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Alberta OHS Code review process

OHS Code review process

Updates to the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Code are made on a 5-year cycle. Previously, changes were made every 3 years.

These updates reflect feedback from workers and employers, industry, labour and health and safety associations, and members of the public.

Over the past 3 years, stakeholders submitted a number of suggestions for areas of the code that would benefit from being reviewed. As a result of this feedback, we have reviewed Parts 4, 6, 10, 16, 18, 21, 23, 32, 33, 36, and 37, and Schedules 1, 4, and 9 along with a smaller number of sections within other parts of the code.

From November 2014 to January 2015, a public consultation on proposed changes was held. We are now in the process of reviewing and considering all feedback.

Review process

  1. for the first 3 years of the cycle, there will be focused annual reviews of specific parts of the code. Government will invite suggestions from stakeholders, review all input, and develop a formal proposal outlining any recommendations for change
  2. in the 4th and 5th years of the cycle, a detailed consultation will take place, followed by final recommendations

Immediate changes to the code may be considered if there is a critical issue. This could include a concern over a work site condition or practice that could contribute to a fatality or serious injury. Changes to the code can also be made if revisions to other legislation that may affect health and safety are identified.

We welcome suggestions for other changes to the Code at any time and will collect this information for future consideration

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When you talk to people regarding Health and Safety are you hoping for a PARLEY?

When we talk Parley we think of the movie and the pirates saying PARLEY no one can be hurt or injured under the rules of PARLEY!

 Parley really means:

To exploit successfully

To increase or otherwise transform into something of much great value  or to use ones money, talent, or other assets to achieve a desired objective as spectacular wealth and success and that includes the SUPERVISOR, not just the worker.

Are you betting your safety program at work based upon your assets, money and talents will achieve a work force with ZERO incidents and happy health workers?   Well how to do you do it how do you get there and you need great education in the WHOLE program at work!

In truth Parley starts by teaching the TEN COMMANDMENTS of your program!The 10 Commandments of Safety

Ten Commandments of Work Health Safety

  1. Safety is everyone’s business legally and morally
  2. All accidents are preventable and irreversible
  3. Follow company rules, regulation and procedures – they’re there to protect you
  4. Assess it, manage it, regulate it and measure it  – stop, think, safety
  5. Be proactive, understand accident causes and make the change
  6. If not trained, don’t risk it; don’t do it
  7. Manual handling – size up the load, manage the lift
  8. Don’t take shortcuts, they lead to injuries
  9. Practice good housekeeping, avoid slips, trips and falls
  10. Be aware – there may be an accident waiting to happen

Safety attitude is more than just following the rules.It’s that extra something that means you care about safety. You show you keep safety in mind when you… Plan ahead for the job, including a review of the procedures and equipment.

Focus on the job you’re doing, even when you’d rather be doing something else.

Take time to do the job right the first time, even if it means getting out extra safety equipment and going over procedures.

Take responsibility for safety, even when it’s “not my job.” Do the right thing, even when others want you to take shortcuts or fool around.

Know the risks of unsafe tasks, and avoid them whenever you can, even when it means taking more time to get the job done safely

Are you teaching your staff about safety in the WHOLE BIG PICTURE OF LIFE

Terry Penney

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Have you ever wonder about some of your Occupational Health and Safety Laws and stated it was either about time or who is the moron that thought this one up, well our OHS rules and standards have been growing and hopefully preventing worker incidents, but since when and by whom?

Although Health and Safety was noted in history four hundred years before Christ, most of our current laws and standards really didn’t get a punch in the arm since Rome until;

In the USA, The Occupational Safety and Health Act is the primary federal law which governs occupational health and safety in the private sector and federal government in the United States. It was enacted by Congress in 1970 and was signed by President Richard Nixon on December 29, 1970. Its main goal is to ensure that employers provide employees with an environment free from recognized hazards, such as exposure to toxic chemicals, excessive noise levels, mechanical dangers, heat or cold stress, or unsanitary conditions. The first federal safety legislation was enacted in the Progressive period. In 1893, Congress passed the Safety Appliance Act, the first federal statute to require safety equipment in the workplace (the law applied only to railroad equipment, however)

On the British and Canadian Side of the courts we a little over 200 years of written laws governing our current standards. From the first legislation in 1802, it has been a rocky road to get to where we are today.


Factory Act 1802
The UK’s first law to protect the welfare of people at work. Pauper apprentices were prohibited from night work and their labor limited to 12 hours a day.


Factories Act 1831

Limited working day to 12 hours for those under 18.


Factories Act 1833

Made provisions for the enforcement of the law by government-appointed inspectors, known as the HM Factory Inspectorate, whose main duty was protecting children from injury and overwork. Four inspectors were appointed. It also extended a young person’s maximum 12-hour working day to woolen and linen mills.

All of our safety laws and standards came into play via these practices, Health and safety law is a body of law that protects the health, safety and welfare of the general public and certain defined sectors of the population such as employees. Most jurisdictions have a framework of health and safety law which will usually be enforced by the state using an inspectorate, regulatory control and the criminal law:

Common Law began as an unofficial practice among judges and other experts, where the transcripts of disputes in Courts were circulated –  eventually, this developed into a formally approved system of precedent, where cases considered to be significant, were documented and later used as authority for specific rules of law.

Precedent is still only set by the superior courts AND yes 90% of our laws did start in Britian (House of Lords, Court of Appeal, High Court) and is binding on courts of equal and lower rank (Crown Court, County Court, Magistrate’s Court etc.).

Judicial Precedent

Decisions made by judges have authority within the system of law. Many precedents are binding – this means that the principle of law set down by a previous judgement will be binding, in courts of equal or lower rank, in subsequent cases found on similar facts. Precedent can be either authoritative or persuasive:

Authoritative precedent refers to judgments made by higher courts that bind the lower courts.

Persuasive precedent refers to judgments which are not binding upon a court, however, a judge may choose to take them into consideration (for example cases in the USA or Commonwealth).

Terry Penney

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Before you turn the key on, Before you Moved the Unit, what did you cover On that forklift?

What factors of work organization can contribute to forklift trucks accidents?

  • Lack of training or improper training of workers who have to operate forklift trucks.
  • Production factors such as speed or stress.
  • Lack of proper tools, attachments and accessories.
  • Improper assignment of forklifts and operators.
  • Poor maintenance of  forklifts.
  • Age of forklifts.

Advises forklift operators to:

  • Inspect forklifts before every use.
  • Perform regular maintenance checks on tires.
  • Establish safe procedures for loads, including picking up, putting down and stacking.
  • Turn off a forklift before performing maintenance.
  • Avoid overloading the forklift by following manufacturer guidelines on weight capacity.
  • Pick up loads with care.
  • Ensure a load is secured, carefully centered and distributed properly to maintain balance.
  • Ensure the forklift is at the correct height for picking up a load.
  • Wear the safety belt installed by the manufacturer.
  • Never engage in horseplay.
  • Never exceed 5 mph in congested or slippery areas.
  • Never drive too close to people standing in front of fixed or stacked objects.

What behavioural and operational factors can contribute to forklift trucks accidents?

  • An operator should avoid turning, if possible, and should use extreme caution on grades, ramps, or inclines. Normally the operator should travel straight up and down (ASME/ANSI B56.1, §5.3.8[d]) [ASME 1993].
  • The operator of a sit-down type forklift should stay with the truck if lateral or longitudinal tip over occurs. The operator should hold on firmly and lean away from the point of impact (ASME/ANSI B56.1, §5.3.18[d]) [ASME 1993].
  • Travelling at excessive speed.
  • Riding with the load elevated.
  • Improper backing up techniques.
  • Improper turning, braking or accelerating.
  • Improper warnings to others about a forklift in use nearby.
  • Poor communication during shared tasks, or in shared spaces.
  • Riding or giving rides on forklift or load.
  • Parking the forklift improperly.
  • Improper blocking of wheels on semi-trailers or railway cars.
  • Horseplay; stunt driving; jerky, erratic driving.
  • Inadequate servicing of the forklift.


How can workplace design contribute to forklift trucks accidents?

  • Narrow aisles.
  • Crowded, cluttered aisles.
  • Obstructions at intersections and doors.
  • Volume of traffic in work area.
  • Walking and working in the general area of forklift operations.
  • Other workplace conditions such as noise, odours, toxic gases, dust, or poor lighting.
  • Many ramps with different surfaces.
  • Condition of loading dock.


What characteristics of the load create a hazard?

  • Poorly stacked or piled on the pallet.
  • Pallets in poor repair.
  • Load too heavy.
  • Load unstable or blocking vision.

Workers who operate or work near forklifts may be struck or crushed by the machine or the load being handled.

Workers: If you operate or work near forklifts, take these steps to protect yourself.

  • Do not operate a forklift unless you have been trained and licensed
  • Use seatbelts if they are available
  • Report to your supervisor any damage or problems that occur to a forklift during your shift
  • Do not jump from an overturning, sit-down type forklift. Stay with the truck, holding on firmly and leaning in the opposite direction of the overturn
  • Exit from a stand-up type forklift with rear-entry access by stepping backward if a lateral tip over occurs
  • Use extreme caution on grades or ramps
  • On grades, tilt the load back and raise it only as far as needed to clear the road surface
  • Do not raise or lower the forks while the forklift is moving
  • Do not handle loads that are heavier than the weight capacity of the forklift
  • Operate the forklift at a speed that will permit it to be stopped safely
  • Slow down and sound the horn at cross aisles and other locations where vision is obstructed
  • Look toward the travel path and keep a clear view of it
  • Do not allow passengers to ride on forklift trucks unless a seat is provided
  • When dismounting from a forklift, set the parking brake, lower the forks or lifting carriage, and neutralize the controls
  • Do not drive up to anyone standing in front of a bench or other fixed object
  • Do not use a forklift to elevate workers who are standing on the forks
  • Elevate a worker on a platform only when the vehicle is directly below the work area
  • Whenever a truck is used to elevate personnel, secure the elevating platform to the lifting carriage or forks of the forklift
  • Use a restraining means such as rails, chains, or a body belt with a lanyard or deceleration device for the worker(s) on the platform
  • Do not drive to another location with the work platform elevated


What mechanical conditions or design features increase the risk for forklift accidents?

  • Malfunction of brakes.
  • Malfunction of steering.
  • Malfunction of clutch, shift linkage, or transmission.
  • Malfunction of mast assembly.
  • Leaks in hydraulic systems or transmission.
  • Safety devices lacking, inadequate, or malfunctioning.
  • Emissions from forklifts.
  • Blind spots or obstructions blocking driver’s view.
  • Poor layout of controls and displays.


How can accidents with pedestrians be reduced or avoided?

  • Separate the pedestrian and forklift traffic by creating designated walkways or travel ways.
  • Restrict people from entering areas where the forklift is operating.
  • Keep a safe distance from the forklift whenever possible.
  • Pedestrians should always let the driver know they are in the area. Make eye contact with the driver to ensure your presence is known.
  • Ensure the area is well lit and there are no obstructions.
  • Be cautious near blind corners, doorways, and narrow aisles. Sound the forklift horn at intersections.
  • Use high-visibility clothing, where appropriate.
  • Limit forklift travel speed.
  • Do not walk near or under raised forks.
  • Do not load the forklift in a way that restricts the driver’s viewing area.
  • Avoid driving forklift near areas where pedestrian traffic is high

Terry Penney

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Flash burn BLUE LIGHT SAFETY risk on your site via your lack of welding knowledge

Someone who can WELD things well on site is a huge asset to the company and getting thing done correctly, but they come with a safety note regarding FLASH BURNS and Eye Care or Risk to EYE CARE!

Welding arcs give off radiation over a broad range of wavelengths – from 200 nm (nanometres) to 1,400 nm (or 0.2 to 1.4 µm, micometres). This includes ultraviolet (UV) radiation (200 to 400 nm), visible light (400 to 700 nm), and infrared (IR) radiation (700 to 1,400 nm). UV-radiation is divided into three ranges – UV-A (315 to 400 nm), UV-B (280 to 315 nm) and UV-C (100 to 280 nm). UV-C and almost all UV-B are absorbed in the cornea of the eye. UV-A passes through cornea and is absorbed in the lens of the eye. Some UV radiation, visible light, and IR radiation can reach the retina.

And yes, Welding is one of the most hazardous occupations in construction. Traditionally, welders had to fear workplace injury from burns, electricity, and “welder’s flash” (blinding and diminished vision, see below). Recent studies have shown that toxic chemicals released from welding rods put welders at an additional workplace risk for less immediate but no less serious conditions of lung, brain, and nerve damage, such as manganism (Welders’ Parkinson’s disease).

The heat necessary for a weld is intense, and the dangers of welding injuries great. Spatter (hot metal) and sparks from the weld can cause second- and third-degree burns and ignite materials, including clothing. Before beginning any weld, make sure a Class C fire (“electrical fire”) extinguisher is nearby. Never use water because a lead’s electricity and water don’t mix. After any weld, the area should be observed to make sure the residual heat from the weld does not cause workplace fires and explosions.

Electrical shock is possible whenever electricity is present. Commonly confused by apprentice rod welders, the “ground connection” does not mean a “work lead” (the cable coming from the power supply connecting to what is to be welded).

Arc radiation and welder’s flash

Welder’s Flash is one of the welding injuries that occur from the intense ultraviolet light, produced from the arc ray. Skin exposed during welding can develop sunburns from this radiation. Welders not given proper eye protection, or not keeping a safe distance from the arc, can develop a painful condition known as welder’s flash. These welding injuries are also knows as Arc Eye, or Flash Burns.

Symptoms of welder’s flash include tearing eyes, light sensitivity, and even intense burning from eyes that feel constantly dry. Welder’s flash symptoms typically occur a few hours after exposure and disappear within a day-and-a-half. Doctors usually prescribe antibiotic eye drops/ointments to prevent eye infection and pain killers. Sometimes an eye patch is required. Although rare, arc radiation can penetrate the retina and cause permanent retinal damage, including cataracts, diminished vision, and higher sensitivity to light. For many, the worst part of welding injuries, are the number of days missed, especially if these are unpaid.

Because of smoke and glare, welders sometimes position their heads too close to the arc and increase the risk for welder’s flash. Wearing cheaters (safety reading glasses) under the hood lets the welder get a better look at the weld and gauge distance. Auto-darkening helmets both protect the welder’s eyes and also prevent weld defects as the welder can better see to position the gun or electrode while the helmet is down. What are the symptoms? • Pain that may be mild to very severe. • Bloodshot eyes. • Being sensitive to light. • Watery eyes. • Blurred vision. • A feeling there is something in your eye (usually both eyes).

First Aid Stories from the field!!!!   Flashburn feels like you eyes have sand in them, and is painful. I would tend to think you have gotten something in it if its only in one area of one eye. Probably wouldnt hurt to see a doctor if it persists. Flash burn feels like someone shot you in the face with pepper spray. I got burnt once and woke up a 2 am with what felt like acid in my eyes. Nothing I could do would would relieve the pain i just had the let it run it’s course. Took about twenty minutes to settle down felt like forever. Once got some welding flash into your eyes, you will tend to get watery eyes, painful eyes, as well as photophobia sometimes. The flash would lead to a dramatic drop in your vision for sometime, so you need to take care of it right away. If lucky and treatment is received, it might last about 2 weeks before you are recovered,

Long-term exposure to UV light can produce cataracts in some persons.

Visible light from welding processes is very bright and can overwhelm the ability of the iris of the eye to close sufficiently and rapidly enough to limit the brightness of the light reaching the retina. The result is that the light is temporarily blinding and fatiguing to the eye.

A serious concern is the “blue light hazard” which is the temporary or permanent scarring of the retina due to its sensitivity to blue light, around 440 nm wavelength. Blindness may result.

Exposure to infrared light can heat the lens of the eye and produce cataracts over the long term. A flash burn occurs when you are exposed to bright ultraviolet (UV) light. It can happen in all types of UV light but is most common among welders (sometimes called ‘Welder’s flash’ or ‘Arc eye’). Flash burns cause a painful inflammation of the cornea (the clear tissue that covers the front of the eye), which is like sunburn in the eye, and can affect both your eyes. What causes fl ash burns? • You can receive a flash burn after being exposed to UV light from various sources. • A welding torch. • Direct sunlight. • Reflection of the sun off water or snow. • A sunlamp (in a tanning salon). • Some types of lamps (halogen or a photographer’s flood lamp). • Lightning. • Explosion. • Solar eclipse (looking directly at the sun for a prolonged period of time).

Certain types of UV radiation can produce an injury to the surface and mucous membrane (conjunctiva) of the eye called “arc eye,” “welders’ eye” or “arc flash.” These names are common names for “conjunctivitis” – an inflammation of the mucous membrane of the front of the eye. The symptoms include:

  • pain – ranging from a mild feeling of pressure in the eyes to intense pain in severe instances
  • tearing and reddening of the eye and membranes around the eye
  • sensation of “sand in the eye” or abnormal sensitivity to light
  • inability to look at light sources (photophobia)

The amount of time required to cause these effects depends on several factors such as the intensity of the radiation, the distance from the welding arc, the angle at which the radiation enters the eye, and type of eye protection that the welder or bystander is using. However, exposure to just a few seconds of intense UV light can cause arc eye. These symptoms may not be felt until several hours after exposure. See your local doctor or health care professional if you: • Have blurred vision • Notice a change in vision • See spots or flashes of light • Have pain when moving your eyes • Have worsening pain after 24 hours • Or you are concerned for any other reason

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Delay in OHS law Prosecution doesn’t mean you are not going to Court, pack your toothbrush!

Even though the case took more than two years to get to trial, an Ontario court has refused to halt a prosecution of a company under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Charges were laid against a construction company in January, 2014 after a worker fell nine feet when a ladder slipped. The charges alleged that the company failed to ensure that the ladder was tied down or otherwise secured to prevent slipping.

There were nine court appearances, and a trial was scheduled for January, 2016.  The company, relying on the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, asked the court to order a stay (similar to a dismissal) of the OHSA charges due to the delay in getting to trial.

The court stated that the “defence was content with the pace of proceedings” and that the company had not provided any evidence that it had suffered “irremediable prejudice” because of the delay.  For instance, there was no evidence that any witness’s recollection had been significantly impaired.  Further, late disclosure of one document had not caused prejudice because the document (disclosed one month before trial) was “of marginal value” as it repeated the Ministry of Labour investigator’s conclusions.  Further, both the defence and the Crown had been responsible for some of the delay in getting to trial.

The court stated that, “A stay is a remedy of last resort. There is a societal interest in having the charges heard on the merits.”  The charges should proceed to trial.

The decision was handed down before the Supreme Court of Canada released its recent, ground-breaking decision on delay in R. v. Jordan, 2016 SCC 27 (CanLII).  It remains to be seen how the new Jordanframework for dealing with delay will be applied in OHSA cases involving corporate defendants.

  1. v. Black and McDonald Limited, 2016 ONCJ 345 (CanLII)

Terry Penney

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Air Brakes on Large Units will only be Safe if you Inspect the Hazards before movement!

Air Brakes on trucks or large units are CRITICAL FUNCTIONAL items that the driver must TOTALLY understand and NEVER ignore before putting anything in gear.   It all starts with a simple inspection! Truck brakes are often blamed for causing crashes. Most commonly, this claim comes from the truck driver, who is trying to transfer blame from himself to a failure of the truck. When this claim is made, interested parties often assume that a catastrophic failure caused a complete loss of braking force.
Stated differently, the assumption is that a defective component of the brake system spontaneously failed causing the brakes to no longer function. In reality, brake systems are designed so that a complete catastrophic failure is an extremely rare event. Therefore, alleged brake failures usually are not failures at all but performance problems stemming from deficient maintenance.

Truck braking systems can usually still provide low levels of braking force even with maintenance deficiencies. This low-level braking force will allow the truck driver to adequately stop the truck for normal operations such as slowing for a stop sign. However, when a high level of braking force is demanded in an emergency, these deficiencies will show themselves. Even though the driver is applying the brakes very hard, he will not get the expected result, which is a high level of deceleration.

A mechanical inspection of the air brake system components.

Prepare the vehicle for inspection:

  • Apply the spring brakes.
  • Put wheel chocks or blocks in place.

Inspect foundation brake components at each wheel for:

  • brake-shoe lining not contacting the brake drum
  • damaged, missing or malfunctioning foundation brake components
  • cracked, loose, missing or contaminated brake lining, improper drum contact or lining thickness that is less than required

Inspect brake chambers at each wheel for:

  • audible air leaks
  • cracks and non-manufactured holes
  • mismatched air brake chamber size on a steering axle
  • mismatched slack-adjuster length on a steering axle

Inspect brake drums or rotors at each wheel for: 

  • cracked or broken brake drum or rotor.

Inspect all accessible air lines for:

  • audible air leak
  • damaged or worn air line
  • improper fittings used to connect or repair an air line

Inspect air tanks for:

  • insecure mounting

Inspect air-compressors for:

  • loose air-compressor drive belt pulley
  • loose, cut or frayed air-compressor drive belt
  • insecure air-compressor mounting, bracket or fastener

Don’t forget it does stop with the above;

Test low-air warning device

  • Ensure air pressure is at least 621 kPa (90 psi). (If air pressure is too low, warning will activate as soon as ignition key is turned on.)
  • Ensure key is ”on”. Engine may be running or shut off. (If ignition key is not turned on the warning will not activate.)
  • Press and release the brake pedal several times until the low-air warning device activates.
  • Watch the pressure gauges and note the pressure value when the low air warning device activates. (Warning may be only a light or a light and an audible device.)

