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Archive for April, 2016

Hot Work

Hot work includes welding, burning, cutting and grinding.  The following are a list of safety rules to follow when conducting any type of hot work:

  • Only experienced persons shall be allowed to do any type of welding, burning, cutting or grinding.
  • No one is to do any type of hot work in a hazardous area without proper instruction and a written permit from the proper authority.
  • Safety concerning hot work is of vital importance.  Improper processes can result in loss of life and property by fire and/or explosions.  Therefore, it is essential that safety precaution be observed during all phases of hot work.  The use of permits for hot work in a hazardous location is one method of reducing a potentially serious situation from developing.  As stated above, no one is to do any type of welding or burning in a hazardous area without a written permit.  These permits should be issued by either the owner, general contractor or Safety Department on your particular jobsite.
  • Do not conduct hot work so that hot sparks, hot metal or severed sections fall on cylinders, hoses, machinery, legs or feet, flammable material or where they may strike personnel working below.
  • Always wear the proper personal protective equipment: (welder and helper) welding hood with proper filter lens, fire retardant welding gloves, welding jacket, natural or flame retardant exterior pants and a respirator when burning materials that give off fumes.
  • A fire watch should be established to patrol all exposed areas of the hot work if the potential for a fire exist.  The fire watch shall conduct a final inspection 30 minutes have hot work is completed.
  • Mechanical or local exhaust ventilation shall be provided whenever welding or burning is performed in a confined space.  Provide adequate ventilation while torch cutting, welding, and soldering working on galvanized material.  Cutting coated steel and rebar may require the use of respirators depending on coating content.
  • Never burn on any closed container that may have held flammable substances without thoroughly purging the container.
  • All exposed combustible materials located below or in the vicinity of the welding and cutting area must be removed to a safe location.  If removal is impractical or impossible, the combustible materials should be covered with a fire-retardant material or protected by an approved spark catcher to contain all sparks and slag.
  • Portable fire extinguishers shall be located at each work site.
  • Locate screens around all welding and burning operations, where possible, to protect fellow employees against burns or flashes.
  • All welding must have a separate and adequate ground cable pulled from the welding machine and connected to the item being welded and in close proximity to the weld.
  • At the end of each shift or when not in use for extended periods all welding machines shall be turned off.
  • Leads, grounds, clamps, welding machines, hoses, gauges, torches and cylinders shall be inspected before each use.  Any faulty or defective equipment shall be reported to the supervisor and the use of the equipment shall be discontinued until its safety has been assured.

Safety Points updated!

The safety point totals for the 1st quarter of 2016 are now available here.

If you would like to redeem your points, please take a look at catalog here.

The Gribbins reusable tote (5 points) is a light bag perfect for keeping in the car for trips to the grocery and farmer’s market.

Gribbins Reusable Tote Bag

For warm weather, the Gribbins soft cooler (20 points) has plenty of space for two or three lunches (or 1 big one!) plus drinks. 

Lunch Box Cooler

 

Anchorage Points

Gribbins Insulation - Toolbox Talk

Anchorage is defined by OSHA as a secure point of attachment for lifeline, lanyards or deceleration device.  The most overlooked component in a personal fall arrest system is planning for a suitable anchorage point.  The following guidelines should be followed when planning or determining anchorage and connection:

