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Monthly Archives: January 2018

DuPont FSRE Safety Kickoff—Contractor Safety Excellence Award

DuPont-2017-award

RAI Safety Director Jim Specht represented RAI at the 2018 DuPont FSRE Safety Kickoff meeting on January 23 where the company was presented with the 2017 Contractor Safety Excellence Award…an award they’ve received for the 8th consecutive year.

Criteria for the DuPont 2017 Contractor Safety Excellence Award:

  • Submission of the 2017 Safety Plan, including the Mid-Year and Year End Progress Reports
  • Safety meeting attendance
  • Proactive participation in safety audits
  • Incident frequency & severity
  • Zero recordable injuries

RAI was one of only 16 contractors to receive the award this year.

Cold Stress

coldstressimage

Cold stress is a condition occurring when the body can no longer maintain a normal temperature. The condition can result in very serious cold-related illnesses and injuries, permanent tissue damage or death. Those working in cold environments—with low temperatures, high wind speed, humidity, and/or contact with cold water or surfaces—are particularly susceptible to cold stress.

Types of Cold Stress Injuries

  • Hypothermia occurs when your body begins to lose heat faster than it can be produced. A body temperature that is too low affects the brain, making the victim unable to think clearly or move well.
  • Frostbite is an injury to the body caused by freezing. Frostbit causes a loss of feeling and can affect the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes.
  • Trench Foot, also known as immersion foot, is an injury of the feet resulting from prolonged exposure to wet and cold conditions.

Best Practices: 

  • Monitor your physical condition and that of your co-workers.
  • Wear several layers of clothing for insulation. The first layer should fit snugly against the skin and be made of a nonabsorbent material that wicks away water and keeps skin dry. Clothing should not be too tight as this may restrict movement resulting in a hazardous situation.
  • Protect your ears, face, hands and feet in extremely cold or wet weather.
  • Wear waterproof and insulated boots and clothing.
  • Wear a hat to reduce the loss of body heat from your head.
  • Have extra socks, gloves, hats, jacket, blankets, and a change of clothes available in case the weather becomes much worse or your clothes become wet.
  • Use radiant heaters in break areas and limit the amount of time outside.
  • Carry or make available a thermos of hot liquid.
  • Include chemical hot packs in your first aid kit.
  • Avoid touching cold metal surfaces with bare skin.
  • Maintain adequate hydration and nutritional requirements.

 

Safe Winter Walking

  • Wear proper footwear. Proper footwear should place the entire foot on the surface of the ground and have visible treads. Avoid a smooth sole and opt for a heavy treaded shoe with a flat bottom. It may be a good idea to wear winter shoes into the building and bring your office shoes with you.
  • Plan ahead. While walking on snow or ice on sidewalks or in parking lots, walk consciously. Instead of looking down, look up and see where your feet will move next to anticipate ice or an uneven surface. Occasionally scan from left to right to ensure you are not in the way of vehicles or other hazards.
  • Use your eyes and ears. While seeing the environment is important, you also want to be sure you can hear approaching traffic and other noises. Avoid listening to music or engaging in conversation that may prevent you from hearing oncoming traffic or snow removal equipment.
  • Anticipate ice. Be wary of thin sheets of ice that may appear as wet pavement (black ice). Often ice will appear in the morning, in shady spots or where the sun shines during the day and melted snow refreezes at night. 
  • Walk steps slowly. When walking down steps, be sure to grip handrails firmly and plant your feet securely on each step.
  • Do not carry too many items so you can catch yourself if you slip.
  • Enter a building carefully. When you get to your destination such as school, work, shopping center, etc., be sure to look at the floor as you enter the building. The floor may be wet with melted snow and ice.
  • Be careful when you shift your weight. When stepping off a curb or getting into a car, be careful since shifting your weight may cause an imbalance and result in a fall.
  • When exiting your car, turn your body so you can step out onto 2 feet instead of one. ALWAYS inspect that area before you step out of your vehicle.
  • Avoid taking shortcuts. Shortcuts are a good idea if you are in a hurry, but may be a bad idea if there is snow and ice on the ground. A shortcut path may be treacherous because it is likely to be located where snow and ice removal is not possible.
  • Look up. Be careful about what you walk under.  Injuries also can result from falling snow/ice as it blows, melts, or breaks away from awnings, buildings, etc.
  • Make facilities manager aware of any ice and snow hazards that exist.

Safety Tip: Freeway Driving

Some states call them freeways, while other states refer to them as expressways. Those with tolls are sometimes called turnpikes. But regardless of what you call them, these high-speed, controlled-access highways require a driver’s undivided attention and quick decision making.

Here are seven tips on freeway driving, provided by AAA:

  • Try to look ahead at least 12 seconds to make sure you are alert to changing traffic and road conditions such as roadwork, congestion, heavy traffic, slow traffic, or stop-and-go traffic.
  • Always signal at least five seconds before changing lanes. Look carefully and check your mirrors — both inside and outside rear view mirrors. And, look over your shoulder in the direction of the lane change.
  • Avoid any sudden moves. Sudden moves are usually not well planned or checked, and do not give other drivers adequate time to react.
  • Help other drivers enter and exit the freeway or change lanes. Adjust your speed or move to the next lane if it is clear.
  • Drive in the lane that is best suited to the traffic conditions. On a two-lane freeway, use the right lane for cruising and the left lane for passing. When there are three or more lanes, use the right lane if you are traveling at a slower speed than traffic, the left lane for passing, and the center lane for cruising.
  • Do not be distracted or slow down excessively to look at incidents in or near the roadway. This adds to congestion and increases the potential for additional incidents.
  • Choose a legal speed that matches the flow of traffic. Speeds that are too slow or too fast will increase the risk of incidents.

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