We Pull Anything! ATV Towing Tips

atv towing tips

We Pull Anything! ATV Towing Tips

You’ve probably heard us mention that we lift anything, but we also pull anything. 

Many of us on the Hercules SLR team are enthusiastic ATV-ers—That’s all-terrain vehicles for all you newbies out there. 

There’s a couple additional things you’ll need before you hit the road, though—You have to get your ATV to the trail, woods or wherever you ride, and it’s illegal to use your ATV on public roads. There’s also a good chance you’ll get stuck in the mud, so it’s essential to have reliable chain, ropes & winches to haul yourself out of a rut. 

atv towing gear
Winch.

Often, ATV’s are transported in a trailer, sometimes a truck (however, most professional sources recommend a trailer to keep your vehicle secure) and a winch (a device used to pull or let a load out) to move your ATV for transport. Many ATV’s come with winches pre-installed, and aircraft cable is commonly used with them. However, some synthetic winch lines have started to appear and rise in popularity. 

ATV TIPS TO SECURE IT SAFELY

The job’s not done when it’s on the ramp—Now comes securing your ATV. 

You likely dropped a pretty penny on your ATV and don’t want it to come crashing down somewhere on the highway. This is why it’s so important to take the same approach with the tie-down process, equipment included. 

To secure your ATV, you’ll need:

  • Ramp and/or Trailer 
  • Webbed nylon tie-down straps/Ratchet Straps 
  • Metal hooks (Snap, wire, flat or delta hooks/rings if strap isn’t equipped with them)

Once your ATV is secure, it should look like it’s supporting a rider, and the wheels should be firmly placed against the trailer. 

It’s also important to make sure your trailer or towing vehicle has the proper rated-capacity to hold the ATV, it has an appropriate amount of tie-down points and your tie-down method complies with the owner’s manual. Take your time loading it onto the trailer, so you don’t over-shoot the trailer and ‘jump’ it, and be sure the trailer, and the ATV are aligned straight with your vehicle. 

Keep the length of your trailer in mind when driving on public roads, take it slow and try to avoid passing other cars if possible. 

ATV TIPS TO TOW IT SAFELY  

Here’s a few members of the Hercules SLR team having fun on their ATV’s.

Okay, so your ATV is secure and you’ve made it to your favourite muddy trail. What else would you possibly need?! 

Like we mention, many ATV’s do have winches, but this isn’t always enough if you’re truly stuck. Their reach might not be enough or they could fail. Some sort of towing line will be invaluable during these situations.

There are many benefits of using a synthetic strap—For example, synthetic strap snapback tends to be less severe & hazardous than say, chain snapback. It also tends to break less than rope, be more durable AND much easier to de-mud. There’s also less risk of cuts on the hand from handling chain or steel, versus synthetic rope, like AMSTEEL Blue.    

Here are some more safety tips for safe muddin’: 

  • NEVER ride alone 
  • Bring or wear at least one piece of hi-vis clothing. Why? Well, if something were to happen and you’re suited-up in camoflauge, it will be extremely difficult for first-responders or search parties to easily locate you. 
  • Keep the distribution of weight in-mind when towing your ATV to avoid tip-over 
  • We can’t repeat this enough—Bring a towing strap and don’t get stuck in the mud! 

What other equipment is beneficial to bring on your ATV rides? Here are some of our suggestions: 

  • Water 
  • Safety gloves
  • First-aid kit 
  • GPS/Phone/Compass 
  • Water-resistant gear (Jackets, ponchos, etc.) 
  • Tools for repair (Tire repair, etc.) 

TOWING EQUIPMENT AT HERCULES SLR:  

CHAIN

  • Standard chain
  • Grade-70 Transport Chain 

SYNTHETIC SLINGS

  • Standard Nylon & Polyester Round Slings
  • Polyester Round Slings 

SYNTHETIC ROPE

  • Amsteel Blue Rope 
  • Manila Synthetic Rope
  • Nylon Synthetic Rope 

TIE DOWN EQUIPMENT

  • Ratchet Straps 
  • Tie-down Cargo Strap with Ratchet
  • Tie-down Cargo Strap with Ratchet 
  • Rubber Tie-down 

WIRE ROPE

  • Aircraft Cable 
  • Standard Wire Rope 

FOR RELATED READING, CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

WHICH ROPE HAS THE GREATEST TENSION?

