Preventing Slips, Trips and Falls

Slips trips and falls are the second highest cause of workplace incidents. Resulting in anything from a minor injury to the worst case scenario…death. The cause can be from cords, uneven terrain, poor housekeeping, not following safety protocol and many more. Here are some pointers to reduce the risk of slips, trips and falls.

Good housekeeping goes along way. Keep the ground or floors free of tools, cords and debris. If something cannot be removed, flag it off so other workers will see it. Clean as you go. This goes for ice snow and mud. You may have to do a clean up more than once a day. Do as needed. Be sure to put up wet floor signs if you have just freshly mopped. Now when it comes to heights, follow the proper procedures. Always tie off with the proper equipment for the job. Inspect your fall pro gear every time you use it. Railings should be installed where possible, all ladders should have a 3 foot extension. When climbing, always use 3 points of contact. And this should go without saying but no running at any time.

Even the tiniest of slips or trips can cause serious injuries such as throwing out your back or sprains. We have all stumbled over our own feet now and then, but the removal of all other hazards will reduce our chances of an incident.

Muster Points

This is one of the first things brought up in your orientation on site or even in most safety training classes. This is not where you get toppings for a hot dog… it’s where workers safely assemble in the case of an emergency. These meeting points help avoid unaccounted for workers and work for even a huge scale of workers.  However, if we become careless about muster points, they are pointless. They might as well be signs that say “chaos” or “stampede” in their place. It’s a blessing if we never have to use these assembly points, but that doesn’t mean we can forget about them all together.

Always know where your muster point is. The one you had in orientation has probably changed and could change day to day, even hour to hour depending on where you’re working. If you’re not sure ask a supervisor. Please don’t settle for a general answer like “by the wash cart”. There are tons of wash carts. Get someone to point it out and if you need to, physically walk over to it so you won’t forget. Always write it on you JHA. Make sure you go over it with your partner or crew working in the same area. Always ask when signing into a JHA. Keep in mind, if an emergency does occur and you’re at the wrong muster point, no one will know where you are and a search could ensue. If you do end up at the wrong one, make sure you tell the appointed safety officer in charge of that muster point, so he/she can radio it in.  This will save everyone’s time and worrying about your whereabouts.

Muster points are one of the many things we pray we never have to actually use. However we need to be very aware of them. This is one of the reasons most sites do practice evacuations. This is great, but you need to take it upon yourself to always be in the know. Every time you change work areas, know your muster point and know you’ll be safe.


Effects of H2S on the Human Body

Just the smallest amount of hydrogen sulfide can have huge effects on the human body. H2S is measured in parts per million. One PMM means one part gas per one million parts air, that’s nothing right? Wrong! H2S starts to wreak havoc at just 0.01 PPM. Let me break down just how deadly this gas really is. (Oh geez did I just say “deadly gas”?)

0.01 – 0.3 PPM – This is called the odour threshold and it smells like rotten eggs. You know the guy that eats egg salad every day in the lunch trailer… It smells like him.

1 – 20 PPM – The egg smell is even more offensive, causing nausea, tearing of the eyes and headaches.

20 -100 PPM – There is nose, eye, throat, lung and digestive irritation, accompanied by the loss of appetite and smell.

100 – 200 PPM – Nose, throat and lung irritation is now severe. Your sense of smell is completely gone now.

250 – 500 PPM – Fluid will begin to build up in your lungs.

500 PPM – Excitement, staggering and sudden collapse is possible now, along with loss of your memory for exposure time, dizziness, unconsciousness and death within a few hours.

500 – 1000 PPM – Respiratory paralysis, irregular heartbeat, collapse and death without rescue.

Over 1000 PPM – Immediate death. Game over, you didn’t have a chance.

Talking about “deadly gas” can be kind of funny, but H2S is absolutely no joke. Make sure you’re trained before entering any area that may contain any amount of H2S. For more information click here.

H2S – Typical Sites and Locations

Here is another snippet from our “soon to be released” H2S course. To keep our courses engaging, we include a mix of animation, video, pictures and set it all with a little background guitar for any music enthusiasts out there…well that part is a bit of a stretch. None the less, we hope you find it interesting and informative…some recent incidents are also included. It brings home the serious nature of H2S and why everyone should be trained.

Hand Signals

When it comes to rigging I’m kind of a geek. I once pulled my family over while in the U.S. to watch a huge lift. They are fascinating, there is so much that goes into these lifts. Whether pulling a small piece of pipe to your station with an overhead crane, or a crazy lift on site, hand signals are a must.

Make sure you know them if you’re participating in the lift. If you’re unsure, sit this one out and observe, don’t participate until you are confident with them. Make sure all workers communicate a review of the hand signals before they begin the lift. Pick one signal person. When doing signals, do them slowly and exaggerated, make sure the operator can see you clearly. Do a distinct move to show a signal is over before starting a new one. As for the operator, never respond to an unclear signal. And always remember that a “stop” signal is to be followed, no matter who gives it.

There is so much more to these lifts than just hand signals and if you want to be more than a spectator like me on the side of the road, take our rigging course, learn the in’s and out’s and be a confident participant in some amazing lifts.

Fall Clearance, Arresting Force and Free Fall Distance – 3D Animation – (Light-Hearted Version)

ABCS is introducing their new 3D character named “Abel Wiseman” who is wearing a full-body harness and shock absorbing lanyard. He is using a cable wrap connected to an I-beam that serves as his anchorage.

Understanding fall clearance, arresting force and free fall distance is key to safely using a personal fall arrest system.

With the assistance of Abel Wiseman, you’ll see how easy it is to calculate your minimum clearance and free fall distance when setting up your fall arrest system.

This 3D animation provides a step-by-step method that explains in simple language how to figure out your clearance and free fall distance without the need for complicated formulas and acronyms.

Swing Fall, Clearance and Self Retracting Devices

Swing fall is a key component to safely using a personal fall arrest system. This 3D animation uses simple language to demonstrate swing fall.

It explains how to set up your personal fall arrest system to minimize a potential swing fall and how to calculate your clearance when using a full body harness and a self retracting device (SRD).