Get to Know your Training Specialist – Jamie England

Jamie-Trainer

Jamie England is one of our highly experienced Training Specialists. We sat down with him to find out more about him and how he decided to choose training as a career path.

Tell us about your educational background?Jamie England

Jamie: I graduated from Acadia University in 1996 with a degree in Education. Over the years I have added to my educational training by completing Adult Education Programs from Dalhousie University and Henson College. I have also collected specific accreditations for industry work such as Enform’s H2S Alive Instructor program, the “Train the Trainer” program from the Advanced Rescue Techniques School of Canada., and recently the LEEA Foundation Course (North American Version).

What made you decide to into this industry?

Jamie:  The rigging field is similar to some of my experiences conducting Technical Rope Rescue seminars across Canada, as well as work I have conducted at height across the Atlantic and Western provinces. It deals with inspections of gear, load calculations, proper rigging techniques and the lifting and lowering of equipment and personnel. It seemed like a logical progression from previous fields of experience while at the same time providing new challenges.

Can you tell us about your work experience before joining Hercules SLR?

Jamie: Once I completed my University Degree I joined a local Nova Scotia company called Survival Systems Training Ltd. It was here that I spent a number of years conducting training in such varied fields as sea survival, Helicopter Underwater Egress Training (HUET), industrial firefighting, confined space entry and rescue, fall protection, and technical rope rescue. I was fortunate to be able to conduct these courses in Alaska, Scotland, Cuba, Egypt across Canada and the USA.

From SSTL I moved onto another local company, Frontline Safety Ltd where I began a career working offshore off the coasts of Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Brazil as a H2S Safety Supervisor. During this time, I also spent 11 months as the permit coordinator for the construction and commissioning phase of the Erik Raude Drilling Vessel, as well being the Safety Health and Environment coordinator for the Sable Tier II commissioning program.

Eirik Raude Drilling Vessel
Eirik Raude Drilling Vessel

On top of this, it is safe to say I have spent considerable time managing safety related jobs in every pulp mill and refinery in Atlantic Canada and beyond allowing myself to build up a wealth of experience of the many different facets of work in heavy industry in this country.

What made you want to transition into training?

Jamie: training was always something I had a particular skill for. I studied at a university level and gained a degree in education. I spent a total of 8 years training at Survival Systems and another 8 at Frontline in which conducting adult education was a requirement of the job. It is something I enjoy and something I am particularly good at, so it was never really a transition, instead it was an evolution. Now I am happy to bring these skills and experiences to another local Nova Scotian company, HerculesSLR.

Why did you decide to work for Hercules SLR?

Jamie: Hercules SLR has always had a strong reputation in industry, and after having worked for companies run out of Alberta or America I am appreciative of the fact this is a local Nova Scotian company with Nova Scotian sensibilities…something that cannot be undervalued, in my opinion. It was also exciting knowing I was walking into a situation where Hercules was looking to expand their training footprint and was willing to commit the finances to do so properly. It’s exciting times with our new training school nearing completion. I am glad to be a part of it.

Where have you traveled during your time as a training specialist for Hercules SLR?

Jamie:  A great deal of the training that we deliver is based in the maritime provinces, but we can deliver training anywhere in Canada. The majority of the training I’ve delivered is mainly in Nova Scotia, but I’ve also delivered training in Newfoundland, PEI and New Brunswick as well.

Where have you enjoyed traveling to most for training?

Jamie: in my career I still have great fondness for Brazil, Alaska and Scotland. Three very unique parts of the world with beautiful landscapes, interesting customs and vibrant people.

Is there anywhere that you would like to travel to in the future with Hercules SLR?

Jamie: I have pretty much seen all of Canada and most of the US during my work-related travels. I am always happy to travel to Europe, South America, Africa…so if there is any training to be done in any of these locals….I’m your man!

Lastly, is there anything that you hope to accomplish during your career in the industry?

Jamie: I am hoping to get more LEEA (Lifting Equipment Engineering Association) courses under my belt. I would like to become an expert in the field, and then to

LEEA Logo

provide that expertise all over the world. This will require a lot of work on my end, but this is, I believe, where my future lies.

 

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn for more news and upcoming events.

Warehouse Wow: How our Distribution Centre Leads the Industry

hercules distribution centre warehouse

WAREHOUSE WORSHIP: HOW OUR CENTRAL DISTRIBUTION CENTRE IS LEADING THE INDUSTRY

HERCULES CENTRAL DISTRIBUTION CENTRE: WHAT WE DO

You’re probably reading this on a computer or mobile phone that at one point, was probably sitting somewhere in a warehouse. In 2019, warehouses are a huge part of nearly every industry but we often don’t consider where our things live before they get to us, or exactly what goes into running a smooth, successful warehouse operation. We’re here to help. 

Hercules’ Central Distribution Centre (DC) in Long-Sault, Ontario has the largest inventory of securing, lifting and rigging equipment under one roof in Canada. We’re also the only Central Distribution Centre (DC) warehouse in the securing, lifting and rigging industry that supplies products on a national-scale to our 20+ branches and ship directly to customers. The Hercules DC is in Cornwall on the 401 highway, sandwiched right between Montreal and Toronto and close to a border-crossing into the United States, as well. 

So, what exactly does it take to operate our DC? Luckily, we know just the guy. Terry Bartlett, Hercules’ Central Distribution Manager shares what he’s learned over his career, and what how he and his team run our DC like a well-oiled machine.  

hercules central distribution warehouse staffHERCULES’ WAREHOUSE: TEAM PLAYERS 

Terry Bartlett has been in distribution and material handling industries for over 20 years. Terry started as a Rig Technician at Hercules SLR in Montreal, quickly moving into a leading roles first as a Production Supervisor, then to Floor Manager. When Hercules decided to open a distribution center 3 years ago, Terry practically leaped at the opportunity to help the team establish operations. Over the past 6 years, Terry’s used his knowledge of Hercules and his distribution experience to set-up, recruit and make operations ultra efficient as our Central Distribution Manager. 

Terry can’t do it all alone—A hard-working team is essential to a well-run DC. Tim Bingley, Nick O’Brien and Jamie Plumadore have been part of the DC warehouse team for two years. They help Terry with basically all aspects of running the DC warehouse, including creating and setting policies & procedures and creating a culture that can continuously improve, keep up and grow with industry trends. 

As our business grows, so does the DC team. The DC Warehouse has doubled their team in the past year. Phillipe Gatien, Adam Bartlett, Eric Nadeau and Eric Vanderwal have joined our team to help operations.  

hercules central distribution warehouse staff

HERCULES WAREHOUSE: 5 SAFETY TIPS FROM TERRY

1. KNOW THE RISKS

Be aware of hazardous risks associated with warehouse work. These include slips and fall (which are some of the most common injuries on any jobsite, even offices) but warehouses present even more issues. Racking accidents, musculoskeletal injuries from improper lifting methods and temperature fluctuations are all risk factors for hazards.

You can’t prevent accidents or expect warehouse personnel to avoid hazards if they aren’t aware of them. 