STOP THE SNAP: PREVENT ROPE SNAPBACK

SAMSON K-100 HOIST LINE: THE FIRST SYNTHETIC CRANE ROPE


HERCULES SLR PROVIDES MAINTENANCE, INSPECTIONS & REPAIRS FOR RIGGING EQUIPMENT

NEED A LIFT? GIVE US A CALL, OR DROP US A LINE.

INFO@HERCULESSLR.COM  1 (877) 461-4876

 


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

Get to Know your National Program Manager, Lisa Barkhouse

hercules slr program manager

Get to Know your National Program Manager, Lisa Barkhouse

What’s it like to be the National Program Manager at Hercules SLR? We talk to Lisa Barkhouse, who trains and develops learning programs for Hercules SLR branches across Canada. 

We sit down with our National Program Manager, Lisa Barkhouse, to discuss her role at Hercules SLR, learning styles and why she’s passionate about training. 

Tell us about your educational/professional background:

I made the principals list in high school and received a bursary to attend Mount Saint Vince University, however for me, learning has been a continued process.

I’ve completed many programs like Dale Carnage, Life Coaching by Eleanor Beaton, ISO training with BDC, Steven Covey Leadership Coaching, and Woman in Business sessions, and this training has been so valuable for me to improve in my role. 

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

Before starting at Hercules SLR, I worked at a variety of places! My very first job was in customer service as a cashier at Canadian Tire in 1985—This experience was key to learning how I wanted to treat other people. 

My first full-time job was at a family-run trucking business, ‘County Trucking’ doing manual accounting and using a two-way radio to communicate with the truckers. This was an interesting experience as we made the switch from a manual to digital system, which was called Business Visions.

In 1991, I left this role to work for my a family’s business, Darose Controls, which my uncle owned at the time. During this time, I had two kids, and decided to take 3 years off to enjoy my family, leaving this role. 

When I decided to re-enter the work-force, I worked as a bookkeeper for Gartec Industrial—Ann Kelly, one of the owners was a huge influence for me, as a mentor in business and leadership. Eventually, I went back to accounting then made the shift to sales in Gartec—In this role I built relationships and realized I loved getting to know people, which was a nice change from accounting.

I ended up working for a company called IMP Marine, now ‘Spartan Industrial Marine’. For the next 3 years, I learned about rigging, inspections and inside sales, and built great relationships there.

What made you decide to go into this industry?

Well, in high school, I had the best marks in was accounting! I was drawn to the start and finish process accounting provides.

But, I truly believed customer service chose me! Growing up, at the supper table my father would talk about his day building furniture, and later, as manager of trades at a university and tell us “You can do anything if you put your mind to it.”

He really instilled in me to learn, and take training and education on in all forms, in each roll I was in.  Accounting was just the start of my business understanding—Leading, influencing and getting people to see how they impact business in every roll is what excited me about leadership.

When did you decide to work for Hercules SLR?

I needed to work for an organization that challenged me and I could put all I learned to work. I understood rigging practices and inspections from IMP, and Hercules SLR stood out as an opportunity to improve even more. 

I actually frequented the same coffee shop every day, where Matt Corey (Hercules General Manager for the Atlantic region) went to. After seeing him there over a year, I asked him one day “What’s exciting at Hercules SLR? I’m interested if there might be an opportunity for me there.” He told me he’d be in touch, and the rest is history—I’m a firm believer that it never hurts to ask a question! 

Soon after, in October 2009, I started as a CSR (Customer Service Representative). I wanted to be the best CSR in the world—Yes, in the world! In my mind, if customer service was what life had in store for me, I’d do it with greatness.

3 months in to the roll, I was meeting all my KPI’s! Matt knew I could do more to help the branch and I was offered the role of Operations Manager. 

Picture this: There’s a new lady in-charge of a rigging shop, shipping department and webbing department—At my first Toolbox meeting, one of the riggers asked me, “What can you do we don’t already know?” After 3 months I was a leader for them now, and I had to show up much different than I did before. Eventually, I moved on to a new area of the company that focuses on the marine industry, which I was familiar with. When I delivered the news to our rigging team that I was leaving, let’s just say they were sad to see me go. I knew I’d earned their trust and proved I supported them. We had good profits, moral and built relationships, and I knew I’d be missed from this branch. 

Where have you traveled during your time at Hercules SLR?

I’ve traveled to so many places throughout Canada! As National Program Manager, I’ve travelled to train in Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec, Calgary and British Colombia to support the branches in operations, and leadership. 