If the device fails to activate or activates below 380 kPa (55 psi), the vehicle is defective.

Test air pressure build-up time

  • If the vehicle has a trailer attached, ensure the trailer supply valve is closed (pulled out).
  • Reduce air pressure to below 552 kPa (80 psi).
  • Maintain engine speed of 600 to 900 rpm.
  • Observe time for pressure to rise from 587 to 690 kPa (85 to 100 psi) while maintaining specified engine speed.

If the air-pressure build-up time is greater than two minutes, the vehicle is defective.

Report defective vehicle conditions

Drivers are required to report defective vehicle conditions.

It is illegal to operate or drive a defective vehicle.

Test air-compressor governor settings

  • Observe the air pressure gauges until pressure ceases climbing. (Air dryer purge also signals compressor cut-out.)
  • Reduce air pressure slowly and note the point where pressure begins to climb again. (A change in the sound of the air compressor also signals compressor cut-in.)

If cut-out pressure is greater than 932 kPa (135 psi) or is less than 690 kPa (100 psi) and/or cut-in pressure is less than 552 kPa (80 psi) the vehicle is defective.

Test air-loss rate

  • Ensure vehicle is secure and release the spring brakes.
  • Ensure air-system pressure is between cut-in and cut-out settings and shut off the engine.
  • Press and hold the brake pedal in the fully applied position.
  • Observe the air-pressure gauges for one minute and note any change. (Disregard the initial pressure drop and begin test after pressure has stabilized.)

If the pressure drop exceeds the value specified for the vehicle, the vehicle is defective.

Test tractor (towing vehicle) protection valve

  • Ensure air-pressure is within its normal operating range.
  • Ensure the trailer supply valve is closed (pulled out).
  • Remove the trailer service-line coupler from the trailer or its storage location and place it where it can be observed.
  • Press and hold the brake pedal. (Note: If concerned that the vehicle has no anti-compounding valve, ensure the vehicle is secure and release the spring brakes before applying service brakes.)
  • Note whether air exhausts from the trailer service-line coupler.

If air exhausts from the trailer service line, the vehicle is defective.

Test automatic application of the trailer spring brakes

  • Ensure trailer supply valve is open (pushed in), air pressure is in the normal operating range and trailer is fully charged.
  • Close (pull out) the trailer supply valve. (Note: The trailer supply line may also be disconnected but this practice is not recommended while the line is under pressure.)
  • Air should be heard exhausting from the trailer spring brakes. (Note: If uncertain that the trailer spring brakes have applied, gently add engine power to confirm brake application.)

If the trailer spring brakes do not apply, the vehicle is defective.

Test spring (parking/emergency) brakes

  • Apply the spring-brakes.
  • Remove wheel chocks or blocks.
  • Add engine power gently to the wheels and observe the vehicle response.

If the spring brakes fail to hold the vehicle stationary, the vehicle is defective.

Inspect air-tank drain valves

  • Ensure air system pressure is within its normal operating range.
  • Drain the supply tank until it discharges only clean air.
  • Drain the remaining air-tanks.
  • Watch the discharge from the air-tanks and ensure that the drain valves function properly.

Note: If you are performing this inspection as part of a practical examination, you must know your vehicle’s brake chamber size and type and bring the following items:

  • a means of applying the service brakes;
  • a means of measuring the applied pushrod stroke
  • a means of marking the pushrod if this method will be used
  • a chart of adjustment limits (click here to see chart)

Inspect brake adjustment

Ensure air pressure is above 621 kPa (90 psi).

  • Release spring brakes.
  • Select one of the following methods and indicate which method will be used:
    Method 1:Mark the pushrod at the brake chamber or a suitable fixed reference point. (Use chalk, soapstone, marker or other similar instrument. Pushrod marks must be narrow and precise.)
    Method 2: Measure and note the released position of the pushrod. (Measure the distance from a point on the pushrod to a suitable fixed point at the brake chamber. This is measurement number 1.)
  • Raise or lower air pressure by running the engine or pumping the brake pedal until both the primary and secondary air-tank pressure gauges display 621 to 690 kPa (90 to 100 psi).
  • Press the brake pedal and use a suitable means to hold the brakes fully applied in order to leave the vehicle and inspect the pushrod stroke.
  • Determine the applied pushrod stroke. (Continue to use the previously selected method.)
    Method 1:Measure the distance from the brake chamber or the fixed reference point to the mark on the pushrod.
    Method 2: Measure the applied position of the pushrod. (Re-measure and note the distance from the previously selected point on the pushrod to the previously selected fixed point at the brake chamber. This is measurement number 2.) Subtract measurement number 1 from measurement number 2 to calculate the applied pushrod stroke measurement.
  • Identify the brake chamber size. (16, 20, 24, 30, for example.)
  • Identify the brake chamber type. (Standard, long-stroke, for example.)
  • Identify the adjustment limit of the brake chamber.
  • Repeat the above steps at each wheel.

If any drain valve fails to function properly, the vehicle is defective.

Report defective vehicle conditions.

Drivers are required to report defective vehicle conditions. It is illegal to operate or drive a defective vehicle.

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Ok what did the SUPERVISOR say in the Journey Management about avoiding animal strikes

Regardless if you are on a motor bike, car, truck or semi in Canada on average, there are 19,900 crashes involving animals each year

throughout Canada in a year.  Here’s what you can do when you travel in areas where wildlife may be present:

  • Watch for wildlife warning signs—they’re posted where animals are most likely to be on the road.
  • Slow down and use caution when you see wildlife on or near a highway, so you have time to react if it crosses your path.
  • Be very alert at dusk or dawn. That’s when animals are most likely to be on the road.
  • Spring and fall are also times when you’re likely to see animals on the road. Animals may be feeding on roadside plants in spring, and many are on the move during the fall.
  • Many animals travel in groups. If you see one animal on the road, slow down—more may be following.

If you can’t stop in time to avoid striking an animal:

  • Try to maintain control of your vehicle, brake firmly and steer to strike the animal at an angle. Let up on the brake pedal just before hitting the animal.  This will cause the front of your vehicle to rise and reduce the chance that the animal will come through the windshield.
  • Report dead or injured animals on the road to the local RCMP or the Conservation Officer Service. Don’t approach the animal yourself—it could be dangerous.

Terry Penney

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Machine guards what type of safety guards do you have in the company

Crushed digits, lacerated body parts, fractured bones… this litany of horrors may bring images of grim worksites horrors to mind, but tragically such injuries are far from confined to the past. Employers should ensure that risks are eliminated where possible, or controlled as far as is reasonably practicable. So, what protection methods are available and how do they work?

Machine guarding is a precautionary safety feature on manufacturing or other engineering equipment. Specifically, it is a shield or device covering hazardous areas of a machine to prevent contact with body parts or to control hazards like chips and noise from exiting the machine. Machine guards provide protection from hazards by providing a covering. The covering creates a barrier, shielding workers and preventing them from touching, or getting caught in moving parts. They also protect from sparks, flying debris and splashing chemicals.

Machine Safety Devices

Safety devices don’t use physical barriers, instead protecting workers by either stopping a machine or restricting machine operators’ movements if they get too close to a hazardous area. They tend to be employed in situations where adjustable, or self-adjusting guards might get in the way. Most protect a worker’s entire body by quickly shutting down the machinery when tripped. Others only protect the hands, either by keeping a machine from starting if a hand is in the wrong place or restricting the machine operator’s hand and arm movements.

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The ABC of your workplace incident, did you see the root cause coming!

Everyone has incidents at work some large some small and hopefully in the Abyss of the event you are talking about the ABC of the events and how you as a company plan to make them better or eliminate them plus some of the root cause events.Whenever there’s an incident, whether the result is a fatality or a broken plate or anything in between, someone is sure to ask: “How did it happen?”

The answer should always be the same: “It didn’t happen; it was caused.” And it’s almost always possible to trace it back to somebody—or several somebodies—who fell down on their job somewhere along the line. Either they did something they shouldn’t have done, or they failed to do something they should have done.

Incidents on the job don’t “just happen,” either. They are caused by the actions or inactions of one or more people.

Just as people cause incidents to happen, they can prevent them from happening. That’s the reason for the safe work practices we have established and the posted list of safety rules. But no work practices, rules, training, or equipment can prevent an incident from happening. You do that. You follow the lockout-tagout procedure; you leave machine guards in place; you tag and report a damaged tool or wire; you wear your safety glasses or bump cap. Remember that when you’re tempted to take a shortcut or break the safety rule “just this once” or “just for a minute.” That one minute could be exactly when the incident doesn’t “happen” but is caused.

Mark Twain once said, “It is better to be careful 100 times than to get killed once.” What does this tell us? Workers are not taking the proper precautionary measures before working, or they are simply too lazy to be bothered with it. After all, they do their jobs everyday right? Why do they need to waste their time with tedious things like inspections and precautionary measures? Well, considering the above statistic, there should be an ample amount of evidence to convince lazy and neglectful workers to start paying more attention to correct safety measures based upon your PRIMARY  ABC overview.

No matter how attentive and conscientious you are about observing health and safety rules on the job, the potential for workplace injuries is ever-present. Not only can these injuries put employees at risk of hospitalization — or even death — it also can impact insurance rates, reduce productivity, increase workers’ compensation claims and affect company morale. Team vigilance at all levels is critical in maintaining a safe environment and preventing incidents from happening.

While no company wants to see its employees maimed or killed, it goes without saying that every company is interested in saving money.  And with the bottom-line being what it’s all about, companies are hyper-aware of the expense attached to safety programs.  Safety costs money.  Money for structural integrity, money for regular maintenance, money for machine guards, money for ergonomics, money for training.

Companies are nothing if not inveterate cost-cutters, and accordingly, safety programs are going to cost money.  Not when their lives depend on it and ignore the triggers of the incidents like


If someone is pushed — or pushes herself — beyond reasonable limits to stay on top of workload, the results often are physical and mental exhaustion.


Job security, finances, health issues and anxiety about personal relationships all factor into the stress equation. When an employee’s mind is too distracted by real or perceived threats, he is not only more likely to make mistakes that could cause injury but also invites an increased risk of a heart attack, stroke or hypertension.


Office kitchens and break rooms are common places for slips to occur because of the number of liquids that get splashed there and are subsequently not cleaned up. Linoleum, hardwood and tile flooring surfaces are particularly hazardous after they have been mopped or waxed. Another consideration is the type of footwear worn by employees.


Items left sitting out in a high-traffic corridor, extension cords that are not properly taped down and carpeting that has come loose all are contributors to tripping employees and sometimes causing more than just stubbed toes. Poorly lit hallways and stairs are danger spots, too, because they obscure the ability to see what is underfoot.

Toppling Objects

If tall pieces of furniture such as bookcases and filing components are not securely anchored, an earthquake could cause them to pitch forward and dislodge their contents, putting nearby workers in peril. Workplace injuries also can be caused by heavy objects such as supplies and file boxes that are stacked on high shelves and are shifted precariously to the edge each time they are put back or the structure gets bumped.

Hazardous Materials

Protective clothing, eye wear and gloves are mandatory for employees whose jobs require them to be around hazardous materials, chemicals and toxic waste. Slip-ups in these rules can result in burns, explosions, respiratory diseases, blindness and skin infections.

Repetitive Motion

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a common occurrence for workers engaged in repetitive motion activities that put pressure on the median nerve, causing numbness and pain in the fingers, wrists and hands. Typists, key data operators and beauty salon employees are at particular risk for developing this excruciating condition.


Many back injuries and pulled muscles that occur in the workplace are the result of picking up something that is too heavy, not bending the legs, not asking a partner to assist or trying to lift or hold a heavy object above the shoulders.

Workplace Violence

Despite increased security measures and limiting office access to individuals who have a legitimate reason to be on the premises, innocent victims are often involved when estranged spouses, disgruntled former employees or even total strangers with a vendetta show up with an intent to commit harm. Managers and workers must likewise stay sensitive to suspicious mail or packages, phone threats and evidence of any security violations.


Opening a door too quickly or turning a corner too fast are the frequent setups for unintended collisions with co-workers. While it may not be with enough force to knock one or the other unconscious, the potential for injury escalates if there are hot liquids, sharp implements or heavy objects involved. Leaving file drawers pulled all the way out is as dangerous at shin level as chin level, especially if a co-worker won’t see it until the point of impact.


Humans are notoriously lazy, so taking shortcuts is a rather common practice in all walks of life, not necessarily work alone. However, when workers take shortcuts at work, especially when they are working around dangerous machinery or lethal chemicals, they are only exposing themselves to a potential catastrophe.


Confidence is always a great thing to have, but there is also such a thing as too much confidence. When workers walk into work every day with the attitude that, “It will never happen to me”, they are setting an attitude that leads to incorrect procedures, methods, and tools while working. Be confident, but remember that you are not invincible.

Poor, or Lack Of Housekeeping

Whenever someone walks through your workplace, they can get a pretty good idea of your attitude towards workplace safety by just looking at how well you’ve kept up your area. Housekeeping is one of the most accurate indicators of the company’s attitude towards production, quality, and worker safety

The quickest way to get a job done is to do it right the first time. To do it right the first time, you need to make sure that you have any and all pertinent information relating to the task you will be performing. Workers who begin a job with just half the information, or half the instructions, are essentially doing the job while blind. Remember this; it’s not stupid to ask questions, it is stupid not to.

Neglecting Safety Procedures 

This is probably the worst thing that any employee at any level in the organization can do. Deliberately neglecting set safety procedures in the workplace doesn’t just endanger yourself, but it endangers the workers around you as well as the company as a whole. Casually following safety procedures doesn’t work either. You are paid to follow workplace safety procedures, not your own.

Mental Distractions 

Everyone has a life outside of the workplace, and sometimes life can take dips and turns that affect your emotions and your mood negatively. However, as harsh as it sounds, workers cannot let mental distractions from their personal lives affect their performance at work. Not only will they become less aware of their surroundings and less safe, but they will also become less productive, costing the company time and money.

Lack of Preparation 

You may have heard of something called Job Hazard Analysis (JHA). JHA’s are an effective method of figuring out the best way to work safely and efficiently. When workers begin a task without thinking through the process beforehand, or hastily start without any type of planning, they are setting themselves up for failure. Make sure you plan your work, then work your plan.

When we look into incidents, we must look at what has happened to identify causes.

We look at

  • what occurred just prior to the incident,
  • the series of events which occurred before the incident.
  • what happened this time different in some respect to what always happens?
  • why the difference this time?
  • are there regular risks being taken?
  • is the system inherently flawed?
  • are incidents and near misses happening as a result of an ineffective ‘system’?


Classifying Error

We try to ‘classify’ error.  We can do this by looking at:

  • Omissions– leaving something necessary out
  • Commission– doing something wrong or doing something right, in the wrong context
  • Extraneous activity– doing something extra within a task, which is harmful

So, it’s not all about disobeying the rules, nor is it all all about a freak piece of ‘bad luck’. It’s not about a faulty piece of equipment, although all of these can and do occur and can explain some incidents.

Task Analysis

There are, obviously, different types of task required of different people at work, each relying to some extent on the other.

Choice analysis – Human error

When considering human behaviour and performance, we acknowledge that people are not perfect and we all make mistakes.

This usually involves coming at the issue from two perspectives:

  • The individual and his or her characteristics, age, gender, type of learning style, risk taking tendencies etc, and
  • The perspective of the wider, organisational culture, management systems and prevailing climate, training given and reward systems in place

Within both of these sub-systems is the matter of the physical plant, machinery, upkeep of machinery and plant and housekeeping.

Classification Packages

There are a number of different classification packages, which have been developed in order to assist in this area of activity.  Briefly, they are:

  • PHECA– Potential Human Error Cause Analysis and
  • SHERPA– Systematic Human Error Reduction and Prediction Approach

Both have manual and computer versions.  For instance, PHECA uses a system of prompts for task type and human errors:

  • Task – operation, maintenance, check, monitor, communication
  • Errors – Not done, part of it done, less than it done, more than it done, other thing (similar) done, as well as, repeated, sooner than, later than, miss-ordered

SHERPA links both task types and error types together to get a combined set of prompts but keeps error causes separately stored

It is important to distinguish between error types and underlying causes.

  • An ‘error type’ should be tied back to defined performance goals and thus a human task – i.e. blade only partly covered by guard.
  • Causes will be linked to the relevant underlying stage of the human action chain within a human information-processing model and classified into either a skill, a rule or a knowledge based error.

Examples of the causes of error are the following:

  • A wrong mental model– a person pictures the way something is best done and does it that way as it appears immediately the ‘right’ way, although it is not. The cause of this can be lack of training, lack of re-enforcement of training, out of date procedures, bad modelling
  • Risk tolerance– error occurring because a person believes that it’s worth it to have a few errors each week as it is made up for by the quicker way of working.  This is allowed occur due to poor supervision locally, insufficient training on safety, insufficient reinforcement, both positive and negative and lack of monitoring
  • Demand overload– error occurring because a person makes mistakes. The cause is obvious – too many demands, not enough supports and can be referred to as stress-related error


How to Change Human Behaviour

Two distinct approaches to changing behaviour in order to better manage workplace safety have competed for attention over the past decade.

The first of these approaches, behaviour-based safety, focuses on the identification and modification of critical safety behaviours.  This is a focused approach using the above method/sequence to classify behaviours which led or might lead to errors, regardless of whether incidents ultimately resulted. This approach emphasises how our behaviour is linked to workplace injuries and  incidents. The focus is on producing systematic changes in objectively defined behaviours. It uses Operant Conditioning (the use of consequences to modify the occurrence and form of behaviour) and Reinforcement Theory (shaping behaviour by controlling the consequences of the behaviour)as its guiding psychological principles.

The second approach, culture based approach, emphasises the more fundamental importance of the organisation’s safety culture and climate – how management practices and policies shape and influence safety behaviour and operations for effectiveness. With respect to safety, the logic of the culture change approach is that the organisation’s basic values in relation to safety hugely influence the level of effort and specific plans used within the organisation to manage safety.  Thus, these activities serve to shape the perceptions held by employees regarding the importance of safety. Their expectations regarding the importance of safe work practices, hazard control, incident reporting are thus set down. In contrast to behaviour change, culture change approaches to safety are more ‘top down’.

  1. First, a set of critical safety behaviours are identified. The focus is on identifying specific behaviours or work practices that result in or have direct potential for producing injuries or other losses. The targeted behaviours are most often behaviours performed by shop-floor or front-line personnel.
  2. Next, performance goals for the behaviours are determined, and the pertinent behaviours are observed or sampled over some time period.
  3. Some type of feedback or contingent reinforcement is then applied to increase the probability of desired behaviours and to decrease the probability of undesired behaviours.
  4. Results are tracked and feedback on performance provided to the relevant audiences within the organisation. Performance trends are recorded and/or plotted, and these data are frequently posted in conspicuous locations in the facility.

The typical implementation of the culture-based approach (which we recommend occur at the same time as the above) usually involves direct feed in to management.

Safety policies and practices can be assessed but only insofar as they fit with the organisation’s core values and assumptions regarding safety.

Collecting information about the availability of safety equipment and safety training, or about the status of hazard control activities, can set a baseline for drawing inferences about the safety culture, but it is not the same thing as assessing the culture directly. Following the assessment phase, most culture change programmes aim at an analysis and planning process to focus the organisation’s safety-related values and vision.  This includes identifying action priorities and implementation strategies for improving safety performance within the organisation.

Terry Penney

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Mowing grass with riding power equipment could be a death sentence if you dont consider safety

Residential Lawn Tractors and Zero-Turns are not designed to mow on slopes steeper than 15 degrees.  Mowing a sloped yard can be a challenge at best and is potentially unsafe if done improperly or with the wrong equipment. Determining whether your slope is safe to mow is much easier than actually mowing it. If your slope is mow-able, you will have to make sure that you have the right equipment to handle the job safely. Some slopes that can be mowed with a walk-behind mower, for example, may not be safe to mow with a riding mower.



Measure the slope of the yard by planting a stake at the top of the steepest part of the slope and another at the bottom. Tie a string between the two and slide the string up the bottom stake until a level says the string is even. Measure the height from the ground to the string on the bottom of the stake. This is the “rise.” Measure the distance between the two stakes: this is the “run.” Divide the rise by the run to determine the slope. Multiply your answer by 100 to convert your slope into a percentage if necessary.


Consult the owner’s manual for your mower to determine whether your slope is safe to mow. In general, you should never mow a slope greater than 20 degrees with a walk-behind mower or more than 15 degrees on a riding mower. Zero-turn-radius riding mowers are safest on slopes of less than 10 degrees.


  • Always mow across slopes when using a walk behind mower and up and down the slope when using a riding mower.


  • Never mow a slope if you feel unsafe on it or feel the need to shift your weight to keep the mower stable.

If it is too steep to mow, turn it into a landscape bed or wildlife area.

Be Safe:

  • On steep slopes, GO SLOW.
  • Side hill mowing, watch the front uphill tire to verify it’s making a solid depression in the grass. If it isn’t, SLOWLY turn downhill.
  • Always have an escape route when in rough ground so if the machine kicks out of gear or the brakes fail or both you can steer to safety.
  • Keep the brakes properly adjusted and maintained.
  • Be very, very aware that going up a steep slope how quick and easily a tractor will flip back on you. If the front end does come up, the rear wheels provide the motive force to flip it back.
  • Generally speaking brakes are for stopping, NOT slowing down in tractor usage, that’s what the trans is for. If you step on the left pedal you set the parking brake and the rear wheels will lock. In most cases this will not hold you on the hill, instead you will slide down the hill.
  • The “GO SLOW” mentioned above means regulate your speed with the transmission.  Choose a lower or lowest gear, with a hydro do the same, keep the RPM’s (engine speed) up.


