Coronavirus Response

December 2020 COVID Policy Revision

In response to the continued increase in Fairfax County COVID cases, the Nova Labs Directors present this revised policy concerning access to and utilization of Nova Labs, Inc.

To all members: 

  • A 7 day quarantine followed by a negative COVID test is mandatory for all members that have traveled, had out of town guests visit them, or participated in gatherings over 10 beyond your immediate household; this includes retail and dining venues. 

Who Can Access:

    • Board members
    • Officially-appointed Team Leads, Assistant Team Leads, and Coordinators
    • Officially-appointed Stewards and Assistant Stewards
    • Key Members
    • Associate Members
    • Interns
    • Event Hosts and Instructors
    • Minors who are family members of Nova Labs members are allowed if they are closely supervised
  • Members are not allowed to bring visitors or guests at this time. 
  • Fee-based Class and Event Attendees are prohibited at this time.
  • Ad hoc tours are allowed If and only If they are accompanied by a Member their entire stay, and registers with the front desk.
  • Please refer to the Membership Policy for the formal definition of Guest, Attendee, and visitor.

Hours of Access

    • Key Members and priority project volunteers:
      • 24 hours/day, 7 days/week
    • Associate Members:
      • 5:30pm-8:30pm Monday-Friday
      • 1:00pm-4:00pm Saturday-Sunday
  • No walk-ins
    • Due to the increased need for social distancing, ALL STEWARDS must reserve space. No exceptions.

Allowed Activities

    • Active Making
    • Leadership meetings
    • Class or Workshop participation
    • Use of Innovation Center space requires IC Membership; please contact jennyfer.peterson@nova-labs.org if interested
  • Eating indoors is not permitted at this time
  • Gaming is not allowed at this time

Criteria for Altering this Policy:

  • We will align our space usage requirements with the guidelines set forth by Governor Northam for the state of Virginia
  • We will strive to follow the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and the White House Coronavirus Task Force
  • Nova Labs leadership reserves the right to enact additional measures in order to comply with the best practices suggested by the World Health Organization (WHO), Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and respected epidemiologists

Safety Precautions:

  • Space Cleaning Protocols

      • 3.5% Nu-Foamicide or similar EPA-approved disinfectant will be used in a fogging machine to sanitize every room at 1916 and 1930 two times/week
        • Documented via disinfection log mounted in each room
      • MERV12-filtered box fans are being added throughout the non-shop zones, 1 unit per 1000 square feet.
        • Filters are marked with date of install and changed every 3 months
      • Leave the makerspace cleaner than you find it!
  • Kitchen Usage 

      • Do not handwash dirty dishes (place in the dishwasher immediately after use)
      • No sharing food or beverages
      • Wipe down all surfaces with disinfectant as necessary
      • Throw dirty napkins or paper towels in the trash immediately after use
      • Do not use the kitchen when someone else is using it (unless invited)
  • 1916 Occupancy

  • Combined Orange Bay, Laser Lab, Conference Rooms, Project Room, the Studio, and Kitchen: maximum of 25 users
        • Orange Bay: maximum of 10 people at a time and no closer than 6’ to another person
        • Laser Lab: maximum of 2 people at a time
        • Project Classroom: maximum of 7 people at a time
        • The Studio: maximum of 6 people at a time
        • Conference rooms: maximum of  4 people at a time
Combined Woodshop, Metalshop, Blacksmithing, and Mixed Media: maximum 25 users
        • Woodshop: maximum of 8 people at a time, no more than 1 person per bench
        • Metal Shop: maximum of 8 people at a time, no more than 1 person per bench
        • Mixed Media Shop: maximum of 2 people at a time, no more than 1 person per bench
        • Blacksmithing: maximum of 2 people indoors; outdoors, maintain 6 ft social distancing and wear a face mask of mostly natural fibers.
  • 1930 Occupancy

      • Enclosed Office: maximum of 1 person/113 sq ft
      • Innovation Center Conference Room: maximum of 2 people at a time
      • Innovation Center co-Working areas: maximum 6 desks or benches in each area, no more than 1 person per bench or desk
      • Innovation Center Tool Bay: maximum of 2 people at a time
      • Innovation Center Laser Lab: maximum of 1 person at a time
      • AV Streaming Studio: maximum of 2 people at a time
      • Community Classroom: maximum of 4 people at a time
      • Community Tool Bay: maximum of 1 people at a time
      • Robot Corral: maximum of 5 people at a time
      • Events Room: maximum of 10 people at a time if divider is open, or 5 people per side with divider closed
      • Lobby: maximum of 5 people at a time
    • Due to the continued need for social distancing, max occupancy for each area has been set at 113 sq ft/user
  • Coronavirus Symptom Questionnaire

      • Do not enter if you answer yes to any of these questions
      • Have you been within 6 ft of a person with a lab-confirmed case of coronavirus for at least 5 minutes, or had direct contact with their mucus or saliva, in the past 14 days?
      • In the last 48 hours, have you had any of the following NEW symptoms?
        • Fever of 100.5ºF (38ºC) or above, or possible fever symptoms like alternating chills and sweating
        • Cough
        • Trouble breathing, shortness of breath or severe wheezing
        • Chills or repeated shaking with chills
        • Muscle aches
        • Sore throat
        • Loss of smell or taste, or a change in taste
        • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
        • Headache
        • Positive COVID-19 test
  • If you answer yes to any of these questions, do not come to Nova Labs.
  • Safe Making Practices – Allowed and Recommended PPE

    • We differentiate between normal safety PPE and the additional Covid-19 PPE (primary air filtering).
    • Run a MERV12-filtered box fan in any space you are working, 1 unit per 1000 square feet.
    • Covid-19 specific PPE and process
      • Clean face mask (required).  Covers both your mouth and nose the entire time you are at Nova Labs.  No masks with unfiltered exhalation valves, but N95 masks are fine.
      • Face shields and respirators must be worn in conjunction with a face mask.
      • MakerShield (the enclosed face shield designed for MakerSchool) can substitute for face masks.
      • Apply hand sanitizer before and after you work
      • Signs designating proper hygiene (handwashing, face coverings, etc), and maximum safe occupancy of each space within Nova Labs will be prominently displayed
      • In some circumstances, it may be necessary to temporarily work around the 6-foot restriction for close inspection/instruction help. This will be done only if everyone has PPE.
    • Safety PPE (please bring your own)
      • Safety glasses
      • Ear protection – optional/as needed
  • In Case of COVID-Positive Nova Labs Contact

    • Nova Labs will notify membership of the dates a COVID-Positive person was in the space
    • Nova Labs will close for 72 hours to conduct sanitization
      • Currently,the standard disinfection protocol is fogging rooms individually with 3.5% Nu-Foamicide twice a week
      • After positive contact, every room will be santitized and then allowed to sit empty for 3 days
      • Nu-Foamicide at 3.5% is EPA certified to destroy a wide variety of viruses, bacteria, and fungi within 15 minutes of initial contact. Our Safety Team Lead has confirmed that it is safe for our machines, as it is not a degreaser.
  • Failure to comply with Nova Labs COVID Policy

    • Any member is encouraged to gently remind violators of the current policy
    • Written Incident Report will be issued for repeat offenders
    • Receipt of a written incident report will result in 7 days’ revocation of space access