You’ve been all over! Where have you enjoyed traveling to most?

I enjoyed working and helping throughout Nova Scotia with their operations, inventory & fish shows.

Over the last 3 years, I’ve spent most of my time in Ontario teaching the operations of Hercules, building the leaders to be effective, and understanding how they can impact the business in a positive way. 

We’ve been hard at work to influence, support and teach this region—I believe their leaders are set to stand out and lead their teams to a profitable region with a culture of outstanding leadership Hercules will be proud of. 

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

This year, Hercules will take me coast-to-coast—It’s important to me build relationships personally, and in my role. I’d like to work more in the East and West coast regions, and help them strengthen relationships with their customers, and show them the impact it has on operational & sales strategies. 

What’s something you’re most proud to have accomplished in your career as Program Manager at Hercules SLR?

I’m most proud to help others see their potential accomplishments—I stand for the success of others first.

When you work in service for others, you reap the rewards of success you could not have ever imagined. I love helping others be successful in their roles, but I can’t talk about my accomplishments and not share who’s given me support along the way. From the beginning with Matt Cory, Linda Kettle, Darlene Vickers, Chris Reid, Cory Young, Paul Johnston and Rose Efford are just some of the great people here that have pushed me to be better. 

Overall, my greatest accomplishment is earning trust by delivering results to the business, and be given a role to help others, and myself work in an environment that values continuous learning and growth. 

Can you give us a piece of advice on leadership?

It’s been said many times that “Leadership is a choice.”

Hercules works hard to make our roles better & easier—Each morning, I look into the mirror and ask myself “How will I help make Hercules better?” Make the team’s work easier?” I think big about my role and how I influence others to perform. 

If you’re not engaged, I think it’s important to ask why, and seek a support team to surround yourself and learn how you can get engaged. It’s way more fun to be apart of the team than sit on the bench.

As leaders, we need to educate teams on what we do each day to deliver results of the business objective. Delivering results to the business, this builds trust.

One of your core responsibilities as Program Manager at Hercules SLR is to create training plans—Can you give us some of your best tips to plan a training session? What do you focus on?

When I build training plans, I know time and learning styles can be the biggest constraints. 

It’s up to me to build something to start with—Then I share, get feedback, and build on what we already know to make it as efficient as it can be. My vision is to make training easy, useful and actionable.

This year I want to groom the on-boarding that has been built, and make sure every Hercules SLR team member, new or old, has the same base level of understanding of how our systems work.

This year, the topics I’m focused on supporting and training our staff in are:  

  • Margin building
  • Freight training
  • Inventory accuracy & adjustments
  • On-boarding CSR’s in sales, shipping & receiving
  • Branch Management handbook on roles & responsibilities
  • CertTracker training roll-out—Labour recovery, department training
  • National Sales Strategies training and score boarding
  • Quote conversion

Before you took on the role as Program Manager in a national capacity, you had a lot of success as a Branch Manager—What kind of things did you achieve? 

One undertaking that was an enormous success, was improving operational strategies by delivering 93% labour recovery in our manufacturing department during our first 6 months in business. Last year, this department hit their 85% target, improving by 10% in the last 6 months, and they did it with 1½ fewer staff members. 

Another project that was a major accomplishment was work on a CSR-confident sales approach. I worked to launch initiatives like the Air Miles program, new product programs and product & services training to give CSR’s better tools to provide the best customer experience they can. We’ve put CSR’s on the road with our outside sales representatives to learn more about our customer’s lives, actually see the sites & projects they work on and be able to build stronger relationships with them and give the best service possible. 


FOR RELATED READING, CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

TIPS FOR TAGLINES | TRAINING TUESDAY

GET TO KNOW YOUR TRAINING SPECIALIST, JAMIE ENGLAND

GET TO KNOW HERCULES MARKETING SPECIALIST, AMANDA WHITE


ARE YOU ENERGIZED & ENGAGED?

JOIN US AND WORK AT HERC—LEARN OR APPLY BELOW

HR@HERCULESSLR.COM  (902) 468-6827

 


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

Why Chemical Safety is Important | Training Tuesday

why chemical safety is important

WHY CHEMICAL SAFETY IS IMPORTANT 

Why is chemical safety important? Hazardous or toxic chemicals are used in many industrial environments on a daily basis. 

Although chemicals make up the world around us, some can be more harmful than others—This is just one reason why chemical safety is important. 