Zero-Turns are not weighted to mow up hill. Especially older zero-turn mowers. They will tip over backwards.

  • If you cannot back up the slope or if you feel uneasy on it, do not mow it with a ride-on machine.
  • Mow up and down slopes with a lawn tractor, not across.
  • Watch for holes, ruts, bumps, rocks or other hidden objects. Uneven terrain could overturn the machine.
  • Choose a low ground speed so you will not have to stop or shift while on a slope.
  • Do not mow on wet or damp grass. Tires may lose traction.
  • Do not mow on drought-dry grass. Tires will lose traction.
  • Always keep the machine in gear when going down slopes. Do not shift to neutral and coast downhill.
  • Avoid starting, stopping or turning on a slope.
  • Keep all movement on slopes slow and gradual.
  • Use extra care while operating the machine with grass catchers or other attachments; they affect the stability of the machine. Do not use them on steep slopes.
  • Do not try to stabilize the machine by putting your foot on the ground.
  • Do not mow near drop-offs, ditches or embankments.

46 inch 2 bladed decks on lawn tractors do not have the clearance between the rear of the deck and the rear tires to install tire chains.

Do not mow near drop-offs, ditches or embankments. Don’t mow near a pond. The first 6 to 10 feet of turf by the water’s edge is water-logged and your mower will sink in and tip over.

Follow the rules in your operator’s manual. But remember, an unseen hole on the down-slope or a bump or stick of wood on the uphill side can increase your slope quickly and cause an accident.

Terry Penney

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Pencil Whipping Health and Safety or Just not using the Data Properly to Prevent Incidents

As injuries occur, safety management teams work to enhance their safety programs and processes. One addition may be to add an observation process to their program. H.S.E. studies have shown that conducting observations influence a safer work environment by providing opportunities to re-direct unsafe behaviors and correct unsafe conditions. The re-direction of these behaviors is driven by leading indicators. Leading indicators are the pieces of your data that, in basic terms, sound the alarm that safety is being handled improperly on the site.   Paper and pencil has long been replaced by the electronic mobile device, AKA your cell phone and tablet.  Apple and Android have put aside their differences to help your organization more effectively gather, dissect, and organize your safety data.  Gone are the times of overstuffed filing cabinets, bursting at the seams with inspections that will likely never again see the light of day.  Sure, the upside of pencil and paper is that anyone can use it, and also that it doesn’t require electricity or an internet connection, but that’s about where it ends.  A piece of paper cannot help to keep workers accountable for resolving issues, and furthermore, it’s extremely difficult to run reports on the leafy contents of your file drawer without the tedious manual entry of data into a reporting program. 

Depending on the work at hand, many organizations set a numeric expectation of inspections per week, or even have a daily requirement. Assuming this number is in correlation with the risk level (hopefully it is), the number of inspections per time period is of value.  But are you creating paper for the sake of paper or do you staff understand the VALUE of that single observation card they just filled out?

Workplace observations are usually performed so that these differences can be spotted and remedied prior to injury. However, what usually happens is a ‘whack-a-mole’ evolution where hazards or at-risk behaviors are sometimes spotted yet only the apparent symptoms are addressed.

Do you have NO Diversity in Inspectors Safety management staff performs most of the safety inspections, but should the buck stop there? Can the operations team bring value by examining risk through the observation process? After all, who really has the most influence on the production line or job site? Employees’ performance shifts when a known safety staff member walks the work area. Some get nervous. Others decide to take a break or perform a light task. On the other hand, when the front line supervisor or project superintendent is walking around, the attitude is to work hard or even harder to show you are pulling your weight and adding value to the team.

You the worker hand it in we the management team use it HOW?

  • Can you turn observation data into actionable information?
  • Can you obtain real-time reporting from the data collected?
  • Can reporting of information be done beyond the single worksite assessment?
  • Can you trend the information collected such as by category, area, and observer?
  • Can you track and trend observation data beyond a single facility or project?
  • Can you benchmark and compare your observation data with other companies?
  • Can you track leadership’s engagement in the safety process?
  • Can the data you collect help you predict where your next injury will occur?


The more diverse the observer, the better observation data you will receive. Lack of diversity is a leading indicator that not everyone who has an influence on the employees has the opportunity to provide the observation data needed. Lack of diversity may even imply that the people responsible for safety are only those with a safety title.

Alternatively, if used appropriately, the percent safe metric can provide some key benefits. The first is long term trending at the categorical level. We must remember that an inspection is a snapshot in time. When a statistically significant number of observations are collected with the same or similar theme (e.g. Fall Protection category) percent safe can provide a good metric on the efficacy of the safety process.

The percent safe metric can also be used to measure systemic progress. When a process is deemed ‘out of control’ or in need of improvement, then percent safe is a good metric to determine if positive strides are being made. More safes should be seen and fewer unsafe observations should be discovered if action is taken to apply controls to the process. The key again is that the data must be closely grouped within a common theme and evaluated for value.

“Pencil whipping is a euphemism used to describe when workers, supervisors and, yes, safety managers, fill out observation cards, sometimes in great numbers, without actually conducting the observation (much less providing the critical feedback).” Relying on the count of inspections completed is not enough to make a difference in your safety process.

Your business assumption is that less than 100 percent must mean an unsafe work environment or lack of supervision. Another reason is because they have been told not to document deficiencies. Are they correcting issues? Of course they are; however, they are not documenting them. Documenting deficiencies may not be an approved practice. Some organizations want to give the impression that they perform100 percent safe all the time; however, if the observers continue to submit 100 percent safe observations, your data will show zero leading indictators.

You cannot track, trend or learn what is not documented. Unsafe observations are the snapshots of the behaviors and conditions on the project. These are the precursors of incidents. The unsafe observations tell a story about the risks the team is taking. Unsafe observation data will provide the safety team the information they need to have conversations with individuals and teams to eliminate the potential for an incident.

Too Many Unsafe Observations On the other end of the spectrum are too many unsafe observations. While collecting unsafe observations provides a picture of the risks the teams are taking at a particular time, too many unsafe observations tells a story about how safety is being managed on a project (or rather, how it’s not). Observers will find unsafe conditions and behaviors as they walk their work areas; however, the number and severity of the observations should be at a steady decline versus an incline if the culture is focused around safety.

A companies continuous high percentage of unsafe observations is a leading indicator that the project is mismanaging the unsafe behaviors and conditions. The steady incline can be an indication the observers are not coaching those who are in violation. Instead, they are simply recording the issue they corrected. Recording the violation is but one step of the process. The step that makes a difference in how people perform their work will depend on the coaching and information they receive after the violation is discovered.

Terry Penney

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Are they really Chemical RESISTANT GLOVES and how do I know as the worker

Chemically resistant gloves are available in a variety of materials including natural rubber or latex, butyl, neoprene, nitrile, polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride, and combinations of these materials. Significant differences exist between various manufacturers’ formulations of the same base material that can affect how their gloves will perform. The form of the material may also affect performance. For example, molded neoprene can have significantly different properties from those of coated neoprene.

 Permeation is a process by which a chemical can pass through a protective film without going through pinholes, pores, or other visible openings. Individual molecules of the chemical enter the film, and “squirm” through by passing between the molecules of the glove compound or film. In many cases the permeated material may appear unchanged to the human eye.

Chemical permeation can be described in simple terms by comparing it to what happens to the air in a balloon after several hours. Although there are no holes or defects, and the balloon is tightly sealed, the air gradually passes through (permeates) its walls and escapes. This simple example uses gas permeation, but the principle is the same with liquids or chemicals.


Permeation data are presented in two values:

 Breakthrough time and Rate. Breakthrough times (min.) are the times observed from the start of the test to first detection of the chemical on the other side of the sample (for test methodology, see the outside back cover of this guide). These times represent how long a glove can be expected to provide effective permeation resistance when totally immersed in the test chemical.

Permeation rates are the highest flow rates recorded for the permeating chemicals through the glove samples during a six-hour or eight-hour test. These qualitative ratings are comparisons of permeation rates to each other.Degradation is a reduction in one or more physical properties of a glove material due to contact with a chemical. Certain glove materials may become hard, stiff, or brittle, or they may grow softer, weaker,

and swell to several times their original size. If a chemical has a significant impact on the physical

properties of a glove material, its permeation resistance is quickly impaired. For this reason, glove/chemical combinations rated “Poor” or “Not Recommended” in degradation testing were not tested for permeation resistance.

Physical integrity of the glove is also important. A glove that provides excellent chemical resistance without adequate resistance to tears, punctures, or abrasions is of little value. Generally, for a given material, the thicker the film of protective material, the better. However, a thicker material can impair dexterity. Likewise, gloves that are too small can restrict circulation, causing hand fatigue, while gloves that are too large can be uncomfortable and hard to use.

Generally, the types of chemicals used will be the primary factor in selecting the appropriate glove material; however, all factors should be considered in making the final selection.

Because of the differences that exist between manufacturers’ products and the testing methods that are used to rate a material’s resistance to a chemical, most manufacturers or vendors include disclaimers with their lists stating that the data is intended for guidance only. Be aware that even a glove with an “excellent” rating is not impervious indefinitely. By following these guidelines and the manufacturer’s recommendations, skin contact with chemicals can be kept to a minimum.

  • Conduct your own test. Turn a glove inside out, fill it with the test solution, and suspend it over a basin. (If the test solution is volatile, conduct the test in a fume hood.) Check periodically for cracking, softening, dripping, or deterioration. The time it takes for signs of degradation to occur is an indication of the ability of the glove to protect your skin.
  • Thin vinyl or latex gloves available from the Storehouse are effective only against water-based or other relatively polar solutions–not organic solvents. Neoprene gloves, also available from the Storehouse, provide better protection against many organic substances.
  • If you are working with a mixture of chemicals, check the glove material for resistance to each component of the mixture.
  • Before you put on protective gloves (even new ones), check them for holes, tears, and other defects, such as softening or deformation, which indicate that physical or chemical degradation has occurred. Latex gloves are extremely sensitive to storage conditions (e.g. high temperatures and ozone). A damaged glove is worse than no glove at all–it can leak chemicals and trap them next to your skin.
  • The glove recommended as the best choice may be bulky, stiff, or have other properties that limit its use for detail work. If sensitivity of touch is required, it may be better to use remote handling techniques plus a lightweight pair of disposable gloves, changed frequently.
  • Make sure that all open wounds, abrasions, or other breaks in the skin are covered before putting on protective gloves. Some chemicals that do not affect the skin may have severe toxicological effects internally.
  • Before reusing gloves, test them again for resistance. Chemicals may have permeated the glove material even though the gloves have been thoroughly rinsed or cleaned.
  • Review the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) for the chemicals or products of interest.

Terry Penney

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Summer is here and so are Inflatable Amusement Devices do you have Safe Operations in place


You have seen them in a variety of location those inflatable amusement devices (inflatables) i.e. air filled structures designed to allow users to bounce, slide or climb on them.  They have been noted at private parties, corporate events and yes even staff picnics but like everything else they need safety considerations to ensure everyone including the adults are safe.

An inflatable amusement device is “an amusement ride or device designed for use that may include, but not be limited to, bounce, climb, slide, or interactive play. They are made of flexible fabric, kept inflated by continuous air flow by one or more blowers, and rely upon air pressure to maintain their shape.”

They are made from flexible fabric, kept inflated by one or more ‘blowers’ and rely on air pressure to maintain their shape. The range of designs continues to increase with simple bouncing devices now joined by climbing frames and obstacle courses, crazy golf, slides and mazes, bungee runs and “barfly” type devices on which people wear special suits fitted with hook and loop fabric. In addition the use of inflatables as “art” has increased with air filled structures being used provide enclosed spaces for light shows etc.

There have been a number of instances where users of inflatables have suffered injury through inappropriate use e.g. mixed ages or over energetic activities. There have also been cases of inflatables breaking free, which have resulted in injury and even death of users.

There are three main designs for the most common type of inflatable, the “bouncy castle”:

  • Open-sided, often referred to as flat beds (distinguished by their lack of walls)
  • Open-fronted, often referred to as ‘castles’ (these have walls on all sides except one)
  • Totally enclosed e.g., disco bouncers (all sides enclosed by an inflatable dome)


There are a number of hazards associated with the use and operation of inflatables:

  • Wind distorting or blowing over the whole inflatable
  • Failure of seams or splitting of the fabric under pressure
  • Air loss due to blower disconnection or failure or interruption of power supply
  • Zip failure
  • Accidental injury to users caused;
    – by themselves or others e.g. overcrowding
    – by spilling or falling from the inflatable
    – during mounting and dismounting i.e. entry or exit
    – by disregard of large users for little users
  • Tripping (particularly over anchorages)
  • Access to unguarded or inadequately protected parts of equipment e.g. blower units
  • Electrical hazards (e.g. shocks and burns)
  • Inadequate means of escape in case of fire
  • Dangerous siting of equipment.

But the most significant risks are those associated with the risk of injury to users and/or the escape of the inflatable due to high winds.

Use and Operation of Inflatables

In the majority of circumstances an inflatable is hired from an Operator. The Operator will generally deliver the inflatable and may erect it – that is – inflate it. Operators may supply Attendants whose role/function is to supervise users and ensure safe operation and use of the inflatable.

Set-Up Guidance: • Follow manufacturer’s instructions for proper layout, set up, and inflation. • Use every anchor point, each time the device is set up, and follow the anchoring methods recommended by the manufacturer. • Check the product and all of its anchorage points before and during every use; and re-secure the product, as appropriate, in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. • Check to ensure that the unit is properly inflated before each use. Sagging walls or pillars are an indication that the unit has not been inflated properly. • Stop using the device if there are signs of air loss. • To prevent slip and fall incidents, keep the area around the product clean and clear of objects. Make sure that the inflatable’s blower has a built-in ground fault circuit interrupter (“GFCI”). Operational Guidance: • Active adult supervision of children and other young users is necessary at all times. • Do not use the product if wind speeds exceed 20 mph. Use great care when operating and wind speeds begin to rise, or when wind gusts may suddenly exceed 20 mph. Know the warning signs. See “Wind Speed Estimation” attachment. • Review all warning labels before using the product. • Instruct children on proper use of the product. • At any given time, all participants should be similar in size (e.g., Do not mix toddlers with 8 year olds). • Shoes and glasses should be removed before playing on any inflatable amusement device. Additionally, make sure there are no sharp objects in pockets or on clothing because these items may puncture the bouncing surface. • Toys and other objects should never be allowed inside the bouncer, unless provided by the manufacturer. • DO NOT exceed the manufacturer’s requirements for maximum loads, and adhere to occupancy limits.

However, the contract may make the Hirer responsible for supervision of the inflatable whilst it is in use. If so it is essential that the Operator supplies clear guidance and instructions for safe use. In such circumstances the Hirer should appoint a sufficient number of suitable i.e. mature and responsible persons, to act as Attendants.

Where necessary, the Hirer should provide training for the attendants

Set-Up Guidance: • Follow the owner/operator’s manual for site layout with proximity to overhead wires and/or objects, inflation procedures, ropes, tethers, tie-downs, anchors, use temperature range, maximum number of riders, size of riders, electrical codes, daily operation, daily inspection, disinfecting repair, deflation, drying, storage, and transportation. o ALWAYS anchor rides per manufacturer’s requirements and instructions, including the number and type of anchors to be used for both indoor and outdoor use. In the absence of manufacturer’s instructions, see the section for Anchoring Guidance below. These anchors can be straight stakes, screw stakes, ground weights, sandbags, ballasts, ground anchors, depending on the manufacturer. o When manufacturer’s instructions permit the use of sand bags or ballasts in place of stakes, ensure that the proper weight stated in the manufacturer’s instructions is used. • Identify and use the number and location of tie-downs specified by the manufacturer. Anchor ropes, tethers, or tiedowns should be attached to an appropriate anchor device or permanent structure and attached so that they cannot slip off the top of their stake during use. DO NOT attach anchors to motor vehicles or other nonstationary objects and DO NOT use non-load-bearing positioning loops as tie-downs or anchor points. Ropes, tethers, and tie-downs should be sufficiently strong to resist breaking during use. In the absence of manufacturer provided tie-downs, P BAR Y SAFETY staff recommends that the owner/operator use ½-inch diameter solid-braided polypropylene rope with a minimum tensile strength of 3,700 lbs. or 370 lbs. working load. Operational Guidance: • Minimum number of operators on a large inflatable slide (over 15 feet tall) is two (2). Operators should maintain a direct line of sight for all riders; there should be no blind spots (this may require additional operators). • Minimum number of operators on an inflatable bounce or small slide (under 15 feet tall), is one (1). Operators should maintain a direct line of sight for all users, and there should be no blind spots (this may require additional operators). • Minimum number of operators on inflatables designed for younger children is two─one attendant to monitor the capacity of the ride─and one to actively monitor riders. P BAR Y SAFETY staff recommends using multiple operators if there are blind spots on the device, or if there is a high volume of participants. • DO NOT exceed manufacturer’s requirements for maximum loads (e.g. number of participants or weight of individual participants); • Adhere to manufacturer’s recommended maximum weight per passenger; • DO NOT use the inflatable ride when wind speeds exceed the manufacturer’s recommendation. Various manufacturers recommend maximum wind speeds from 15 to 25 mph, depending on the ride. However, when wind speeds (including the speed of gusts) exceed 25 mph, it is dangerous to operate any inflatable ride. Unload and deflate the device immediately. For more information on estimating wind speed, see “Wind Speed Estimation” attachment.

Anchoring Guidance In the absence of manufacturer’s instructions on anchors, owner/operators should use every anchor point, every time the ride is set up. Generally, there are two types of anchors commonly used; stakes and weights. Stakes use a rod driven into the ground, and weights use the weight of sand, water, or other materials to anchor the device. When selecting the proper stakes to use, stakes with a larger surface area have greater holding power. Therefore, longer stakes with a wider diameter, set deeper into the ground, will have a much greater holding power than smaller versions. • Stakes o Traditional straight stakes should: § range from a minimum of 18 inches (for use in hard or compact soil conditions, and the stake should be fully driven into the ground) to 42 inches in length, with at least 75 percent or more of the length in the ground after it is installed; § be installed in the vertical position; § if installed in sandy or loose soils, a longer stake is required to generate the same holding power as shorter stakes installed in hard or compact soil. Wet soil also reduces friction, and therefore, a longer stake may be required; and § have exposed ends of the anchors covered after installation to prevent a tripping hazard. o Auger style stakes provide extra holding power in sandy or loose soil conditions; • Weights o Sandbags or ballasts should not be used if manufacturer’s instructions do not permit their use, or if no manufacturer’s instructions are available; and • Anchor ropes, tethers, or tie-downs should be attached to a properly installed stake, weight, or permanent structure, and be attached so that they cannot slip off the top of their stake during use. DO NOT anchor an inflatable to any vehicle or motor vehicle equipment (e.g., motor vehicle, ATV, ROV, trailer, recreational vehicle, tractor).

Controlling Risk – Injury to Users

With outdoor events, where the inflatable is the only or the main attraction and where crowds are present, a perimeter fence should be positioned around the inflatable. Such a crowd control barrier should be at least one metre high, should surround the device and have an access gateway, the barrier may need to have an alternative means of exit or escape for use in an emergency.

The operating area at the front of the step/front apron should be kept clear of onlookers so that the Attendant has a clear field of vision and can ensure that persons can mount and dismount safely. This is also essential in order to permit a clear view of the interior of the inflatable.

Non inflatable gym mats or similar soft landing material (minimum 25 mm to maximum 125 mm thickness) should be provided to cover hard surfaces which are adjacent to open sides and entrances/exits for a distance of at least 1.2 metres. Safety mats should be fire resistant when used indoors.

The ‘blower’ should also be located at least 1.2m away from the inflatable.

The Operator may identify the minimum number of Attendants needed to ensure the safe operation of the device or this may need to be done by the Hirer. This number must be available at all times. If there are insufficient Attendants the inflatable should be taken out of use. Entrance and exit points should be covered by an adequate number of attendants.

Attendants must know and understand the rules outlining the safe operation of the inflatable and know the maximum number of users permitted at one time. In particular Attendants must:
• Ensure that users:
– remove their footwear and any other hard, sharp or dangerous object
– do not consume food/drink or chew gum
– do not bounce on the step/front apron of the device
– do not climb or hang on the outside walls
• Not allow persons who are taller than the outside walls (when standing on the device) to use the device
• Ensure that the entrance/exit is not obstructed

Attendants must posses sufficient maturity to enforce safe use and to stop horseplay or
inappropriate use. They must constantly monitor the activity on the inflatable, discouraging any horseplay. The first sign of any misbehaviour should be corrected by the use of a whistle or similar means of attracting attention. Attendants should not allow overloading of the inflatable.

Boisterous and larger children should be separated from smaller ones and numbers on the inflatable should be restricted to allow the users enough room to play safely.

Never deflate the equipment whilst it is still in use. Should the ‘blower’ fail the attendants should clear the inflatable as quickly as possible.

Controlling Risk – Effects of High Winds

When used outdoors inflatables must be securely anchored to the ground at all times.
Anchoring to vehicles (or similar method) should be used on hard standings or impenetrable ground where pegs of pins can not be used.

