Openreach says it has been working since the first coronavirus reports in January to identify and evaluate the potential risks to the business, and to plan for any scenario where the spread of the virus may impact our customers.
"We’re closely monitoring the situation and following guidance from the WHO and PHE, including asking our people to remain vigilant and to protect themselves through strict adherence to personal hygiene measures," said a spokesperson.
"We have a dedicated programme team who are working closely with our key contractors, partners and suppliers to assess their business continuity plans, and to make sure they have adequate procedures in place to maintain their services and delivery."
The Openreach spokesperson added: "Our engineers visit thousands of customers in their homes and businesses every day to fix faults and provide new services, so to make sure these visits can continue safely, they’re now asking customers some simple questions before they arrive or enter the property: Has anyone in the premises been diagnosed with COVID-19, has been asked to self-isolate, or has been travelling to a coronavirus high-risk area or country in the last 14 days? Is anyone in the premises suffering from flu-like symptoms?"
"A yes response to either of these questions doesn’t necessarily mean the visit won’t take place, but it means our engineers will need to take some further steps and risk assessments before stepping inside the premises.
"The situation is clearly exceptional and ultimately the safety of our people comes first.
"Should we reach a time when the spread of the virus creates a need to prioritise our services differently, then we will follow Government guidance. We will also consider, as an example, prioritising the repair of existing services over the provision of new ones. This work is being overseen at the highest level within Openreach."