COVID Operating Protocols

Updated May 2021


VMI has been operating with new COVID-19 protocols since 1 July 2020 and as such can now provide a completely normal service, albeit with some modified safety protocols in order to safeguard our staff and clients.

The following guidelines have been setup in association with the rental company association, ASPEC.

Main Guidelines Below

  • Rental Desk London/VMEDIA: 8am – 6pm
  • Warehouse London/VMEDIA: 7am – 7pm
  • Rental Desk Bristol: 8am – 6pm
  • Warehouse Bristol: 8am – 6pm
  • COVID working practices are still in place to ensure that staff and clients are kept safe as per published ASPEC protocols.
  • 3% of daily/weekly gross rental fee to be charged for a sanitising fee for rentals, however there will be no sanitising charge for inter ASPEC -company hire.
  • Drivers and Technicians wear PPE when greeting clients.
  • No signing of documents required.
  • QR code for visitor registration at VMI London and VMI Bristol.
  • VMI is open for camera testing, subject to new revised procedures.
  • Account, Advanced Payment or contactless payment facility will avoid handing credit cards.
  • All equipment will be sanitised before shipping, as per published ASPEC protocols.
  • Production and crew to be made aware that our drivers will not under any circumstance pick up equipment that has not come from the rental house.  It could result in the driver being disciplined as it compromises health and safety and could put other staff in danger.
  • Whilst most Rental Desk client contacts and admin staff will continue to work from home remotely.
  • When jobs that require crew testing return to VMI they will be subject to the same protocols as VMI staff.   
  • Rental equipment is not to be subject to quarantine periods.
  • Cases are sealed with ‘contents sanitised’ labels once sanitised, to provide a visible indication that contents are safe.

Our procedures and processes will be monitored and reviewed weekly and change when conditions change, in line with Government recommendations.

All VMI staff will wear face masks at all of VMI buildings, when they are not at their desks or work benches.

All face to face dealings with clients, including drivers delivering or collecting, will see VMI staff wearing appropriate PPE.

Phase Two

We are now in our Phase Two of the COVID-19 procedures which sees crews being allowed into the rental houses but following the protocols that have been put into place. During Phase Two crew will be allowed to bring in a Preston, Follow Focus or similar.  However they will have to leave them in the test room and then take them home again at night or pay the rental house to have it sanitised.

COVID-19 Camera Testing

Camera Test
  • Any camera tests must be confirmed and agreed in advance.
  • All visitors attending camera tests for equipment being delivered the following day must vacate the building by 6.30pm.
  • Visitors to complete visitor’s book and leave contact details.
  • Visitors to wash hands upon entering our buildings.
  • Each Camera test room has a separate fresh air supply and an air conditioner which cools air in that room only and does not circulate with other rooms.
  • Where help is sought from VMI technicians, then they will wear suitable PPE.
  • Paperwork will not need to be signed upon collection, as digital images can be used to capture proof of collection.

VMI COVID 19 General Risk Assessment

This document is to provide clear guidance on the identified risks and preventative measures taken by VMI.TV Ltd in order to protect both its employees, their families, its clients and end users in light of the current situation with the COVID-19 outbreak.

It does not, in any way, replace any government, WHO, NHE or HSE guidelines or recommendations.

This document is subject to change as and when any of the above agencies change their recommendations.

New VMI COVID 19 Procedures and Processes

Our newly designed Contents Sanitised paper labels are printed onto recycled paper (of course) to affix to the butterfly catches of cases to ensure that once gear is sanitised, it provides a visible notification to clients that the contents have been sanitised.

Being made of recycled paper, they are also easy to dispose of responsibly.

Our staff are being provided with custom PPE to ensure the safety and welfare of our staff.

VMI is committed to the welfare of our staff and clients and will adhere to all government guidelines in this fluid situation.

Our staff are using all sanitation guidelines as laid down by the healthcare professionals and we will remain fully staffed in both the rental and operations departments until and if required to shut down as ordered by the government.

Our operations will work on a split shift basis to maximise social distancing and limit contact and all staff required to be Acton or Bristol will be provided with alternative means of travel to avoid public transport

All external meetings will be conducted remotely.

VMI has (and always has had) robust interruption of Business mechanisms in place and these will be activated accordingly and will mitigate even a long stretch of relative commercial inactivity.

We wish all our staff, colleagues and particularly the freelancers of our industry safe passage to the other side of this crisis.


Upon arrival to the building, you will be required to:

  1. Scan the QR code for track and trace from your mobile.
  2. You will be required to wear a facemask at all times whilst in the building.

ASPEC 10 Point Plan for safe working procedures

ASPEC (Association for Studios and Production Equipment Companies), is an association which represents the largest camera, grip and lighting hire companies in the UK, seeking to ensure high standards of health & safety and support the film, commercial and television production industries, by encouraging the correct working practises in our individual member companies and have been working together in order to produce some guidelines and best-practices for us all to return to work, post- COVID-19.

The member companies forming the association would be committing to opening their businesses in phased, safe, careful, cautious and responsible way, with the emphasis being uppermost on Health and Safety.

The Member Companies continue to show a remarkable degree of unanimity and consensus, given that normally, they are all the fiercest of competitors. Also, there is total agreement, that morally and ethically, there should be no commercial advantage, to be made from the appalling situation, in which the industry, country and world finds itself.

The most up to date protocols agreed by ASPEC are provided on this link.

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