Safety Tips when Working at Height

Safety Tips when Working at Height

Working at height is responsible for a high proportion of accidents in the workplace and it is imperative that as part of the drive to reduce such accidents that all those who work on MWPs and other such equipment are fully trained on PASMA and IPAF accredited courses. There are a great variety of courses available from many excellent center across the UK that target people who use different machinery or who are involved in working at height at various levels. This is, of course the number one recommendation when advising how to work at height without putting yourself at risk – be properly trained. Let’s take a look at some of the other ways in which employees can work at height more safely.

Assess the working environment before getting started

This should be standard practice, but often the pressures of getting cracking override your common sense and this basic rule is ignored. There are 3 key steps involved in ensuring your working environment for the day is safe.

  1. Look around to spot any hazards that relate to falling from height. Are you (or others) using ladders, scaffolding or will you be working on roofs that may be unstable? Is there a risk of items falling from height?

2.  Assess who of your team is most at risk from each hazard and make sure everyone is aware of the potential risks on site, mitigating them where possible.

  1. Make sure that there is a regular review of the site and any precautions that were in place before are still adequate.

 

Eliminate working at height wherever possible

This might sound obvious, but too often accidents happen when working at height when there would have been a safer way to get the job done. The fewer people who are placed in high risk working situations the better.

Never overload or overreach on ladders

A very basic, but essential rule of thumb is that anyone using a ladder should not take up items that will mean they exceed the highest load stated on the ladder. Obviously, this does not mean it is safe to carry heavy weights under the maximum load limit and common sense should be applied. Also, while on ladders your navel should remain inside the stiles and at any given time once you have reached working height you should maintain both feet on the same rung.

Use the right tools for the job

Part of your IPAF training should have taught you how to make sure that you choose the right equipment for each job that involves working at height. The choice between a ladder for instance or scaffolding, mobile access tower or powered access equipment is often dictated by the height you are required to reach. If you conclude that the height is above that safely reached by your ladder or scaffolding then you should rent or suggest the rental of suitable MWPs or other powered access equipment. When the equipment is being chosen, you must ensure that it is stable enough and strong enough to support the weight of whoever will be using it. Any protection around the edge should be strong enough to prevent a fall. Do not start a job with equipment that you strongly feel is inadequate.

Inspect and maintain equipment

All equipment used in working at height should be routinely inspected and maintained appropriately. This includes personal protection equipment such as lanyards and ropes.

This little mini guide to your ideal equipment check system is useful.

(a) Examination – checking for faults, damage, wear and tear or dirt

(b) Testing – make sure your equipment works properly before use

(c) Cleaning –  all equipment works best if kept clean

(d) Repair

(e) Replacement

 

Improving workplace security – Think like an intruder!

Improving workplace security – Think like an intruder! Trap him

 

If I ever think like an intruder, then I will put myself as an intruder and would think about all the possibilities which will be a breakthrough for me to intrude in anyone’s home. This is the best way to resolve issues by going deep into the problem. You must be thinking if we will think like an intruder then how can we improve workplace security? Because being an intruder, I would come across only those points that would be supportive for me to break-in. In this article, I am going to let you know how to stop an intruder and what is that essential information which should keep secret from a burglar? Take a look

System Information should keep Secret

Being an intruder, I will try to get full system information through their brand details. They can easily find out for what they are looking for. No matters how many attempts they have tried.

Detail brand study can be harmful to your workplace security. Make sure brand information is secret to prevent any burglary. What would we get by doing this? Then let me tell you that brand details are easily searchable on the internet. They might discover several ways of resetting a factory then obviously it would be difficult for you to deal.

Possible modes of malfunctioning with Access Control

 

You need to ask some questions from yourself. We all know access control systems require swipe cards for verification purpose to enter in the workplace. Can I have a duplicate copy of that card? Can I steal pin number? Can I easily get into the building especially at lunch time with a bunch of people? These are some queries which would be mostly searched by intruders who want to intrude.