2. PREVENT FALLS, MAKE HOUSEKEEPING A PRIORITY

Like we mention above, slips and falls are some of the most common warehouse injuries, and can be particularly dangerous when lifting equipment is being used. In Ontario, nearly 20% of lost-time injury claims were due to falls. To prevent falls and trips, be sure to have guards installed in areas where there are large spaces between floors that personnel could fall through. Mop and clean up spills, slippery materials like sawdust, and be sure to store boxes properly – not on the warehouse floor where someone may trip over them.

Train and make personnel aware of any abnormalities that might cause them to trip, like cracks in the floor, uneven stairs or plugged-in cords; and also human error that easily contributes to falls, like tools or equipment placed on the floor for just a moment.   

3. KEEPING TRAINING CURRENT

Yes, maybe employees who have been hired years ago have been trained, but as new standards come out, personnel should be familiar with them. Be sure to give thorough training on any new technologies you bring in, like connective radios or tracking systems, hand signals & important communicative phrases, and make sure safety and equipment training is up-to-date – to do this, give personnel ‘refresher’ courses regularly and hold safety meetings with warehouse personnel. 

4. USE EQUIPMENT PROPERLY

Again, “Isn’t this common-sense?” you probably think. However, one of the top citations OSHA gives out each year are for equipment violations. Ever see this scene from ‘The Office’? Some people shouldn’t use the forklift.

Make sure personnel has the proper training and licenses to operate machinery like forklifts, aerial lift trucks and even fall protection. Safety harnesses can be used improperly, which can lead to accidents. For example, a Hercules SLR inspector was once called into a warehouse operation whose safety equipment was often breaking. When he entered the warehouse, he saw a worker swinging from side-to-side on various platforms with a safety harness and lanyard which were only supposed to be used vertically. This was improper use, which explained why their safety equipment was failing so frequently.

In 2018, three of OSHA’s most frequent citations in warehouses were for Fall Protection training & general requirements and industrial truck violations – invest in training for warehouse personnel, especially when fall protection is being used.

5. HAZARD COMMUNICATION 

Another citation OSHA often gives out is for hazard communication. Hazardous chemicals can cause corrosion, respiratory issues or become flammable, and should be labelled. Hazard communication includes proper labelling, education for employees about the risks involved and plans to control spills and proper disposal. 


FOR MORE INFORMATION ON WAREHOUSE WORK,

CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

WAREHOUSE SAFETY: 8 STEPS TO TAKE AFTER A RACKING ACCIDENT

WOMEN IN INDUSTRY: MEET KIM REYNOLDS, WAREHOUSE ASSOCIATE

WAREHOUSE SAFETY: IS YOUR FORKLIFT HOLIDAY SEASON READY?


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Have questions about our  rigging equipment or our Central Distribution Centre? Hercules SLR will lift you there.

E-mail us at info@herculesslr.com to learn more about Hercules SLR’s rigging equipment.

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn for more news and upcoming events.

CROSBY QUIZ: Can you Pass this Hook Inspection Quiz?

crosby quiz, hoist hook inspection at hercules slr

CROSBY HOOK HOIST INSPECTION

TAKE THE CROSBY QUIZ

So you think you know how to inspect a hoist hook? Prove it. Take the Crosby Quiz and find out if you’re a  pro at inspecting hooks for hoisting, or if you should get some more training. 

It’s important to know what makes a hook no longer safe to use – there are a number of factors that contribute to this, and aren’t always glaringly obvious like it being broken or crooked.

Hooks that don’t pass inspection can cause the load to release, and this can result in damaged materials, injured workers or legal consequences. It’s important to conduct inspections before you use the sling – each time

Take the Quiz from Crosby and find out if you’re a hook inspection pro, or if you have a bit more to learn. 

Wear in the area indicated is limited to _____?

The Crosby Group.®
Correct! Wrong!

Wear in the circled areas is limited to _____ of cross sectional area?

The Crosby Group.®
Correct! Wrong!

Wear in the areas indicated are limited to _____ of cross sectional area?

Per ASME B30.10, you should remove any hook from service with a throat opening that's increased by _____. Or, as the manufacturer recommends.

The Crosby Group.®
Correct! Wrong!

According to ASME B30.10, if a hook has _____ twist, remove the hook from service immediately.

Correct! Wrong!

This hook should be removed from service, because:

Correct! Wrong!

ASME B30.10 gives rejection criteria for hoist hooks - this includes:

Correct! Wrong!

CROSBY QUIZ: So you think you can Inspect a Hoist Hook?
100%
Wow, are you a LEEA certified inspector?! You know exactly when a hoist hook should be removed from service.
83%
Wow, you're good - almost an expert! A little hands-on experience will help make you even better.
67%
So close - you're almost there! A little rigging, and you'll be an expert in no time.
50%
Not quite a fail, but not quite a pass either... You definitely have some work to do! You definitely don't have your ASME B30 standards memorized, but with a little work and training, you'll get there.
33%
Yikes... Only 2 correct. Hopefully you're not responsible for rigging or inspecting hoists!
17%
Only 1 right... Please tell us you're not a rigger. Time for training!
0%
None right. Head back to rigging school!

Share your Results:


ASME STANDARDS

There are ASME Standards that apply to rigging, and more specifically, hooks for lifting. Although they’re not law themselves, these standards are important to know as they’re directly quoted in Canadian legislation. Be sure to check the manufacturer warnings, usage instructions and other recommendations that may apply to the equipment you’re using. 

ORIGINAL ARTICLE REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION VIA THE CROSBY GROUP.

 

 


Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn for more news and upcoming events. 

CM’s Tips: Crane & Hoisting Equipment in Hazardous Areas

cm hoisting equipment at hercules slr

COLUMBUS MCKINNON GUEST BLOG: How to Use Hoists & Cranes in Hazardous Areas

This guest blog is reprinted with permission from the experts at Columbus McKinnon. Their specialists give you an overview of safe practices to follow to operate crane and hoisting equipment in hazardous environments. 

CRANE & HOISTING EQUIPMENT IN HAZARDOUS AREAS: THE NEED FOR SPARK RESISTANCE 

Among many industries that range from upstream oil and gas, refineries to agriculture and wood working, many potentially flammable atmospheres exist. These areas can present unique challenges for material handling equipment and can pose a serious threat to materials, equipment and most importantly, personnel.

In Canada, hazardous areas are defined and managed by a few different regulatory bodies, including the Canada Labour Code, the Canadian Standards Association and the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety, to name a few. 

FACTORS

It’s generally understood that friction between certain materials can cause sparks sufficient enough to ignite flammable gas or dust. A cigarette lighter or an antique flintlock musket are common examples of this. Obviously the type and concentration/dilution of gases in an area is one element that affects potential ignition from a mechanically generated source, but other key factors could include:

  • The type materials making contact
  • The speed/pressure with which the materials come into contact
  • Corrosion on one or more of the contacting surfaces
  • Lubrication

To address this potential risk, Columbus McKinnon uses materials such as copper, bronze, and austenitic stainless steel, which are generally considered non-sparking. These are used for coatings, or as material substitutions for enhanced spark resistance. Not only are these materials spark resistant, but they can also protect against corrosion. Since surface corrosion can increase friction between mating components, corrosion prevention is also important when using material handling products in hazardous environments.