It is the responsibility of the Operator to identify the extent to which an inflatable needs anchoring. The Operator should ensure that a sufficient number of suitable anchor points are used if they erect the inflatable. Alternatively they should supply the Hirer with information about anchoring. It may be necessary to carry out an assessment of ground conditions to determine the suitability of anchor points e.g. more may be required in soft or sandy ground.

Information about weather conditions for the duration of the event should be obtained. When high winds are expected it may be necessary to stop use of the inflatable or even deflate it.

Inflatables must not be used during periods of high or gusty wind.

It will not be possible to anchor the inflatable with stakes when used indoors. However, whilst there may be no risk of overturning due to high winds it may be necessary to secure the inflatable to ensure that it does not “creep” during use.

Key Action Steps

  • Hirers should only select suitably competent Operators when they wish to use inflatables
  • All Hirers should receive full and sufficient training in the working of inflatables if they are responsible for erection and control including:
    – method of operation
    – safe loading of the inflatable
    – safe system of work
    – training requirements for Attendants
    – safe methods of assembly and dismantling of the device
    – inspections
  • Attendants should receive suitable and sufficient training for the work they will be expected to carry out as follows:
    – safe anchorage arrangements
    – crowd control enclosures
    – control of the public
    – safe loading of the device
    – associated risks and precautions
    – defect and breakdown procedures
    – emergency procedures
  • Rules and procedures for safe operation should be available to Hirers and Attendants and should be adhered to at all times when both erecting/dismantling and using the inflatable
  • Each inflatable device should be thoroughly examined at regular intervals and at least annually by a competent person
  • The Hirer should ensure that there is an inspection of the inflatable out first use on any day. This should include:
    – crowd control measures
    – anchorage points
    – ropes and stakes
    – inspection of the material for defects
    – adequate pressure upon inflation
    – ‘blowers’
    – electric cables
    The inflatable should not be used by the public until any defects, adjustments or repairs identified in the daily check have been carried out.

NB This will be carried out by the Operator if there are supplying Attendants

  • Use of the inflatable should not be allowed during high winds.
  • Operators should ensure:
    – Maintenance of the inflatable is carried out in accordance with manufacturers’ guidelines and schedules.
    – Records of all examinations and daily inspections are kept either with the device or should be readily available for inspection.

Terry Penney

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Confusing the Hazard with its Effects

“A hazard can cause harm or adverse effects.”
Sometimes a hazard is referred to as being the actual harm
or the health affect it caused rather than the hazard. For
example, the disease tuberculosis (TB) might be called a
hazard but in reality it is the TB-causing bacteria that are the
“hazard” or “hazardous biological agent”.
The TB causing bacteria is a hazard.
The risk is that a person who spends time in area where the
TB causing bacteria is (or may be present) will get
The controls appropriate to control a hazard associated with
the TB causing bacteria are different than the controls needed
to control the risk of getting tuberculosis.


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Every time I hear about Ladder Incidents at work I wonder WHO TRAINED YOU and WHO SUPERVISED

No matter where you read in OH&S Ladder incidents  stand out like white on rice for OH WHY DID THAT HAVE TO HAPPEN, the better question is what was the person training and WHO THE HELL WAS SUPERVISING  THE SITE.  And did both worker and supervisor did they really know the rules, good prove it show me how you tested that knowledge!

Ladders are tools. And were you trained on Extension Ladder

  • Extension Trestle Ladder
  • Fixed Ladder
  • Job-Made Wooden Ladder
  • Mobile Ladder
  • Platform Ladder
  • Single Ladder
  • Step Stool Ladder
  • Stepladder
  • Trestle Ladder

As your employees learn so do your supervisor as they start to know or re-enforce the knowledge on what they should know about this critical piece of equipment

Topics include:

  • Types of ladders and their uses
  • Ladder inspection
  • Setting up various types of ladders
  • Guidelines for safe ladder use
  • Storage and maintenance



Upon completion of this course you will:

  • Understand the different uses of ladders made from various materials
  • Know how to inspect a ladder
  • Know how to select the right ladder (height and material) for the job
  • Know how to set up a ladder correctly
  • Know how to work safely on a ladder
  • Know how to store and maintain a ladder
  • Find additional information on ladder safety


Many of the basic safety rules that apply to most tools also apply to the safe use of a ladder:

  • If you feel tired or dizzy, or are prone to losing your balance, stay off the ladder.
  • Do not use ladders in high winds or storms.
  • Wear clean slip-resistant shoes.  Shoes with leather soles are not appropriate for ladder use since they are not considered sufficiently slip resistant.
  • Before using a ladder,inspect it to confirm it is in good working condition.
    • Ladders with loose or missing parts must be rejected. Rickety ladders that sway or lean to the side must be rejected.
  • The ladder you select must be the right size for the job.
    • The Duty Rating of the ladder must be greater than the total weight of the climber,tools,supplies,and other objects placed upon the ladder. The length of the ladder must be sufficient so that the climber does not have to stand on the top rung or step.
  • When the ladder is set-up for use, it must be placed on firm level ground and without any type of slippery condition present at either the base or top support points.
  • Only one person at a time is permitted on a ladder unless the ladder is specifically designed for more than one climber (such as a Trestle Ladder).
  • Ladders must not be placed in front of closed doors that can open toward the ladder. The door must be blocked open, locked, or guarded.
  • Read the safety information labels on the ladder.
    • The on-product safety information is specific to the particular type of ladder on which it appears. The climber is not considered qualified or adequately trained to use the ladder until familiar with this information.

A ladder that is set up incorrectly puts you and other workers at risk of serious injury. Make sure that you meet all the following key requirements when you set up your ladder.

Straight or extension ladders • Place the base of your ladder on a firm and level surface – Make sure that both feet are on the ground. – Use leg levellers on uneven surfaces. – On wet or unstable ground, brace the base to keep it in place, such as by nailing a two-by-four to the ground. – Do not place a ladder on unstable surfaces such as boxes or pallets. • Set up your ladder at the required angle – Use the 4-to-1 Rule: For every 4 feet (1.2 metres) up, place the base of your ladder 1 foot (0.3 metres) from the wall or upper support that it rests against. • Position and secure your ladder for safe access – If you will be getting off the top of your ladder to access your work area, your ladder’s side rails must extend at least 1 metre (3 feet) above the level or upper landing you are accessing. Tie off your ladder’s side rails at the top. • Place the top of your ladder against a stable surface – Make sure both side rails are equally supported, unless your ladder is equipped with a single-support attachment.

Stepladders • Place the base on a firm and level surface. • Make sure that all four feet are on the ground. • Open and lock the spreader bars.

As a supervisor, you play a key role in making sure the workers under your supervision use ladders safely.

Supervisors need to make sure workers maintain three-point contact — one hand and two feet, or two hands and one foot — when working from a straight or extension ladder. Make sure suitable equipment is provided Ladders may be suitable for • Accessing work areas, such as a roof, mezzanine, or scaffolding • Minor maintenance tasks such as caulking, touch-up painting, inspection of gutters, or other light-duty tasks that take no more than 15 minutes to complete When workers are using ladders on the job, make sure that the ladders • Are in good condition • Are strong and tall enough to allow workers to complete their work safely • Meet a standard acceptable to WorkSafeBC, such as CSA or ANSI If you don’t think ladders are the most suitable equipment for the job, let your employer know that a safer alternative, such as a work platform, stairs, or a ramp, might be needed. Make sure workers are trained • Participate in ladder safety training. • Provide safety orientations and on-the-job training, as directed by your employer.

Make sure workers set up and use ladders safely When supervising workers, watch for these key ladder safety requirements. • Ladders must be inspected before use. Damaged or bent ladders must be taken out of service. • Ladders must be placed on a firm and level surface and set up so that they are stable and secure. • Straight or extension ladders must be set up at the required angle, using the 4-to-1 Rule: For every 4 feet (1.2 metres) up, workers must place the base of their ladder 1 foot (0.3 metres) from the wall or upper support it rests against. • Workers must maintain three-point contact when climbing any ladder and when working from a straight or extension ladder. • Workers must keep their bodies centred between the side rails. • Workers must step or stand no higher than the step or rung specified on the manufacturer’s label

As a supervisor or company did you cover off on this knowledge and how the heck do you know if the worker understood it!!!!!

The environment of your work site is the first factor in choosing the material from which your ladder is constructed. For example, if you are working near sources of electricity, a metal ladder should be rejected since aluminum is an electrical conductor. Your body can complete an electrical circuit between the electrical power source, the ladder, and then to the ground in the event of a live wire contact incident. An electrical shock while working from a ladder can trigger a fall or cause your heart to stop leading to serious injury or death. On the other hand, if there are no electrical power sources in your work area, the aluminum ladder is the lightest weight when compared to fiberglass or wood.

There are also several kinds of ladders manufactured for a variety of uses. Again, evaluation of your work environment and knowledge of what ladders are available will allow you to choose the right ladder for the job. Each of the following considerations addresses safety issues in your work environment:

  • Will the ladder be resting on an uneven surface?
  • Is the work area crowded with people and/or materials?
  • What obstructions are in the path of the climb?

Next, the proper ladder length must be selected.It is unsafe to use a ladder that is too long or too short. When using a Step Ladder,for example, standing on the top cap or the step below the top cap is not permitted due to the increased likelihood of losing your balance. Likewise, when using an Extension Ladder, the top three rungs are not to be used for climbing. A Straight Ladder is too long, for example, if ceiling height prohibits the ladder from being set-up at the proper angle. Likewise, an Extension Ladder is too long if the ladder extends more than three (3) feet beyond the upper support point. In this case, the portion of the ladder that extends above the upper support point can act like a lever and cause the base of the ladder to move or slide out. Safety standards require a label on the ladder to indicate the highest standing level.

Next, consider the Duty Rating of the ladder. This is an indication of the maximum weight capacity the ladder can safely carry. To figure out the total amount of weight your ladder will be supporting, add:

  • Your Weight; plus
  • The Weight of Your Clothing and Protective Equipment; plus
  • The Weight of Tools and Supplies You Are Carrying; plus
  • The Weight of Tools and Supplies Stored on the Ladder

There are five categories of ladder Duty Ratings:

The Duty Rating of your ladder can be found on the specifications label. Safety standards require a Duty Rating sticker to be placed on the side of every ladder. Do not assume that a longer ladder has a higher weight capacity.   There is no relationship between ladder length and weight capacity.


Ladder Varieties

Your work environment, including the physical size restrictions, is probably the most important factor in determining the variation of ladder to use for a given job. The versatility of the ladder, however, is a major consideration, especially for domestic use.

Otherwise, the number of ladders that one would need to have available for the wide variety of tasks around the home that require elevation from the ground would be prohibitive. In an effort to assist in familiarizing yourself with the standard ladder variations that are available, consider the following:

  • Articulated Ladder

An Articulated Ladder is a portable ladder with one or more pairs of locking hinges which allow the ladder to be set up in several configurations such as a single or extension ladder, with or without a stand-off, a stepladder, a trestle ladder, scaffold or work table. Each pair of articulated joints in the ladder can be locked in one or more positions to accommodate the various configurations. The locking positions of the hinges allow set-up at the proper angles to accommodate each configuration that the manufacturer has designated.

An instruction label appears on each Articulated Ladder illustrating the locking hinges in both the locked and unlocked positions. Each Articulated Ladder manufacturer has a unique locking hinge design and each lock must visibly indicate whether it is locked or unlocked. As a result, it is important that the user become familiar with the proper operation of the hinge and make sure all the hinges are locked before using the ladder. Never attempt unlocking or re-positioning any of the hinges while standing on the ladder.

The hinges of an Articulated Ladder require periodic lubrication. The hinges should be lubricated upon receipt of the ladder and then annually or more frequently, depending upon use. When involved in messy work, place a covering over the exposed hinge mechanisms to avoid getting contaminants into them that may cause malfunctions.

Another on-product label illustrates all the acceptable configurations for a given Articulated Ladder. Configurations not illustrated on the label are not to be used.

The size of an Articulated Ladder is determined when it is set up in the stepladder configuration by measuring along the front side rail from the bottom to the center of the hinge at the top of the ladder. When set up in the stepladder configuration, Articulated Ladders range in size from 3 to 15 feet maximum. When set up as a Single or Extension Ladder, Articulated Ladders may have a length of no more than 30 feet.

All four feet of an Articulated Ladder are covered with a slip-resistant material which must be present and in good condition before the ladder is used.

The ladder must not be used on ice, snow or slippery surfaces unless suitable means to prevent slipping is employed.

The ladder must never be placed upon other objects such as boxes, barrels, scaffolds, or other unstable bases in an effort to obtain additional height.

Articulated Ladders must not be tied or fastened together with any other type of ladder to provide a longer length.

Proper Care

A thorough inspection must be made when the ladder is initially purchased and each time it is placed into service. Clean the climbing and gripping surfaces if they have been subjected to oil, grease or slippery materials. Working parts, bolts, rivets, step-to-side rail connections, and the condition of the anti-slip feet (safety shoes) shall be checked.

Ladders exposed to excessive heat, as in the case of fire, may have reduced strength. Similarly, ladders exposed to corrosive substances such as acids or alkali materials may experience chemical corrosion and a resulting reduction in strength. Remove these ladders from service.

Broken or bent ladders, and ladders with missing or worn out parts must be taken out of service and marked, for example, “Dangerous – Do Not Use” until repaired by a competent mechanic or destroyed. No attempt shall be made to repair a ladder with a defective side rail. Ladders with bent or broken side rails must be destroyed.

In the event a ladder is discarded, it must be destroyed in such a manner as to render it useless. Another person must not be given the opportunity to use a ladder that has been deemed unsafe.

When transporting ladders on vehicles equipped with ladder racks, the ladders must be properly supported. Overhang of the ladders beyond the support points of the rack should be minimized. The support points should be constructed of material such as wood or rubber-covered pipe to minimize the effects of vibration, chafing and road shock. Securing the ladder to each support point will greatly reduce the damaging effects of road shock.

Storage racks for ladders not in use should have sufficient supporting points to avoid sagging which can result in warping the ladder. Other materials must not be placed on the ladder while it is in storage.

  • Combination Ladder

A Combination Ladder is a portable ladder capable of being used as Stepladder, or as a Single or Extension Ladder. It may also be capable of being used as a Trestle Ladder or as a Stairwell Ladder. Its components may be used as Single Ladders. This type of ladder can be designed with either steps or rungs, and the inclusion of a pail shelf is optional. When steps are present, the ladder should be erected so that the step surfaces are horizontal. Either spreaders or a locking device can be used to securely hold the front and rear sections in the open position.

An instruction label appears on each Combination Ladder to either illustrate the locking mechanism, provide instructions for the locking mechanism, or both. It is important that the user become familiar with the proper operation of the locking mechanism and make sure all the joints are locked before using the ladder. Never attempt unlocking or repositioning any of the joints while standing on the ladder.

Another on-product label illustrates all the acceptable uses and positions for a given Combination Ladder. Configurations not illustrated on the label are not to be used.

The size of a Combination Ladder, when used in the Stepladder configuration, ranges from 4 feet to a maximum of 10 feet, as measured along the front side rail from the bottom of the foot to the top of the top cap or to the top of the top step when no top cap is used. The maximum Extension Ladder length is marked on the identification label.

All four feet of a Combination Ladder are covered with a slip-resistant material which must be present and in good condition before the ladder is used.

The ladder must not be used on ice, snow or slippery surfaces unless suitable means to prevent slipping is employed.

The ladder must never be placed upon other objects such as boxes, barrels, scaffolds, or other unstable bases in an effort to obtain additional height.

Combination Ladders must not be tied or fastened together with any other type of ladder to provide a longer length.


When used in the Single or Extension Ladder Mode:

Selection of proper Single or Extension Ladder size requires knowledge of the height of the top support point. In the event the top support point is a roof eave, the top of the ladder must extend approximately three feet above the roof eave if the climbers’ intent is to access the roof. The ladder must also be tied to the upper access level before climbing onto or off the ladder at the upper level. The user must take care when getting on or off the ladder at the upper level in order to avoid tipping the ladder over sideways or causing the ladder base to slide out.

Single and Extension Ladders should be erected as close to a pitch of 75 1/2 degrees from the horizontal as possible for optimum resistance against the bottom of the ladder sliding out, strength of the ladder, and balance of the climber. A simple rule for setting-up the ladder at the proper angle is to place the base a distance from the wall or upper support equal to one-quarter of the length of the ladder side rails.

The top of a Single or Extension Ladder must be placed with the two side rails equally supported unless the ladder is equipped with a single-support attachment for situations such a pole light standard, building corner or in-tree type operation such as pruning or fruit picking. When it is necessary to support the top of the ladder at a window opening, a device should be attached across the back of the ladder and extending across the window to provide firm support against the building walls or window frames.

In cases where the work site imposes a height restriction on the ladder length, the user may find that longer ladders are not capable of being set-up at the proper 75 1/2 degrees angle. To safeguard against the bottom of the ladder sliding out, select a shorter Extension or Single Ladder.

There are also situations where the use of a particular ladder length creates a gap in the height of a wall that can be reached by the user. For example, a 14-foot Single or Extension Ladder cannot be used to work on a wall below a certain height because the user would be too far out from the wall. Usually, the lower portion of the wall can be reached from the ground up to a height of about 7 feet. When working from the 14-foot Single or Extension Ladder, working from the ladder below 10-feet becomes a problem. These conditions create a gap between 7 and 10-feet in height where another ladder selection is recommended. To work in this zone, a shorter self-supporting ladder such as a Stepladder configuration should be considered.

In an effort to avoid losing your balance and falling off a Single or Extension Ladder, the user must not step or stand higher than the step indicated on the label marking the highest standing level.

When used as a Stepladder:

A Stepladder requires level ground support for all four of its side rails. If this work site condition does not exist, the Stepladder configuration should not be selected for the job.

In order to prevent tipping the ladder over sideways due to over-reaching, the user must climb or work with the body near the middle of the steps or rungs. The ladder should be set-up close to the work. Never attempt to move the ladder without first descending, relocating the ladder, and then re-climbing. Do not attempt to mount the ladder from the side or step from one ladder to another unless the ladder is secured against sideways motion.

In an effort to avoid losing your balance and falling off the Stepladder, the user must not step or stand higher than the step indicated on the label marking the highest standing level. The user must also not step or stand on the bucket/pail shelf, if so equipped.

When ascending or descending the ladder, always face the ladder and maintain a firm hand hold. Do not attempt to carry other objects in your hand(s) while climbing.

Refer to the manufacturers instructions with regard to whether more than one person is permitted on the Combination Ladder at the same time when in the Stepladder or Trestle Ladder configuration.

When used as a Stairwell Ladder:

When used as a self-supporting Stairwell Ladder, a Combination Ladder must not be climbed on its back section.

Proper Care

A thorough inspection must be made when the ladder is initially purchased and each time it is placed into service. Clean the climbing and gripping surfaces if they have been subjected to oil, grease or slippery materials. Working parts, bolts, rivets, step-to-side rail connections, and the condition of the anti-slip feet (safety shoes) shall be checked.

Ladders exposed to excessive heat, as in the case of fire, may have reduced strength. Similarly, ladders exposed to corrosive substances such as acids or alkali materials may experience chemical corrosion and a resulting reduction in strength. Remove these ladders from service.

Broken or bent ladders, and ladders with missing or worn out parts must be taken out of service and marked, for example, “Dangerous – Do Not Use” until repaired by a competent mechanic or destroyed. No attempt shall be made to repair a ladder with a defective side rail. Ladders with bent or broken side rails must be destroyed.

In the event a ladder is discarded, it must be destroyed in such a manner as to render it useless. Another person must not be given the opportunity to use a ladder that has been deemed unsafe.

When transporting ladders on vehicles equipped with ladder racks, the ladders must be properly supported. Overhang of the ladders beyond the support points of the rack should be minimized. The support points should be constructed of material such as wood or rubber-covered pipe to minimize the effects of vibration, chafing and road shock. Securing the ladder to each support point will greatly reduce the damaging effects of road shock.

Storage racks for ladders not in use should have sufficient supporting points to avoid sagging which can result in warping the ladder. Other materials must not be placed on the ladder while it is in storage.

Terry Penney

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When you TRACK KPI events in safety are you making is SIMPLE to follow and follow up

What Metrics Should You Include?

Keep it simple. If you make things too complicated it will be hard to keep the scorecard updated. While you may want to track the number of injuries at your site, keep in mind that by the time an injury happens it’s too late to prevent it. For leading indicators make great numbers to track on your safety scorecard.

The search for other metrics has led to five other areas which can potentially impact the results:

  1. Safety Activities – organizational functions such as training, on-boarding new employees, leadership, supervision, safety meetings, and others. All these can impact the results, but how do you measure them? The quest for such metrics is ongoing.
  2. Participation – what percent of workers participate in training or meetings, or serve on safety teams or committees. Participation can impact results and can be measured rather easily in terms of committee membership or meeting attendance percentages.
  3. Perceptions – what do people think of safety and how do they perceive the effectiveness of other strategies in helping them avoid accidents. Perceptions impact behaviors and behaviors impact accidents. Perceptions can be scored as a percentage of ideal and trended across time or benchmarked against other organizations or industry averages.
  4. Behaviors – worker performance toward safety goals involving specific precautions. Behavior is, by definition, observable and therefore measurable in workplace observations. Certain behaviors can be targeted based on Pareto analysis of accident data and can be measured and trended as a percentage of safe behavior vs. at-risk behavior.
  5. Conditions – unsafe workplace conditions and potential hazards. Physical audits can be conducted and targeted to Pareto analysis of accident data to determine which conditions contribute to most accidents. These audits can be measured by number and also by how many work orders result and how many are completed. Experimentation has been done in measuring each of these areas. As the measurements have been made and analyzed, newer and better metrics have evolved and the process gets into a continuous-improvement loop. Going from simple results metrics to multiple metrics is challenging for some organizations and truly understanding the new metrics is even more challenging.

