Meet our Estimator Intern, Jackson Wendel who comes to us from the University of Southern Indiana (USI). He is a senior studying Manufacturing Engineering Technology and will be graduating in the Fall of 2023. After graduating from USI Jack plans to work as a project manager.
Some jobs involve a lot of manual lifting.
- Back, neck, and shoulder injuries are common.
- Manual lifting in cramped or awkward conditions increases the risk of injury.
Avoid lifting above shoulder height. This causes your back to arch and puts a lot of stress on your shoulder and on the small joints in your spine. Don’t try to catch falling objects. Your muscles may not have time to coordinate properly to protect your spine. Push rather than pull. Pushing lets you maintain the normal curves in your back and puts less stress on the spine. Safe lifting starts with planning.
- Size up the load.
- Make sure the path is clear.
- Get help if you need it.
- Use a dolly or other materials handling
- equipment whenever you can.
- Get as close to the load as possible. This is very important. Our lifting capacity is reduced the further away we are from the load.
- Put yourself in the best possible position for the lift. Try to avoid twisting from the waist, reaching out, and leaning over material or equipment when you lift.
- Use a well-balanced stance with one foot slightly ahead of the other.
- Tighten your stomach muscles as you start to lift.
- Keep your lower back in its normal curved position and use your legs to lift.
- Pick up your feet and pivot to turn. Don’t twist your back.
- Lower the load. Maintain the curve in your lower back. You can hurt your back just as easily lowering a load as lifting it.
Partners should be roughly the same height. Before the lift, both partners should agree on:
- The type of lift (waist-high, shoulder-high, etc.)
- Who will take charge?
- How they will lower the load.
- What direction they will be traveling.
As you may know, fires are very costly, especially in the construction industry. Fires are usually not caused by an accident but are caused by overlooking potential hazards in the work area that can contribute to a fire. We can all do our part by observing and obeying the rules and regulations to prevent fires. Below are general rules and good practices to prevent fires on the jobsite:
- Good housekeeping
- Disposing of paper trash, cardboard, and similar combustible materials in appropriate trash bins, and removing these items throughout the work day.
- Dispose flammable liquids (oils, gases, etc.) in approved containers. This includes rags that have oil, grease, or other flammable contents on them.
- Proper storage of aerosol cans and flammable liquids in flammable cabinets when not in use.
- Flames and Sparks
- Only use flame or spark producing tools in a designated area. These tasks usually required additional approval or permits from safety or management.
- Fire resistant shields and clothing, spark shields, and fire watches should be used when appropriate.
- Smoking is only allowed in designated areas. Smoking is prohibited inside of any building.
Three ingredients are needed to produce a fire, which is also known as the fire triangle.
- Heat– This can come from many sources such as welding, grinders, cigarette butts, or equipment being used to perform work.
- FUEL–This can be a liquid such as gas, or a solid such as cardboard.
- AIR– A critical source which we all depend on is oxygen, which is necessary to sustain a fire. One side of the triangle we cannot do much about.
When you know the ingredients to make a fire, it makes it easier to prevent and control a fire. When you find these three ingredients in the work environment, take action, a fire could be in the making.
Eliminating one of these three items can prevent or extinguish the fire.
- Even better than recycling are the efforts to prevent waste at the source. Some of our efforts include:
- Reuse wooden pallets
- Eliminate disposable cups for water and coffee
- Customers and vendors are encouraged to use email.
- Directive from executive management to limit printing and use email for all written communication.
- Utilizing Harness to perform safety documentation electronically.
- Non-Hazardous waste shall be disposed of at frequent regular intervals in designated disposal areas. Work areas shall maintain good housekeeping throughout all jobs.
- Hazardous waste must be disposed of in accordance with federal, state and local regulations. Examples of hazardous waste include oils, fuel, paints and solvents, aerosol cans, etc. Other examples include lead and asbestos, in this instance the owner will be responsible for directing waste disposal. All hazardous waste must be handled by trained employees with appropriate PPE and precaution.