CM crane and hoisting in hazardous areas, Hercules SLR

Columbus McKinnon engineers a variety of specialty products with spark-resistant components and finishes, including:

  • Solid bronze hooks, bottom blocks and trolley wheels
  • Bronze plated components
  • Stainless steel load and hand chain
  • Multi-coat epoxy finishes
  • Zinc-aluminum corrosion-resistant finish

CRANE & HOISTING EQUIPMENT IN HAZARDOUS AREAS: THE NEED FOR CORROSION RESISTANCE

hoisting equipment in hazardous areas by hercules slr
Offshore refinery, example of a hazardous environment. Photo courtesy of CM.

As we mentioned earlier, lifting equipment used in classified hazardous locations must be compliant with applicable standards. 

It’s important to make sure critical mechanical components are resistant to sparks – it’s equally important to make sure these parts are protected from corrosion. These parts include: 

  • Load blocks
  • Trolley wheels
  • Load brake
  • Lifting mediums
  • Chain
  • Wire rope

Many classified hazardous areas exist outdoors that expose lifting equipment to direct, and often harsh weather. These include offshore oil platforms, natural gas processing plants and refineries – to name a few. Specifically in offshore facilities, equipment may be exposed to splash zones, salt spray and the condensation of salt-laden air. In addition to harsh and corrosive weather conditions, sulfur, mineral acids and other corrosive agents are often present in the crude oil and natural gas that is being produced, processed and transported in these facilities, working to further corrode lifting equipment used in these environments.

CORROSION = $$$ cm hoisting equpment from hercules slr

The cost of corrosion can be tremendous, and can add up to billions of dollars each year in the oil and gas industries alone. In these industries, the cost to repair and replace corroded lifting equipment combined with unscheduled maintenance, downtime and lost production have a major impact on profitability. Corroded load blocks, hooks, chains and cables can result in catastrophic equipment failure. Not only can this cause costly damage to the equipment and the facility, but most importantly, can cause injury or be fatal to operators and other personnel in the facility. 

So – how do you protect lifting equipment from corrosion? It’s critical to use corrosion-resistant materials for load blocks, hooks, chains, cables and other components. Since surface corrosion can increase the friction between mating components, corrosion prevention is important to maintain mechanical spark resistance when using these products in a classified, hazardous environment. 

 

cm hoisting equpment from hercules slr
A corroded pipe in an offshore environment.

Columbus McKinnon offers a variety of solutions for these challenges, in the form of a wide range lifting products with spark and corrosion resistant materials and coatings. They also offer application engineering assistance to help determine the right solution for your application. Choose from specially engineered products with:

  • Solid bronze hooks, bottom blocks and trolley wheels
  • Lightweight aluminum housings
  • Stainless steel load and hand chain
  • Multi-coat epoxy finishes
  • Zinc-aluminum corrosion-resistant finish 
damaged hoisting equipment hercules slr
Corroded chain. Photo via CM.

In addition to corrosion-resistant materials and finishes, we also suggest proper hoist lubrication to prevent sparking. These measures, combined with a robust inspection and preventative maintenance program that includes pre-lift inspections, play a critical role to make sure equipment is dependable and safe in these harsh environments. 

Regardless of where you do business, CM has hoisting equipment and cranes to keep your people, materials and equipment safe in hazardous areas. 

 

CRANE & HOISTING EQUIPMENT IN HAZARDOUS AREAS: SPACE CONSTRAINT CHALLENGES & SOLUTIONS

Earlier in this article, CM discussed the need for mechanical spark resistance and corrosion-resistant measures, especially in hazardous environments. This section outlines challenges faced working with space constraints, how they can be increased in hazardous environments and solutions to potential problems.

SPACE CONSTRAINT CHALLENGES  

hoisting equipment in space constraints at hercules slr
Examples of a constrained space. Photo courtesy of CM.

 

 

 

 

 

Another example of a constrained space. Photo courtesy of CM.

Classified hazardous areas frequently exist within confined spaces, especially in the mining and oil & gas industries. In mining, tunnels often have low overhead clearance in areas where coal or other flammable dust may be present. In the oil and gas industry, designers of offshore facilities typically look to minimize the overall size of the structure, which can lead to low headroom between deck levels and tight clearances for monorails and crane runways.

In all of these situations, there is a need for overhead lifting equipment that is compact in design, including low headroom and short side clearances, as well as a short “end approach” to maximize the deck coverage area served by the monorail hoist or crane.

This need for compact hoists, trolleys and cranes is often complicated by the possibility that flammable gases or dust may be present in the areas where the equipment is used. Therefore, explosion-proof and spark-resistant features may be needed, each posing their own challenges given the space constraints. For example, explosion-proof electric motors and control enclosures are typically larger and heavier than those for non-hazardous areas. Spark-resistant bronze load blocks and hooks tend to be larger than carbon or alloy steel hooks and blocks with the same safe working load. Also, the use of spark-resistant stainless steel load chain or wire rope often requires the equipment capacity to be de-rated due to lower tensile strength of stainless versus alloy steel. This de-rating can sometimes result in larger, heavier and more costly hoists and cranes.

SOLUTIONS 

As you can see, there are many factors to consider when specifying or purchasing lifting equipment for hazardous locations with space limitations. When dimensional constraints within facilities and working environments compete with the need to comply with hazardous area requirements, the safety of personnel, equipment and facilities themselves must always take precedence in our decision making.

Fortunately, there are a variety of hoisting equipment options available, featuring spark- and corrosion-resistant materials and explosion-proof components, that can be used in confined areas. Low-headroom hoists are offered in both wire rope and chain varieties, including manual, electric and pneumatic models.

Wire rope hoists can typically provide higher capacities and faster lifting speeds, while chain hoists can offer smaller overall dimensional envelopes to optimize end approach and clearance. Solid bronze and stainless steel components can provide lasting protection against sparking and corrosion, but, in some applications, copper or nickel plating can be substituted to provide lower headroom dimensions and reduce the need for de-rating of safe working loads.

CM has solutions to many of these problems. Products that work in many different restricted areas for this purpose are: 

  • Ultra-low headroom hoist models 
  • Low-profile hoists 
  • Wire rope hoists/crane rope 

Hercules SLR carries Columbus McKinnon products, hoisting equipment and solutions to use cranes and hoists in hazardous areas—e-mail info@herculesslr.com to find out how we can support your next crane or hoisting operation with safety training, inspections or repairs.  


VISIT CM WORKS FOR MORE: 

PART 1: The Need for Spark Resistance
PART 2: The Need for Corrosion Resistance
PART 3: Space Constraint Challenges & Solutions 

FOR MORE COLUMBUS MCKINNON,

CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

CRANE & HOISTING SYSTEMS: THE DANGERS OF SIDE PULLING

CM GUEST BLOG: 3 SAFETY TIPS TO INSTALL YOUR CM TROLLEY

 CHAIN SLING WEAR AND STRETCH: ARE THEY THE SAME THING?


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Where’s your CM hoisting equipment? Hercules SLR will lift you there.

Click here to learn more about CM crane and hoist equipment at Hercules SLR. 

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.  

Get to Know Hercules Marketing Specialist Amanda White

Marketing Amanda White

Amanda White is our Hercules Marketing Specialist. We sat down with her to find out more about her and how she decided to choose Marketing as a career path.

Tell us about your background?

