. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact your ITC representative or call 877.ITC.ITC9.

 

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