Remember Lagging indicators are typically “output” oriented, easy to measure but hard to improve or influence while leading indicators are typically input oriented, hard to measure and easy to influence. Let me illustrate this with a simple example: For many of us a personal goal is weight loss.

key performance indicator (KPI) is a business metric used to evaluate factors that are crucial to the success of an organization. KPIs differ per organization; businessKPIs may be net revenue or a customer loyalty metric, while government might consider unemployment rates.

The major drawback to only using lagging indicators of safety performance is that they tell you how many people got hurt and how badly, but not how well your company is doing at preventing incidents and accidents.

The reactionary nature of lagging indicators makes them a poor gauge of prevention. For example, when managers see a low injury rate, they may become complacent and put safety on the bottom of their to-do list, when in fact, there are numerous risk factors present in the workplace that will contribute to future injuries.

Here are some examples of numbers you could track:

  1. Number of training hours per employee per week
  2. Number of site inspections per week
  3. Number of Job Safety Analyses completed each week
  4. Number of Near Misses reported each week
  5. Number of safety observations reported each week
  6. Results of safety perception surveys

Take Action Now!

It’s easy to get started by setting up a simple Excel spreadsheet with these metrics.

  1. Set up an excel spreadsheet and create a row for each of your safety leading indicators.
  2. Next to each item, list which member of your team is accountable for meeting each number.
  3. Determine your weekly goal for each number, and include it in each row.
  4. Decide who is accountable for preparing the scorecard each week and how that person will get the numbers from each team member.
  5. Review your scorecard each week with your safety team. If any numbers are off-track, discuss ideas for getting them on track the next week.

These excel dashboards reports templates will help you report all your safety metrics in one place. For example, safety metrics like illness, incidents, environmental metrics, injuries, proactive safety initiatives and projects metrics, lost time, efficiency, productivity, benchmarking and literally all the safety KPIs you need to track and report will be organized in one place. This will avoid the need for using any additional documents or files in order to find and organize the reports you need. At anytime you can just update your excel data and all your reports will be updated simultaneously. In addition to improved reporting and better more effective and efficient management think about all the time that you can save by getting rid of all those various sources of data and reports and have everything in one place in Microsoft Excel. Your spreadsheet should look something like this:

Every business is different, so choose the metrics that make sense for your operations. Need help setting up a system like this for your safety department? Contact us for a consultation.

An EXCEL program can be set up LAGGING metric in your program just as easy and Excel has a program Call Excel Dashboard that is easy to purchase and set up for such operation too.

Terry Penney

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Safeguarding is a term that refers to protecting a worker from coming into contact with moving parts and machinery. Moving parts and machinery pose a substantial hazard to maintenance workers and production workers.

Safeguarding as an Engineered Control

Injuries from moving parts occur very frequently in industry, including the manufacturing, construction, and warehouse environments. These injuries result from exposure to excessive energies such as crushing, tearing, pinching, and cutting.

Safeguarding is a control strategy to keep the worker out of the “energy zone” to prevent these exposures.

Engineered controls are one of the most effective ways to protect workers from moving parts. Safeguarding is simply another way of engineering out a hazard.

Location of Control


There are three opportunities, following this model, to control worker exposure to harmful energy. Controls can be introduced at the source, along the pathway, or at the worker.

Here is an example. A rotating auger is defined as a hazardous source. It may be very simple and cost-effective to train the worker to not put his hand in the rotating auger. This would be an example of administrative control. However, this is not our most effective means of controlling the hazard.

It would be more effective to use an engineering control such as machine guarding.

Safeguarding Terms


In order to fully understand safeguarding, you need to understand the following key


  • Safeguarding: Any means of preventing workers from coming into contact with moving parts.
  • Point of Operation: The point at which material is placed for processing.
  • Power Transmission: Moving mechanical parts on a piece of equipment. These may be electrical, pneumatic, hydraulic, or mechanical.
  • Device: A mechanism designed for safeguarding at the point of operation.
  • Guard: Barriers used to safeguard the point of operation area.
  • Enclosure: Barriers used to enclose the moving parts of a mechanical piece of equipment.
  • Fencing: An enclosure system placed around a piece of equipment to prevent access of unauthorized personnel.
  • Nip Point: A hazardous area created by mechanical parts moving in opposite directions.
  • Pinch Point: A hazardous area where a body part can come into contact with two or more moving mechanical parts.

Safeguards generally have the following characteristics:

  • Are an integrated part of the equipment
  • Are well designed and durable to withstand the forces of the equipment
  • Allow for simple feeding and ejection
  • Are easy to inspect and maintain
  • Must be tamper-proof

Safeguards should not create another hazard, interfere with the work to be completed, or cause worker discomfort. All safeguards have the same general function – to protect the worker.

A guard is like a cover that prevents access to the moving parts. A barrier guard is the most common type of guard. A device is a mechanism designed for safeguarding at the point of operation. It prevents access to the point of operation, meaning the worker is denied access or close contact and protected from harm. A two-hand control is an example of a device.

Devices that interfere with the work to be completed or create worker discomfort reduce efficiency. Because of this, workers may tamper with or remove devices, thus creating a hazard.

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Using GPS devices in your vehicle safely TURN RIGHT TURN RIGHT NOW!

In your safety talks at work did anyone, anyone at all cover this topic!!!!

As you travel either for business or pleasure you see GPS devices everywhere, and they beat the heck out of maps or and matching landscape, but they have a few safety features you need to consider.

One they come usually pre- programed with maps so those ones you can update via your computer are better than the ones you need memory cards for.  Second as you listen to the voice in that little box say turn right, turn right now,( and you cant) you hear this cranky voice noting redirecting your route. Using the GPS device can be a great way to get you from point a to point B safely. Understanding how to safely use a global positioning system requires understanding of how to operate your system, using it to the fullest extent you can safely and always keep your eyes on the road way ahead of you.

How it works

  • GPS satellites circle the earth twice a day in a very precise orbit and transmit signal information to earth. GPS receivers take this information and use triangulation to calculate the user’s exact location.
  • Essentially, the GPS receiver compares the time a signal was transmitted by a satellite with the time it was received. The time difference tells the GPS receiver how far away the satellite is. Now, with distance measurements from a few more satellites, the receiver can determine the user’s position and display it on the unit’s electronic map.
  • GPS can calculate the longitude and latitude of locations and transmit this information to a receiver which enables the person using GPS to correctly locate and travel to destinations.
  • GPS devices have been manufactured into some vehicle models and are also available as stand-alone devices

A risk under distracted driving, younger drivers do not want the directions they want the address so they can use their smart phones to guide them to the location. Whether you use a app on your iPhone or your navigation system in your automobile or pickup, there are certain safety tips that will help you arrive safely. And yes, bluetooth is a wireless networking technology that uses short-range communications to transmit data. Where you would have used a wire to connect your phone to your headset, Bluetooth technology will securely send the information wirelessly. Your phone can use this technology to send calls and other information through your GPS.


The first safety tip is to program your GPS device with the address before you leave. Any accidents are caused by distracted drivers who are attempting to punch in the address or dictate the address to their GPS device while driving. Don’t go there. Spending just a minute before you start making sure that you have added the address correctly and know the general route is the first step to proper use of your GPS device.


Whether you are using an app on your iPhone, android device or other GPS, if the application has voice directions it is a good idea to utilize that. The best GPS systems provide very good feedback to the driver giving the driver plenty of time to prepare for changes in lames and streets. Additionally, using the voice direction feature serves to prevent unnecessarily distraction by taking your eyes off of the road and looking at your GPS device.


Another safety tip is to put your passenger in charge of the directions. If you do not have voice directions, have your passenger look at your GPS device and give you instructions -so you can keep your eyes on the road. A great number of unnecessary car accidents occur simply because the driver was paying attention to something other than the roadway ahead.


GPS systems are not infallible. Paying attention to the direction traveled and having looked at the destination and route before starting your trip can help you stay on course. Always obey traffic signs and anticipate there may be changes not reflected on your GPS information. It all boils down to paying attention to the roadway and not your device. Depending on the device, the maps may not be updated for the latest highway you are on.

Just like worker training or competency KNOW HOW TO USE YOUR GPS BEFORE YOU START

Know how to operate your GPS device and take advantage of it safety features such as voice control. If you do not know how to use your application or the building GPS navigation in your vehicle go to YouTube and you can find a video that will walk you through the steps to understand how to use your specific GPS.


The basic rule of safety and using the GPS device is always keep your eyes on the road and not on the device. If you must reset or change your destination in your device pull off the road where you can safely and re-program your GPS before you start your trip again.


GPS devices are covered under distracted-driving laws. Whether you’re in compliance depends on how you use them, even how you install them. And failing to follow the rules is not only expensive in terms of tickets, points against your license, and higher insurance premiums, it can also be dangerous. To avoid getting into a distracted driving accident, keep these hints in mind when using your GPS:

  1. Pull over: First and foremost, a GPS unit or a GPS app on your phone should never be used while you are driving. Most versions actually will not allow you to perform any functions if it detects that your vehicle is in motion. Just to be careful, find a safe spot to pull over and tinker with the gadget then and only then.
  2. Secure it: Use some sort of device mount to keep your GPS unit or your phone stable while you drive. Secure it in a spot that is not going to block your field of view while driving, but also will not require you to look well away from the road ahead to see it. Right on the center console is usually good.
  3. Predestination: Do you know where you’re going next? Type it into the navigational system before you even get into your car. Now all the trouble of trying to type in a complicated address while simultaneously driving is completely avoided. You should also review the route it suggests and check it ahead of time for traffic problems.
  4. Familiarization: New gadgets can be fun to use and discover all of their functions and options, but driving is not the time to do so. Why not set aside 15 minutes to familiarize yourself with your GPS unit before your next trip? It could allow you to handle a glitch or problem with ease, should one come up while you are behind the wheel.
  5. Be human: This means you need to still think for yourself and judge driving situations using your own trusted knowledge of the road and rules. Sometimes a GPS will tell you to drive the wrong way on a one-way street, or report the speed limit is 45 miles per hour when its actually just 25. Never put your own better judgement aside for what a programmable robot has to say.

No matter how safe you are with your GPS device, it will not help you if another negligence driver allows themselves to become distracted by their own GPS or cellphone. If you get hit by a distracted driver and suffer a serious injury in the resulting car accident,

In the workplace they have more than one use!!! Benefits of GPS for the road user/ motorists

  • The use of a satellite navigation system improves driver behaviour in unknown areas, heightens alertness and reduces stress levels.
  • An international study revealed that the use of a GPS device reduces the amount of miles driven by 16 percent and reduces travel time in an unknown area by 18 percent. GPS systems assist motorists to in identifying the location of features on, near, or adjacent to the road networks.
  • These include service stations, maintenance and emergency services and supplies, entry and exit ramps, damage to the road system, etc.
  • Motorists are alerted through a constantly updated database of accident blackspots, primary school zones, safety camera locations and other hazardous stretches of road.
  • New developments include research to provide warnings to drivers of potential critical situations, such as traffic violations or crashes.
  • GPS speed camera detectors help motorists drive within the local speed limits, ensuring safer and worry- free motoring.
  • The use of a navigation system increases driver awareness and reduces stress
  • Before setting out, the motorists adds his destination address on the system’s in-dash touch pad, and within seconds, arrows on the moving map and a kindly woman’s voice guide you on your way. Most systems even enable you to specify the easiest, quickest or most scenic route.
  • Motorists also receive information on the current speed, average speed, maximum speed reached and estimated time to reach the destination.
  • Real time traffic information is available and not dependent on road or weather conditions

Accident Investigations

  • The use of GPS (Global Positioning Systems) is the fastest and most accurate way of obtaining reliable data about accident locations.
  • GPS is also the cheapest way to identify accident locations in countries with existing accident data collection programs.
  • Localization has to be performed at the road accident location immediately after the accident occurrence when the causes and circumstances can be examined more precisely.

Terry Penney

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Loading ATV on a truck or trailer YES IT CAN BE DONE SAFELY every time

Loading and Unloading ATV’s from a trailer seems simple enough and YES your  company should have proper written instructions and procedures in place.  With that said, I’ve heard countless horror stories of people hurting themselves or trashing their equipment by improperly or unsafely carrying out this task.  With some basic knowledge and a little bit of patience, loading and unloading should be quick and easy.

All of the steps below should be done with the assumption that the trailer is safely hitched to your tow vehicle and the emergency brake on the tow vehicle is engaged.

1) Put on your helmet.  If you do mess something up, at least your head is protected.

2) Align the ramps so the tires are as close center as possible.  This prevents the ramps from tipping.

3) Start the ATV and put it into the lowest forward gear.  This allows the ATV to move with the least amount of throttle input.

4) Engage four-wheel drive if the ATV is equipped.  Four wheels gripping the ramps help prevent wheel spin.

5) Smoothly apply throttle until the ATV begins to climb the ramps, giving it just enough throttle to maintain forward momentum.  Be careful to avoid rapid throttle input that could cause the wheels to spin.

6) When cresting the ramps and reaching the deck, gently apply the brakes to bring the ATV to a complete stop.

7) Place the gear selector into park, if applicable.  If no parking gear is present, engage the parking brake.

8) Shut down the engine, remove the key from the ignition and place it in a safe spot.  I generally choose the center console of my truck.

9) Tie down the ATV with a set of quality tie downs sturdy enough to secure an ATV.  It is imperative that the ATV is secured well enough to prevent moving or sliding on the trailer.

10) Place the ramps back into their storage location.  You’ll need them to unload when you reach your destination.

1) Grab your helmet and put it on immediately.  You’ll be climbing all over the trailer so this is an easy, but unacceptable step to miss.

2) Undo the tie downs and place them in a safe spot.  You’ll need them again later.

3) Align the ramps with the front wheels of the ATV.  If they’re not centered, the ramps could tip.

4) Start the ATV, put it into the lowest forward gear and gently apply enough throttle to roll onto the ramps.  Momentum should carry the ATV down the ramps with very little throttle input.

5) Stop the ATV and either put it into park or engage the parking brake, then shut off the engine.

6) Place the ramps back in their storage location.  This will help prevent the ramps from being damaged or stolen.

On to a truck is equally the same  SORT OF!

Step 1: Get Proper Ramps

There are tons of different kinds of ramps out there, just make sure you use something that is built by a reputable company and is rated to take the amount of weight you’re applying. Once you line up the ATV with the truck, place those ramps in the center of the wheels.

Step 2: Secure the Ramps to Your Truck

It’s here that you’ll want to secure your ramps to the truck to prevent them from falling out from under you. Ratchet straps work best for this, though any type of tie-down strap will do. It is best to attach your straps onto your ramps so that they do not get in the way during the loading process. So hook one end of the strap onto the ramps on the other end onto the safety chain tie-down ring beside the hitch receiver.

This will keep the strap out of the way and it was also put downward pressure on the ramps, holding them firmly onto the tailgate and truck.

Step 3: Wear an Approved Helmet

Always remember, safety first.

Step 4: Shift Into 4LO

Putting your ATV into 4LO will help you get up the ramps nice and slow with no drama or hassle.

Step 5: Slowly But Firmly Head Up the Ramps

Give the ATV some gas and get up those ramps. You don’t need to be a speed demon, but you also must stay on the gas and not back off in the middle of the loading. Be firm with the throttle.

Step 6: Creep Forward

Once your rear wheels are fully onto the tailgate, slowly creep forward until you are nearly touching the front of the bed. Now, shut off your ATV and make sure you put it in park if you have it, and/or apply the parking brake. Make sure you pull the key out of your machine.

Step 7: Remove Ramps and Close Tailgate If Possible

You’ll want to close the tailgate if it’s possible. Even if it does close, you still need to properly tie-down your ATV.

Step 8: Secure Your ATV

To properly tie down your ATV, you want to attach your straps to points that will compress the suspension. On an ATV, the best place is usually onto the cargo racks. If you use strong ratchet straps, they will compress the suspension of the ATV for you as you crank them down. If you don’t own ratchet straps, pull down on the end of the ATV you’re tying down to compress the suspension, then tighten your straps. If you have a friend, get them to sit on the very front or back edge of the machine while your secure the straps.

With the suspension compressed, it will put constant pressure on the strap, helping to control side-to-side swaying motion.



If you’re lucky enough to be able to ride your quad out of your garage and onto a trail…well, then we’re jealous. The rest of us have to load up our quads either in the back of pickup trucks or on a trailer and drive them to the nearest trail system or track. Getting your quad secured for the trip with tie-downs is very important, very easy, and something that some people don’t know how to do correctly.

You want to place the tie-downs in a way that collapses the suspension of your ATV. For example, place tie-downs on the rear grab bar and on the front handlebars. When you tighten the straps, they should collapse the suspension. Also, make sure there is tension both forward and backward on the quad so it doesn’t roll off the flatbed. Two tie-downs from each end works well. And make sure that you have high-quality tie-downs. The cheaply made, thin tie-downs easily snap and break…trust us. Get the nice tie-downs to keep your quad safe on the journey!

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Near Miss REPORTING is not OPTIONAL in your program it is your walk up call to zero fatalities

Incident Reporting and Investigation

Your company should aim to maintain a safe and healthy environment by correcting situations that caused or could likely cause injury. When an incident occurs, it is important to report the occurrence so actions such as an investigation can be taken to make sure that a similar or more serious incident does not happen again. Many safety activities are reactive and not proactive, and some organizations wait for losses to occur before taking steps to prevent a recurrence. Near miss incidents often precede loss producing events but may be overlooked as there was no harm (no injury, damage or loss). An organization may not have a reporting culture where employees are encouraged to report these close calls. Thus, many opportunities to prevent the incidents are lost. History has shown repeatedly that most loss producing events (incidents), both serious and catastrophic, were preceded by warnings or near miss incidents. Recognizing and reporting near miss incidents can significantly improve worker safety and enhance an organization’s safety culture.

Near miss reporting is vitally important to preventing serious, fatal and catastrophic incidents that are less frequent but far more harmful than other incidents. Incidents occur every day at the workplace that could result in a serious injury or damage.

What is an incident?

There are two types of events that fall under the definition of an incident for the purposes of reporting guidelines:

The first is an event that resulted in an injury.

The second event is one called a Near Miss. A near miss is an unplanned event that did not result in injury, illness or damage, but had the potential to do so. Only a fortunate break in the chain of events prevented an injury, damage or fatality.

It is extremely important to report incidents right away, no matter how minor it may be. Even if the injury is minor or if there is no initial injury and you feel it is not worth reporting, the incident must be documented. The reason for this is that minor injuries can worsen over time and become more of an issue, or an ergonomic injury can become apparent several days or months after the initial cause. If this happens and there was no report of the incident, it may be difficult to argue that it happened at work. Furthermore, reporting an incident right away will allow for corrective action to be taken sooner, possibly preventing others from becoming injured,and ensure the details are accurate as the event will still be fresh in your mind.

Investigations are in important part of due diligence. Investigations will help to uncover the root causes of the incident, and provide those involved with better information about how to correct and prevent the situation for the future.

Employee participation in any near-miss program is vital, P bar Y Safety said. “It’s employees themselves who witness these things,”.

Workers should be trained on how to properly identify and recognize potential hazards. To help make it easy for employees to submit near misses and ensure good data, consider allowing them to turn in near-miss reports anonymously, P bar Y Safety suggested.

“If we require them to put their name on it, some of the information we would otherwise get wouldn’t happen,” he said.

To get employees in the habit of turning in near-miss data, employers may be tempted to set quotas. But P bar Y Safety advises against this. Although quotas may be beneficial for establishing expectations when kicking off a new reporting program, they said, continuing these requirements could negatively affect the quality of the information employers receive.

“If people look at it as an obligatory quota thing, they might just get it out of the way right away,” P bar Y Safety said, cautioning that workers who have met their quota may ignore subsequent – and potentially more dangerous – near misses.

Additionally, safety pros may find more support from employees when investigating a near miss than when investigating an incident. “Many times, I’ve found people are much more open to make a positive team contribution towards the prevention of an accident through the discussion of a near miss than if an accident has already occurred,” P bar Y Safety said. “People seem more willing to talk than when something has happened.”

Employees want to know their employer is serious about the program, so management needs to work hard and be persistent in promoting the value of near misses, he said.

Behaviors or conditions can cause a near-miss incident. Examples include:

  • Failure to maintain or repair equipment;
  • Removal of machine guards;
  • Failure to keep walkways free of slip, trip or fall hazards;
  • Inadequate training or personal protective equipment;
  • Not following procedures or poor procedure enforcement. No matter what the reason, if unsafe acts or conditions are identified and corrected, injuries most likely can be prevented. Ask what other information would be important to preventing future incidents. Examples include:
  • Factors contributing to the incident (include unsafe acts and/or unsafe conditions);
  • Corrective actions necessary;
  • Responsibility for corrective action and date to be completed. In general, collect as much information as possible but remember the key point: The information must be effectively communicated throughout the organization to increase its value.

“You have to demonstrate over time you’re committed to it,” P bar Y Safety said. “If you can do that, you’ll have a better program.” Overcoming barriers to reporting

Many obstacles stand in the way of operating and utilizing an efficient and effective near-miss reporting program:

Fear of blame: Many employees are afraid to report near misses because either they don’t want to admit that they didn’t follow safety procedures or they will be mistakenly accused of doing something wrong. To create a truly effective near-miss reporting program, this stigma must be eliminated.