Amanda: I’m a British immigrant to Canada, and have been living in Nova Scotia for 8 years now. People often ask me “What made you move to Canada?” The answer is a pretty simple one. I first visited family friends in Toronto in 1992, and I was hooked from that moment on. In between various travels to other countries I kept returning and exploring other parts of Canada. In 2005 I visited Nova Scotia and fell in love with the scenery and the people. After returning from a second trip in 2006, my husband and I submitted our papers and waited patiently to have our application reviewed. We were accepted in 2009 and moved over in May 2010. It was, and still is, hard leaving family and friends behind, the process was stressful and leaving our jobs for the unknown was scary—but we knew it was something we just had to do. I am happy to say, we love our life here.

What made you decide to enter this industry?

Amanda: From leaving school I held various roles in many different industries. I guess you might call me somewhat of a floater. I really didn’t decide what I wanted to do career-wise until around 2000. It was at this time I was working in an admin role for a Mail Order firm that sold Movie Memorabilia. I decided I wanted to explore my creative side more and took an evening course in Graphic Design at Yeovil College. A year later I passed with distinction, and was head hunted by Thales Naval Division in the UK where I became their Principal Design Editor. I continued in this role for 7 years until I emigrated to Canada.

design ideas

What made you want to transition into Marketing?

Amanda: After moving to Nova Scotia, it was difficult at first to get established in the job market, but I found a home in a local printing company. I was once again back in an admin/customer service role, but due to changes within the company I was able to incorporate my design skills alongside my other duties. I stayed in that role for around 5 years, until cut-backs meant I was out of work and looking for something new. I then moved into a communications role for a Real Estate firm, it was a short contract which enabled me to design and expand my skills more into the marketing side of things. It was as that contract was coming to an end that I applied for the role of Marketing Coordinator at Hercules SLR. Because of my corporate background in a largely industrial/defense sector, I thought Hercules would be a good fit for me. Since working for the company I have learned so much more about marketing and after a year, my title changed to Marketing Specialist. My role is challenging and varied, from copy writing and graphic design, to managing website content and social media—there is never a dull moment. I love the people I work with. The firm is extremely diverse, and you get to meet people from all over the world.

Where have you traveled during your time as a Marketing Specialist for Hercules SLR?

Amanda: Being a ‘behind the scenes’ kind-of-girl (which is where I am happiest), I haven’t really traveled with the company. I have however, attended open days in at branches within the Province. If the opportunity arose I would most like to visit our locations out West.

Is there anything that you hope to accomplish during your career in the industry?

Amanda: In marketing you never stop learning. I intend to expand my knowledge, and plan on expanding my InDesign education next year.

Lastly, is there anything else you would like people to know about you?

Outside of work I am a keen photographer. There is nothing I love more than trawling the back roads and looking for interesting scenes and subjects. My passion is landscapes, but I also have a love of abandoned places. I have been published several times in the UK and been awarded for some of my work. I am also an accredited member of the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain.

My other love in life is traveling. I am lucky enough to have traveled extensively over the years, from India, Egypt and Thailand, to most of Europe, Dubai and Kenya. I am a cat lover and I once parachuted solo from 3,000 ft…Badly!

The Old Pontiac

Stonehenge

Stourhead

Waterfowl Park

————————————————————————————————————————–

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook for more news and upcoming events.

.

 

What do Riggers do Offshore?

what do riggers do offshore

WHAT DO RIGGERS DO OFFSHORE?

What do riggers do offshore? If the first word that comes to mind when you think of the words ‘riggers’ or ‘rigs’ is ‘offshore’, you’re on the right track.

As we’ve covered in many of our blogs, riggers perform many different job duties, from stage rigging for plays to positions on construction projects that help move different equipment and materials. Although you’ve likely heard the term ‘offshore rigger’ or ‘rigging’ before, you still might not know everything about this job and its duties. 

Read on to and learn more about an offshore rigger’s job duties, responsibilities of the role and more about Hercules SLR’s work offshore. 

WHAT DO RIGGERS DO OFFSHORE? WHAT THE OFFSHORE INDUSTRY IS

When you hear the term ‘offshore’, it usually refers to the oil & gas and wind energy industries. In the oil and gas industries, a vessel is installed in specific areas to drill for oil or gas. This is important, since gas reservoirs can be found anywhere – including the ocean. To drill offshore, a drilling rig and pipe is installed to access reserves underground. This rig can be on a floating or fixed platform.

So, what do riggers do offshore? Offshore riggers’ manage and monitor all the different parts of a drilling vessel’s operation. To operate rigs, worker’s are required to operate the drilling, attach and operate machinery and deconstruct the machinery when drilling is complete. They also make sure that oil flows through the pipes properly and that oil is transported to the tanker efficiently, and the pipes don’t burst. A rigger is also responsible to make sure safety rules and regulations are followed – remember, emergency responders can’t access an offshore rig quickly or easily, so it’s essential that risk is minimized. 

A person who performs work on the offshore rig is often called a rigger, or a rig technician and there can be different positions, or levels of technicians who perform different duties based on their training, specialties or seniority.

There are often positions available that range from entry-level duties to roles that require experience or more specialized skill, like a derrickhand or welder, for example. Working hours on an offshore rig are much different than your typical 9-5 gigs – offshore work is usually accomplished in two-week (or longer) chunks. Often, riggers will work for a few weeks offshore, on the rig, and then will often have a few weeks off, back on-shore. Offshore rigging takes you away from land (if you didn’t catch that by the word ‘offshore‘), and as we mentioned, often for big chunks of time. 

what do riggers do offshore
A rig technician inspects a valve on an oil rig.

WHAT DO RIGGERS DO OFFSHORE? HOW HERCULES SLR SERVES OFFSHORE INDUSTRY

INSPECTIONS, TESTING & REPAIRS 

Hercules SLR has different technicians that work on offshore rigs with different issues, like broken equipment or machinery on the rig. Inspectors and other technicians will travel to offshore destinations to inspect, repair and if needed, certify equipment. This can happen when equipment fails or other issues are found that threaten safety – Hercules SLR can fix the issue until it’s safe to resume work.

Examples of inspection and repair issues Hercules SLR’s called to work on include:

  • Container inspections
  • Sling/equipment failure
  • Non-destructive testing,
  • Equipment failure
  • Incidents investigation (ex. A dropped load – dropped loads often cause injury, and can be fatal).
  • Fall protection products, inspections, repairs & trainings – a fall protection system is required when working at heights of 6-feet or more, so as you can imagine having a fall arrest system is crucial). 

Since an offshore rig is isolated and far from everyday amenities, it’s usually appropriate to have a rig technician for the entire project to ensure things run smoothly. Offshore rigging presents many safety risks, and it’s important to prevent and reduce any unnecessary harm to workers and the environment by making sure the rig runs properly. 

RIGGING 

Hercules SLR’s rigger’s will come to your offshore installation or project for nearly anything the operation needs. We can: 

  • Move or lift difficult loads to or from the offshore rig
  • Provide you with lifting equipment or equipment rentals for lifting/moving 
  • Identify methods or equipment needed to move particular loads
  • Create custom-rigging solutions to move awkward or difficult loads 
  • Provide riggers’ for your offshore installation 
TRAINING

The Hercules’ Training Academy offers different courses that are useful in offshore applications, like Fundamentals of Rigging with Practical.  