 So you have to decide either you are going with the card system, choosing to have facial recognition or some other kind of advanced biometric systems because these will not let anyone easily getting into the building directly. To reduce malfunctioning with access control systems, you have to get rid of pin number system because your employees can share pin numbers with each other quickly.

Social Media Tracking

These days intruders don’t let go of any chance to track you even on social media. Make sure you are not giving them any clue through your recent check-ins. Just keep some details secret from them. Being an intruder, I will not leave any chance to follow. This is a strategy of an intruder to keep all the updates about you. Just ensure that you are not giving them a chance of doing anything. Is there any function or seminars at your workplace? And if you have already updated the participation of outsiders then probably intruder can easily get the way of how to get into the building directly.

Scamming with your CCTV

Invaders keep themselves up to date through latest technologies about cameras as ordinary people use to do that. Employees shouldn’t have access to the monitoring room. Only a few individuals should allow. An intruder can easily sabotage the security parameters by easily getting the information about the camera technology. In my Essex workplace, our management is ensuring that no employee has access to camera and while CCTV installation in Essex and our Manchester branch it is a priority to keep all the information secret regarding cameras.

 

These are some top practices which I get to know after placing myself in place of a burglar. These queries need your practical answers. So by having answers of these, you can protect your workplace by giving your best. It’s difficult to say the latest technology wouldn’t let any intruder to break-in. They achieve their false attempts quickly, so it’s up to you how will you keep your premises secure

9 Ways to Whittle Your Waist and Boost Your Back

9 Ways to Whittle Your Waist and Boost Your Back

Has your doctor suggested you shed some pounds to ease your low back pain? Carrying extra weight is bad news for your back. Each pound puts more stress on the spinal discs, muscles, and ligaments. If the weight is carried in the stomach, the pelvis can be pulled forward, further straining the lower back. What you can do about it you’ve probably been told that losing weight is simple: just take in fewer calories. If you’d like some more specific ideas, read on: 1. Check with your doctor first. The last thing you want is to make your pain worse by charging into the wrong kind of physical activity. Ask your doctor which kind of exercises are best for you and which should be avoided. Low-impact moves, such as walking or water therapy, are often recommended at first if you haven’t exercised in a while.

 

  1. Target both diet and exercise. It can be tempting to focus only on food, or only on exercise, but tackling both is likely to have the biggest payoff. It’s also best for your body: You need nutritious food for energy, and physical activity is required to deliver nutrients into the spine. 3. Let your phone be your workout buddy. The number of fitness and diet apps available could make your head spin. There are fitness apps to track your steps, stairs climbed, and miles walked or biked. You can also watch instructor-led workouts on your smartphone. Diet apps help you compare calories in menu items, set goals, and track your progress. If apps aren’t your style, check online weight-loss calculators and goal-setting resources. Search for “weight loss calculators” to get started.

 

  1. Consider a personal trainer.  Do you prefer the personal touch? If you worry your motivation will waver or feel intimidated at the gym a trainer could be just what you need. You’ll learn which exercises burn fat the fastest, how to build muscle, and which weight machines fit your needs. If cost is an issue, ask whether small-group training sessions are offered. Even a single session with a trainer can teach you plenty.  5. Cut back on sugar. Many of us are eating much more sugar than we realize. Take a look at the nutrition labels on your “healthy” granola bars, cereal, and yogurt. This may be the time to switch to healthier alternatives.

 

  1. Keep a food log. Tracking your food online or on paper is a good way to pinpoint food pitfalls and find ways to sidestep them. Maybe you nibble on potato chips while watching TV, or can’t resist a midnight snack. Once you see the pattern, you can be ready for these cravings by having some low-calorie snacks handy. Hard boiled eggs, baby carrots, or a low-calorie cheese stick may work well as replacements. 7. Make exercise part of your routine. If you have a dog, grab the leash and go each morning or when you get off work. No dog? Head out for a walk on your own or with an exercise-minded neighbor.  8. Take a class. You don’t want exercise to be a chore or a bore. Classes can be great for procrastinators who can’t seem to fit exercise into the day. Pilates, yoga, and tai chi are all exercise approaches that can help strengthen the back while burning calories.

