At Berkeys, customer service, value and top quality service are our priorities for our business. But before any of that comes our community. Each of our team members support their part of the community in their own way – through their church, volunteering, or donations. As a company, Berkeys supports our community, too. We are proud of our personal and professional role we play in our community. Berkeys welcomes the chance to help our Dallas/Fort Worth neighbors. As recently reported in the Dallas Morning News, we need you to help us stay safe, so we can continue to serve our community.
‘Essential’ workers like plumbers and electricians say they’re counting on you to keep them safe
Service providers want customers to notify them if they’re sick before they arrive for a job.
As Dallas County shelters in place, essential service workers like plumbers, HVAC technicians and electricians are continuing to enter the homes of residents — and they’re relying on customers to keep them safe.
“Plumbers, historically, protect the health of the nation,” said Keresa Richardson, who co-owns Benjamin Franklin Plumbing in Dallas, “and we continue to do so by providing services when everyone else is quarantined. We’re still out there doing our job.”
Richardson and her husband, J.R. run Lawton Group, a firm that includes Benjamin Franklin Plumbing, Buckaroo Pest Protection, Lawton Mechanical Services and other companies providing mechanical services.
“Our guys are accustomed to dealing with very unhealthy environments, and they have a series of inoculations they have to go through as a plumber to protect themselves,” Richardson said.
Benjamin Franklin’s nearly 150 employees are continuing to work, she said. But the company is asking customers who call for service to tell them if anyone in the home is feeling ill or showing symptoms related to COVID-19.
“We want to make sure that if there is anyone quarantined, we’re not putting our employees at risk,” said Richardson.
Baker Brothers CEO Jimmy Dale said his company is also relying on customers to notify his company if they’re sick so that they can avoid potentially spreading coronavirus.
Still, there’s a level of risk involved.
“The fact that [workers] can spread it to other places and other people … that’s the part that really scares them and scares us,” said Dale.
Dale said Baker Brothers hasn’t run into a scenario where they might have to deny service to a customer, but that those decisions will be made by management to ensure the safety of both workers and customers. If a customer reports that someone in the household is sick when calling to request services, the company will first try to reschedule the job depending on what is being requested.
Dale has also given employees permission to refuse service at the door if they feel customers aren’t forthcoming about any potential illness in the household, or they’re uncomfortable about a job for any reason.
Baker Brothers’ 273 employees are working remotely where possible, according to Dale. Technicians who make house calls are going straight to service calls from their homes and calling in for weekly team meetings.
The company has instructed workers to follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention when they go into homes. They’re maintaining six feet of space between themselves and customers, and also wearing protective gear including face shields and gloves. And they’re disinfecting equipment between every job.
Employees at Dallas-Fort Worth-based Berkeys Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical are keeping their distance at customers’ doors and performing touchless payment transactions for jobs, according to President Jamie Wooldridge.
“We can actually send an invoice to the customer and they can pay for it then,” said Wooldridge. “And if that’s not feasible, then we have them read us the credit card number instead of passing it back and forth.”
Wooldridge said that if a customer tells the company they’re under quarantine or exhibiting symptoms associated with coronavirus, they’re asking them to reschedule services for a later date.
The shelter in place order that affects more than 2 million Dallas County residents is also putting an abnormal — but expected — strain on home plumbing systems, Richardson said.
Several plumbing companies’ executives who spoke with The Dallas Morning News said they’ve seen an uptick in service calls for clogged plumbing, likely resulting from the added stress of residents flushing products other than toilet paper.
“A lot of times we don’t realize we have five people in the house but you only have two people in at a time,” Dale said. “All day long, five people being there kind of creates that.”
“We’ve had a big uptick in drain calls,” Dale said. Baker Brothers saw twice as many service requests for clogged plumbing Monday as it would on an average Monday, he said.
Benjamin Franklin plumbers have even started leaving a roll of complimentary toilet paper at the homes they service.
“With a toilet paper shortage, they are flushing baby wipes, paper towels, Kleenex, whatever they can find to use if they’ve run out of toilet paper,” said Richardson. “That clogs the system because those are not meant to disintegrate like toilet paper.”
Berkeys supports our community, too. We are proud of our personal and professional role we play in our community. Berkeys welcomes the chance to help our Dallas/Fort Worth neighbors.
Berkeys Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical is a proud member of the Dallas / Fort Worth community, Our reliable, professional employees will help you keep your home’s systems running efficiently and safely so you can enjoy our great DFW metroplex.
When you need a dependable, knowledgeable plumber, electrician or HVAC technician in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area, call a name you trust. Berkeys Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Electrical 24/7, Call us at 817-405-0740 or schedule online for questions and scheduling information. You can also find us on Facebook »