Read on to learn how toxic chemicals can enter the body, how to identify hazards, some tips for using chemicals safely in the workplace and terms you should know. 

WHY CHEMICAL SAFETY IS IMPORTANT | 4 TYPES OF EXPOSURE

There are four different ways chemicals can enter the body. These are:

  1. Inhalation: Chemicals that take form in gas, vapour or particulates are easily inhaled. These chemicals can absorb into the respiratory tract, and can head into the bloodstream and organs. This is often noted as the most common way the body absorbs harmful chemicals. 
  2. Skin/Eye absorption: Chemical contact with skin can result in mild dermatitis, or a rash. However, chemicals can also be absorbed into the bloodstream this way. Eyes are also sensitive to most chemicals, so safety glasses must be worn when conducting work with chemicals. Another common scenario that causes eye contact to chemicals (especially if not wearing appropriate safety glasses) is wiping or rubbing at your eyes during chemical exposure.   
  3. Ingestion: Like with inhalation or skin/eye absorption, ingestion can cause the toxic chemicals to travel to the organs. When conducting work in areas where ingestion is likely, like confined spaces, it’s important to have an entry & exit plan, and the proper PPE for the job. 
  4. Injection: This doesn’t necessarily mean directly injecting chemicals into your bloodstream, but if you have a cut or other tear in the skin, chemicals can be absorbed this way. 

Chemicals often travel to the respiratory system, but how? The respiratory system has two main parts. These are the upper & lower airway passages. The upper respiratory system consists of the nose, mouth, pharynx & larynx. The lower respiratory system consists of the vocal cords to the trachea, to the end of the bronchial tree. 

It’s important to note that there are different factors that affect how the degree of hazard caused by the chemical. These are: 

  • How it enters the body 
  • How much enters the body 
  • How toxic the chemical is 
  • When/How it’s removed 
  • Biological variation 

WHY CHEMICAL SAFETY IS IMPORTANT | IDENTIFYING HAZARDS

Obviously, chemical exposure in the workplace is unavoidable—But risks and hazards can be managed. 

A risk assessment should be conducted for chemicals, just like is conducted for other workplace hazards.
To identify chemical hazards in the workplace:why is chemical safety important

  • Identify: Determine the chemicals in your workplace and safety hazards that go along with them. For example, if chlorine is used to clean, know that long-term exposure to chlorine can cause nausea & eye discomfort, and have eyewash stations in-place so employees can rinse their eyes if contact occurs. 
  • Assess: Take a look not just at hazardous chemicals in the workplace, but the processes that accompany them.
  • Control: After hazards are identified, put controls in-place to reduce the likelihood of an accident.

WHY CHEMICAL SAFETY IS IMPORTANT | TERMS TO KNOW 

ACUTE TOXICITY (SEE TOXICITY BELOW): Refers to exposure to chemicals that humans aren’t often around, or are in contact with due to an accident. For example, a leak at a plant could cause the locals to experience acute toxicity. Sometimes, effects are immediately felt, and in other cases effects can be delayed. 

BIOLOGICAL VARIATION: Characteristics that might be unique to the individual, like weight, height or sex. 

PARTICULATES: Solids or liquids that are dispersed as gas. Particulates can include dust, mist, fumes or other particles that are found in the space. 

TOXICITY: The measure of how poisonous a chemical is. For example, a chemical with a lower toxicity will need a much higher amount to be harmful than a chemical with a high amount of poison or toxicity. 

WORKPLACE HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INFORMATION SYSTEM (WHMIS): This is Canada’s national workplace hazard communication standard. This elements of WHMIS include hazard classification, cautionary labelling, availability of material safety data sheets and educational programs for employees. 

chemical safety

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


FOR RELATED READING, CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

TRAINING TUESDAY: TAGLINES

 TRAINING TUESDAY | CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS

RIGGING AND LIFTING SLINGS | TRAINING TUESDAY


HERCULES SLR PROVIDES MAINTENANCE, INSPECTIONS & REPAIRS FOR RIGGING EQUIPMENT

NEED A LIFT? GIVE US A CALL, OR DROP US A LINE.

INFO@HERCULESSLR.COM  1 (877) 461-4876

 


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

CM Guest Blog | The Twenty Year Rule

cm cranes and hoisting equipment

CM ON THE TWENTY YEAR RULE

CM knows it can be easy to fall into the ‘twenty year rule’ trap—but what is it? Read on for tips from Columbus McKinnon (CM) on why some rules actually are made to be broken. 