 

  1. Drink more water. Staying hydrated helps in two ways. First, the spinal discs are mostly water, and need fluids to function well. Second, drinking a glass of water before a meal may help you feel full faster and eat less. Replacing soft drinks with water or other calorie-free drinks is a quick way to cut calories. You’re likely to feel more motivated some days than others. Keep in mind that any weight loss is better than none. Even losing 10% of your body weight 16 pounds for a 160-pound person can make a difference in your health.

 

Author bio:

Dr. Atif writes health articles for body pain tips. His articles have appeared in a number of e-zine sites, including EzineArticles, ArticlesBase and HubPages. Learn more about how Dr.Atif’s health articles by visiting his blog at Body Pain Tips

Innovative Ways to Promote Workplace Diversity and Inclusion

Innovative Ways to Promote Workplace Diversity and Inclusion

 Promoting workplace diversity and inclusion has become an important focus area for companies, big and small. While the realization to do so occurred only recently, the good news is that a lot is already happening, with companies like Intel pledging $300 million for their diversity-related outcomes by 2020 and Apple earmarking $50 million towards non-profit organizations supporting women in technology.

Why Diversity Matters

For business success in this increasingly interconnected world, embracing diversity in the workplace is the need of the hour. A diverse workplace can help a company attain profitability in new markets, which is becoming a reality because of the many expansions, mergers and acquisitions occurring all over the world. Some other benefits of encouraging inclusion and diversity in the workplace is that the idea, once executed, will breed creative thinking, result in innovative outcomes, and expedite the process of problem solving because of a range of expertise that a diverse talent pool tends to bring in.

Solutions to Foster Diversity and Inclusion at the Workplace

  • Counter Any Resistance to Change – Any attempt at organizational change is almost always met with resistance from some quarters, be it acceptance of new ideas or shattering age-old stereotypes around gender, race, religion, color, etc. It is, therefore, important to introduce a diversity training workshop that sensitizes everyone in the organization to the need and importance of having such a diverse workplace.

 

  • Strengthen your Orientation Program  It can be a daunting task for anyone new to settle into an organization where they are not in a majority,  be it because of a skewed sex ratio amongst the employees or because of a language barrier. Your company orientation program must, therefore, look at assigning mentors in such cases. A great example to reinforce this point is a study conducted between 2011 and 2015 by the University of Massachusetts, where it was found that female Engineering undergraduates without mentors felt increasingly anxious, under-confident, and out of the place through the year than girls who were assigned mentors.

 

  • Promote Diversity in Leadership Positions  Remember, good practices must begin at the helm! When talking of leaders, we have always heard about a visionary leader, a dynamic leader, an innovative leader, but very seldom do we hear about a collaborative leader.   So, unless you have a diverse Executive Leadership that understands the real need and benefits of diversity, an all-inclusive and progressive workforce would remain a distant dream.

 

  • Improve Communication  Men in leadership roles have an important role to play, especially when it comes to shattering gender-based stereotypes that prevent the free flow of thoughts and ideas within an organization. They need to become patient and active listeners, and never adopt an authoritarian attitude when it comes to women at their workplace.

 

  • Focus on the Granular Details  Focusing on very small aspects of your organization, especially highly visible ones, can present a lot of improvement areas. Ever thought of providing multilingual safety and warning signs and labels? For instance, experts at Clarion Safety Systems say, Safety labels need to be quickly and easily understood, so people can gain immediate awareness of hazards and avoid accidents and injuries. With increasing diversity in workplaces, you have to take into consideration whether or not your audience reads English. While signs and labels may be a small detail, they can go a long way in reinforcing safety policies due to their high visibility.

 

  • Analytical Insights  Important analytical insights, captured over a period of time, analyzed and implemented, can deliver rich dividends that can help streamline the performance of any business. Big data presents a treasure trove of information and must be explored to assess the quality of past hires, so that any emotional biases during the interview process can be addressed with the help of tangible data.

