Work zone Safety

National Work Zone Awareness

Work Zones Need Your Undivided Attention, We’re all in this together.

The national campaign is conducted every year at the start of the construction season to attract national attention to drive carefully through highway construction and repair sites. Each year, approximately 1,000 people are killed in roadway work zones.

Please Drive Defensively in work zones. Work zones are very dangerous places because so much is happening. To safely navigate through one, always slow down, stay alert, focused and be patient. Always expect the unexpected. Work zone workers, equipment and materials may be in the traffic lanes. Altered road conditions such as edge drop-offs, sharp turns or sloped surfaces can affect your vehicles stability.

Here are 10 defensive driving safety tips for navigating through work zones:

10 Defensive Driving Tips for Work Zones

  • EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED! (Normal speed limits may be reduced, traffic lanes may be changed, and people may be working on or near the road.)
  • SLOW DOWN! Prepare to merge into different traffic lanes. (Speeding is one of the major causes of work zone crashes; obey posted speed limits. Speeding ticket fines are doubled for work zone violations)

  • DON’T TAILGATE! KEEP A SAFE DISTANCE BETWEEN YOU AND THE CAR AHEAD OF YOU. Allow plenty of following distance – at least 3 seconds so you have time to react to hazards (The most common crash in a highway work zone is the rear end collision. So, don’t tailgate)
  • KEEP A SAFE DISTANCE BETWEEN YOUR VEHICLE AND THE CONSTRUCTION WORKERS AND THEIR EQUIPMENT. Watch for the orange work zone cones.
  • PAY ATTENTION TO THE SIGNS! Be prepared to stop! (The warning signs are there to help you and other drivers move safely through the work zone. Observe the posted signs until you see the one that says you’ve left the work zone.)

  • OBEY ROAD CREW FLAGGERS! (The flagger knows what is best for moving traffic safely in the work zone. A flagger has the same authority as a regulatory sign, so you can be cited for disobeying his or her directions.)
  • STAY ALERT AND MINIMIZE DISTRACTIONS! (Dedicate your full attention to the roadway and avoid changing radio stations or eating while driving in a work zone.)
  • KEEP UP WITH THE TRAFFIC FLOW. (Motorists can help maintain traffic flow and posted speeds by merging smoothly, and not slowing to “gawk” at road work equipment and crews.)

  • SCHEDULE ENOUGH TIME TO DRIVE SAFELY AND CHECK RADIO, TV AND WEBSITES FOR TRAFFIC INFORMATION. (Expect delays and leave early so you can reach your destination on time. Check the National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse for information on work zone delays throughout the country.)
  • BE PATIENT AND STAY CALM. (Work zones aren’t there to personally inconvenience you. Remember, the work zone crew members are working to improve the roads and make your future drive safer.)

Information provided by FHWA, Workzonesafety.org and the National Traffic Safety Council.

Today’s Post is by Ken Oswald, Safety and Security Manager for Plateau

keno@plateautel.com

 




Understanding the different types of heat

Not all heat is created equal. Understanding which type of heat you are trying to protect against is going to make all the difference between proper protection and burns.

From the Stanco catalog page 38, we get the following classifications

What kind of heat is it?

It is important to understand the types of heat in order to select the proper gloves and clothing for protection.

Radiant: Generated by a heat source. An example would be a fireplace or the sun. The materials being struck absorb the heat’s rays (it’s hotter standing in the sun than in the shade).

Ambient: The surrounding atmospheric temperature in a particular environment. Example 72 degrees Farenheit in your home; 92 degrees Farenheit on the golf course in July; 1,800 degrees Farenheit in a flaming building.

Conductive: Direct contact with hot surfaces. Example: Touching a hot piece of metal at 800 degrees Farenheit or leaning against a heat treating oven at 1,000 degrees Farenheit.


New OSHA Publication available on Ladder Safety

Ladders

 

A new OSHA publication, entitled “Falling off Ladders Can Kill: Use them Safely” is now available as a free download from the OSHA website.

With text in english and Spanish and simple illustrations to show what should and what shouldn’t be done, this 14 page publication isn’t the end all concerning all the rules and regulations concerning ladders and safety but it does cover the basics that everyone needs to know.

