JSHA VS FLHA Part 3

We have learned about JSHA’s and the hierarchy of controls used to make them. Now let’s get into what’s expected from the employee. FLHA stands for Field Level Hazard Assessment. This is to be completed by the worker. It’s pretty self-explanatory, it’s to be filled out at field level, meaning right where you are working. A fab tent, the high line or a ditch, they all have specific hazards that only apply to them. A FLHA ensures that all workers know the hazards involved in their task. They have been a part of identifying hazards that directly affect them. They also need to know the steps to eliminate or mitigate each of those hazards. They can then add the additional hazards that they have identified at the field level, also outlining the controls needed to eliminate or reduce the hazard. These need to be filled out every time a factor in the task changes. A new worker joins the task or the job location changes. Even if everything’s the same as yesterday, you still need to do one every morning before you start and go over it after each break. There are always changes, weather changes, night/day crews in the area, other companies coming through, there are endless possibilities of what you may have missed. Also, it never hurts to go over the hazards again and stay fresh. 

 

No matter what these forms are called, it is imperative that they are done. Will it be the highlight of your day? Probably not. But getting injured at work doesn’t sound like a skip in the park either. The 15 (boring) minutes you may spend filling one out, will give you a better understanding of exactly what is needed of you and your co-workers so everyone makes it home safe… Every night. If you work for an employer that is not doing this, You need to speak up, it’s for your own safety and bottom line… It’s legislated.

 

To learn even more about this topic head to our site and take our in depth Hazard Assessment course. It will provide you with some great tools for your safety belt and best of all… it’s free for limited time!

 

 

JSHA VS FLHA Part 2

I know you have been patiently waiting to learn all about the hierarchy of controls… so let’s jump right back in. The hierarchy of controls are 4 possible ways to eliminate or lessen the hazard. The first is always elimination. Is it possible to completely remove that hazard from the equation? Most times this is not an option. The second is engineering controls. An example of this would be constructing a safe walkway for pedestrians and workers next to an area using a EWP. The third step is administrative. This would be changing how a task is done. You can do this by reworking a safe job procedure to include steps to mitigate the hazard. An example of this would be how to conduct a task with motorized equipment that must be done in a congestion work area where a separate walkway is not possible. In this case they would use the proper steps to identify and acknowledge pedestrians and a plan to proceed safely with the task at hand. The last resort is PPE. Is it reasonable to make all workers and pedestrians wear PPE? Workers, yes of course. Pedestrians… absolutely not. Using these 4 controls an employer will find the safest and most effective way to get the job done. Now going back to the ever so riveting legislation, it’s also stated that “An employer must involve affected workers in the hazard assessment and in the control or elimination of the hazards identified.” And so FLHA was born. I’ll see you back here tomorrow to learn about FLHA’S and finish up.

 

To learn even more about this topic head to our site and take our in depth Hazard Assessment course. It will provide you with some great tools for your safety belt and best of all… it’s free for limited time!

 

JSHA VS FLHA Part 1

Sometimes with all the safety talk going on, I forget that not everyone always knows what I’m talking about. I bring JSHA’s and FLHA’s up a lot. They’re one of the most valuable tools in the safety industry. Then it dawned on me… Some people might not know what I’m talking about. This is a terrifying thought but a real one. I worked on one site where there was a quick pre-work talk… mostly instructions for the day but no FLHA. When I asked about doing one, everyone looked at me like I had two heads. This wasn’t THAT long ago. So, sadly there may be some of you new to industry working on a site like this as well. For those workers and well… everyone, let’s take a few days to focus on one of the most important tools in your belt. 

 

JSHA and FLHA are not different names for the same thing. They each have their own purpose. JSHA stands for Job Site Hazard Analysis (keep in mind there are many names for both of these such as JSA, JHA and so on) This is completed by an employer for the entire site. If we want to get super technical here, the legislation in Alberta OH&S Code, Part 2, Section 7.1 states, “An employer must assess a work site and identify existing and potential hazards before work begins at the work site or prior to the construction of a new work site.” Section 7.2  further states, “An employer must prepare a report of the results of a hazard assessment and the methods used to control or eliminate the hazards identified.” This site wide hazard assessment can be viewed as the Job Site Hazard Assessment, or JSHA. They will use the hierarchy of controls to determine what is safe and practicable for each task. Come back tomorrow and we will go over the hierarchy of controls and all things JSHA and FLHA.