 

These are easy to implement solutions that can go a long way in enabling your vision of creating a workplace environment that is diverse and inclusive. This is something that should not be seen as just a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative but a practice that will yield better and more profitable business outcomes going forward.

Security On A Construction Site

Security On A Construction Site

 According to the U.S National Insurance Crime Bureau, there is over $1 billion of construction equipment stolen every year. Thieves tend to view a construction site as an ‘easy mark’ due to lack of natural security measures like closed doors and enclosing walls available. This is why physical construction security can be very important.

 

By investing in the right security measures, you can drastically decrease the likelihood of any potential theft or vandalism occurring on site.

There are several construction site security systems which you could consider to maximise the security of your work possessions. One in particular is electric fencing and locks. Electric fences are fairly inexpensive and can keep outsiders off limits. Electric locking can also help to prevent thieves from accessing construction tools and equipment.

CCTV video surveillance can also help to increase your overall security significantly. Keeping constant eyes on your construction site can steer criminals away because they know they are being watched at all times.

Further security measures for a construction site include posted notices, and proper identification and record keeping. Whilst posted notices may not keep criminals out, they warn intruders of what the consequences would be for them if they were to break in and steal equipment. As well as this, marking all equipment with the use of identifiable tags can be a great way of keeping track of your construction equipment. This way you can easily identify which equipment is yours, and if anything is missing.

This article was written by Simon Parker. Simon Parker has over 70 years of shared experience with Minerva Security, dealing with commercial business security and fire alarm systems.