  • Anchorage point shall be capable of supporting at least 5,000 pounds per employee attached.  Examples of what might be appropriate anchor points are steel members or I-beams if an acceptable strap or I-beam anchor is available for the connection, large eye-bolts made of an appropriate grade steel or other points that have been designed for anchor points.
  • Anchorage points shall be independent of any anchorage being used to support or suspend platforms.
  • The strength of a personal fall arrest system is based on it being attached to an anchoring system which does not reduce the strength of the system.  Therefore, if a means of attachment is used that will reduce the strength of the system, that component should be replaced by a stronger one, but one that will also maintain the appropriate maximum arrest force characteristics.
  • Do not use a lanyard with a snap hook clipped onto itself, unless specifically designed for that application.  This can reduce the strength of the lanyard by as much as 70%
  • Anchorage points should be positioned at or above the D-ring of the harness.
  • Employees should plan for a 19 ft. clearance if a fall would occur.
  • Length of Lanyard – Free Fall (6ft) + Average Height of Worker (6ft) + Energy Absorber Deceleration Distance (4ft) + Safety Factor (3ft) = Total Fall Distance (19ft)
  • The shock absorbing end of the lanyard shall be attached to your body harness.  The other end of the lanyard shall be connected to your anchor point.
  • Anchor points should be as directly above you as possible to prevent swing fall hazards.
  • When selecting anchor points look for other hazards below if a fall would occur.
  • Inspect anchorage connector attachment point for corrosion, cracks, deformities or other defects that may weaken the structure.
  • Do not attach to vertical structures unless a means of restraining the connector from sliding down the structure is present.
  • Never connect a shock-absorbing lanyard to a retractable lanyard.
  • Never connect more than one employee to a lanyard.
  • Knots shall not be used for an anchorage point.
  • Double locking snap hooks shall always be used.  Inspect the snap hook to ensure it fully closes and locks.
  • D-ring straps or chokers shall be tightly wrapped around the anchorage.  The strap may be wrapped more than once to shorten the strap.
  • Avoid working where your line may cross or tangle with that of other workers or objects.
  • Never clamp, knot or prevent the lifeline from retracting or being taut.
  • OSHA requires that the maximum arresting force to be placed on an employee not to exceed 1,800 lbs.  To achieve this the personal fall arrest system must be rigged so the potential free fall is never greater than 6 ft.
  • Avoid working where the lifeline will be in contact with or abrade against unprotected sharp edges.  Provide protection for the lifeline or lanyard when possible.

If you have questions about anchor points or need assistance in determining the appropriate anchor points, please contact the Safety Department.

Scissor Lifts

Scissor lifts are an important piece of equipment we use on a daily basis, but can become an extreme hazard if proper procedures are not followed.  The main causes of injuries from scissor lifts are electrocutions, falls, tip-overs, caught between and struck by.  It is imperative that employees abide by the following safety rules when using scissor lifts to prevent being injured.

  • These machines are not electrically insulated and will not provide protection from contact with or proximity to electrical current.  Maintain a clearance of at least 10 ft. between any part of the machine and its occupants, their tools, and their equipment from any electrical line or apparatus carrying up to 50,000 volts.  One foot additional clearance is required for every additional 30,000 volts or less.  Allow for machine movement and electrical line swaying or sagging.
  • Occupants must wear a full body harness with a lanyard attached to an authorized anchor point.  Guardrails are not approved anchor points.  Before operating the machine, make sure all gates and chains are closed and fastened in their proper position.
  • Maintain firm footing on the platform at all times.  Do not use ladder, boxes, steps, planks, guardrails or similar items to provide additional reach.
  • Do not raise the platform or drive the machine with the boom extended or raised unless on a firm, level and smooth surface.  Never exceed the allowable side slope or grade while driving.  Do not use on moving surface or vehicle.
  • Do not exceed the maximum platform capacity.  Distribute loads evenly on platform floor.  See model operation manual for actual capacity rating.  Do not push or pull any object with the boom.  Never attempt to use the machine as a crane or attach overhanging loads.  Do not tie off machines to any adjacent structure.
  • Inspect work area for clearances overhead, on sides and bottom of platform and lift base when lifting or lowering platform and driving.  During operation, keep all body parts inside platform guardrails.
  • Keep non-operating personnel at least 6 ft. away from the machine during all driving and swing operations.
  • Use extreme caution when entering and exiting the lift.  Face the machine and use three points of contact.  Always exit through the designated anchor point.  Do not climb over guardrails.
  • Keep the base of the lift at least 2 ft. from holes, bumps, drop offs, obstructions, debris and other potential hazards on the floor or surface.
  • Do not operate the machine in strong or gusty winds, JLG states not to operate in wind above 28 MPH.
  • Do not increase the surface area of the platform or the load.  Increase of the area exposed to the wind will decrease stability.
  • Only two employees are allowed in a lift at one time.  Only one person may operate the machine at a time.
  • Use the boom functions, not the drive function, to position the platform close to obstacles.
  • Be aware of stopping distances while driving or maneuvering.  Do not operate quickly in restricted or tight areas or when operating in reverse.  Use extreme caution at all times to prevent obstacles from striking or interfering with operating controls and persons in the platform.
  • Use a spotter when driving in areas where vision is obstructed.  Always warn personnel not to work, stand or walk under a raised boom or platform.  Barricades may be required to achieve this.
  • Limit travel speed according to conditions of ground surface, congestion, visibility, slope, location of personnel, and other factors which may cause collision or injury to personnel.
  • Do not alter or disable machine components that in any way affect safety or stability.
  • Always inspect and document a lift inspection before work begins.  If lift is not working properly, do not use, red tag and inform your supervisor.

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