If you or any of your employees use ladders in the course of the days’ work, download and print out this booklet and make sure you and they have gone through it. With falls still the leading cause of injuries and deaths in the workplace, it’s a serious hazard that needs to be addressed and this pamphlet is a great place to start.


National Earth Day Gardening Safety Tips

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Be Healthy and Safe in the Garden

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Stay safe and healthy while enjoying the benefits of gardening.

Whether you are a beginner or expert, health and safety are important as you head out to your garden, vegetable plot, or lawn. Gardening can be a great way to get physical activity, beautify the community, and go green. However, it is important to protect yourself and take precautions as you work and play in the sun and around insects, lawn and garden equipment, and chemicals.

Below are some health and safety tips for gardeners to follow while enjoying the beauty and bounty gardening can bring:

Dress to protect.

·         Prevent exposure to harmful chemicals, insects, and the sun by wearing the proper clothing, and safety equipment.

·         Use an insect repellant and sunscreen with sun protective factor (SPF) 15 or higher, and both UVA and UVB protection.

·         Always check your clothes and body for ticks.

·         Wear a hat with a wide rim to shade the face, head, ears, and neck.

Know your limits in the heat.

·         Even being out for short periods of time in high temperatures can cause serious health problems.

·         Monitor your activities and time in the sun to lower your risk for heat-related illness.

·         Schedule outdoor activities carefully, and pace yourself. Use common sense.

Stay hydrated.

·         Drink plenty of water.

·         Whatever your outdoor activity, have water on hand to decrease the chance of dehydration.

·         Avoid beverages with alcohol and drinks high in sugar, and stay away from caffeinated and carbonated beverages.

Put safety first.

·         Be aware of possible hazards to prevent for injury.

·         Read all instructions and labels before using chemicals and operating equipment.

·         Check equipment before each use.

·         Limit distractions while using equipment.

Enjoy the benefits of physical activity.

·         Gardening is an excellent way to get physical activity.

·         Active people are less likely than inactive people to be obese or have high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, coronary artery disease, stroke, depression, colon cancer, and premature death.

·         Adults should get 2½ hours per week of physical activity.

Persons with disabilities and physical activity.

·         Engage in regular physical activity based on abilities and avoid inactivity.

·         Adults with disabilities should consult their health care provider about the amounts and types of physical activity that are appropriate for their abilities.

·         Physical activity can reduce pain and improve function, mood, and quality of life for adults with arthritis.

Get vaccinated.

·         Vaccinations can prevent many diseases and save lives.

·         Remember that tetanus lives in soil and all adults should get a tetanus vaccination every 10 years.

Go green.

·         Conserve water, reuse containers, recycle, and share your bounty.

·         Eye-catching gardens and landscapes that save water, prevent pollution, and protect the environment can be achieved.

Keep your yard clear.

·         Remove any items that may collect standing water, such as buckets, old tires, and toys. Mosquitoes can breed in them within days.

·         Clearing trees and brush in your yard can reduce the likelihood that deer, rodents, and ticks will live there.

 

Ken Oswald

Safety and Security Manager

Plateau


Drop & Cover or the Triangle of Life?

earthquake

When I was growing up, we were all told that, in the case of an earthquake you needed to “drop and cover”. If possible cover yourself with a sturdy table or desk, if not, roll into a ball and cover the back of your neck with your hands.

In the past few years, however, a new earthquake survival technique has been advocated. This technique, called “The triangle of Life” advocates getting behind a couch or up against an inside wall so that, if the building collapses, you end up in a triangular pocket thereby increasing your odds of survival. It is based on the fact that search and rescue found that survivors in earthquakes where the buildings collapse, like the one in Haiti, were in such a pocket or triangle.

So what is the safest way to survive an earthquake? Should you drop and cover or get into the triangle of life?