Industrial Fabrication Quality and Safety Practices

Industrial Fabrication Quality and Safety Practices
When you’re in the metal fabrication industry, there are certain quality and safety practices you should follow to ensure that your workers are safe and that your clients are satisfied. Whether it is steel or aluminum fabrication, welders are always exposed to hazards that can endanger their lives.
In this article, we will discuss some of the guidelines you can follow to improve the quality and safety of welding practices in your workshop. Whether you’re working for a large construction company, a small metal fabrication workshop or a welding-centric company, you will find the something useful in this post.
Studying the Manual Carefully
These days, https://www.nist.gov/sites/default/files/documents/el/whitepapers.pdf new technologies are always introduced to the metal fabrication workshop</a>. When operating the equipment, it is important that welders carefully read, study and follow the manual. Take your time to familiarize yourself with the manual’s content so that you can use the equipment efficiently. If you lose the manual, you can always contact the manufacturer and request for a replacement. You can also go online and download the manual from the manufacturer’s website.
Wear the Proper Work Clothing and Gear
People inside the work area should not wear shorts or short-sleeved shirts. No matter how long or short you’d use the machines, you should always wear proper safety gear which includes protective clothing and gloves, among others.
It is advisable for workers to wear flame-resistant clothing with tightly woven material. Some welding jackets may be thick and heavy, but you can always search for manufacturers that offer flame-resistant clothing that is lightweight.
Make sure that no skin is exposed to the damaging and harmful ultraviolet and infrared rays coming from the welding machine. This means that you should also make sure that your pockets, shirts and pant cuffs are buttoned. The aforementioned may catch sparks and get your skin smoldered.
When it comes to gloves, you do not have to settle for the generic ones. You can find ergonomic gloves that are designed with curved fingers, making certain welding processes more comfortable. Of course, you should not forget to protect your feet too. So, wear high-top leather shoes or boots and avoid wearing tennis or fabric shoes that may catch sparks. Moreover, do not let the legs of your pants go over your shoes.
Ensure Proper Ventilation
Constantly breathing in the fumes and smoke coming from the welding process can be dangerous to your health. Inside an enclosed work space, toxic fumes or shielding gases may accumulate and replace the breathable air. So, do not forget to mount an exhaust hood so that workers can have proper ventilation inside the work area.
Keep your Eyes Protected
Welders who do neglect to wear proper eye gear may experience an ‘arc flash’. Although temporary, this condition can be painful and it is caused by exposing the eyes to the rays from the welding arc. Sometimes, people experience an arc flash hours after exposure and it would be too late for them to realize that they should have worn protective eyewear.
Do not neglect to wear a helmet that is fitted with a filter shade that protects your eyes. Moreover, under the helmet, remember to wear safety glasses with side shields and ear protection. Whether you’re doing steel fabrication or simply observing, always remember to wear a protective helmet.
Get Auto-Darkening Helmets to Avoid Stress Related Injuries
If you want a better option apart from traditionally fixed helmets, then go for auto-darkening helmets. Helmets like such are lighter which reduces neck fatigue. When they have to drop the hood, welders do not need to snap their head because of the helmet’s lightweight nature.
You can also save some seconds in between welds because of the auto-darkening function. When you’re working on bigger metal fabrication jobs, these few seconds can accumulate to several minutes. Consequently, you will have a faster turnaround time that will profit the business.
Keeping the Welding Workspace Organized
One of the most important safety practices in metal fabrication is organizing the workspace. Every piece of welding equipment must be clearly labelled and have a designated storage space. Moreover, the welding workspace must only have the tools and equipment that the welder uses and nothing more. For a more efficient and organized workspace, it is advisable to get a welding table with a scissors mechanism. This allows the welder to adjust the height according to the application so that they won’t have to switch from one table to another.
Encourage Efficient Operations by Using Boom-Mounted Wire Feeders
Wire feeders that are mounted with booms are efficient for welders who work on a high-production welding station. Having one increases the work station’s efficiency, flexibility, and comfort. Place the drive assembly at the end of the boom and the controls of the wire feeder at the 12- or 16-ft. boom’s base.
This option allows you to rotate the boom at 360 degrees. The set-up also allows you to move the boom up and down at 60 degrees, giving you around 24 to 32 ft. work area diameter. After setting the boom in its position the counterbalance will hold it in place.
Encourage Welders to Comply with Safety Rules
When new programs are rolled out, workers see the project as something that will only last for a few months. Metal fabrication companies can implement a different approach to promote welding safety.
Little by little, incorporate the guidelines listed in this article into the daily work activities of the welders. If they comply, motivate them by providing them with incentives. You can even encourage them more by using a weekly point system that will be rewarded by the end of the month.
Another effective approach you can use is the ‘stick’ in the ‘carrot and stick’ technique. When employees violate the quality and safety rules, give them a demerit. Implementing consequences lets workers know that you are serious about your guidelines. Some may think that this is a harsh way of treating your subordinates. However, you can combine it with the incentive program so that they will still have the motivation to do their best.
People working in the metal fabrication industry are exposed to hazardous processes. Apart from the equipment and the products, the labourers are the most important assets of a company. When they are kept healthy, safe and happy, you can ensure quality workmanship and business success.
Author Bio:
Ashley Batman is a writer at <a href=”http://ramfab.com.au/“>RamFab.com.au</a>. She worked as an online video editor before she started her writing career.
Photo Credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/highwaysagency/“>Highways England</a>

What Are The Important Physical Security Measures An Organization Should Consider?

What Are The Important Physical Security Measures An Organization Should Consider?

Implementing a fail-safe security system is one of the most important actions a business owner must take when opening their organization to the general public. This system should be designed to protect the company against all known threats and to ensure the company’s employees and customers feel safe and assured in working with the organization in the long-term. For customers, a secure company is a productive company. Here is a list of the most important physical security measures an organization must take to protect their infrastructure.

 

The Basics: A Security Alarm System

Every business and organization should begin by installing a security alarm system – this is an absolute essential for any business. You can then enhance this level of security by investing in monitoring, which means that your premises will be monitored by an alarm company to ensure that you and your employees are safe and secure at all times. In the event that an emergency unfolds, the alarm company will contact the appropriate emergency department on your behalf.

Not only should businesses have a security alarm installed as a means to deter burglars and other intruders, but additional security measures should be put in place to actually prevent them from forcing themselves through windows and doors, for example. This means that all businesses should also consider security bars, security window film, or both. Indeed, when it comes to security, organizations need to protect themselves from every possible angle.