Hercules SLR’s training courses can be completed at the Hercules Training Academy, or, we can come to your offshore installation. Our Offshore Rigger Banksman course teaches students the fundamental skills to rig, lift, sling & release loads in an offshore environment. The course also includes: 

  • Regulations, standards and associations
  • Risk management
  • Rigging plan
  • Calculating load weight, centre of gravity and sling angles 
  • Load control
  • Rigging equipment how-to’s (slings, hitches, hardware and hooks) 
  • Pre-use inspection 
  • Duties and responsibilities of the rigger and banksman 
  • Communications (radio and hand signals)
  • Personnel transfer
  • Container inspection
  • Practical application of the equipment and principles 
what do riggers do offshore at hercules slr
Valves and pipes on an oil rig.

WHAT DO RIGGERS DO OFFSHORE? SAFETY TIPS FOR THE RIG

Safety is very important on offshore rigs not only to prevent injury, but to avoid costly delays in work. As we mentioned, making sure equipment is taken care of is essential, especially for a safe offshore operation. Not only does this make sure the drilling rig operates properly, but will help keep workers safe by preventing a hazard caused by equipment failure.

We can’t stress the importance of safety on the rigs – more safety tips for work on offshore rigs are:

  • House-keeping: Slippery surfaces lead to falls. Using proper PPE to avoid slips and keeping surfaces as dry and clean as possible will help manage risk.
  • Emergency Planning: It’s important to have thorough emergency plans for work on offshore rigs. A confined space entry and rescue plan, exit and first-aid response plans for emergency response are just a few plans it’s important to have before starting work offshore. 
  • Personal Protective Gear (PPE): This goes without saying, but making sure you have the proper PPE is important to stay safe. This should include proper fall protection for tools, non-slip shoes, safety glasses and even lighting for hard-to-see areas.

WHAT DO RIGGERS DO OFFSHORE? IS IT RIGHT FOR YOU 

Do you enjoy assembling and disassembling machinery? Like making equipment work? Have a passion for safety? If you don’t mind travelling, work as a rigger offshore might be perfect for you. 

Being an offshore rigger requires mechanical knowledge, common sense (not as common as you might think, and very important for a safe operation) and communication skills to keep yourself and others safe.

To learn more about offshore rigging, check out our blogs below or head to our career page to browse offshore rigger career opportunities.  


FOR MORE INFORMATION ON OFFSHORE RIGGING,

CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

HERCULES SLR AT THE SABLE STRATEGIC LEADERSHIP WORKSHOP

RIGGING WITH OVER 15 YEARS’ EXPERIENCE IN HAMILTON, ONTARIO: MEET RIGGER JIM CASE

GET TO KNOW LANGLEY, BC NDE INSPECTOR CHRIS DAVIES

BECOME A RIGGER: YOUR CAREER MAP


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Need offshore rigging solutions? Hercules SLR will lift you there.

Click here to learn more about offshore rigging services at Hercules SLR, or e-mail us at info@herculesslr.com to find more information on how we can serve your next offshore project.   

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn for more news and upcoming events.

Crosby Guest Blog: Shackle Inspection & Care

crosby shackles

CROSBY SHACKLES 

Crosby shackles are a popular option for lifting applications. Time-tested and work proven, Crosby has made their mark in rigging—they’ve produced the first wire rope clip, quench and temper fittings (this makes performance more reliable) and were the first to fatigue-rate products. Their shackles are particularly popular – read on to learn more about Crosby shackles and how to use them safely, a handy interactive inspection checklist and more tips for best use. 

CROSBY SHACKLES: 3 MAIN SHACKLE TYPES

Round pin shackles can be used for lifting applications and others like tie down, towing or suspension applications when the load’s strictly applied in-line.

Screw pin shackles are used for pick and place applications. Pick and place applications are when a load is moved to its desired location, and the screw pin is tightened before each pick.

Bolt-type shackles can be used in any applications that round pin or screw pin shackles are used. They’re also great for long-term or permanent installations where the load may slide on the pin, which causes it to rotate. The other way to secure a shackle includes using a nut and cotter, which eliminates the need for you to tighten the pin before each lift or movement. 

CROSBY SHACKLES: USE THEM SAFELY  

Before you put your Crosby shackle in service, make sure your shackle’s in good condition. To do so, look for these conditions:

  • The shackle’s pin works freely and fits correctly. 
  • The pins are undamaged, have no considerable wear and fit properly from the opposite side of the shackle. 
  • The load line and jaw opening are aligned.
  • The pin is always seated and is ‘matched’ to the body.
  • The shackle is the right material, size and type for the proposed lift.
  • Shackles are stored in a dry, cool place.

CROSBY SHACKLES: INSPECTION 

It’s important to inspect your rigging equipment frequently. Ideally, this happens before use, during (check for points of stress or tension during use) and after use. Inspection is important to prevent equipment failure, which can lead to damaging the load entirely, or worse—injure or kill workers’. 

Check your shackle before use. If any of these conditions are present, remove your shackle from service and have it inspected, repaired or replaced. 

  • The shackle’s jaws or pins are distorted.
  • The shackle isn’t stamped with is safe-working load (SWL).
  • The shackle is home-made (never use homemade shackles).
  • The shackle’s pin does not work freely, or fit correctly in the shackle’s opening. 
  • The pins’ threads are damaged, worn down or don’t easily screw in from the opposite side of the shackle. 
  • The unthreaded hole is enlarged – a hole too big places unnecessary strain on the loaded shackle. 
  • The shackle has wear that’s reduced its diameter by more than 8% of its original diameter. To test for cracks that may be hidden, tap them with a hammer. A shackle in good-condition should ‘ring’ clearly.
  • The shackle’s pin has been replaced, especially if it’s been replaced with anything but a pin. 

CROSBY SHACKLES: USE THEM SAFELY OR NOT AT ALL 

There are a few things to keep in mind when using shackles for securing and lifting applications. 

  • When you use shackles in conjunction with multi-leg slings, you must give consideration to the angle between the legs of the sling. 
  • As the angle increases, so does the load in the sling leg, and as a consequence, any shackle attached to the leg. 
  • Try to avoid erratic loading of the shackle – to do this, place a loose spacer on either end of the shackle’s pin, or use a shackle with a smaller jaw. 
  • If using a shackle to secure the top block of a rope block set, the load on the shackle is increased by the value of the hoisting effort. 
  • Take care to make sure the shackle and assembly above the hook is the right capacity. 
  • It’s important that on shackles fitted with a nut and bolt pin, the length of the bolt’s plain portion will cause the nut to jam on the inner end of the thread, and not on the shackle’s eye. This leaves the bolt free to rotate.
  • Be sure the bolt and nut are cross-drilled for the fitting of a split cotter pin. 

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON CROSBY PRODUCTS,

CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

CROSBY QUIZ: CAN YOU PASS THIS HOOK INSPECTION QUIZ?

GUEST BLOG: CROSBY TALKS FORGED WIRE ROPE CLIPS VS MALLEABLE CAST IRON CLIPS

RIGGING HARDWARE WE LOVE: CROSBY® 4-50 CLIP APPLICATIONS


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Have questions about Crosby products? Hercules SLR will lift you to the answers.

Click here to learn more about Crosby at Hercules SLR. 