The problem is that the drop & cover is the best protection against objects falling on you (plaster, chandeliers, etc…) whereas the triangle of like is the best protection against collapsing buildings. The triangle isn’t going to protect against falling objects and pieces of the building and the drop and cover isn’t going to protect against a building that’s collapsing. In the Haiti earthquake, for example, the triangle of life probably was the most effective because whole buildings collapsed. Those who ended up in pockets like those created by the triangle of life had better odds of surviving and being found. Getting under a desk when the floor above you is coming down isn’t going to save you; you’re going to get crushed. Here in the USA, however, most earthquakes don’t result in the whole building imploding so the drop and cover will still probably save more lives than the triangle.
I guess that ideally, a table in a corner would be the ideal, especially as you don’t know how strong the earthquake is going to be till it’s over.


Online Dangers – Part 4 Fraud and Scams

Unless you just discovered the internet a couple of hours ago, you’re familiar with those emails promising a chunk of money for help transferring funds out of Nigeria or some other country like that. That’s the kind of thing that we’re talking about. Email is just one way that scams and fraud is practiced online.

Email scams:

The email scam we just mentioned is known as the “Nigerian 419 Letter”. The setup is that you provide your bank information supposedly in order to allow someone in Nigeria (or somewhere else, the country can vary) to transfer several million dollars in order to get the money out of the country. In exchange, you’ll get to keep a percentage, usually around 30%. The reality is that they either access all the money in your bank account and clean you out or they keep asking you to put up more money in order to expedite the process and/or pay for bribes, etc…

There are so many variations on these types of emails that it is impossible to try to cover all of them. Ultimately they are all the same. They want you to help them and promise you something in return that you’ll never get. You’ll end up paying money for non-existent merchandise or for a percentage of the transfer and have nothing to show for it except an empty bank account.

A variation on this email scam is the email that tells you you’ve won something (large screen TV, Blue Ray Player, Xbox, etc…) and that all they need from you is a debit card and pin number in order to pay for shipping costs. Again, the only thing you get is money taken out of your bank account.

Another variation is that you won the lottery in Canada, UK, or somewhere else.

There’s a simple rule in dealing with these email scams: If it sounds too good to be true, it is! Ask yourself why someone in Nigeria who has millions of dollars can’t find any other way to get his money out of the country but to contact a perfect stranger and get them to do it for them. Ask yourself how you won a contest or the lottery that you didn’t even enter! You didn’t! They are simply gambling and playing the odds, knowing that there are enough greedy people out there.

The Reshipping Scam:

I actually personally know someone who got involved in one of these. Fortunately, she got out in time.

This scam relies on emails or adds on sites like Craigs List claiming that you can make money from home (work-at-home). What they need is someone to receive goods and transfer funds. The problem is that, unbeknownst to you, the merchandise you’re receiving is merchandise that was purchased using stolen credit cards. You essentially become the front man. By the time the Feds track the stolen items to you, the address that you’re shipping to has no one there. Additionally, the funds that you are transferring are stolen funds and you are essentially laundry the money for them.

Ask yourself why a legitimate traders would use a work-at-home mom to handle his business transactions and shipping if he wasn’t trying to hide something.

From the FBI’s webpage on Internet Fraud, here’s a list on how to protect yourself:

Internet Fraud

Listed below are tips to protect yourself and your family from various forms of Internet fraud.

For information on the most common complaints and scams, see the annual reports of the Internet Crime Complaint Center, or IC3, a partnership of the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center. Also see its information on Internet Crime Schemes and its Internet Crime Prevention Tips.

Use our online tips form or the IC3 website to report potential cases of cyber fraud.

Tips for Avoiding Internet Auction Fraud:

  • Understand as much as possible about how the auction works, what your obligations are as a buyer, and what the seller’s obligations are before you bid.
  • Find out what actions the website/company takes if a problem occurs and consider insuring the transaction and shipment.
  • Learn as much as possible about the seller, especially if the only information you have is an e-mail address. If it is a business, check the Better Business Bureau where the seller/business is located.
  • Examine the feedback on the seller.
  • Determine what method of payment the seller is asking from the buyer and where he/she is asking to send payment.
  • If possible, purchase items online using your credit card, because you can often dispute the charges if something goes wrong.
  • Be cautious when dealing with sellers outside the United States. If a problem occurs with the auction transaction, it could be much more difficult to rectify.
  • Ask the seller about when delivery can be expected and whether the merchandise is covered by a warranty or can be exchanged if there is a problem.
  • Make sure there are no unexpected costs, including whether shipping and handling is included in the auction price.
  • There should be no reason to give out your social security number or driver’s license number to the seller.

