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By Toni DeRosa
Wasco Tribune 

Pandemic precautions at Primex

Employees make sure guidelines are followed


Last updated 8/23/2020 at 5:21am | View PDF

Primex has taken precautions to protect its workers during the covid-19 pandemic. Mojhan Amin, the company’s chief operating officer, says Primex has been in compliance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Kern County Health Department guidelines.

During a recent tour of Primex’s facility, many of these steps were on display.

Since the middle of March, Primex has instituted new regulations for anyone entering the premises. Once a visitor enters, they are required to have their temperature taken.

Receptionist Samantha Zavada, weight master Joselin Escobar, human resources manager Angie Nunez and production manager Aldo Montoya led the tour.

Primex employees must wear a mask, smock, gloves, nonslip shoes and a hard hat before leaving the hallway for the next room.

As soon as Montoya entered, two employees asked why a visitor didn’t have regulation attire on. This happened several times during the tour.

The first stop was a hand-washing area where several employees -- socially distanced -- were waiting in line to approach an available sink. An antibacterial soap was on hand.

The first area entered was the employee locker room. Currently, there is a wall where employees hang up their smocks, but the company is adding more lockers so no one has to hang their smock on a hook.

Next, the packaging area, an assembly line area where employee stations are outfitted with Plexiglas dividers between each employee. Rows of employees maintained the required safe distancing.

At each stop, employees asked Montoya why the visitor wasn’t wearing the required attire. “There are employees who specifically keep an eye out for people not wearing the required gear,” Montoya said. “It’s one way we check to make sure everyone is clean enough to enter the packaging and processing areas.”

Primex has also installed Plexiglass partitions in their lunchroom. Seating is placed to encourage safe distancing. There are two television sets on in the lunchroom so employees can keep up with covid-19 updates.

On July 27, Primex held employee meetings to update staff on how many employees tested positive and how many were returning to work. “As of July 27, 151 employees tested positive for the virus and 85 of those returned to work, while another 30 are anticipated to return to work soon,” Rojas said.

Next week: Part of this inside tour of one of the largest nut processing plants in the country.


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