For near-miss reporting to work well, employers need to create a safe and comfortable atmosphere. The goal is to make employees so comfortable about the process that they report them as easily and freely as they would report a garbage can is full or a light bulb is burned out. Blame cannot be part of the equation – period.

Incoherent indifference: Another enemy of effective reporting is indifference. When a near miss occurs, some employees may question whether the situation was substantial enough to be recorded. When this happens, employees often simply disregard the event. This mindset can be lethal to a near-miss reporting program.

Hazards that are overlooked or dismissed as minor are lost opportunities for valuable insight. Employees should be trained on the importance of reporting each and every near miss. A clear definition should be provided on what constitutes a near miss, including any situation that appears to be “unsafe.” Once employees understand the importance of reporting and are clear on the definition of what defines a near miss, they will feel confident about their judgment and empowered to report.

Lack of supervisor support: Employees usually follow their direct supervisor’s instructions in most job-related situations. If a supervisor does not treat near-miss reporting as a priority, there is a good chance their personnel won’t either. Supervisors need to encourage this type of reporting and set an example by reporting near misses themselves. When employees know that their supervisors are completely on board with near-miss reporting, it is easier for them to feel comfortable to report, as well.

Near-miss reporting is a critical component of any well-organized and effective safety program. Over time, near-miss programs have been shown to save millions of dollars in medical care and equipment replacement costs. More importantly, they save lives.

Success is measured many ways

Report all near-miss incidents. It is a proposition you cannot afford to ignore. Conclude by stressing to document all near misses. Incident prevention begins with identification. All near-miss incidents should be immediately documented using your company’s incident report form and incident reporting procedures

Terry Penney

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I want you to play two games from your childhood and how GHS helps


Ok Little Johnny

come to the front of the class, well no this isn’t a Little Johnny joke and although Little Johnny has been mentioned a few times in your adult life for better or worse here is what he learned, no joke!

When we think back to our childhood we played and played when we could rain or shine, night or day our brains were used to see, smell touch and hear things to enhance our skills.   Two every important and critical competency games were I SPY WITH MY LITTLE EYE SOMETHING THAT IS!, and then it was off to school and the teacher would ask us to play along in class with SHOW AND TELL.   So why are these childhood games pre worker competency requirements, well read on to find out.

I spy with my little eye something that is, it was the first learning item in spotting the strange or unusual in your environment like workplace hazards.  It allowed us to see thing hidden or made our minds work in seeing things either in our environment or outside like pre-job hazard assessments.  Our asker would already know or see the item it was up to us to sharpen our skills (like competency training) and see the same thing, hence our mentors at home just like our mentor at work was saying when you look what do you see, or smell or hear.   So as you can see safety was training you for the workforce at an early stage to be OBSERVANT in our world.

The second step was taught by our next mentor our teacher in grade school in SHOW AND TELL.  What show and tell taught us was that we would bring something common to us or unusual and we would tell everyone in class our peers (or fellow workers) what that item was like a tool box or safety meeting.  The showing was just as critical as the telling.  The telling was our chance to display our competency and knowledge on the item and second having the courage within to stand up and talk with people ( our first step in public speaking) it allowed us to say yes I saw this hazard and it could you affect you in this way and why and people  ( fellow workers would listen).  The first time or two was always nerve racking it was hard to stand up and say your mind or tell folks because you didn’t know what people would think and your knowledge was challenged by the other students ( workers).  Some would stare in wonder others would giggle and laugh as the teacher ( mentor , supervisor) would say pay attention  and learn,

Well looking for hazards at work is like both games, I spy ( looking for hazards) and show and tell (tell or writing down what you see and why it is a hazard.

So lets start with understanding  the topic in worker education and GHS

Employers have a responsibility to protect workers against health and safety hazards at work. Workers have the right to know about potential hazards and to refuse work that they believe is dangerous. Workers also have a responsibility to work safely with hazardous materials.

Health and safety hazards exist in every workplace. Some are easily identified and corrected, while others create extremely dangerous situations that could be a threat to your life or long-term health. The best way to protect yourself is to learn to recognize and prevent hazards in your workplace. The meaning of the word hazard can be confusing. Often dictionaries do not give specific definitions or combine it with the term “risk”. For example, one dictionary defines hazard as “a danger or risk” which helps explain why many people use the terms interchangeably.

There are many definitions for hazard but the more common definition when talking about workplace health and safety is:

hazard is any source of potential damage, harm or adverse health effects on something or someone under certain conditions at work.

Basically, a hazard can cause harm or adverse effects (to individuals as health effects or to organizations as property or equipment losses).

Sometimes a hazard is referred to as being the actual harm or the health effect it caused rather than the hazard. For example, the disease tuberculosis (TB) might be called a hazard by some but in general the TB-causing bacteria would be considered the “hazard” or “hazardous biological agent”.

There are four main types of workplace hazards:
Physical hazards are the most common hazards and are present in most workplaces at some time. Examples include: frayed electrical cords, unguarded machinery, exposed moving parts, constant loud noise, vibrations, working from ladders, scaffolding or heights, spills, tripping hazards.

Ergonomic hazards occur when the type of work you do, your body position and/or your working conditions put a strain on your body. They are difficult to identify because you don’t immediately recognize the harm they are doing to your health. Examples include: poor lighting, improperly adjusted workstations and chairs, frequent lifting, repetitive or awkward movements.

Chemical hazards are present when you are exposed to any chemical preparation (solid, liquid or gas) in the workplace. Examples include: cleaning products and solvents, vapours and fumes, carbon monoxide or other gases, gasoline or other flammable materials.

Biological hazards come from working with people, animals or infectious plant material. Examples include: blood or other bodily fluids, bacteria and viruses, insect bites, animal and bird droppings.

Poor work practices create hazards – examples of unsafe work practices commonly found in the workplace include:

Report hazards immediately
Everyone in a workplace shares responsibility for ensuring that their work environment is safe and healthy. Some hazards pose an immediate danger and others take a longer time to become apparent. But both types of hazards must be fixed. If you are aware of a hazard in your workplace, you should report it promptly to your supervisor, employer or health and safety representative. Once a hazard has been identified, your employer and/or supervisor has a duty to assess the problem and eliminate any hazard that could injure workers.

Workplace inspections prevent hazards
Regular workplace inspections are another important factor in preventing injuries and illnesses. By critically examining all aspects of the workplace, inspections identify and record hazards that must be addressed and corrected.

A workplace inspection should include:

What is WHMIS?
The Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) is a Canadian hazard communication system that provides employers and workers with information about many hazardous materials (referred to as controlled products) that are produced, handled, stored, used or disposed of in the workplace. The goal of WHMIS is to reduce accidents and prevent health hazards.

WHMIS in Canada addresses three important areas of workplace safety:

  1. Labels– All hazardous or controlled products must carry labels that clearly identify the product and provide hazard information about it. The label must indicate whether a workplace SDS (see below) is available in the workplace.
  2. Safety Data Sheets (SDS)– An SDS must be provided for every controlled product in your workplace. The SDS provides much more detailed information than a label.
  3. Worker education– Every employer is expected to develop and implement an up-to-date education program to enable workers to understand and use the information that is provided on the labels and SDS. This program should be reviewed at least once a year, and whenever there is a change in conditions or new hazard information concerning any hazardous substances in the workplace. Employers must keep written records of employee education.

An effective program for controlling hazardous substances includes the following elements:


Now take it one more step is it the only hazards you see what else could something else be a hazard?

Safety Hazards:

Safety Hazards are unsafe working conditions that that can cause injury, illness and death. Safety hazards are the most common workplace hazards.

Some hazards are more likely to be present in some workplaces than others, and depending on the work that you do, there will be hazards that are more or less relevant to your business.

What are the most common workplace hazards?

There are many types of workplace hazards, which tend to come under four main categories:

  • physical hazards – the most common workplace hazards, including vibration, noise and slips, trips and falls;
  • ergonomic hazards – physical factors that harm the musculoskeletal system, such as repetitive movement, manual handling and poor body positioning;
  • chemical hazards – any hazardous substance that can cause harm to your employees;
  • biological hazards – bacteria and viruses that can cause health effects, such as hepatitis, HIV/AIDS and Legionnaire’s disease.

Common health risks

Some of the most common health risks associated with workplace hazards include:

  • breathing problems;
  • skin irritation;
  • damage to muscles, bones and joints;
  • hearing damage;
  • reduced wellbeing.

How to prevent workplace hazards

The best way to protect yourself and your employees from workplace hazards is to identify and manage them and take reasonable steps to prevent their potential to harm.

In order to control workplace hazards and eliminate or reduce the risk, you should take the following steps:

  • identify the hazard by carrying out a workplace risk assessment;
  • determine how employees might be at risk;
  • evaluate the risks;
  • record and review hazards at least annually, or earlier if something changes.

Workplace hazards can come from a wide range of sources. General examples include any substance, material, process, practice, etc that has the ability to cause harm or adverse health effect to a person under certain conditions.

As shown, workplace hazards also include practices or conditions that release uncontrolled energy like:

  • an object that could fall from a height (potential or gravitational energy),
  • a run-away chemical reaction (chemical energy),
  • the release of compressed gas or steam (pressure; high temperature),
  • entanglement of hair or clothing in rotating equipment (kinetic energy), or
  • contact with electrodes of a battery or capacitor (electrical energy).


They include:

  • Anything that can cause spills or tripping such as cords running across the floor or ice
  • Anything that can cause falls such as working from heights, including ladders, scaffolds, roofs, or any raised work area
  • Unguarded machinery and moving machinery parts that a worker can accidentally touch
  • Electrical hazards like frayed cords, missing ground pins, improper wiring
  • Confined spaces

Biological Hazards:

Biological Hazards include exposure to harm or disease associated with working with animals, people, or infectious plant materials. Workplaces with these kinds of hazards include, but are not limited to, work in schools, day care facilities, colleges and universities, hospitals, laboratories, emergency response, nursing homes, or various outdoor occupations.

Types of things you may be exposed to include:

  • Blood and other body fluids
  • Fungi/mold
  • Bacteria and viruses
  • Plants
  • Insect bites
  • Animal and bird droppings

Physical Hazards:

Physical hazards can be any factors within the environment that can harm the body without necessarily touching it.

They include:

  • Radiation: including ionizing, non-ionizing (EMF’s, microwaves, radiowaves, etc.)
  • High exposure to sunlight / ultraviolet rays
  • Temperature extremes – hot and cold
  • Constant loud noise

Ergonomic Hazards:

Occur when the type of work, body positions and working conditions put a strain on your body.  They are the hardest to spot since you don’t always immediately notice the strain on your body or the harm that these hazards pose.  Short-term exposure may result in “sore muscles” the next day or in the days following the exposure, but long term exposure can result in serious long-term illness.

Ergonomic Hazards include:

  • Improperly adjusted workstations and chairs
  • Frequent lifting
  • Poor posture
  • Awkward movements, especially if they are repetitive
  • Having to use too much force, especially if you have to do it frequently
  • Vibration

Chemical Hazards:

Are present when a worker is exposed to any chemical preparation in the workplace in any form (solid, liquid or gas).  Some are safer than others, but to some workers who are more sensitive to chemicals, even common solutions can cause illness, skin irritation, or breathing problems.

Beware of:

  • Liquids like cleaning products, paints, acids,solvents – ESPECIALLY if chemicals are in an unlabeled container!
  • Vapors and fumes that come from welding or exposure to solvents
  • Gases like acetylene, propane, carbon monoxide and helium
  • Flammable materials like gasoline, solvents, and explosive chemicals
  • Pesticides

Work Organization Hazards:

Hazards or stressors that cause stress (short term effects) and strain (long term effects).  These are hazards associated with workplace issues such as workload, lack of control and/or respect, etc.

Examples include:

  • Workload demands
  • Workplace violence
  • Intensity and/or pace
  • Respect (or lack thereof)
  • Flexibility
  • Control or say about things
  • Social support or relations
  • Sexual harassment

Remember that these lists are non-exhaustive.  When you are completing a workplace hazard assessment, take into account these six larger categories to think of factors that may affect your workers in their particular circumstances.  And that a occupational hazard is a thing or situation with the potential to harm a worker. Occupational hazards can be divided into two categories: safety hazards that cause accidents that physically injure workers, and health hazards which result in the development of disease. It is important to note that a “hazard” only represents a potential to cause harm. Whether it actually does cause harm will depend on circumstances, such as the toxicity of the health hazard, exposure amount, and duration. Hazards can also be rated according to the severity of the harm they cause – a significant hazard being one with the potential to cause a critical injury or death.

Terry Penney

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When you have an INCIDENT at work is the procedure understood and easy to follow, a tip from the OHS Cops

Investigative Procedures

The actual procedures used in a particular investigation depend on the nature and results of the incident. The agency having jurisdiction over the location determines the administrative procedures. In general, responsible officials will appoint an individual to be in charge of the investigation. The investigator uses most of the following steps:


  1. Define the scope of the investigation.
  2. Select the investigators. Assign specific tasks to each (preferably in writing).
  3. Present a preliminary briefing to the investigating team, including:
    1. Description of the incident, with damage estimates
    2. Normal operating procedures
    3. Maps (local and general)
    4. Location of the incident site
    5. List of witnesses
    6. Events that preceded the incident
  4. Visit the incident site to get updated Information.
  5. Inspect the incident site.
    1. Secure the area. Do not disturb the scene unless a hazard exists.
    2. Prepare the necessary sketches and photographs. Label each carefully and keep accurate records.
  6. Interview each victim and witness. Also interview those who were present before the incident and those who arrived at the site shortly after the incident. Keep accurate records of each interview. Use a tape recorder if desired and if approved.
  7. Determine what was not normal before the incident.
    1. Where the abnormality occurred
    2. When it was first noted
    3. How it occurred
  8. Analyze the data obtained in step 7. Repeat any of the prior steps, if necessary.
  9. Determine why the incident occurred.
    1. A likely sequence of events and probable causes (direct, indirect, basic)
    2. Alternative sequences
  10. Check each sequence against the data from step 7.
  11. Determine the most likely sequence of events and the most probable causes.
  12. Conduct a post-investigation briefing.
  13. Prepare a summary report, including the recommended actions to prevent a recurrence. Distribute the report according to applicable instructions.

An investigation is not complete until all data are analyzed and a final report is completed. In practice, the investigative work, data analysis, and report preparation proceed simultaneously over much of the time spent on the investigation.

Gather evidence from many sources during an investigation. Get information from witnesses and reports as well as by observation. Interview witnesses as soon as possible after an incident. Inspect the incident site before any changes occur. Take photographs and make sketches of the incident scene. Record all pertinent data on maps. Get copies of all reports. Documents containing normal operating procedures, flow diagrams, maintenance charts, or reports of difficulties or abnormalities are particularly useful. Keep complete and accurate notes in a bound notebook. Record pre-incident conditions, the incident sequence, and post-incident conditions. In addition, document the location of victims, witnesses, machinery, energy sources, and hazardous materials.

In some investigations, a particular physical or chemical law, principle, or property may explain a sequence of events. Include laws in the notes taken during the investigation or in the later analysis of data. In addition, gather data during the investigation that may lend itself to analysis by these laws, principles, or properties. An appendix in the final report can include an extended discussion.


In general, experienced personnel should conduct interviews. If possible, the team assigned to this task should include an individual with a legal background. In conducting interviews, the team should:

  1. Appoint a speaker for the group.
  2. Get preliminary statements as soon as possible from all witnesses.
  3. Locate the position of each witness on a master chart (including the direction of view).
  4. Arrange for a convenient time and place to talk to each witness.
  5. Explain the purpose of the investigation (incident prevention) and put each witness at ease.
  6. Listen, let each witness speak freely, and be courteous and considerate.
  7. Take notes without distracting the witness. Use a tape recorder only with consent of the witness.
  8. Use sketches and diagrams to help the witness.
  9. Emphasize areas of direct observation. Label hearsay accordingly.
  10. Be sincere and do not argue with the witness.
  11. Record the exact words used by the witness to describe each observation. Do not “put words into a witness’ mouth.
  12. Word each question carefully and be sure the witness understands.
  13. Identify the qualifications of each witness (name, address, occupation, years of experience, etc.).
  14. Supply each witness with a copy of his or her statements. Signed statements are desirable.

After interviewing all witnesses, the team should analyze each witness’ statement. They may wish to re-interview one or more witnesses to confirm or clarify key points. While there may be inconsistencies in witnesses’ statements, investigators should assemble the available testimony into a logical order. Analyze this information along with data from the incident site.

Not all people react in the same manner to a particular stimulus. For example, a witness within close proximity to the incident may have an entirely different story from one who saw it at a distance. Some witnesses may also change their stories after they have discussed it with others. The reason for the change may be additional clues.

A witness who has had a traumatic experience may not be able to recall the details of the incident. A witness who has a vested interest in the results of the investigation may offer biased testimony. Finally, eyesight, hearing, reaction time, and the general condition of each witness may affect his or her powers of observation. A witness may omit entire sequences because of a failure to observe them or because their importance was not realized.

Problem Solving Techniques
Incidents represent problems that must be solved through investigations. Several formal procedures solve problems of any degree of complexity. This section discusses two of the most common procedures: Change Analysis and Job Safety Analysis.

Change Analysis
As its name implies, this technique emphasizes change. To solve a problem, an investigator must look for deviations from the norm. Consider all problems to result from some unanticipated change. Make an analysis of the change to determine its causes. Use the following steps in this method:

  1. Define the problem (What happened?)
  2. Establish the norm (What should have happened?)
  3. Identify, locate, and describe the change (What, where, when, to what extent)
  4. Specify what was and what was not affected
  5. Identify the distinctive features of the change
  6. List the possible causes
  7. Select the most likely causes

Job Safety Analysis
Job safety analysis (JSA) is part of many existing incident prevention programs. In general, JSA breaks a job into basic steps, and identifies the hazards associated with each step. The JSA also prescribes controls for each hazard. A JSA is a chart listing these steps, hazards, and controls. Review the JSA during the investigation if a JSA has been conducted for the job involved in an incident. Perform a JSA if one is not available. Perform a JSA as a part of the investigation to determine the events and conditions that led to the incident.

Report of Investigation
As noted earlier, an incident investigation is not complete until a report is prepared and submitted to proper authorities. Special report forms are available in many cases. Other instances may require a more extended report. Such reports are often very elaborate and may include a cover page, a title page, an abstract, a table of contents, a commentary or narrative portion, a discussion of probable causes, and a section on conclusions and recommendations.

The following outline has been found especially useful in developing the information to be included in the formal report:

  1. Background Information
    1. Where and when the incident occurred
    2. Who and what were involved
    3. Operating personnel and other witnesses
  2. Account of the Incident (what happened?)
    1. Sequence of events
    2. Extent of damage
    3. Incident type
    4. Agency or source (of energy or hazardous material)
  3. Discussion (Analysis of the Incident–how; why)
    1. Direct causes (energy sources; hazardous materials)
    2. Indirect causes (unsafe acts and conditions)
    3. Basic causes (management policies; personal or environmental factors)
  4. Recommendations (to prevent a recurrence) for immediate and long-range action to remedy:
    1. Basic causes
    2. Indirect causes
    3. Direct causes (such as reduced quantities or protective equipment or structures)

Thousands of incidents occur daily throughout the United States. These result from a failure of people, equipment, supplies, or surroundings to behave as expected. A successful incident investigation determines not only what happened, but also finds how and why the incident occurred. Investigations are an effort to prevent a similar or perhaps more disastrous sequence of events.

Most incident investigations follow formal procedures. This discussion covered two of the most common procedures: Change Analysis and Job Safety Analysis. An investigation is not complete however, until completion of a final report. Responsible officials can then use the resulting information and recommendations to prevent future incidents.

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Safety during POWER OUTAGES, what did we cover oh snap I need power to access the net to find out!

We have all in our life time been through power outages not just short bumps on the grids but those long range ones where you say I WONDER WHAT HAPPENED! Most power outages will be over almost as soon as they begin, but some can last much longer – up to days or even weeks.    Everyone always rolls their eyes and wonders where safety gets this stuff right up to the point of the event then it’s like what was in that safety talk again?

Most people would say oh Id just go home, ok you cant use the elevator no power, you can use the stairs assuming the emergency power working, you cant use the security electronic locks or garage doors to the building they need power!   The list is endless of what is not working!!!!   Everyone talks a great story until the light bulb goes out, and ask what is in our emergency plan and is this an emergency?  Did we cover the procedures and who does what and where are those STUPID FLASH LIGHTS.


Safety FIRST remember the power went out for a REASON so shut down machines, look for downed lines or did you over load a circuit and trip the breakers?

During a power outage, you may be left without heating/air conditioning, lighting, hot water, or even running water. If you only have a cordless phone, you will also be left without phone service. If you do not have a battery-powered or crank radio, you may have no way of monitoring news broadcasts. In other words, you could be facing major challenges. You can greatly lessen the impact of a power outage by taking the time to prepare in advance at work and business or home.

At work we talk about many things like EMERGENCY LIGHTING and how long does it last and who or whom tested it last, or I have flashlight in my gear but when did Iast test test it and I cant find my bag in the dark.

Or what about the staff fridge or food how long was the power out will the  stuff on the inside stay fresh!

WHERE IS THAT FLASHLIGHT and what PM did you give it?