Tips for Avoiding Non-Delivery of Merchandise:

  • Make sure you are purchasing merchandise from a reputable source.
  • Do your homework on the individual or company to ensure that they are legitimate.
  • Obtain a physical address rather than simply a post office box and a telephone number, and call the seller to see if the telephone number is correct and working.
  • Send an e-mail to the seller to make sure the e-mail address is active, and be wary of those that utilize free e-mail services where a credit card wasn’t required to open the account.
  • Consider not purchasing from sellers who won’t provide you with this type of information.
  • Check with the Better Business Bureau from the seller’s area.
  • Check out other websites regarding this person/company.
  • Don’t judge a person or company by their website. Flashy websites can be set up quickly.
  • Be cautious when responding to special investment offers, especially through unsolicited e-mail.
  • Be cautious when dealing with individuals/companies from outside your own country.
  • Inquire about returns and warranties.
  • If possible, purchase items online using your credit card, because you can often dispute the charges if something goes wrong.
  • Make sure the transaction is secure when you electronically send your credit card numbers.
  • Consider using an escrow or alternate payment service.

Tips for Avoiding Credit Card Fraud:

  • Don’t give out your credit card number online unless the site is a secure and reputable. Sometimes a tiny icon of a padlock appears to symbolize a higher level of security to transmit data. This icon is not a guarantee of a secure site, but provides some assurance.
  • Don’t trust a site just because it claims to be secure.
  • Before using the site, check out the security/encryption software it uses.
  • Make sure you are purchasing merchandise from a reputable source.
  • Do your homework on the individual or company to ensure that they are legitimate.
  • Obtain a physical address rather than simply a post office box and a telephone number, and call the seller to see if the telephone number is correct and working.
  • Send an e-mail to the seller to make sure the e-mail address is active, and be wary of those that utilize free e-mail services where a credit card wasn’t required to open the account.
  • Consider not purchasing from sellers who won’t provide you with this type of information.
  • Check with the Better Business Bureau from the seller’s area.
  • Check out other websites regarding this person/company.
  • Don’t judge a person or company by their website. Flashy websites can be set up quickly.
  • Be cautious when responding to special investment offers, especially through unsolicited e-mail.
  • Be cautious when dealing with individuals/companies from outside your own country.
  • If possible, purchase items online using your credit card, because you can often dispute the charges if something goes wrong.
  • Make sure the transaction is secure when you electronically send your credit card number.
  • Keep a list of all your credit cards and account information along with the card issuer’s contact information. If anything looks suspicious or you lose your credit card(s), contact the card issuer immediately.

Tips for Avoiding Investment Fraud:

  • Don’t judge a person or company by their website. Flashy websites can be set up quickly.
  • Don’t invest in anything you are not absolutely sure about. Do your homework on the investment and the company to ensure that they are legitimate.
  • Check out other websites regarding this person/company.
  • Be cautious when responding to special investment offers, especially through unsolicited e-mail.
  • Be cautious when dealing with individuals/companies from outside your own country.
  • Inquire about all the terms and conditions.

Tips for Avoiding Business Fraud:

  • Purchase merchandise from reputable dealers or establishments.
  • Obtain a physical address rather than simply a post office box and a telephone number, and call the seller to see if the telephone number is correct and working.
  • Send an e-mail to the seller to make sure the e-mail address is active, and be wary of those that utilize free e-mail services where a credit card wasn’t required to open the account.
  • Consider not purchasing from sellers who won’t provide you with this type of information.
  • Purchase merchandise directly from the individual/company that holds the trademark, copyright, or patent.

Tips for Avoiding the Nigerian Letter or “419” Fraud:

  • Be skeptical of individuals representing themselves as Nigerian or foreign government officials asking for your help in placing large sums of money in overseas bank accounts.
  • Do not believe the promise of large sums of money for your cooperation.
  • Guard your account information carefully.