 

To learn even more about this topic head to our site and take our in depth Hazard Assessment course. It will provide you with some great tools for your safety belt and best of all… it’s free for limited time!

Boss VS Leader Part 2

So, we have already gone over how a leader puts in the time for their team and to educate themselves. Another big difference between a boss and a leader, is communication. Anyone can bark orders and live by the “do as I say” mentality, but to actually take the time to ask your crew for input and hear their questions can go a long way. Remember, your crew is working right in the hub of it all and may have safety concerns you would have never thought of. Yes, there will be times when you will need to flex your authority, but this can be done with constructive feedback. Always include your staff and be fair. An employee that feels heard and treated fairly is less likely to “stick it to the man” aka cut corners aka cause an incident. 

Lastly, inspire your workers.  Excite and encourage your team. Safety doesn’t have to be boring. You can do anything from rewarding good safety behavior to reflecting on your own trials and tribulations with safety. You will be teaching your workers as well as getting to know them. Have discussions on everything from improvements to grievances. Make sure your team feels heard! That small difference can really change the safety culture on your crew… and when that changes for the better, everyone wins.

Sadly most workers dread seeing the “white hats” on site. But you know who can change that? You.. over there, with the white hat on. You can change that! Don’t just be a “boss”, challenge yourself to lead your crew. All it takes is a little bit of time, some communication and a whole lot of inspiration. Be the “white hat” everyone is happy to see. A good leader equals a happy crew which equals a safe crew! 

 

Boss VS Leader Part 1

So you wear a white hat, have a company truck and an office space in a trailer; you are officially a “boss.” No matter if you are a foreman for a 3 person crew or a project manager for a huge site, you still have big responsibilities. The biggest responsibility that falls on your shoulders is to ensure your workers go home safe every night. Yes, of course there are deadlines, budgets and paperwork; all of that means nothing if the people who work under you, are having incidents, injuries or even worse! So what can you do to keep these people safe? You can be a leader! How is that different from a boss and how does this affect safety? Well let’s get into that. 

 

A boss knows the job and dictates what should be done, how it should be done and when it should be done, throwing a “do it safely” at the end of instructions. Which will probably get the job done… but will the end result be a good one? Will everyone involved leave unscathed?🤷 A leader will put in the time, communicate with and inspire workers to do their best and do it safely. I think you can break it down into those three categories… Time, communication and inspiration. 

 

When I say “putting the time in” I don’t mean punch your time card for 10 hours a day and poof! I mean go to site and spend time with your crew. Get to know them and their safety concerns. Take time out of your office or truck and head to the front lines, get your hands dirty and show your crew you’re part of the team. Also spend some time educating yourself. You are in charge of how up-to-date you are with safety standards and innovations. Remember, you have other workers’ well-being laying right on your shoulders, so keep current. 

 

Come back on Monday and we will finish up the last two keys to being a great leader. 

 

There’s Never an Easy Way

We’ve all cut corners before, skipped a step or rushed through a task. For whatever reason, maybe you’ve done it that way for 15 years, maybe you’re in a hurry or let’s be honest… maybe your just being lazy? Whatever the reason; there is never an “easy way”. It may seem easy at the time but it will catch up to you. Taking a trip down easy street can put everyone at unnecessary risk. There is a reason you are asked to do a task a certain way. For example; you’re asked to tighten a flange bolt and you only hand tighten it and not even in sequence because you are rushing to get to break. Well, you took the easy road but for the employee who’s standing anywhere near that pipe when it’s put under pressure, things will be anything but easy… if they even survive. If it seems easy at the time, there will be a price to pay later. It’s so important to do all our tasks properly; every time. Take pride in your work and your safety.

