Eleven food and food delivery companies have agreed not to ask their couriers to work on days when work is canceled due to typhoons or other natural disasters, the Ministry of Labor said on Friday.
Foodpanda, Uber Eats, Lalamove, Foodomo, Deliveroo, YoWoo Food Delivery, McDonald’s Taiwan, Pizza Hut, KFC, Napoli Pizza and Domino’s Pizza agreed to the safety guidelines, the ministry said in a statement.
The ministry said that it also urged companies to take all steps possible to ensure the safety of their delivery staff, such as providing them with high-visibility vests and helmets, as well as giving them safety training.
Some companies engage independent contractors — not employees — to deliver food, which some have said falls outside the scope of safety and health regulations, but companies must comply with the provisions of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (職業安全衛生法), Occupational Safety Division head Lee Wen-chin (李文進) said.
According to Article 51 of the act, individuals engaged in work directed by a company supervisor are covered as much by safety and health regulations as the company’s own employees, Lee said.
Companies face a maximum fine of NT$300,000 for occupational injuries resulting from a breach of the regulations, he said.
Non-legally binding guidelines for the safety of food couriers would be introduced soon and would likely include a clause that they are not required to work on typhoon days off to reduce the number of traffic accidents involving delivery staff, the ministry said.
A Taipei veterinarian is urging pet owners to avoid using insecticides around their homes, as their ingredients can be toxic to pets. Commercial-grade insecticides contain pyrethroids — organic compounds similar to natural pyrethrins, pesticides produced by flowers such as chrysanthemums — in quantities that are harmless to humans, but potentially fatal to cats and dogs, Asian Veterinary Specialist Referral Center veterinarian Chua Man-ling (蔡曼琳) said. Even in small quantities, pyrethroids are hazardous to cats, as they lack the metabolic enzymes needed to process them, Chua said. Cockroach sprays and ant traps are especially dangerous to pets as they contain boric acid, she
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