Install Outdoor Motion Sensors

Protecting the interior of the building begins with proactively monitoring the outside perimeter of the property. Companies should begin their security systems implementation processes by installing outdoor motion sensors. It’s important to consider systems that connect to a wider security infrastructure. Some companies now use smart sensor technology that connects outdoor motion sensors directly to their smart devices and to switchboards operated by emergency response personnel.

Install An Electronic Access Control System

Installing an electronic access control system should be one of the leading considerations when it comes to protecting your organization, both from external and internal threats. An access control system means that only authorized individuals (who have been issued an electronic card) can enter the premises.

Access control systems allow businesses to protect themselves internally by restricting employees’ ability to enter certain rooms and floors and at different times/days of the month. In this way, access control systems allow businesses to protect their most valuable areas that absolutely need to be protected, from server rooms to workstations with computers, for example.

Integrate Security Cameras across the Premises

With the growth in security camera technology and the increasing innovation within the smart device field, security cameras are now a must-have tool for the Canadian businesses. This simple to use low cost device can help monitor a company’s premises during regular office hours as well as overnight to protect work staff and ensure intrusion events are spotted and resolved quickly and effectively. When installing security camera systems, it’s important to conduct a walk-through of the business property with a security professional to locate hidden areas and points of potential security weakness.

Use Industry-Recommended Safes

Business owners must have a comprehensive plan for maintaining the safety of their valuables. The latest safe products from brand leaders such as Halsco Safes can help company leaders keep their documents and other important items safe within the property. It’s imperative that business owners review the range of safe options available within the marketplace, including under counter safes for money storage, and wall-safes for document and property storage.

Create a Complete Security Network

After the installation of their security cameras, motion sensors, and safes, business owners should work with their local security specialist to ensure the entire property is secured through an inter-connected cabling system. Business security specialists can help analyze the company’s needs and then advise owners on the creation of a versatile network that empowers proactive responses to the latest security threats. This will help ensure that any threats are monitored, catalogued, and mitigated using cutting-edge systems.

By understanding the physical threats to their business, company owners can build a refined security infrastructure that ensures their firm, its employees, and its customers are protected. To learn more, speak with the team at Protection Plus directly.

 

Benefits of Safety Footwear when Working at Heights

Benefits of Safety Footwear when Working at Heights

 Safety at a workplace is a prerequisite at any job. Employers have to make sure that proper steps are taken to keep their workers safe, healthy and to prevent any possible injuries and accidents. Especially hazardous are maintenance and construction jobs and any such jobs where heavy machinery or working at heights is involved.

Every employee deserves to have a safe working environment, where proper precautions are in place to secure their health and where risk factors are properly and sufficiently controlled. No matter the workplace, whether it is indoors or outdoors, an office, a construction site or a factory, maximum safety has to be ensured. This involves proper safety attire which should be required by the employer. This means high visibility clothing, hats and Personal Protective Equipment or PPE.

Height risks

Working at heights is especially dangerous and involves many more risks. Accidents that result from working at heights, most commonly falls and slips, are responsible for a great number of serious injuries at a workplace every year. Anything from a two-meter fall or higher, can cause serious or even fatal injuries. Working at heights includes working on platforms, scaffolds, ladders, but also working on roofs, on any elevated structures or vehicles, on the edges of buildings or structures, working on top of pits or any kind of deeper holes.

Some of the main risks of working at heights are workers slipping, falling, and also objects falling on the people beneath them. This can happen when the workplace is not properly secured, or assessed for risks, if the objects are not properly stored or secured, if the equipment is not adequately secured, if workers are not properly trained or if they are not wearing proper safety equipment and clothing.

Importance and benefits of safety footwear

Personal Protective Equipment is essential at a workplace, and what it includes depends on the nature of the job. When it comes to working at heights, safety or protective footwear is of very high importance, but it is often times neglected or overlooked. Many problems and accidents could be prevented if proper and adequate footwear was used and worn, so ensuring that workers wear them as a part of their obligatory safety equipment is very important.