When you buy a flashlight, you typically purchase one for a specific purpose and in many cases, that purpose will most likely put some wear and tear on your light. Whether using it on heavy construction sites or as a critical tool for repairing your car on the side of the road in the rain, there is truly is no limit into which a good Coast flashlight can be pushed. While we designed our flashlights to withstand these tough environments, flashlight maintenance is still vital to the longevity of the light. For a flashlight, like many other tools used in everyday occasions, maintenance is key because it can help extend the life of the flashlight and ensure it is at its peak performance for when you’re in the thick of those tough environments. Inspired by the various issues shared with our warranty and the solutions they provide on a daily basis, we’ve created a flashlight maintenance guide.

Flashlight Maintenance doesn’t necessarily occur after use, the way you use your light during work or recreation is important as well. A common mistake we see many users do with their light is hold it in their mouths. By doing this, it allows the moisture from your mouth to enter and potentially damage the end cap of the light and this can lead to issues such as switch failure. If you find yourself in scenarios where both hands are needed, we highly recommend switching to a headlamp or a flashlight with a clip. Another in use practice that relates to moisture is if your flashlight gets significantly wet, make sure to dry it off as soon as possible. While all our lights are water resistant and some are even water proof, leaving it damp for an extended period of time increases the risk of damage.

Once you finished using your light, don’t just clean off the access moisture, make sure to clean off any dirt or grim on the light as well. Once that dirt settles, it can be difficult to remove and can potentially ruin the grip of the flashlight. Simply take a damp wash cloth to the light and scrub away. Depending on the substance on the light, you may need a more heavy duty cleaning material to use but make sure it won’t ruin the casing of the light. Keeping it clean will not only help perform at peak performance but also continue to look great as well!

Finally, after cleaning the light, flashlight maintenance continues with how you store your light. The first step in storage is making sure it’s not stored somewhere with direct sun exposure. It’s a very common practice to keep a flashlight in your car and we recommend not keeping it on a dashboard or back window where the sun can overheat the light. Storing your flashlights in dry, cool spaces is recommended. When storing, according to our lighting specialists, removing alkaline is also a recommended flashlight maintenance step. This will help prevent batteries from eroding and unnecessarily draining.

Flashlight Lubes

This is the step that makes sure that your flashlight unscrews smoothly and that your O-rings do not dry out. Some of the best lubes are Nyogel, Krytox, Nano-oil, or our preferred since it is easy to find and cheap is Super Lube. We also think that this is a great lubricant for O rings. One of these tubes will last you a long time. You might need different lubes based on the material that your O-rings are made out of but Super Lube should work for most lights

Finally, if stored for a long time, monthly batteries tests are recommended. If a battery erodes and leaks into the light, it can ruin flashlight. Keeping batteries fresh or using a rechargeable light with lithium batteries will help avoid this issue.
During a power outage

  • First, check whether the power outage is limited to your business or home. If your neighbours/competitors’ power is still on, check your own circuit breaker panel or fuse box. If the problem is not a breaker or a fuse, check the service wires leading to the business/house. If they are obviously damaged or on the ground, stay at least 10 meters back and notify your electric supply authority. Keep the number along with other emergency numbers near your telephone.
  • If your neighbours’ power is also out, notify your electric supply authority.
  • Turn off all tools, appliances and electronic equipment, and turn the thermostat(s) for the business or home heating system down to minimum to prevent damage from a power surge when power is restored. Also, power can be restored more easily when there is not a heavy load on the electrical system.
  • Turn off all lights, except one inside and one outside, so that both you and hydro crews outside know that power has been restored.
  • Don’t open your freezer or fridge unless it is absolutely necessary. A full freezer will keep food frozen for 24 to 36 hours if the door remains closed.
  • Never use charcoal or gas barbecues, camping heating equipment, or business or home generators indoors or in garages. They give off carbon monoxide. Because you can’t smell or see it, carbon monoxide can cause health problems and is life-threatening.
  • Listen to your battery-powered or wind-up radio for information on the outage and advice from authorities.   Oh you don’t have one then how do you expect to get update even Cell towers use batteries


  • Make sure your business or home has a working carbon monoxide detector. If it is hard-wired to the business/house’s electrical supply, ensure it has a battery-powered back-up.
  • Protect sensitive electrical appliances such as TVs, computer, and DVD players with a surge-protecting powerbar.

Use of business or home generators

Business or home generators are handy for backup electricity in case of an outage, but must only be used in accordance with the manufacturer’s guidelines. A back-up generator may only be connected to your business or home’s electrical system through an approved transfer panel and switch that has been installed by a qualified electrician. Never plug a generator into a wall outlet as serious injury can result when the current produced by the business or home generator is fed back into the electrical lines, and transformed to a higher voltage. This can endanger the lives of utility employees working to restore the power.

To operate a generator safely:

  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Ensure that the generator operates outdoors in well-ventilated conditions, well away from doors or windows, and never in your garage, to prevent exhaust gases from entering the house.
  • Connect lights and appliances directly to the generator. If extension cords must be used, ensure they are properly rated, CSA-approved cords.


And don’t forget person with other needs other than your own

People with disabilities or others requiring assistance

Consider how you may be affected in a power outage, including:

  • Your evacuation route – without elevator service (if applicable).
  • Planning for a backup power supply for essential medical equipment.
  • Keeping a flashlight and a cell phone handy to signal for help.
  • Establishing a self-help network to assist and check on you during an emergency.
  • Enrolling in a medical alert program that will signal for help if you are immobilized.
  • Keeping a list of facilities that provide life-sustaining equipment or treatment.
  • Keeping a list of medical conditions and treatment.
  • If you live in an apartment, advise the property management that you may need assistance staying in your apartment or that you must be evacuated if there is a power outage. This will allow the property manager to plan and make the necessary arrangements on your behalf.


During power outages, many people use portable electrical generators. If the portable generator is improperly sized, installed, or operated, it can send power back to the electrical lines. This problem is called backfeed or feedback in the electrical energy in power lines. Backfeed can seriously injure or kill repair workers or people in neighboring buildings. This fact sheet provides workers with information on how to restore power safely to local communities when a portable generator is being used in a home or homes in the area.

Effects of Backfeed

The problem of backfeed in electrical energy is a constant risk for electrical energy workers. Electrocutions are the fifth leading cause of all reported occupational deaths.

Understanding the Process

When power lines are down, residents can restore energy to their homes by another power source such as a portable generator. If the generator is plugged into a household circuit, the electrical current could reverse, go back through the circuit to the power grid, and then increase in voltage. If a worker attempts to repair power lines when this happens, the worker could be electrocuted. Following certain safety guidelines can reduce this risk.

Safeguards against Backfeed

  • Workers should treat all power lines as “hot”unless the lines have been de-energized and grounded. Because of the possibility of a feedback circuit, the worker should ground all lines on both sides of the work area unless he/she is wearing the proper personal protective equipment.
  • Prevent electrocutions by conducting standard teststo decide if there is high voltage in the power lines. Low voltage includes voltages from 50 to 600 volts. High voltage includes voltages of 601 volts to 230,000. Extra high voltage is any voltage over 230,000 volts.
  • Workers should also use low voltage testing equipmentsuch as glowing a neon light or light-emitting diode type equipment to determine whether there is low voltage present. High voltage tests may not identify lower voltage levels. Lower voltages are also deadly.
  • Power lines should not be repaired or otherwise accessed without adequate personal protective equipmentsuch as NEC rated and approved gloves and sleeves.

How the Public Can Help

  • Have a trained, qualified electrician install a portable generator.
  • Be sure that the main circuit breaker is OFFand locked out prior to starting the generator. This will help protect utility workers from possible electrocution.

First Aid for Electrical Shock

If you believe someone has been electrocuted take the following steps:

  1. Look first. Don’t touch. The person may still be in contact with the electrical source. Touching the person may pass the current through you.
  2. Call or have someone else call 911 or emergency medical help.
  3. Turn off the source of electricity if possible. If not, move the source away from you and the affected person using a nonconducting object made of cardboard, plastic or wood.
  4. Once the person is free of the source of electricity, check the person’s breathing and pulse. If either has stopped or seems dangerously slow or shallow, begin cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) immediately.
  5. If the person is faint or pale or shows other signs of shock, lay the person down with the head slightly lower than the trunk of his or her body and the legs elevated.
  6. Don’t touch burns, break blisters, or remove burned clothing. Electrical shock may cause burns inside the body, so be sure the person is taken to a doctor.

Power Line Hazards and Cars

If a power line falls on a car, you should stay inside the vehicle. This is the safest place to stay. Warn people not to touch the car or the line. Call or ask someone to call the local utility company and emergency services.

The only circumstance in which you should consider leaving a car that is in contact with a downed power line is if the vehicle catches on fire. Open the door. Do not step out of the car. You may receive a shock. Instead, jump free of the car so that your body clears the vehicle before touching the ground. Once you clear the car, shuffle at least 50 feet away, with both feet on the ground.

As in all power line related emergencies, call for help immediately by dialing 911 or call your electric utility company’s Service Center/Dispatch Office.

Do not try to help someone else from the car while you are standing on the ground.

Avoid Carbon Monoxide

For important information about the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning during a power outage, see the following resources.

When using gasoline- and diesel-powered portable generators to supply power to a building, switch the main breaker or fuse on the service panel to the “off” position prior to starting the generator. This will prevent power lines from being inadvertently energized by backfeed electrical energy from the generators, and help protect utility line workers or other repair workers or people in neighboring buildings from possible electrocution. If the generator is plugged into a household circuit without turning the main breaker to the “off” position or removing the main fuse, the electrical current could reverse, go back through the circuit to the outside power grid, and energize power lines or electrical systems in other buildings to at or near their original voltage without the knowledge of utility or other workers.

Effects of Backfeed

The problem of backfeed in electrical energy is a potential risk for electrical energy workers. Electrocutions are the fifth leading cause of all reported occupational deaths. Following the safety guidelines below can reduce this risk.

Safeguards against Backfeed

  • Extreme caution must be exercised by persons working on or in the vicinity of unverified de-energized power lines.All persons performing this work should treat all power lines as “hot” unless they positively know these lines are properly de-energized and grounded. Because of the possibility of a feedback circuit, the person performing the work should personally ground all lines on both sides of the work area and wear the proper required protective equipment.
  • Linemen must be instructed to treat all power lines as energized unless they personally de-energize themby establishing a visible open point between the load and supply sides of the line to be repaired, by opening a fused disconnect, by opening a fused switch, or by removing a tap jumper if the load permits.
  • Workers must verify that the power lines have been de-energized.
  • Workers must provide proper grounding for the lines.Unless a power line is effectively grounded on both sides of a work area, it must be considered energized even though the line has been de-energized. Lines must be grounded to the system neutral. Grounds must be attached to the system neutral first and removed from the system neutral last. If work is being performed on a multiphase system, grounds must be placed on all lines. Lines should be grounded in sight of the working area and work should be performed between the grounds whenever possible. If work is to be performed out of sight of the point where the line has been de-energized, an additional ground should be placed on all lines on the source side of the work area.
  • Persons working on or in the vicinity of power lines should be provided with appropriate safety and protective equipment and trained in procedures that address all magnitudes of voltages to which they may be exposed.Procedures should be established to perform a dual voltage check on the grounded load and supply sides of the open circuit. Once it has been determined that high voltage is not present, low voltage testing equipment, such as a glowing neon light or a light-emitting diode, should be used to determine if lower voltage is present.

Terry Penney

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Are you killing your welder at work and everyone around them!

Intense heat is produced during the welding process which can have a damaging effect on the welder’s health. These fumes cause a range of respiratory illnesses such as bronchitis or occupational asthma but they can affect other parts of the body as well.

One example is a condition called Manganese Poisoning and how are welders and people around them impacted by the work they do!!!!!!

Manganism or manganese poisoning is a toxic condition resulting from chronic exposure to manganese. It was first identified in 1837 by James Couper. Manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) is the principal antioxidant enzyme in the mitochondria. Because mitochondria consume over 90% of the oxygen used by cells, they are especially vulnerable to oxidative stress. The superoxide radical is one of the reactive oxygen species produced in mitochondria during ATP synthesis. MnSOD catalyzes the conversion of superoxide radicals to hydrogen peroxide, which can be reduced to water by other antioxidant enzymes .


A number of manganese-activated enzymes play important roles in the metabolism of carbohydrates, amino acids, and cholesterol . Pyruvate carboxylase, a manganese-containing enzyme, and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK), a manganese-activated enzyme, are critical in gluconeogenesis — the production of glucose from non-carbohydrate precursors. Arginase, another manganese-containing enzyme, is required by the liver for the urea cycle, a process that detoxifies ammonia generated during amino acid metabolism.    So the doctors state: Magnesium

Supplemental magnesium (200 mg/day) has been shown to slightly decrease manganese bioavailability in healthy adults, either by decreasing manganese absorption or by increasing its excretion and motor disturbances, termed manganism. Generally, exposure to ambient manganese air concentrations in excess of 5 micrograms Mn/m3 can lead to Mn-induced symptoms.

In initial stages of manganism, neurological symptoms consist of reduced response speed, irritability, mood changes, and compulsive behaviors.[  Upon protracted exposure symptoms are more prominent and resemble those of idiopathic Parkinson’s disease, as which it is often misdiagnosed, although there are particular differences in both the symptoms (nature of tremors, for example), response to drugs such as levodopa, and affected portion of the basal ganglia. Symptoms are also similar to Lou Gehrig’s disease and multiple sclerosis.

This is caused by the inhalation of manganese fumes produced when working with carbon steel which cause serious side effects.

These include:

  • Slurred speech
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Shakes/tremors
  • Impaired motor skills
  • Poor co-ordination
  • Difficulty with balance and walking
  • Psychological problems

These symptoms affect the central nervous system and have a serious impact upon the affected person’s quality of life. But what constitutes a high level? As a trace element in people’s diet, manganese is essential to keeping organs, including the brain, healthy.

The American standard for the airborne concentration of manganese dust is now 5 milligrammes per cubic metre of air—a vast improvement on the doses of close to 1,000mg/m3 that some workers were exposed to only 60 years ago. Symptoms first appear after a chronic exposure of at least several months in duration:

1) Prodromal Phase: evidence of cognitive dysfunction and emotional disturbance begin to occur prior to severe motor and neurological dysfunction; symptoms may include fatigue, anorexia, muscle pain, nervousness, irritability, violent outbursts, insomnia, decreased libido, and labile affect; workers may also report headache, hypersomnia, spasms, weariness of the legs, and arthralgias;

2) Intermediate Phase: compulsive uncontrollable laughter or crying, clumsiness of movement, exaggeration of reflexes in lower limbs, speech disorders, visual hallucinations, excessive sweating, excessive salivation, and confusion;

3) Established Phase: muscular weakness, difficulty in walking, stiffness, impaired speech, mask-like face, increased muscular tone, slow and shuffling gait, micrographia, and resting tremors; the syndrome is indistinguishable from Parkinson’s disease;

Parkinsonism caused by manganese has the following that distinguish it from Parkinson’s disease: psychiatric symptoms early in the disease; cock walk; tendency to fall backward; less frequent resting tremor; more frequent dystonia; lack of response to dopaminomimetics; abnormal MRI showing manganese in the pallidum and caudate nucleus; and normal fluorodopa positron emission tomography scan. [IRRST] Characteristic findings of manganese poisoning are poor steadiness of hands, difficulty doing rapid alternating movements, muscular rigidity, and postural instability.

Entry of Mn to brain can occur via three known pathways: through the capillary endothelial cells of the blood–brain barrier, by the choroid plexus of the blood–CSF (cerebrospinal fluid) barrier, or via the olfac-tory nerve from the nasal cavity directly to brain. The latter is important, as most of the reported toxicities have occurred through the inhalation exposure. This review, however, will focus on the vascular routes, since contrast agents are routinely injected into the bloodstream.

The blood–brain barrier (BBB) lies in and around brain capillary cells and has physical, chemical and metabolic properties that influence movement of selected substrates. The capillary endothelial cells have tight junction proteins, which closely and securely link adjacent cells. The endothelial cells are surrounded by a basement membrane consisting of collagen and other lipophilic matrix proteins, which together slow the diffusion of water-soluble compounds. Astrocytes surround the capillary almost exclusively, covering an estimated 99% of the brain surface of the capillaries, leaving neurons to contact ≤ 1% of brain capillary surface. This connection of endothelial and glial cells with the basement membrane constitutes the physical BBB, which inhibits movement between the blood and brain. Substrates in blood may also be prevented from brain entry by their metabolism at the BBB. The barrier also contains transporter proteins whose distribution and activity influence movement across the BBB.

Terry Penney

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In your HSE program at work HOW OFTEN DO YOU MONITOR product recall notices

When it comes to issuing equipment, PPE or anything else at work, supply and services or the Health and Safety Department issue the products to its works in GOOD FAITH based upon the companies budget and based upon your legal need to do a written risk assessment report done on that product, but what happens when it fails or doesn’t hold up to spec’s?

In every safety program from Tires to PPE to Medical Supplies ( the list is endless) how are you monitoring the RECALL LISTS for defective products at work?   And if you are not WHY NOT!

Consumer Product Safety Recall Guidelines

The Guidelines have been developed by your governments legislated standards in consultation with state/provincial and territory product safety regulators.

The system a supplier has in place to ensure the recall of unsafe consumer products from consumers and from within the supply chain should be tailored to the type of product and the risk they pose to consumers. A supplier may seek its own independent advice (including legal advice) regarding the system it develops/has in place for conducting a consumer product recall.

It does this by setting out:

  • the legal requirements for suppliers in relation to a consumer product recall specified in the your countries Consumer Laws
  • the role and responsibilities of suppliers and government agencies when a recall is necessary
  • requirements for conducting a recall, including:
    • notification
    • recall strategy
    • retrieval of the product
    • reporting on the recall

The risks to user are based on letters in the legislated matrix;

Class A hazards warrant the highest level of attention. They call for a company to take immediate, comprehensive, and expansive corrective action measures to identify and notify consumers, retailers and distributors having the defective  product and to remedy the defect through repair or replacement of the product, refunds, or other measures.

Class B Hazard Exists when a risk of death or grievous injury or illness is not likely to occur, but is possible, or when serious injury or illness is likely, or moderate injury or illness is very likely.

Class C Hazard Exists when a risk of serious injury or illness is not likely, but is possible, or when moderate injury or illness is not necessarily likely, but is possible.

Regardless of whether a product defect is classified as a Class A, B, or C priority hazard, the common element is that each of these defects creates a substantial product hazard that requires corrective action to reduce that risk of injury.

Why Recall?

The recall of a consumer product will:

  • minimize the risk of injury or death to consumers by removing the unsafe product from use;
  • retrieve as many defective products from the marketplace as possible; and
  • minimize the cost and inconvenience to consumers, your customers, and your company.

In most cases, a company should initiate a product recall when they become aware:

  • of a defect that makes a product unsafe;
  • of an injury or death to consumers caused by an unsafe product; or
  • that a product does not comply with legislative requirements.

Government and Private agencies ( suppliers) may request that a company initiate a recall when:

  • a product does not comply with the applicable legislation; or
  • a product poses an unacceptable risk to the health and safety of the consumer or user.

A recall media release may include the following information:

name and location of the recalling company

a detailed description of the product, including name, make, model, distinguishing features, batch or serial number, retail cost, etc.

a statement of the hazard and associated risk

the number and type of injuries reported

dates when the product was available for sale

retail locations where the product was sold

the number of products involved

the immediate action that the consumer should take

who consumers should contact for further information including a telephone number, preferably toll-free with service in English and French, and hours of business

a picture of the product

So states the LEGAL STAFF IN MOST COMPANIES show me your policy


Companies whose products come under the jurisdiction of the COMPANY should consider developing an organizational policy and plan in the event a product recall or similar action becomes necessary, whether it involves the COMPANY or another government agency. This policy and related plans should focus on the early detection of product safety problems.

  1. Designating A Recall Coordinator

Designating a company official or employee to serve as a “recall coordinator” is one step firms can take in meeting their product safety and defect reporting responsibilities. Ideally, this recall coordinator would have full authority to coordinate all recalls, and have the sanction and support of the firm’s chief executive officer.

The recall coordinator should have the following qualifications and responsibilities:

– Knowledge of the statutory authority and recall procedures of the Consumer Product Safety Commission;
– Ability to function as the central coordinator within the company for all information regarding quality control procedures, product safety, and consumer complaints;
– Keeping the company’s chief executive officer informed about all potential product recalls and reporting requirements;
– Making recommendations, as needed, about initiating product recalls;
– The authority to involve appropriate departments and offices of the firm in implementing a product recall;
– Responsibility for serving as the company’s primary liaison person with COMPANY.

At the outset, the recall coordinator should fully review the company’s product line to determine how each product will perform and fail under condition of proper use and foreseeable misuse or abuse. Through research and analysis, product safety engineers can identify the safety features that could be incorporated into the product to reduce its potential for future injury.

The company should institute a product identification system if one is not now in existence. Model numbers and date-of- manufacture codes should be used on all products whether they carry the company’s name or are privately labeled for other firms. In the event a product recall is necessary, the company can easily identify all affected products without undertaking a costly recall of the entire production run. Similarly, once a particular type of product has been recalled and corrected, a new model number or other means of identification should be used on new non- defective products so distributors, retailers, and consumers can readily distinguish products subject to recall from those new, non-affected items.


Some companies have used stickers to identify products which have been checked and corrected from the recalled products until a production change could be made to incorporate a new model number or date code.

