COVID-19 Statement | General
COVID-19 Statement

COVID-19 Statement

LAST UPDATED ON 05/01/2021

Earlier this week, the UK Government announced plans for the easing of the current lockdown restrictions over the coming months. For now, we remain in a national lockdown, you must stay at home, leaving only where permitted by law. We will continue to monitor government guidance however, for now, the VIRTUS COVID controls will remain unchanged.

We would like to take this opportunity to address the specifics of face mask exemption across VIRTUS sites. We request that all customers wear a face mask whilst in any public areas of our data centres (this includes within our co-location data halls). If you are exempt from wearing a face mask, we request that you wear a face shield. If for whatever reason you are unable to wear either a mask or a shield then regretfully we must decline entry to the data centre.

This decision has not been taken lightly but it is our duty to protect the health and wellbeing of all personnel on site. We will review this requirement on a regular basis.

As a reminder, the below guidelines remain in place:

In order to gain access to site, you must either be listed on your organisations Epidemic Master Access List or you must have a valid access request in place for the date of your visit. We ask all customers to keep their visits to essential visits only in order to limit the number of people on site and in turn reduce the risk of exposure to the VIRTUS site teams who are essential to keeping our sites operational.

If you need to visit multiple VIRTUS data centres, you should allow a minimum of a 48 hour window between visits. As a result of the track and trace system, if you visit one of our data centres and later test positive for COVID-19, anyone who may have been in close contact with you in the 48 hours before symptoms started will be required to self isolate. Therefore, to reduce the risk of your own personnel or VIRTUS personnel at multiple sites having to self isolate and potentially impact the operation of our data centers, it is important that this 48 hour rule is maintained. We understand that this is not always possible when an emergency happens but we ask that this rule is maintained in all other situations.

Anyone visiting our data centres will be required to wear a face covering whilst moving around site. Coronavirus (COVID-19) usually spreads by droplets from coughs, sneezes and speaking. By wearing a facemask (or shield), you will be reducing the risk of exposure to all site users around you. To be clear, if you are unable to wear any face covering you will not be allowed entry to the Data Centre.

We also ask that anyone who does need to attend site adheres to social distancing guidelines and takes the required precautions to wash hands frequently or to use antibacterial hand gel which is readily available around the Data Centres. Washing your hands properly removes dirt, viruses and bacteria to stop them spreading to other people within the data centre.

Everyone attending site will be asked the following questions and required to have their temperature screened on arrival. VIRTUS reserve the right to refuse access if the answer to any of these questions is ‘Yes’, or if temperature reading is 38C or above:

1. Are you feeling at all unwell including loss of smell or taste?

2. Have you been asked to self-isolate?

3. Have you been in contact with or is suspected to have contracted the Coronavirus in the last 7 days?

4. Have you been contacted by the NHS Test and Trace and awaiting testing or results?

We would like to thank all customers for your continued support at this challenging time. We will continue to keep you informed as the situation develops but if you have any questions or feedback in the meantime please feel free to get in touch with our team at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

CBRE COVID-19 Impact Report: VIRTUS' CEO, Neil Cresswell, shares insights into the short term and long-term impact on the data centre industry. Read the full report here



FAQs

Are all of VIRTUS’ data centres still fully operational?

All VIRTUS sites remain fully operational. We are continuing to closely monitor the current unfolding Coronavirus situation in the UK.

We always operate in line with our ISO certifications, which does include epidemic planning. These documents are under continual review in line with developments in national guidance.

In accordance with Government guidelines relating to social distancing, we are managing the footfall at each site to ensure visitors and staff visit our data centres only if it is necessary. Questionnaires are required to be filled in before any access is granted.

 
How does VIRTUS plan for the eventuality that there is a case associated with one of its data centres?

VIRTUS follow the advice provided by Public Health England (PHE). Firstly, anyone feeling at all unwell cannot gain access to a site. Secondly, if a person is diagnosed with COVID-19 they will be asked to self-isolate for 7 days. Following PHE advice VIRTUS will carefully clean all areas the individual has been in and monitor the staff they have been in contact with.

 

Are Data Centre Operators classed as ‘Key Workers’ in the UK?

Yes, those running Data Infrastructure are designated key workers. Please see: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision

 

What would happen if someone started to display symptoms whilst at a data centre?

VIRTUS follow the advice provided by Public Health England (PHE). Firstly, anyone feeling at all unwell cannot gain access to a site. Secondly, if a person falls unwell while on site they are immediately asked to return home, self-isolate and use the NHS111 website. Following PHE advice VIRTUS will carefully clean all areas the individual has been in and monitor the staff they have been in contact with.

 

Who can I contact if I have further concerns?

If you have any other questions or concerns please get in touch with our 24/7 Service Management Centre (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).