NSCA Coronavirus – COVID-19 Action Plan

Monday, March 16, 2020

The situation with the progression of the Coronavirus COVID-19 remains extremely dynamic, and to some both frightening and confusing.

The NSCA is keeping abreast of the developments and following the advice of the UK Government as published by the Department of Health and Social Care and Public Health England.

Currently that advice is that people should follow these Do’s and Don’ts to avoid catching coronavirus:

Do

  • Wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • Always wash your hands when you get home or into work
  • Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
  • Cleaning hard surfaces in your home and immediate workspace (including equipment such as keyboards, mice and telephones) using disinfectant sprays and wipes
  • Thoroughly cooking meat and eggs before eating them

Don’t

  • Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean

Stay at Home if you have Coronavirus symptoms

Stay at home for 7 days if you have either:

  • A high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
  • A new, continuous cough – this means you've started coughing repeatedly

Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.

You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you're staying at home.

Testing for coronavirus is not needed if you're staying at home.

Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:

  • You feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
  • Your condition gets worse
  • Your symptoms do not get better after 7 days

Only call 111 if you cannot get help.

The RYA acknowledge that all of this could affect planned events and activities. Unless there is official advice telling you not to do so, and as long as you follow the government advice on how to avoid catching or spreading the virus, you can continue with things like group activities and use of club facilities.

NSCA Advice to Members:

Follow the guidelines as laid out above.

If you believe you are in a higher risk or vulnerable category, you should consider whether the benefit of attending an event is outweighed by any increased risks of attending that event. Keep up to date via Government, NHS and RYA websites – we suggest https://www.rya.org.uk/newsevents/news/Pages/rya-guidance-coronavirus.aspx as a good starting point.

Currently there are no restrictions on events of the size of most Open Meetings or UK National Events, including the Spring Championships at Draycote SC, Pusinelli at Felpham SC, National Championships at East Lothian YC, Inland Championships at Grafham Water SC and End of Season Championship at Carsington SC. However the situation is fluid and some clubs may decide to postpone or cancel events, and Government Advice may change at any time.  The NSCA will do it’s best to keep you updated but your decision to attend an event is yours alone.

Individuals attending events may prefer to change separately, to bring their own food and apply any other distancing strategies they feel appropriate.

The NSCA considers that at this time hand-shaking or other form of direct contact is not advisable, and no member will consider less of any other member not sharing this traditional greeting.

Some of the International events planned may be at risk, the Nations Cup and Dutch Championships both scheduled to be held in the Netherlands where there are currently restrictions on sailing events and training events – but these restrictions are currently only until the end of March, but may well be extended. The Portuguese Nationals could be affected if travel restrictions or the need to travel through countries with Government advice not to travel – see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/travel-advice-novel-coronavirus

The NSCA is in contact with the UK Clubs organising Solo Class events, and we are asking them to ensure a minimum series of measures.

NSCA Advice to Clubs holding Events for Solo sailors:

Please follow the advice from the RYA, embodied in the following notice: https://www.rya.org.uk/SiteCollectionDocuments/clubs/RYA%20Coronavirus%20FAQs%20Affiliated%20Clubs.pdf

We would request as a minimum:

  • Notices be posted around (and external to) the facility requiring any person with symptoms of the coronavirus to return home; and any person who develops symptoms of the coronavirus whilst at the facility to immediately leave and return home
  • Signs highlighting the Do’s and Don’ts as well as hand-washing guidelines detailed above and available ready to print here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/866065/Handwashing_techniques.pdf
  • Provide additional hand-sanitiser points around the facility, as well as additional paper tissues and bins to encourage the Catch-it, Bin-it, Kill-it strategy.

RYA Affiliated Clubs will already have received advice from the RYA and should have considered this in detail. The link to the summary is here:  https://www.rya.org.uk/SiteCollectionDocuments/clubs/RYA%20Coronavirus%20FAQs%20Affiliated%20Clubs.pdf

The NSCA fully understands if clubs are un-able, or find themselves unwilling to hold events, or most likely find that their normally extremely helpful volunteers are choosing not to help out, that events may have to be cancelled. In the event that cancellation looks likely, please be in touch with your NSCA Regional Rep or NSCA Event Organiser so that sufficient notice can be given to sailors.  For Open meetings 2-3 weeks notice would be appreciated, while for Super-series events we would like to ask for at least a month if possible, ideally more if there is significant travel and accommodation expense to be incurred by sailors.

NSCA Aspiration

The NSCA hopes that the 2020 season will not be overly affected by Coronavirus COVID-19, but at this stage this could change extremely rapidly.

It is our intention to support all Solo sailing as well as is possible, and to continue to encourage, in the most responsible way, our members to enjoy their time on the water. In the event we are forced to cancel any of the National or Super series events, either due to RYA / Government advice, or because of a decision by a host club – which we will support in a sympathetic manner – we will then shift our attention to regional events including regional Open Meetings.  Should any Regional events including Open Meetings not be possible, we will try to highlight Club sailing involving Solo sailors. 

Our overall message is let’s wherever possible, enjoy our sailing while following all advice so as to stay as safe as possible, and respecting the decisions of individuals and host clubs should they decide to not attend or cancel events, and in line with Government and RYA Advice.

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