 

Theft

There is a lot misconception about stealing from the worksite. Some people believe it’s a victimless crime. That these big construction/ oil and gas companies won’t even notice. Wrong! They do notice, according to CBC, employee theft costs Canadian businesses around 1.4 billion dollars every year. So how is this a safety concern? Well in a roundabout way it is. Missing tools or equipment can slow down or completely halt a job, making workers more likely to increase the speed they work at to play catch-up. This can lead to making critical errors and…. POOF! There is an accident or incident. Not to mention the blame game. Have you ever been on site when something does go missing? Everyone gets hammered by supervisors and finger pointing  takes over, making it hard to focus on the task at hand, again making a perfect breeding ground for an incident. 1.4 billion dollars is a lot of money that could have gone to safety programs, staff BBQs or maybe even raises. Stealing from your job site is not a victimless crime and of course, it’s also illegal so it also puts your job in jeopardy. Stealing from your workplace is the very definition of biting the hand that feeds you. We all make good money in the trades… Just buy your tool and equipment like everyone else.

Asking for Help

You are not paid to be the strongest person in the world….or to have magical powers and do the work of ten employees….or even be the all-knowing construction Genie. Yet a lot of people in the trades have a huge problem with asking for help. I’m not sure if they don’t want to slow down the job or they think it’s a sign of weakness or being bird-brained. Whatever it may be, it can cause serious injuries. What’s more embarrassing; asking for help to lift something or doing it yourself and throwing your back out and missing weeks of work? Or; being unsure of something and asking for help or trying to figure it out and hurting yourself? Asking for help, whether it be for assistance or with a question, can keep us from causing an incident for others or ourselves. Therefore, kind of making you the all powerful, never have an incident employee. Which is up there with all-knowing construction Genie.

Keep Learning

Some people hate change… And that’s fine if we are talking about the mullet you’ve been rockin since the 80’s or your playlist from Woodstock. However, when it comes to change in workplace safety; you need to embrace it. I know when you’ve been doing something the same way for 20 years and then all of a sudden your supervisors are asking you to do it differently, it can be overwhelming; maybe even frustrating and more time consuming….. but I assure you there is a reason for it. That reason is more than likely your safety. Just think if we did everything the same as we did 20 years ago? How dangerous would that be? With every incident, accident and injury, we learn how it could have been avoided. Then we apply it to the next worker; helping them avoid the same outcome. Not to mention technology is constantly changing and evolving, also helping us play it safe. We need to be on our toes and always learning the new safer way of doing things. So try and be the worker that is open to learning new things. It may even make you seem a bit younger and hip… Even with that mullet on your head. 😉

Fire Safety While Camping 🔥

What would camping be without a good campfire? That’s where all the action happens, the drinks, the grilling of hamburgers and hotdogs and of course the spooky ghost stories. I would say that anyone who has been camping, that their best memories are sitting around a fire. However, those memories could quickly change from the best to the worst if your campfire gets away from you. Here’s a quick overview of camp fire safety to keep those memories, great ones.

 

First check the fire bans and follow them. They are not suggestions and you can be fined for not complying. Next, make sure you can have a fire at your campsite. Almost all parks in Canada that allow fires will supply the pit or firebox. These are the only places you can make a fire. Please note, you cannot 4×4 into the woods, find a random spot and build a fire. However where fires are allowed, clear the area where your fire will be. If there is no pit, use bare ground. Clear a 3 meter area around the fire from all debris. Always have water, sand and a shovel close by.  Only let a competent adult start the fire. I say “competent” because you don’t want party animal Pete (who’s been drinking for several hours) starting the fire with a can of hairspray and a jerry can of gas. A competent adult should also be in charge of supervising the fire. Always extinguish the fire before leaving your campsite or going to bed. I know it sounds so cozy to sleep in your tent while a fire crackles away, but that fire can get out of hand very easily.

 

According to Alberta wildfires there are approximately 1500 wildfires in Alberta a year and 64% of them are human caused. In B.C. according to the Government of British Columbia the average is 1666 with 57.3% caused by humans. These fires cost millions; sometimes even billions, like the fire in Fort McMurray in 2016, not to mention the cost of human life. So, please enjoy a fire while camping but do so safely.