Protective footwear is designed to prevent major injuries such as falling and slipping, electrical hazards, heavy objects falling on the foot. Working at heights should involve slip-resistant shoes, i.e. with slip-resistant soles, hard materials that protect the foot from falling objects and metal protection for the toes. And on top of it all, they should also be comfortable enough to work in them for a whole day.

When it comes to the health of workers, the shoes have to be comfortable and also made in the way that they offer enough support for your feet. When standing on your feet all day and working, it can be hard on your feet as well as on your back and posture. Having a shoe that provides arch support is invaluable. It prevents health problems as well as excessive physical exhaustion, and therefore workers are more alert and there will be less falls and slips.

Having a shoe that fits properly is also very important. It is not rare that workers have problems with their legs and feet, such as pain, tension or even blisters. This can all be due to a wrongly fitted shoe, or the wrong size of it. The feet bear all the weight, especially when standing on them for a prolonged amount of time. It is important that shoes fit, so that you can safely stand and move around and be stable on your feet. It is important to measure both feet when trying on footwear, because they may not be the same size, as well as have enough room in the shoe for the toes to wiggle, leaving at least 1cm of space between them and the end of the shoe.

Quality of the soles is very important. They should be strong and flexible, but also shock-absorbent. This means that they will protect your joints when walking or hitting hard surfaces. The most important thing about them when working on heights is that the soles are slip-resistant, and those are usually made of rubber or PVC.  The entire shoe should be made out of a natural breathable material, so that the foot is kept fresh, and so that it repels water.

Article is written by Matt, a writer and editor for Choice Solutions Roofing & Exteriors.

 

 

 

A Safety-First Approach to Refueling a Forklift

A Safety-First Approach to Refueling a Forklift

Acute inhalation of carbon monoxide (CO) gas is considered to be one of the most frequent causes of occupational fatality in the United States, according to an article published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), US National Library of Medicine (NLM). The fact that CO is a colorless and odorless gas makes it extremely hard to detect and therefore it is also dubbed as “the silent killer.”

According to the NCBI/NLM resource, fuel-powered forklifts are one of the common sources of CO poisoning. It is, therefore, extremely important for an employer to put in adequate safeguards around the use of forklifts, especially during the refueling process.

Even a small thing like using a high-quality safety valve can help prevent accidents during forklift refueling, which involves the use of dangerous gases. For instance, experts at Clark Cooper recommend a specific solenoid valve for hydrogen gas that can withstand its greater pressures, in comparison to other liquids or gases.

Follow OSHA Guidelines to the Letter

Did you know that workplace forklift training is governed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), under the US Department of Labor? There is already a set of guidelines by OSHA that act as best practices that every industrial unit should follow. These include forklifts with:

ü      Internal Combustion Engines

While forklifts with internal combustion engines are easier to refuel, a great amount of caution needs to be exercised while doing so to avoid spills and leaks. Here are some best practices to consider:

  • As a standard operating procedure, all hydraulics must be checked beforehand, along with the levels of oil and water, even before commencing the refueling operation.
  • It is a good time to check for any leaks that might have occurred in the battery, cylinder or fuel system.
  • Adequate ventilation is important and therefore the refueling must not occur in an area that is poorly ventilated.
  • You must be alert to unusual noises or excessive vibrations.
  • The color of the exhaust can reveal a lot. For instance, black smoke might be a sign of incomplete combustion.

ü      Liquid Petroleum Gas

  • Avoid confined areas, since LPG is heavier than air and can collect in low lying areas, thereby increasing the chances of an explosion, when it is accidentally exposed to heat.
  • LPG trucks must not be parked near heat sources.
  • The service valve must always be turned off when the forklift is parked for a long period of time.
  • LPG containers must always be handled by trained and authorized personnel only.

