The Right Tool for the Right Job We are seeing the construction industry become more and more sophisticated with new construction techniques. However, in residential construction, the same tools that were used fifty years ago are used today although with some improvements. One way to get injured on the job is using the wrong tool for the job. Two important points to remember when using hand tools is the selection of the tool for the job and the use of the tool for the job. Guide for Discussion Some key points to remember: Misuse Resulting From: Ignorance. Poor attitudes. Production demands. General Points: Keep your...

Dressing For Winter Work During cold weather, it can have a chilling effect on the senses to see, smell, and feel. It is usually difficult to be productive when you are cold.  Therefore, it is important to dress for the weather conditions found on the jobsite. Guide for Discussion Always dress in layers with the outer layers being rather loose and the inner layers being somewhat tighter (to trap body heat). Do not over use the outer layer of clothing as a windbreak This will make the layers underneath more effective. Minimize sweat. If you begin to get hot, take a layer...

Effects of Weather There is one element in the construction business that we have no control over—the elements— the weather. However, we can control how the weather affects the safety of a project. Guide for Discussion Wind: Can blow dust in your eyes. Can blow materials and people off scaffolds, roofs or higher floors. Can blow down poorly braced formwork or newly framed walls. Lightning: Often electrical storms occur without any rain. Therefore are very dangerous. Be sure to stay away from any type of tall object. If working around iron or rebar and lighting is seen, clear the area. Rain, Sleet, Ice and Snow: All four are wet,...

Keeping in Shape Staying in shape is one subject that is rarely discussed when safety is the topic. However, a person who stays in good physical condition is less likely to be involved in an accident. They are usually more alert, less subject to the adverse effects of weather and generally able to react more quickly to changing conditions on the job. That is why this is an important subject. Guide for Discussion: Staying in Shape Reduces Injuries by: Reducing the effect that adverse weather has on your Reducing the effect of minor injuries. A body in good condition will usually repair itself...

Safety is Common Sense According to safety professionals, four of five serious injuries are the result of workers not being sensible on the job and taking unnecessary chances.  Common sense on the job is irreplaceable. Most of us have worked around people that are accident prone. They aren’t jinxed; they aren’t very common sense smart. Today we want to talk about using common sense to avoid accidents in the workplace. Guide for Discussion Common Sense “Smarts” Always wear the proper personal protective equipment. Don’t over exert yourself – get help with heavy tasks. Don’t over extend yourself when on ladders – and risk...

Near Misses Most accidents occur as a result of an unsafe condition or unsafe action coming together with a person. The end result is the person gets injured. Often unsafe acts or unsafe conditions have several misfires and the result is a near miss accident or incident. The only difference between a near miss and an accident is luck. Safety conscious companies make a near miss a big deal – so do we. Guide for Discussion Near misses are injuries without Near misses are not funny; they are often Always report a near Take immediate action to prevent a similar near If...

Aerial Work Platforms Aerial Work Platforms include manlifts and scissor lifts. These are two pieces of equipment that many workers can't imagine working without. This equipment, if used correctly, provides quick and safe access to work areas that at one time could only be reached from scaffolding or a crane's manbasket. These lifts, collectively called Aerial Work Platforms, are important tools. But as with any tool, there are right and wrong ways to use them safely. The most important tip to remember before operating any aerial lift platform, is always read and follow the manufacturer's safety and operation manual! This information must...

Shop Safety Instructor Note: Perform a self-inspection prior to making a shop safety presentation. Look for anything that is out of place. Check against the Guide for Discussion for items to point out. Introduction: The safe work practices we do in our shop are often the same practices we take out of our shop and into our homes. What we want to talk about today is what makes shop safety a little different than what we normally do. Guide for Discussion Discuss in-shop procedures initiated to ensure that frequent and regular inspections are conducted to identify potential hazards in materials and equipment in the...

Foundry Worker Safety Foundries are a source of many hazards. There is a hot work environment and the potential for burns or fires around furnaces and crucibles.  Molten metals create fumes.  Sand molding materials can create silica dust.  Chipping, sandblasting, and grinding creates dust.  Conveyors, crushers, and stamping machines pose a caught/crush hazard. This combined activity creates a noisy atmosphere.  Workers need proper work techniques, adequate ventilation, and personal protective equipment (PPE) to stay safe. PPE protects you from the foundry environment. Wear leather shoes, gloves, and safety glasses with a side shield.  A hat with a brim protects you from spatters....

Recognizing Unsafe Conditions Recognizing unsafe conditions, or hazards in the workplace, is not just a Safety Committee responsibility. It is everyone’s responsibility from the most junior employee to the company president to identify hazards and make suggestions on how to fix the problem. Guide for Discussion Causes of unsafe conditions or actions: Poor housekeeping. Horseplay. Confused material storage. Careless handling of materials. Improper or defective tools Lack of machine guarding; failure to install warning systems. Lack of or failure to wear proper personal protection equipment. Weather. Worker not dressing for the job to be done. Failure to follow instructions. Steps to take once an...