On July 1, 2014, the fines for talking or texting on a hand-held wireless communications device increased. First time offenders now face a fine of at least $200. The fine associated with a second offense increased to a minimum of $400, and drivers who are caught a third time face a fine of at least $600, a possible 90-day suspension of their driver’s license, and (3) three motor vehicle penalty points.
Although it is discouraged, drivers may use a hands-free device if it does not interfere with standard safety equipment. “Use” of a wireless phone and any other hand-held communication device includes, but is not limited to, talking or listening to another person, texting, or sending and receiving electronic messages.
A hand-held phone may be used for an emergency only and the driver must keep one hand on the wheel at all times.
Cell Phone Safety Tips:
- Turn your phone off or put ring on silent to avoid the urge to answer.
- Put your phone in a secure location that is easy to reach, in case of emergency.
- Never dial while driving, move to a safe area off of the road.
- Prior to driving, store important contact information in your phone.
- Use a hands-free unit, so that both of your hands are on the steering wheel at all times.
- Become familiar with your phone’s speed dialing and voice-activation features to minimize dialing.
- Prior to driving, set up your voice-mail to take messages.
What’s wrong with this picture?
In many workplaces, workers are vulnerable to falls. There are many kinds of falls and this picture illustrates two of them:
- Falls from ladders
- Falls through floor openings
As if simply falling off a ladder to the ground below isn’t dangerous enough, a worker using this ladder the way it has been positioned would also be at risk of falling through the open doors into this building’s basement.
This hazardous situation is easily avoidable. First, the ladder could be placed a safe distance from either side of the open basement doors, so that the opening doesn’t pose a risk to a worker on the ladder. Second, if the ladder had to be positioned in that particular location, say, to access the window, the basement doors should be closed and secured before the ladder is put in place.
To protect your workers from falling off ladders, make sure they:
- Place ladders on solid, level ground
- Do not position ladders near an edge or floor opening that would significantly increase the potential fall distance
- Face the treads when going up and down the ladder and stay in the center of the side rails
- Maintain three points of contact with the ladder at all times
- Avoid leaning to one side or overreaching
- Carry tools in a tool belt or raise and lower them with a hand line
- Wear shoes/boots with clean, slip-free soles
- Do not place a step ladder on boxes or scaffolds to gain extra height
- Take extra care when positioning a ladder in corridors or driveways where it could be hit by a person or vehicle
- Do not move a ladder while someone is on it
- Wear fall protection when required by the OHS regulations
And, to protect workers from falls through openings, you should:
This information provided by SafetySmart www.safetysmart.com
- Identify hazardous openings
- Install either guardrails or coverings that comply with the requirements in the OHS regulations for these safety measures
- Develop a hazardous openings policy, which should bar workers from placing ladders near or over floor openings such as the one in the picture
- Train workers on these policies