ü      Diesel and Gasoline

  • Safe locations should be earmarked for the refueling operation, preferably outdoors.
  • Refueling should not be carried out near heat sources, since that could lead to an explosion.
  • The engine must be switched off during the refueling process.
  • Transmission must be put to Neutral and the parking brakes applied.
  • No one should smoke while the refueling is in progress.
  • Keep an eye on the fuel levels. Avoid letting the forklift run out of fuel completely or being too low on fuel, since sediments can be drawn into the fuel system.
  • Do not fill the tank right to the top. Leave some space because fuel tends to expand when heated.

In addition, you must also be aware of the safety instructions as prescribed in the operator’s manual and comply with those guidelines as well. Remember, it is a federal offense for anyone below the age of 18 to operate an industrial forklift or for anyone above 18 years to operate it without proper training and certification.

Plumbing Safety Tips

Plumbing Safety Tips

While many people would think that they can just DIY and repair their plumbing systems, it is undeniable that sometimes, it can be dangerous too. This is why many experts advice home and business owners to just leave any renovation, remodeling, or repair to the pros. But, some will still risk it, especially if it’s a minor issue and the hassle of acquiring the services of contractors is not worth it.

In any given time and circumstances, standard safety precaution and measures should be diligently applied. To make sure you are fully safe, here are some basic safety rules and reminders which you should apply when dealing with home plumbing projects:

 Turn off every electrical source.

One of the most immediate dangers of dealing with plumbing is the threat of being electrocuted. Remember, since most likely you will be working on wet areas, water is a conductor of electricity and electricity can travel through water. Being electrocuted imposes a great risk for your health and safety. If you are repairing a plumbing issue near an electrical source, it is important to remember to turn off the power near that source.

Wear protective gear.

Never think it is over the top to wear protective gear when working with your plumbing system. Wear goggles to protect your eye from any small debris. Safety goggles particularly will provide the adequate protection for your eyes for most jobs. Wear an ear-protecting gear when you’re working with loud tools. Remember that Protecting your ears is even more important when you are performing nosier jobs like hammering or heavy-duty pounding. Continuous loud noise can damage your ears more than you think. Wear gloves to protect your hands. The type of gloves that you may need depends on the type of job that you are doing:

  • If your work involves chemicals, wear rubber gloves.
  • If you are doing some soldering, wear a pair of heavy-duty leather gloves

You should also consider your working clothes. As much as possible, never work while on your home clothes or pajamas. Wear long pants and long sleeves for waste water protection containing chemicals and bacteria. You can also wear a respirator, or face masks to avoid inhaling chemical fumes. Keep in mind that accidents can happen all the time, and being prepared is better than being sorry in the end.

Use the right tools.

One of the most important factors of successfully doing any job is having and using the right tools specific for the need. If you are DIY-ing for the first time, you might want to invest in the right tools for each job. You cannot just improvise, or use a different tool specified for a sole purpose, it can only worsen the situation, or even lead to bigger, harder to solve problems. The repair can also take a much longer time to do if you use the wrong tools. You can even lose more money in the long run!

Although buying each tool may be hard on the budget, it is important to purchase high quality ones which can last the test of time and will not deteriorate over a couple of uses. Also, know which tools you will need prior to doing the renovation or repair. Keep in mind that these tools were designed to perform a specific task, made to fit in specific spaces and you should respect it and use them accordingly.

 Study and Practice.

Studying what you need to do by the book can only do so much. Practice. Watch tutorials and know the proper usage of the tools. This can help you address the needed repairs properly.

Know the emergency numbers.

In line with preparation, have the emergency contact numbers at hand. List down the contact for the fire department, hospital and ambulance numbers, police hotlines, and specific utility numbers as well. Have them ready or displayed in a common area on your house.

  Calm down 

If anything bad happens, remember to calm down. Sometimes, panicking can do no good and only worsen the situation. Know the first aid and the right thing to do when accidents happen. Remember, keeping calm will help you make the best decision and act quickly and wisely.

 

Safety should always be your top priority regardless of the situation. Hazards can be prevented by knowing what to do, using the right tools, practicing, being prepared, and most importantly, staying calm. In spite of being willing to repair things, you should note that your health and your life should be your priority.

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