Italian oil and gas contractor Saipem has confirmed that more than 2,000 staff are working from home due to the coronavirus.
Around 2,196 employees, many whom are based in the firm’s headquarters in Milan, are under what Saipem called “smart working”.
Saipem added that it has worked hard to ensure the “maximum psycho-physical safety of its employees”.
On Friday February 21 all employees of Saipem with fixed residency in the areas identified by authorities where the infection broke out were requested by the firm to stay at home.
More than a dozen areas of Italy are now under quarantine, especially the Lombardy and Veneto regions.
On Monday, it was revealed Saipem had told workers in the affected coronavirus regions to “stay at home” and avoid “social interactions”.
The Milan-headquartered firm announced that “all missions abroad” are cancelled with workers at site “reduced to the minimum”.
Saipem said it had “sanitised” all its offices located in Milan.
A seventh person in Italy reportedly died from the virus on Monday
Up to 50,000 people are understood to be affected in the dozen of so towns now placed under quarantine by Italian officials.
Up to 2,600 people have died from the virus thus far with almost 80,000 infected.
Most victims are in China, where the coronavirus broke out a number of weeks ago.