There are special precautions that must be in place for storage of fuel, oils or other hazardous waste. These precautions include:
- A containment area or container that will contain 110 percent of largest container in the storage area.
- Must be located away from drains.
- Elevate off of the ground.
- Labeled appropriately.
- All containers must remain closed and be in good condition.
- Containers holding hazardous waste must be labeled with the contents of the container, type of hazard and EPA hazardous waste number.
- Secondary containers are usually smaller containers, such as spray bottles, jugs, glue guns, or jars that chemicals are transferred to from the primary container once within the workplace.
- Secondary containers must include at minimum, the full name of chemical, the hazard, the date transferred and expiration date.
What Injury-Free is NOT:
- It is not the same as zero injuries
- It is not a goal, but rather a value
- It is not a guarantee
- It is not a prescription
- It is not the elimination of all risk
What Injury-Free IS:
- It is about caring for one another, and demonstrating that care on a daily basis.
- It is about all workers going home safely everyday.
- It is about a mindset intolerant of any level of injury.
- Taking responsibility for your own safety and those that work with you and around you.
- Being proactive and asking questions, such as what is the most dangerous thing that can happen to me while performing this task, and how can I mitigate this risk.
- Having a positive attitude of choosing to follow the safety rules and procedures.
- Speaking up and expressing your concern when you see something unsafe.
What our leaders should expect from us!
- If a task is not safe, do not perform the task or letter other employees perform the task.
- Speak up immediately if you see something unsafe. Have a voice!
- If you are unsure of something (gut feeling), stop work and speak up.
What we should expect from our leaders!
- Support, when someone does “stop work” or speak up.
- When a safety concern is brought to our attention, it should be addressed, corrected, mitigate, or communicated further up to management or customer.
- If an injury occurs, it will be investigated in such a way to not blame the injured.
- Individual commitment to safety, and intervene
- Preventing injury or loss
- Ignore it and we condone it
- Lead by example
- Learn from experience
- Support each other
- Drive the organization towards World Class Safety!
A Job Hazard Analysis (JHA) is a tool we utilize in order to identify the task we are performing for the day, any potential hazards that may be associated to those tasks, and the controls to mitigate the hazards. The JHA is a process that will identify the tools, materials, and equipment needed to develop safe work methods and procedures in order to accomplish a task safely. This tool is completed prior to work commencing and shall be re-evaluated if work scope/task change in order to capture the associated hazards of the new task.
Steps to an Effective JHA
- Define the scope of work to be performed (TASK)
- Involve the employees performing the work
- Identify the Hazards associated to the scope of work
- What could go wrong?
- What could cause things to go wrong?
- What other factors in the work area could cause a hazard?
- Identify the controls for each of the hazards identified.
- Engineering- Eliminate/substitute the hazard or reduce exposure
- Administrative- Changing the conditions, reducing exposure, or following the process/procedure
- Personal protective Equipment- When engineering or administrative controls cannot be performed, utilize PPE “Last Line of Defense”.
Benefits of JHA
- Setting a standard
- Following processes and procedures
- Comply with OSHA requirements
- Reduce injuries
- Protect employees
- Provides a form of training (specifically for new employees)
- Improve communication
Effective August 1st, 2022, all Gribbins/Elite foreman and crew, shall be conducting a JHA within Harness prior to the start of the shift. Foreman will be the individual conducting the JHA reviewing with the entire crew, engaging with the crew and requiring each crew member to sign the JHA. If a customer or owner requires a specific JHA (ex. JSA, STA, DHA, TAP, etc.), Gribbins/Elite employees will not be required to complete the Gribbins/Elite JHA.
If you are unaware on how to utilize the Harness Safety Software in order to complete Toolbox Talks or JHA’s, please contact
Adam Mayer- Cell:(812) 454-6460