When the UK went into lockdown, many tradespeople had to reconsider how they were going to continue working, if at all. Wavin Hep2O recently had a virtual catch up with Marcus of MB Plumbing & Heating to find out exactly what lockdown was like for him, his experience carrying out emergency repairs, and what things are like now work is back in full swing and we adjust to a new normal.
What was your first reaction to working throughout the pandemic?
To begin with, we had to work out exactly what our strategy would be to see us through. This meant identifying which jobs would be safe to continue with and which we should put on hold. We decided to temporarily cancel all of our regular maintenance services and only focus on emergency jobs, to make sure we weren’t unnecessarily visiting customers’ homes during a time where limited contact was vital. Overall, we didn’t stop working or take any time off, we just switched our focus.
Understandably, we were nervous at first, as most people were. However, things soon fell into place, we got used to it and it became the normal way of working.
Is there a particular lockdown job that stands out to you?
I think the jobs that stand out to me the most are the ones with customers who were considered vulnerable, because naturally extra precautions had to be put in place. Near the start of lockdown, I was called out to an emergency repair on a blocked toilet. The customer was an elderly lady who suffered with dementia, so we had to arrange for her carer to be in the house at the same time, to make sure social distancing guidelines were followed. These new rules and regulations have been hard enough to get to grips with for anyone, so I can’t imagine how much tougher this must have been for someone suffering with a condition like dementia. It wasn’t a massive job – it actually only took an hour – but the situation was unique so was quite an eye-opener.
How are things now we’re starting to get back to normal?
Since we’ve come out of lockdown and have been able to carry on with our normal services, we’ve definitely seen a huge increase in maintenance jobs, as these were all put on hold. As you can imagine, we’ve also being carrying out a lot of repairs to sort out DIY plumbing jobs that have gone wrong. They do give me a good laugh though. I think people must have thought they’d try their hand at plumbing while they were stuck at home. There have been a lot of broken toilets to sort, but that’s all part of the job.
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