30th April 2020
In the midst of illness, economic downturn, furloughs and worldwide concern for COVID-19, Pure Safety Group’s (PSG) Checkmate brand started producing face masks for distribution in the U.K. In conjunction with MakeMasksuk.org, PSG’s Sheerness Kent location has activated volunteer furloughed employees to produce its newest product, the CheckMask, a non-medical barrier mask for use by individuals today and moving forward as guidelines for social distancing continue.
Oliver Auston, PSG chief innovation officer stated, “Being able to do this important work is a positive opportunity for our company and teams. As our world looks to phase into a new normal, allowing businesses to reopen and individuals to congregate, people will be wearing masks. This is an opportunity for our team members to stay busy, while making an impact on their community. After all, we are in the safety business.” Auston says the company was able to quickly ramp up production, given it has product designers, sewing machines and manufacturing capabilities from making its core products, such as safety harnesses and other gear that keeps people safe while at heights.
Masks are being made in accordance with AFNOR spec S76-001 and will be distributed through makemasksuk.org. The organization identified the need for non-medical masks to help protect essential workers such as those in food manufacturing and distribution, food retail, delivery services and the community at large. MakeMasksUK is a federation of local businesses using UK-based resources to craft barrier masks. The organization is managing mask requests and distribution.
“We are privileged to have businesses here in the county showing the innovation and drive that will be vital when we emerge on the other side of this pandemic,” said Gavin Cleary, CEO of Locate in Kent, a Kent economic development organization. “The manufacturing sector, in particular, has shown great adaptability. They’re a credit to both Kent and the U.K.”