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn for more news and upcoming events

ISO 9001: What does it mean in the Supply Chain?

supply chain and iso 9001 at hercules slr
As someone who is involved in the selection of suppliers and, possibly, responsible for making purchasing decisions, you may have seen or used products and services that are promoted using reference to ISO 9001:2015, or, more simply, “ISO 9000”.

What does this mean? How does this help you? How can you be sure that your suppliers understand what you expect from them? Are you capable of consistently providing products and services that meet your needs and expectations? This text via ISO gives some answers to these questions, and will inform you about how you can get the most out of ISO 9001 as a supply chain tool.

ISO AND THE SUPPLY CHAIN: WHAT IS ISO 9001?

ISO 9001 is an International Standard that gives requirements for an organization’s quality management system (QMS). It is part of a family of standards published by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and often referred to collectively as the “ISO 9000 series” or “ISO 9000 family”. 

For this reason, you may sometimes hear suppliers refer to being “ISO 9000 certified”, or having an “ ISO 9000-compliant QMS ”. This will normally mean that they are claiming to have a QMS that meets the requirements of ISO 9001, the only standard in the ISO 9000 family that can be used for the purpose of conformity assessment. It is important to understand, however, that ISO is the body that develops and publishes the standard – ISO does not “ certify ” organizations, as will be explained later in this text. The objective of ISO 9001 is to provide a set of requirements that, if effectively implemented, will give you confidence that your supplier can consistently provide products and services that:

  • Meet your needs and expectations 
  • Comply with applicable regulations 

ISO 9001 adopts a risk-based (“preventive”) approach to quality that covers a wide range of topics, including your supplier’s top management commitment to quality, its customer focus, the adequacy of its resources, employee competence, process management (for production, service delivery and relevant administrative and support processes), quality planning, design of the products and services it provides, review of incoming orders, purchasing, the appropriate monitoring and measurement of its processes, products and services needed to ensure conformity, its processes to resolve customer complaints, corrective actions, and a requirement to drive improvement.

Last but not least, there is a requirement for your supplier to monitor your perceptions about the quality of the products and services it provides to you. ISO 9001 does not define specific requirements for the products or services you purchase. It’s up to you to make your own needs and expectations clear to your supplier. You might, for example, refer to product or service specifications, drawings, national or international standards, supplier’s catalogues, or other documents as appropriate.

supply chain and iso at hercuels slrISO AND THE SUPPLY CHAIN: WHAT DOES “CONFORMITY TO ISO 9001” MEAN? 

This means that your supplier has established a systematic approach to quality management and is managing its business to ensure that your needs are clearly understood, agreed and fulfilled. A statement of conformity to ISO 9001 should not, however, be considered a substitute for a declaration or statement of product or service conformity.

ISO AND THE SUPPLY CHAIN: HOW DOES ISO 9001 HELP YOU SELECT A SUPPLIER?

ISO 9001 provides some requirements for the purchasing process that include you as the customer. These requirements address the following topics: 

  • Requirements for purchasing information that you should provide so suppliers’ clearly understand your needs. 
  • Any specific approvals that might be needed to confirm that the supplied products and services meet your requirements, and any monitoring or inspections that you might require at your supplier’s premises.

You have an important role to play to communicate to your supplier specifically what you actually want. You may need to consult with your own internal technical staff (the actual users) in this process. If you don’t do this, you might find that you receive a product or a service that meets all your stated requirements and the applicable regulatory requirements, but which is absolutely wrong for your intended application. So, first of all, you should concentrate on specifying your needs related to the intended use of the product or service.

To do this, consider: 

  • What is the specific product or service you are buying?
  • What impact does this have on your own business?
  • What are the risks to your business if you experience problems with this product or service?
  • How can you be sure that the product or service you receive will actually meet your requirements?
    • What do you know about the reputation and historical performance of your supplier?
    • What level of confidence do you need in your supplier’s ability to provide you with conforming products and services on a consistent basis?
    • If you decide that conformity to ISO 9001 is important (based on your assessment of the risks associated with the products and services you are buying), how can you be sure that your supplier does have a QMS that meets ISO 9001 requirements?
    • Are the products and services you require covered by your supplier’s QMS? (You may need to ask for a copy of your supplier’s actual certificate or declaration of conformity to find this out!)

ISO AND THE SUPPLY CHAIN: HOW CAN YOU HAVE CONFIDENCE YOUR SUPPLIER MEETS ISO 9001?

There are many ways that your supplier can claim it meets QMS ISO 9001 requirements. These include:

  • “Supplier’s declaration of conformity”: A declaration by your supplier itself affirming that its QMS meets ISO 9001 requirements, usually supported by legally binding signatures. This declaration can be based on your supplier’s internal audit system, or on second-party or third-party audits.
  • Second-party assessment: Your supplier has been assessed directly by its customer (for example by you, or by another customer whose reputation you respect) to check if its QMS meets ISO 9001 requirements and your own requirements – sometimes used in contractual “business-to-business ” transactions.
  • Third-party assessment (often known as certification or registration): Your supplier hires an impartial third party (a certification body or “registrar”) to conduct an assessment to verify conformity to ISO 9001 requirements. This third party will issue a certificate to your supplier that describes the scope of its QMS, and confirming that it conforms to ISO 9001.
  •  Additional confidence may come from the fact that some certification bodies (registrars) are accredited by nationally or internationally recognized accreditation bodies. These verify the certification body’s independence and competence to carry out the certification process. Many accreditation bodies have multilateral arrangements under the umbrella of the International Accreditation Forum (IAF) to promote worldwide mutual recognition in support of World Trade Organization (WTO) free trade principles. Figure 1 explains this in simpler terms.
iso supply chain certifications
Figure 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ISO AND THE SUPPLY CHAIN: CAN SUPPLIERS CLAIM THAT THEIR PRODUCTS OR SERVICES MEET ISO 9001?

No. ISO 9001 references indicates that the supplier has a quality management system that meets the requirements of ISO 9001. As mentioned earlier, this should provide you with confidence in your supplier’s ability to provide consistent, conforming products or services. ISO 9001 requires your supplier to monitor the levels of satisfaction of its customers (this includes you!), and to feed back this information in order to improve the effectiveness of its QMS.

ISO AND THE SUPPLY CHAIN: WHAT DO I DO IF THINGS GO WRONG?

In the event that you are not happy with specific products or services you receive, first, you should bring this to your supplier’s attention. You will typically do this via the normal technical and/or commercial communication channels that have been established. Your supplier is obliged to investigate your complaint and should take appropriate actions to avoid or reduce the chances of it happening again. If, however, you are dissatisfied with the overall performance of your supplier (if for example they continue to provide non-conforming products and services, do not address your complaints, or are not taking appropriate corrective action), then this is an indication of problems in their quality management system.

Depending on the responses you receive, you should be aware that you can escalate your complaint about the supply chain via the steps described below.

