Building a Safety Culture – Free Download

Dodge Research and Analytics is giving away a free copy of their new report entitled “Building a Safety Culture: Improving Safety and Health Management in the Construction Industry

Building_A_Safety_Culture

“This report establishes a safety culture spectrum of contractors in the U.S. construction industry based on the use of 33 leading indicators of a safety culture. It also examines critical shifts in the use of safety management practices and their impact in the industry since 2012, as well as the key drivers and obstacles for increasing investment in safety management practices and key trends in safety training. The report demonstrates that firms at the high end of the safety culture spectrum use more safety management practices and see stronger business benefits than companies lower in the spectrum.”

Essentially the report finds that companies that invest more time and money on safety have a greater employee retention, have a greater ability to attract new hires, have a greater return on investment and a better project quality.

Download your own copy of this 56 page document.



Class A & Class B SRLs

From our friends at Guardian Fall Protection

SRLs Have Class – Two Actually: Understanding the Difference Between Class A & Class B SRLs

In August of 2012, ANSI, in their Z359.14-2012 Safety Requirements for Self-Retracting Devices for Personal Fall Arrest and Rescue Systems (since revised to Z359.14-2014), divided SRLs into two classes. These classes are defined based on an SRL’s maximum potential arrest distance and maximum potential average arrest force. SRLs with a maximum arrest distance of 24 inches are labelled Class A, and those with a maximum arrest distance of 54 inches are labelled Class B. Average arrest forces are capped at 1,350 lbs. for Class A SRLs, and 900 lbs. for Class B SRLs, with the maximum arrest force of 1,800 lb. for both classes.

Breaking It Down.

Going only by the numbers, it seems no matter which SRL you choose you will be trading arrest force for arrest distance. On its face, that’s true. But if we take a more nuanced look into the real-world meaning of those numbers, it becomes clear that what seems like a compromise is actually a means to provide the most appropriate solution for a given fall protection scenario.

First, it’s important to understand that both classes of SRLs are OSHA 1926.500 subpart M compliant because they both, “limit [the] maximum arresting force on an employee to 1,800 pounds (8 kN) when used with a body harness.” This means that no matter what class of SRL you choose, you can rest assured of OSHA compliance. When it comes to the difference in average arresting force between the two classes (1350 lb. and 900lb., respectively) it is really just a by-product of how quickly the SRL stops a fall.

SRL-classes-explained-guardian-fall-protection

Read the rest of this post here.


Having an AED Isn’t Enough!

A good number of AED (Automated External Defibrillators) that inspect in the workplace might not work in case of emergency. It’s great to have an AED in the workplace but unless someone is maintaining and inspecting it on a regular basis, it might not actually work when you need it.

Zoll-AED

You need to assign someone to inspect that AED at least  once a month. Set up a calendar reminder on their computer so that they don’t forget.

Here is the AED inspection checklist:

  1. First thing to check is the battery. Most defibrillator have two batteries. One is the battery that actually powers the AED when you use it, administrating the shock. Most AED batteries have a 4-5 year life (check with your manufacturer) and should be replaced after that period regardless of whether or not it has ever been used. There should be an expiration date stamped on the battery. The other is usually a small 9 volt battery that your AED uses to do regular self-testing. There should be a small light that blinks on your AED letting you know if this battery needs to be replaced or not. Green means it’s still good, orange or red means it needs to be replaced.
  2. Second thing to check are the pads. AED pads have a 2-year expiration date. Again the date should be stamped on the package that the pads come in.
  3. Third is a quick visual inspection to make sure that there are no frayed wires, disconnected leads or obvious damage that might hinder the AED from working when needed.
  4. Finally, the accessories should also be checked and replaced as needed. Disposable gloves, for example, deteriorate rather rapidly and should be replaced every six months or so. Check also to make sure that the scissors, CPR barrier, etc… are all still there and replace as needed.

While it’s great that so many companies are finally getting the message and purchasing an AED for the workplace, it’s also important to put together an inspection schedule to make sure that AED can do what it was purchased to do if the time ever comes.

Need an AED? Check out the Zoll AED.


When Safety Officials Go Too Far

I came across this article in the Express from England the other day. The gist of the article was the city of Blackpool in England, because of budget cuts, has stopped cutting the grass in certain community areas. Concerned that their children might get injured from broken glass, buried rocks and other objects, the local citizens took it upon themselves to cut the grass themselves. Sounds awesome doesn’t it?

Apparently the local bureaucrats didn’t think so. They banned local residences from mowing any common areas because of safety issues. This doesn’t mean that the council cabinet won’t, at some point allow residences to do the job, it just means that a risk assessment will need to be done, insurance certificates will have to be drawn up and permissions will have to be issued… Which probably means that it’ll never get done!

BLACKPOOL-685598(Image source: http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/685598/Blackpool-council-block-citizens-cutting-overgrown-grass-health-safety-concerns)

Needless to say, local citizens aren’t happy. They continue to assert that trying to “protect” the adults who volunteer to mow the grass is actually putting their children at risk.

Reminds me of the park employee I saw a couple years ago using a weed wacker. He was wearing chainsaw chaps, a long sleeve coat, steel toe boots, shin and knee guards, a hard hat, safety glasses, a face shield and ear muffs. Oh, did I mention it was in the high 90s that day! Hopefully they gave him a cooling vest to wear under all that gear.

Obviously we here at National Safety, Inc. are all about safety but safety can be overdone and actually become unsafe.

 



Combustible Dust OSHA Fact Sheet

combustible_dust

Combustible dust means just what it sounds like, it’s dust that accumulates in the air to a level where it can ignite. A number of products are known to be especially volatile and therefore, especially dangerous.

It is, therefore, important to know if the products you work around are classified as potentially combustible and to know how to take the appropriate steps to protect yourself and others who work around them.

Examples of combustible dusts include charcoal, corn, egg white, fertilizer,flour, powdered milk, spices, aluminum, starch, sugar, tobacco, and a lot of other substances.

Sugar, for example, is combustible but the sugar molecules burn up in a quick flash and don’t normally present a problem. The danger arises when those molecules are close enough to ignite the molecule next to it whether those molecules are floating in the air or have accumulated on surfaces in the work area. When that happens a chain explosion takes place.

To learn more read the recently released OSHA Fact Sheet to help inform on the dangers of combustible dust.

 




“My First Car” Safety Campaign

There’s a lot of excitement and joy when your teen gets his or her first car both for the parents who don’t have to drive the teen around anymore as well as for the teen who now has a degree of freedom they haven’t had before. For the parents there’s also the concern and worry over whether or not their teen is going to drive safely, especially with regards to texting and driving.

That’s the emphasis of Michelin’s new TV ad and hashtag entitled #FirstCarMoment that features real footage of several teens finding out that they just got gifted their first car. Have a look for yourself:

#FirstCarMoment
(Click on the image above to view the video)