  1. Preparing For A Product Recall

It is unlikely that any two recall programs will ever be identical. Therefore, companies should be prepared to address the problems that invariably arise. For instance:

– What is the defect that causes the product hazard?
– What caused the product defect to occur in the first place?
– Where are the unsafe products? How may are there?
– How did the product fail to comply with government safety regulators?
– Was the government or the ruling regulatory body informed about this lack of compliance?
– Have consumers, distributors, and retailers been told about the defective product and any resultant injuries to consumers therefrom?
– What is the company’s estimate as to the cost of the product recall campaign?
– Is the company prepared to deploy manpower and fund the effort to provide replacement parts for defective products or to exchange them for new products which do not have the problem?
– Has a plan been developed to ship replacement parts or new units to distributors participating in the product recall?
– Is the company prepared to monitor the product recall and provide timely reports to the regulatory agency on progress of the recall?
– How is the company upgrading its quality control or risk analysis procedures to prevent a similar product recall in the future?

This list addresses most administrative and operational functions of a company involved in a product recall. Even if a company never incurs a product recall, it should be prepared, nonetheless, to respond to the questions listed above.


How well a company undertakes a product recall largely depends on how effectively it gathers the information needed for the recall. This points out the obvious need for maintaining accurate records about the design, production, distribution,and marketing of each company product during its expected life. Generally speaking, the following records are essential for a company to conduct an effective product recall:

  1. Production Records. Accurate data should be kept on all production runs, volume of units manufactured, lot numbers and product codes component parts, and other pertinent information which will help the company identify defective products quickly.
  2. Distribution records. Data should be maintained as to the location of each product according to product line, production run, quantities shipped, dates of delivery, and quantities sold to retailers.
  3. Quality control records. It is to the company’s benefit to maintain records documenting the results of quality control testing and evaluation associated with each production run. If the company were confronted with a product recall, these records would help identify possible flaws in the design or production of the product. It would also aid the firm in charting the appropriate corrective action plan.
  4. Complaint record. Complaints from users or others in the distribution chain can be a key source of information in that they may highlight or anticipate problems which may arise in the future. careful analysis of complaints may reveal a flaw in the product long before the product is involved in serious injuries, perhaps forcing the company into a costly recall program.

Product complaints serve as an “early warning system” and should not be ignored. In stead, they should thoroughly evaluated to determine what prompted the complaint.

Terry Penny


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3M Recalls Hard Hats Due to Shock Hazard

Terry Penny

3M Recalls Hard Hats Due to Shock Hazard

Recall Summary

Name of product:

Vented hard hats



Hard hats sold online were marketed to protect against electric shock, but they do not provide this protection, posing a shock hazard to consumers.

Recall Details


About 7,500 plus workers at risk know to date!


This recall involves 3M vented hard hats sold under the 3M™, 3M™ Tekk Protection™ and AOSafety™ brands. The hard hats are white, have eight, ¾-inch long ventilation slits along each side at the hat’s crown and have a ratchet adjustment for fit.  “3M” or “AOSafety” is molded into the white plastic on the top of the brim.  “XLR8 VENTED” is molded onto the bottom of the brim. “ANSI Z89.1” is printed on a sticker inside the hard hats. This recall only involves the 3M hard hats sold online.


Consumers who purchased the hard hats online for protection against electrical shock should immediately stop using them and contact 3M for a free replacement hard hat.

Consumer Contact:3M Company at 800-494-3552 from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. CT Monday through Friday or online at and click on “Safety Recall”.


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Teflon tape and Securing that Fitting Safely with the RIGHT Tape, it is not a guess!

Terry Penney

When it comes to TEFLON Tape (plumbers tape) for fitting most people would just pick up a roll at your local supply store and head out, and wonder latter why did it fail or not work right!   The different types are  not common to a lot of folks but the usage is as difference as a crescent wrench and a jack hammer.   Yes both are tools but that about the similarity. Some type of pipe thread sealant are not the same, but reaching for the nearest pipe joint sealing material can lead to serious problems, including leaks, pipe system damage, contamination, and plant downtime. The purpose of this white, nonsticking tape is to serve as a lubricant when threaded parts of a piping system are being assembled. The inherent slipperiness of the material makes assembly easier.

Strictly speaking, Teflon tape is not a thread sealant. The tape may have the effect of clogging the thread path, but it does not actually adhere to surfaces as a true sealant should.

At work or at home we use, “Teflon tape”

  • First, the lubricant qualities allow male threaded pipe to be turned deeper into female threaded fittings to prevent leaks;
  • Second, it acts as a filler to smooth out micro abrasions or surface irregularities on threads;
  • Third, it keeps the male and female threads from rusting together (a.k.a. seizing);

Thread seal tape (also known as PTFE tape or plumber’s tape) is a polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) film for use in sealing pipe threads. The tape is sold cut to specific widths and wound on a spool, making it easy to wind around pipe threads. It is also known by the genericised trade-name Teflon tape; while Teflon is in fact identical to PTFE, Chemours (the trade-mark holders) consider this usage incorrect, especially as they no longer manufacture Teflon in tape form Since many provincial/ state and local codes adopted the use of double density tapes when making connections for natural gas, the use of same color for two different thickness presented a challenge when time came to inspect a job. Thus, a “yellow TEFLON tape” was later introduced for such application.

ASTM has broadened the specifications for PTFE tape colors:

  • White – used on NPT threads up to 3/8 inch
  • Yellow – used on NPT threads 1/2 inch to 2 inch, often labeled “gas tape”
  • Pink – used on NPT threads 1/2 inch to 2 inch, safe for propane and other hydrocarbon fuels
  • Green – oil-free PTFE used on oxygen lines and some specific medical gasses
  • Gray – contains nickel, anti-seizing, anti-gailling and anti-corrosion, used for stainless pipes
  • Copper – contains copper granules and is certified as a thread lubricant but not a sealer

Overuse or misapplication of thread tape may be a hazard. Excess application of PTFE tape can prevent mating threads from fully engaging, reducing the shear point of the threads. Combining thread-seal tape with a pipe dope compound can also overload threads. Also, internal overhangs of loose material may constrict a joint or slough off and form a foreign body that could jam a valve seat. Therefore, use of PTFE tape as a thread sealant is generally not considered appropriate in fluid power (hydraulic) systems

Advantages . Teflon tape can be applied quickly with no mess. It supplies sufficient lubrication to enable pipe system components to be easily assembled without damage to threads. The product is easy to carry and store, and has an indefinite shelf life.

Disadvantages . Teflon tape does not adhere to thread flanks, and does not provide a secure seal. Because the tape is thin and fragile, it is prone to tearing when pipes are being assembled and tightened. Bits of torn tape can migrate into a fluid system, clogging valves, screens, and filters. Teflon tape may be dislodged during pipe adjustments, allowing leak paths to form.

Ok how did the company tell you how to apply it!

Over the years, I’ve learned that taking time and paying attention to little details will minimize the risk of leakage (very frustrating to take it all apart to fix a leak!).

In its simplest form, we are trying to apply the sealant tape from the end of the pipe and wrap the sealant tape under tension in the direction of the thread turns.

Each successive layer should overlap the previous layer by approximately 1/2 to 2/3 in width and continue wrapping until the entire threaded portion of the pipe is covered.

In most cases, 2 turns is sufficient (max of 3 turns). If you wrap it the wrong way, discard, and start with a new piece of tape.

  1. For this exercise, let’s assume that our elbow piece is a RIGHT HANDED thread;
  2. That means when you are looking directly at it, the threaded piece is designed to be tightened by turning right;
  3. While looking directly at the elbow as if you are still installing it, visualize a thread sealant tape is wrapped in the OPPOSITE direction;
  4. For example, a sealant tape is wrapped to the LEFT TURN for a a RIGHT HANDED thread;
  5. It can get little confusing if you change your viewpoint so make sure that your elbow piece is DIRECTLY IN FRONT of you when visualizing. When installing a tape, this perspective will change because you need both of your hands to correctly install the tape;
  6. Now take the your TEFLON / sealant tape roll, spool out approximately 3 inches of tape which will be just enough for 2 wrap turns on a 1/2″ thread (you do not want it too thick);
  7. A circumference on a 1/2″ diameter is roughly 1.6″ (2 turns x 1/6 = ~ 3″). Obviously if your threaded pipe has a larger diameter, you will need a longer tape.
  8. Hold down the beginning of the tape with your left thumb;
  9. With your right hand, gently tug on the tape until you can see the outlines of threads;
  10. You can let go of your left thumb once you complete the first turn
  11. Continue to tug on the TEFLON roll and complete 2 additional turns and cut it off
  12. Make sure that any part of the TEFLON tape does not go inside the pipe/joint (you don’t want a small piece to rip off later and clog something)
  13. Carefully apply the threaded piece to the female coupling (if you back out the threaded piece for whatever reason, you need to install a new piece of tape)

Like all things in Safety remember these items before applying


  • The main purpose of a thread seal tape / liquid thread sealant is to seal out micro abrasions or surface irregularities on threads. If you have a major gash or nick on a thread, you will need to replace the pipe section or re-thread it, rather than applying a thicker seal tape layer;
  • Applying more than 3 layers of sealant tape is not recommended;
  • When starting out, make sure the seal tape is not covering the pipe opening. Any exposed seal tape may break loose over a period of time and cause a blockage problem; in the future;
  • Pipe connections generally turn clock-wise but there are instances when that is not true (i.e. gas pipe union joint). Always test out and make a note of the pipe rotation before applying the tape and remember that the tape application must “go with the flow”;
  • You cannot connect dis-similar pipes together (i.e. copper-to-steel) and hope that a thread sealant tape will prevent from interacting with each other, possibly causing corrosion problems. In this situation, you must use a dielectric union .
  • If you need a gasket sealer, you may want to checkout can use hyolomar based


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If you have Chemicals on site WINDSOCKS are Critical Safety Risk Assessment Tool or do we use the flag!

Pending if you live in Canada or USA there are small real differences you need to know in your risk  assessment, “I wonder if they told the wind this math formula”?

windsock is a conical textile tube which resembles a giant sock. Windsocks typically are used at the airports to indicate the direction and strength of the wind to pilots and at chemical plants where there is risks of gaseous leakage. They are sometimes located alongside highways at windy locations.

Wind direction is the opposite of the direction in which the windsock is pointing (note that wind directions are conventionally specified as being the compass point from which the wind originates; so a windsock pointing due north indicates a southerly wind). Wind speed is indicated by the windsock’s angle relative to the mounting pole; in low winds, the windsock droops; in high winds it flies horizontally.

Per USA Windsock standards referenced below, a 15-knot (28 km/h; 17 mph) wind will fully extend the properly functioning windsock. A 3-knot (5.6 km/h; 3.5 mph) breeze will cause the properly functioning windsock to orient itself according to the wind.

Per Canada Windsock standards: a 15-knot (28 km/h; 17 mph) wind will fully extend the wind sock, a 10-knot (19 km/h; 12 mph) wind will cause the wind sock to be 5° below the horizontal, a 6-knot (11 km/h; 6.9 mph) wind will cause the wind sock to be 30° below the horizontal.

I wonder what Admiral Beaufort would have thought of these two standards his was around since 1805!

Force 0 

Strength: Calm
Speed: Less than 1 mile per hour (mph), less than 2 kilometers per hour (kph)
Observations: Tree leaves don’t move, smoke rises vertically, sea is calm

Force 1 

Strength: Light Air
Speed: 1-3 mph, 2-6 kph
Observations: Tree leaves don’t move, smoke drifts slowly, sea is lightly rippled

Force 2 

Strength: Slight Breeze
Speed: 4-7 mph, 7-11 kph
Observations: Tree leaves rustle, flags wave slightly, small wavelets or scale waves

Force 3 

Strength: Gentle Breeze
Speed: 8-12 mph, 12-19 kph
Observations: Leaves and twigs in constant motion, small flags extended, long unbreaking waves

Force 4 

Strength: Moderate Breeze
Speed: 13-18 mph, 20-29 kph
Observations: Small branches move, flags flap, waves with some whitecaps

Force 5 

Strength: Fresh Breeze
Speed: 19-24 mph, 30-39 kph
Observations: Small trees sway, flags flap and ripple, moderate waves with many whitecapes

Force 6 

Strength: Strong Breeze
Speed: 25-31 mph, 40-50 kph
Observations: Large branches sway, flags beat and pop, larger waves with regular whitecaps

Force 7 

Strength: Moderate Gale
Speed: 32-38 mph, 51-61 kph
Observations: Whole trees sway, large waves (“heaping sea”)

Force 8 

Strength: Fresh Gale
Speed: 39-46 mph, 62-74
Observations: Twigs break off trees, moderately high sea with blowing foam

Force 9 

Strength: Strong Gale
Speed: 47-54 mph, 75-87 kph
Observations: Branches break off trees, shingles blown from roofs, hight crested waves

Force 10 

Strength: Whole Gale
Speed: 55-63 mph, 88-101 kph
Observations: Some trees blown down, damage to buildings, high churning white sea

Force 11 

Strength: Storm
Speed: 64-74 mph, 101 kph-119 kph
Observations: Widespread damage to trees and buildings, mountainous waves

Force 12 

Strength: Hurricane
Speed: 75 mph or greater, 120 kph or greater
Observations: Severe and extensive damage


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What YOU do in an emergency at work and what does everyone else DO!

Terry Penney
Emergencies happen every day in a variety of workplace, some events are large others are small but all are deemed by someone based upon the events in front of them to be an EMERGENCY.  So what is your training, how good was  it, when was is last tested or applied and how did YOU DO? At some point, most people will either witness or be involved in an emergency. Knowing what to do next and who to call can potentially save lives. Most of your safety training teaches you how to do your job safely on a day-to-day basis.  But what about those rare times when something goes seriously wrong?  Would you know how to respond?

Emergency preparedness is an important part of your job safety training.

I once witness a great example of not only compassion in an emergency but inner strength and knowledge by your HR person.  It was a real fire drill unknown to anyone including safety.  Well the alarms went, the wardens did their jobs and gathered up all the staff and sent them down the emergency stair wells except our HR Lady and One Employee that couldn’t do the stairs, ( and yes safety offered to stay)   Her response was nope Ive got this Ill stay and just send up the emergency crews to get us ( even with the lady now having a panic attack that couldn’t make the flight of stairs (we were on the 18 floor).  Now that confidence in training and in your team that you cannot buy or have develop overnight, but due to her training and knowledge our HR lady knew that our teams descending with the masses would not faultier or forget they need help based upon the building plans.  And yes the fire crews did come up and yes it was drill but in life we had no idea, the whole event was REAL, just like an emergency!

An emergency situation is any situation that poses an immediate threat to a person’s health, security, property, or environment. Knowing how to assess the signs that make up an emergency will help you know how to handle it. In addition, being well-prepared for an emergency will pay off when it’s time to handle any emergency situation.

Remain calm. Although emergencies require rapid action, the most important factor in effectively handling the situation is to keep calm. If you find yourself becoming confused or anxious, stop what you’re doing. Take a deep breath. Remember that to be calm in a stressful situation you must deliberately adjust your behavior. The reason you feel panicked in an emergency is the result of your body’s automatic overproduction of the stress hormone cortisol. The cortisol goes to the brain and slows down the pre-frontal cortex, which is the region responsible for planning complex action.

Determine the nature of the emergency. What signs indicate that there is an emergency? Is this a medical emergency, or is there a threat to the property/building that may result in human injury? Behavioral emergencies are best met by remaining calm, and encouraging the person in crisis to stay calm as well.

Know that sudden changes can be emergencies. Chemical spills, fires, breaking water pipes, electrical outages, natural disasters such as floods or fires are all examples of potential workplace emergencies. If you have advance warning of the possibility of an emergency, such the warning of flood, heavy snow, tornado, etc., you may be better prepared. However, the nature of an emergency is to be unexpected. When assessing emergency situations, be aware that the situation may be volatile. It may change rapidly.

Be alert for human-caused emergencies. Assaults or threats of violence at a workplace or home are emergencies that call for rapid response. In most cases, there is no predictable pattern or method to these emergencies. These situations tend to be unpredictable, and they change quickly.

Assess the immediate threat. For example, if one person appears injured, are you or anyone else in danger of also being injured? For example, if one person is caught in a machine, is the machine turned off? If there has been a chemical spill, is the spill spreading towards anyone else?

Remove yourself from danger. If you, or others, are at risk of being harmed, leave the situation immediately. If you have an evacuation plan, follow it. Go to an area where you will be safe.

· In a situation where you cannot leave, find the safest possible location within your given area. For example, hiding beneath a solid surface, such as a desk or table, may help if there is a chance of being hit by falling debris.

Help others leave a hazardous area. If you can safely assist someone else in leaving a dangerous situation, do so. If returning to the emergency situation is risky, a trained rescue person may be better equipped to retrieve anyone in harm’s way. Offering verbal reassurance to an injured person if he is conscious will help another person, even if you can’t move him.

Seek additional help. Like calling  911 or what ever agency you have

Determine if you can do anything to help. The most important thing you can do is to remain calm, and stay in control of the situation. Sometimes there is nothing that you can do, and that’s fine. Don’t be worried about admitting that there’s nothing you can do to help.

Take time to think before acting. Being in an emergency situation can result in panicked thinking and actions. Instead of reacting to a situation, take time to calm down. Breathe deeply before you take any action.

Get the first aid kit. A first aid kit should have constructive tools for taking care of many medical emergencies. Any first aid kit should contain bandages, gauze, adhesive tape, disinfectant, and other useful items.

The best response in an emergency situation is to follow the emergency plan of your home or workplace. Certain people may be identified as emergency leaders, with special training. In an emergency, you will save necessary time and energy by following the plan. Your emergency plan should have an assembly place to gather once you’ve evacuated the home or building.

· Keep emergency phone numbers posted near the phone.

· Important medical data should be stored in your phone or your wallet.

· Know your physical address. You’ll need to know your location in order to tell any emergency dispatcher where to send help. While it may be easy to know the address of your home, it’s also important to memorize the address of your workplace. Get into the habit of checking the address wherever you are.

Identify your closest exits. Always be aware of the exits to any building you’re in, whether they’re home, office, or commercial locations. Identify at least 2 exits, in case one is blocked. In a workplace or public location, exits should be clearly marked. Choose two places where you can regather with your family or coworkers. One location should be outside the home or workplace. The other location should be outside the immediate vicinity, in case the neighborhood is unsafe. Emergency exits are essential to escape from:

· Fires, either inside the building or in the surrounding area.

· Explosions caused by gas leaks or chemical reactions.

· Power outages caused by natural disasters or internal electrical problems.

· Building collapse or major structural failure.

· Release of toxic substances or spills of flammable liquids.

· Natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes and tornados.

Several of these events may happen in a sequence as one triggers another.  An explosion may start a fire and cause structural damage in one part of a building.  The fire may also cause a loss of electrical power, plunging your work area into darkness.  Bearing this in mind, emergency exits probably seem a lot more important to you now.

Emergencies can occur at any time for a variety of reasons. The first priority is always your safety. Be prepared to respond independently, particularly if working after-hours. When to call 9-1-1 or 999 or whatever system you use (where available)

· Report a fire

· Report a crime

· Save a life

In case of a major emergency

· Follow your emergency plan

· Get your emergency kit

· Make sure you are safe before assisting others.

· Listen to the radio or television for information from local officials and follow their instructions.

· Stay put until all is safe or until you are ordered to evacuate.


You may be instructed to “shelter-in-place” if chemical, biological or radiological contaminants are released into the environment. This means you must remain inside your home or office and protect yourself there. The following steps will help maximize your protection:

· Close and lock all windows and exterior doors.

· Turn off all fans, heating and air-conditioning systems to avoid drawing in air from the outside.

· Close the fireplace damper.

· Get your emergency kit and make sure the radio is working.

· Go to an interior room that’s above ground level (if possible, one without windows). In the case of a chemical threat, an above-ground location is preferable because some chemicals are heavier than air and may seep into basements even if the windows are closed.

· Using duct or other wide tape, seal all cracks around the door and any vents into the room.

· Continue to monitor your radio or television until you are told all is safe or are advised to evacuate.

Evacuation orders

Authorities will not ask you to leave your home unless they have reason to believe you are in danger.

If you are ordered to evacuate, take:

· your emergency kit

· your emergency plan

· essential medications and copies of prescriptions

· a cellular phone (if you have one)

If and ONLY IF you have time:

· Call or e-mail your out-of-town contact. Tell them where you are going and when you expect to arrive. (Once you are safe, let them know. Tell them if any family members have become separated.)

· Leave a note telling others when you left and where you are going.

· Things to Remember

· Remain calm, use common sense, and provide aid. Take time to think before acting.

· Always evacuate the building immediately when you hear an audible alarm or see a visible alarm, when directed by authorities, or when the building becomes life-threatening, e.g., smelling natural gas.

· Proceed to the emergency gathering point for further instructions.

· Do not use the telephone for reasons other than emergency purposes.

· Do not enter elevators during an emergency. If stuck in an elevator do not attempt to force open stalled elevator doors, use the emergency phone to contact Public Safety.

· Keep a flashlight handy if you are in an area that does not have emergency lighting or natural lighting.

· Know the location of all marked exits from your working area.

What to do in your company plan or building plan if:

· During an avalanche

· During an earthquake

· During a flood

· During a hurricane

· During a landslide

· During a severe storm

· During a storm surge

· During a tornadoes

· During a tsunamis

· During a wildfire

· During a power outages

Knowing what to do in case of an emergency can help prevent panic and it can save lives. Learn your part in emergency procedures.