  1. If your supplier has a QMS that meets ISO 9001 requirements, they are required to have established communication channels for monitoring customer satisfaction, obtaining customer feedback and dealing with complaints. You should make a formal complaint using these channels.
  2. If you are still not satisfied with the response from your supplier, and if they are certified by an independent (third-party) certification body (registrar), you should bring the matter to the certification body’s attention. You can find the certification body’s name by looking at your supplier’s certificate. The certification body will investigate the problems during their surveillance audits of your supplier’s QMS, or, in critical cases, may decide to carry out an additional specific investigation.
  3. If you do not receive a satisfactory response from the certification body, and if it is accredited (see Figure 2), you should complain to the relevant accreditation body. Details of any such accreditation will appear on your supplier’s ISO 9001 certificate. 
  4. If you feel that you have not received a satisfactory response from the accreditation body about the supply chain, and if it’s a member of the International Accreditation Forum (see Figure 1), you can complain to the IAF (www.iaf.nu).

Remember that none of the above will affect your statutory rights as a purchaser and it may be appropriate to take legal action against your supplier instead of, or in parallel with, the above channels. The way in which you do this may vary from one country to another.

ISO AND THE SUPPLY CHAIN: SUMMARY

ISO 9001 is a useful basis for organizations to be able to demonstrate that they are managing their business to achieve consistent (good!) quality products and services. There are several ways in which your suppliers can claim conformity to ISO 9001, and you need to ensure that the method chosen by your supplier provides you with the necessary degree of confidence. If you are not satisfied with the performance of your supplier, you must provide them with the appropriate feedback. Learning from complaints helps organizations to improve their future performance – that is what ISO 9001 is about. Find more information on the ISO 9000 family on the ISO website. Various Canadian standards’ bodies are further sources of assistance. 

REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION VIA INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR STANDARDIZATION

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON ISO AND QUALITY AT HERCULES SLR,

CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

HERCULES SLR CERTIFICATIONS: ISO 9001—DEBUNKING THE MYTHS

MEET QUALITY ASSURANCE & SAFETY SPECIALIST, JAMES GOLEMIC

ARE THE TECHNICIANS INSPECTING YOUR GEAR QUALIFIED?


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What does ISO certification mean for Hercules SLR? Let us lift you there.

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Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.


Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn for more news and upcoming events.

Fall Arrest System: Don’t Fool with your Tools

fall arrest system for tools at hercules slr

You likely know about a Fall Arrest System for your body–but what about your tools? Fall protection for tools is the ‘F’ of the ABCDE’s of Fall Protection. A fall arrest system for tools to prevent drops is essential for a safe worksite. Tools dropped from heights are the third cause on injury on work sites. Preventing tools from slips leads to safer, quicker more productive work. 

FALL ARREST SYSTEM: HAVE A PREVENTION PLAN IN PLACE

When a tool falls, gravity takes over. This is why it’s essential to have a plan in place to address issues that lead to injuries at heights and prevent the fall in the first place. Workers’ need to be protected when at heights 6ft or higher, which really, isn’t all that high. Many different industries perform work at this height, and many perform work much higher. 

There are three good reasons to have a fall prevention plan to reduce (and hopefully, eliminate) tools dropped on a worksite.

SAFETY 

Dropping tools leads to injuries, fatalities and can increase hazardous risks around the worksite. Tools that fall from heights are the third cause of injuries on construction sites. 

PRODUCTIVITY

When tools are dropped on a worksite, injuries often happen. This means that work must stop temporarily – and sometimes, indefinitely. When a tool is dropped or broken and especially if it injures someone, a investigation must take place to determine the exact circumstances that caused the injury.  

OPERATIONS  

Dropping tools can effect the operations of the day, and often the company at large. When a tool drops, work needs to be stopped so they can investigate the incident. Usually, this means workers’ are paid even though work has stopped while the situation is dealt with. Depending on the damage, this usually means that equipment needs repairs too, which results in maintenance costs and time that the machinery or gear will be out of use. 

WHY IS A FALL ARREST SYSTEM FOR TOOLS SO IMPORTANT? THE NUMBERS

As mentioned, tools dropped from heights are the third cause of injuries on construction sites. In Canada alone, 27,000 people every year are hit by tools on a work site—this means 80 people a day are hit and likely injured by dropped tools. 30 of these each year are fatal.

Fall from heights are the fourth cause of workplace injury. Over 14,000 injuries are caused by falls each year, and of these 14,000, 40 are fatal.    

TOOL FALL ARREST SYSTEM: THE PRICE OF DROPPED EQUIPMENT

Human life can’t be replaced. We know not using tool fall protection at heights leads to injury, but beyond being dangerous, there’s considerable financial impact, too. 

There’s other costs associated with dropped tools that go far beyond just replacing broken equipment. Consider administration time and fees to file paperwork, equipment replacement, inspection or repair, legal fees and consequences, time spent to find more employees or production-loss when there are fewer workers’ at the same job, training for new employees and insurance fees. It’s worth your time and money to invest in fall protection and arrest systems for tools. 

FALL FROM ROOFS: $119,000
FALLS FROM HEIGHTS: $66,000
FALLS FROM LADDERS: $82,000
FALLS DOWN STEPS: $48,000
 
 

WHY DO PEOPLE DROP THEIR TOOLS? 10 REASONS

  1. Inadequate risk assessment
  2. Human Error: Although normal, natural human errors have severe consequences at heights. These include operator error, poor behaviour, complacency or neglect. 
  3. Tools or equipment stored inadequately: Includes tool lanyards or tethers not being used or not containing loose items. 
  4. Inadequate risk assessment or procedures: This could be from poor planning, not managing changing hazards on various worksites. 
  5. Failed fixtures or fittings: Includes corrosion, poor design, vibration and selection or installation.
  6. Poor Housekeeping: This could be pre-existing hazards from previous work, or other debris. 
  7. Collisions and snagging: Happens often when lifting, with travelling equipment and on taglines and service loops. 
  8. Inadequate Inspection, repair and maintenance: Ignoring unsafe conditions
  9. Redundant, neglected and homemade tools and equipment (these should be eliminated)
  10. Environmental Factors: Includes wind, rain, harsh winter and heat. 

WHAT TOOLS DO PEOPLE DROP? 3 MOST COMMON TOOLS

The three most commonly-dropped things on a construction may or may not surprise you. They are:

  1. Tape Measure
  2. Hard hat
  3. Cellphone/Radio 

WHERE DO FALLEN TOOLS GO? THE ANSWER MIGHT SURPRISE YOU 

Dropped tools don’t fall straight down—this is called falling object deflection (see figure 1). When you drop a tool, it can deflect in any direction. As we mentioned, workers’ need tool fall protection when they’re working up to 6-feet high, since a tool dropped from this height can deflect up to 20-metres away. This means that an innocent person, minding their own business that not on the site could very likely be struck by a dropped object. For workers’ that are even higher (which is more common than you think), say 200-feet high, a tool can deflect up to 128-metres away.

Even small objects pick up enormous force when dropped (see figure 2). This force means that something as non-threatening as a tape measure can be deadly if dropped. 

tool fall protection deflection
Figure 1—Chart via 3M

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

tool fall arret and impact forces via 3m
Figure 2—Impact Forces Chart via 3M

INDUSTRIES 

As we mentioned, any industry that does work 6-feet or higher will benefit from a tool fall arrest system. Are you a telecom specialist, tradesperson or part of a theatre rigging crew? You should probably have a tool fall prevention plan (this include the right equipment) ready. 

In particular, the following industries benefit from a fall arrest system for tools: 

  • Construction
  • Utilities 
  • General Manufacturing 

The number of injuries from dropped tools on Canadian worksites continues to grow – this is why it’s important for workplaces to have a tool-drop prevention plan in place. This helps your construction crew manage productivity, safety concerns, asset management and the high costs associated with accidents.  


FOR MORE INFORMATION ON TOOL PROTECTION,

CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

TOOL FALL PROTECTION: MORE IMPORTANT THAN YOU THINK 

FALL PROTECTION FOR TOOLS: STOP THE DROP

FALL PROTECTION TRAINING: DON’T GET LEFT BEHIND 


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Need to stay protected at heights? Hercules SLR will lift you there.

Click here to learn more about fall arrest systems at Hercules SLR. 

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn for more news and upcoming events.

What is a Rigger in Construction?

what is a rigger in construction, hercules slr

WHAT IS A RIGGER IN CONSTRUCTION?

What is a rigger? A rigger in construction is a person responsible for securing a load to lift, pull, hoist or move in general. They’re responsible in making sure the right equipment and hardware is used for a lift, the right methods are used to lift and the equipment used is operated properly, by a qualified professional. 

You might wonder, “Don’t all construction sites move and lift things?” And you’d be correct – functions of rigging are used on construction sites daily. However, a rigger’s responsibilities are a bit more specific. They may be brought onto a construction site to move the construction crew’s large machinery (think a skid steer or forklift) to another part of the site. Other roles a rigger might perform on, or for, a construction site are: 

  • Signal Person: This person is responsible to signal, with verbal or physical cues to workers’ who operate the lifting equipment, especially cranes.
  • Inspector/Fabricator: This person is involved in fabricating the equipment used to lift, and is also likely be used on the construction site to repair, inspect or certify rigging equipment and other lifting apparatus’ used on site. 
  • Controller: This person may be involved in operating the equipment used to lift, mechanical or otherwise. They could operate a crane, electric chain hoist or other moving gear and direct the path of hard-to-move loads. 
  • Assess and install: A rigger will determine the best equipment to be used for the load. 

WHAT IS A RIGGER IN CONSTRUCTION? HERCULES SLR EXPLAINS

As we mentioned, lots of rigging happens on a construction site daily. But a rigger may be called in to lift a load that requires specialized equipment to get the job done. Certain lifts, or equipment you need to complete those lifts, may be regulated or require certifications to operate them. In these circumstances, a rigger would be called in to complete the lift or to assess the load and determine which equipment should be applied. 

For example, one of our riggers’ was called to a site to move an excavator that had broken down. They needed the equipment moved so it could be repaired, and Hercules SLR was brought in to find the best methods and tools to lift and move it. 

WHAT IS A RIGGER IN CONSTRUCTION? THE HERCULES SLR EXAMPLE

Here’s an example.

The project manager wanted to use two synthetic round slings to lift the excavator by its tracks.

Before the move, Hercules SLR riggers’ discussed the clients’ needs and expectations. The two riggers’ on the job gave their recommendations and went beyond that by finding the excavator’s manual which detailed its lifting points, and which hardware was best to use. Then, our riggers’ calculated the excavator’s load weight – after collecting and calculating all relevant information, they found that synthetic round slings’ were specifically not recommended to lift this particular excavator. 

If the project manager had simply bought the equipment he thought best to lift the excavator, it’s very likely he would have damaged a $100,000+ piece of equipment  yikes. 

This is a common example of a rigger being called in to rig something for a construction project. 

WHAT IS A RIGGER IN CONSTRUCTION? SKILLS TO HAVE

Rigging involves the use of equipment like cranes, forklifts and large spreader-beams – this work often requires workers’ to be at heights. Working at heights is something a rigger should be comfortable with. 

Many rigger positions or construction positions with rigging as their primary role will offer some on-on-the-job and outside training, but that’s not say there aren’t useful skills to have. 

Some of the skills a rigger should have, are: 

  • Math & Science: Physics and other calculations are an everyday part of securing and rigging a load. Determining an objects’ centre of gravity, for example, is an essential skill. 
  • Operating Machinery: If you’ve skipped over the first part of this article, or it just didn’t sink in yet – operating machinery is another everyday part of rigging. Much of this machinery is electric, but manual pulley’s and hoists are used, too. If you have an interest in mechanics and problem-solving, construction rigging could be a great path for you. 
  • Adaptability: Typically, a rigger in construction will have to travel to different sites for work. Depending on the type of rigging done, a riggers’ travels can take you to faraway destinations – some of the places Hercules SLR’s riggers have gone to include Sable Island, Mexico and offshore destinations, which can be particularly isolated. 
  • Risk Management, Communication & Planning: Imagine this – you’re working with a construction crew, and you’re responsible to help build a commercial kitchen. You’ve rigged part of a large industrial walk-in refrigerator, but forgot to assess the hazardous risk for chemical refrigerants. The load’s weight hasn’t been distributed evenly and the load sways and crashes against an obstacle, damaging the container and causing it to leak. Many refrigerants contain harmful, environment-damaging chemicals and now, you’re the rigger responsible for damage to the environment, people and the equipment. Situations like this can have harmful financial, legal and fatal consequences for the rigger and everyone else involved. This is why it’s important to understand the machinery, physics and the risks associated with securing and lifting various loads – planning and being able to communicate with all involved on the job site is crucial to manage risk. 

Some of the things taught on a rigging course are:

  • Regulations/Standards
  • Rigging Planning
  • Rigging Triangle
  • Load Control
  • Sling angles
  • Rigging Equipment (slings, hitches, hardware, hooks)
  • Pre-use Inspection
  • Communications (radio and hand signals)
  • Practical Application of the equipment and principles 

WHAT IS A RIGGER IN CONSTRUCTION? THEIR (MANY) JOB TITLES

As we explored in this article, a rigger performs many different duties, functions and must be responsible for many different aspects of a lift. Industrial trades, like construction are often associated with rigging, but riggers’ are found across nearly every industry. They might not be called a rigger, either  someone who rigs might also have these job titles: 

Boat/Ship/Marine Rigger

Crane Erector

Crane Operator

Crane Rigger

Entertainment/Stage/Theatrical Rigger

Gear Repairer

Gripper/Stage Grip

Hook Tender

Labourer

Loft Rigger

Machinery Mover

Material Handler

Offshore Inspection Technician

Offshore Rigger

Parachute Rigger

Rigging Foreman

Rig Worker

Scaffolder

Slinger/Ring

Warehouse Associate 

 

WHAT IS A RIGGER IN CONSTRUCTION? CONCLUSION

A lot’s been covered in this blog post – and we’ve only scratched the surface of some the roles a rigger plays in construction. Riggers’ in construction are often found working as crane operators, inspectors, transport truckers or millwrights.

For more information on what a rigger in construction is, check out our blogs below or e-mail info@herculesslr.com to learn how Hercules SLR’s services can assist your construction crew.


FOR MORE INFORMATION ON RIGGING,

CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

WELCOME TO ONTARIO: BRAMPTON RIGGERS TALK CHAIN HOIST SAFETY 

RISK MANAGEMENT: SAFETY IS EVERY RIGGERS’ BUSINESS

BECOME A RIGGER: YOUR CAREER MAP


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Is a career in rigging right for you? Hercules SLR will lift you there.

Click here to learn more about career opportunities across Canada with Hercules SLR. 

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.