Their rigging experts discuss safety, inspections & why it’s important to keep your training up to date—No matter how long you’ve been doing it. 

While conducting our overhead lifting safety training it never fails that we get a comment to the effect of,

“We’ve been doing it this way for over twenty years. We never had an accident. And now, you’re telling me it’s wrong?” 

Just because you have been lifting a certain way for the past twenty years and never had an accident only means that you have been lucky. When performing safety training we emphasize all the safety standards and regulations that are applicable. They all serve a purpose.

When performing safety training we emphasize all the safety standards and regulations that are applicable. They all serve a purpose.

ANSI/ASME B30 Safety Standards for overhead lifting began in 1916 as an eight page safety code – now 94 years old. Although ASME is the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, many Canadian organizations and equipment used here observe their standards, so it’s worth noting. 

In Canada, the CSA standard B167.08 began in 1964—It’s 46 years old.

Finally, let us not forget OSHA, which began in 1970, making it 40 years old, who enforces two federal regulations for overhead lifting:  CFR 1910.179 for cranes and 1910.184 for slings. Between all these organizations and safety standards there is a total of 355 years of experience. 355 years trumps your 20 years, every time.

These organizations were not put together to make your life miserable! You can’t take short cuts the way you have been doing the past twenty years. These organizations include people that are involved in all facets of overhead lifting, including riggers and production and construction personnel that perform overhead lifting as part of their job. They want you to be safe in your work habits and environment so that you can go home at the end of your shift or work day to your family.

This blog post was written by Larry Lynn, former Product Trainer for Columbus McKinnon Corporation. 

CM | HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH WHEN IT COMES TO ANNUAL INSPECTION?

So, we know that standards for training, testing & inspections exist for a reason, and it’s important to keep your training and inspection knowledge up-to-date—CM explains more. 

CM was asked, “How do we complete the annual PM (preventative maintenance) per the manual unless we open up the gear box and inspect the internals?” This question is centered around the annual inspection task to inspect ‘Load Bearing Parts.'” 

Tom, a Technical Instructor who specializes in Hoists & Overhead Cranes for the Columbus McKinnon Corporation says: 

We encounter this question frequently in inspection and maintenance training classes. 

ASME Standard B30.16 defines load bearing / load suspension parts as follows; “the load suspension parts of the hoist are the means of suspension (hook or lug), the structure or housing that supports the drum or load sprocket, the drum or load sprocket, the rope or load chain, the sheaves or sprockets, and the load block or hook.”

Brakes, load and holding, gearing, motors, etc. are mechanical parts. They are part of the drive train.

ASME B30.16-2.1.3(b) states, “Covers and other items normally supplied to allow inspection of components should be opened or removed.”

ASME states that required inspection items be prefaced with “Evidence Of.” 

There are several indirect ways of checking for and detecting (finding “evidence of”) excessive wear or abnormal operation of internal parts. If gearbox oil is not degraded, there are no metallic particles attached to the drain plug, the hoist raises and lowers properly (with and without a load), and there are no strange or abnormal sounds from the gearbox, it is unlikely that serious problems exist. If this inspection causes suspicion, refer to ASME B30.16-2.1.3(c) “A designated person shall determine whether conditions found during inspection constitute a hazard and whether disassembly is required.”


FOR RELATED READING, CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

TIPS FOR TAGLINES | TRAINING TUESDAY

GET TO KNOW YOUR TRAINING SPECIALIST, JAMIE ENGLAND

GET TO KNOW HERCULES MARKETING SPECIALIST, AMANDA WHITE


WHERE’S YOUR CM?

CONTACT US OR CLICK BELOW TO LEARN MORE ABOUT COLUMBUS MCKINNON HOISTS & LIFTING EQUIPMENT AT HERCULES SLR: 

INFO@HERCULESSLR.COM  1 (877) 461-4876

 


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

Why wear safety glasses? | Training Tuesday

why wear safety glasses

Why wear safety glasses?

Why wear safety glasses? Luckily, it’s Training Tuesday at Hercules SLR, where we bring you training tips for rigging, securing, lifting, safety and more each week. 

This week, the focus is on eye safety and why you should wear safety glasses—Even when it seems trivial. 

First of all, why wear safety glasses? Well, even with all we know about the importance of eye safety and the availability of eye glasses, approximately 700 eye injuries happen to Canadian workers each day, and each year about 720,000 eye injuries occur at work and home—According to the Workplace Safety & Prevention Services, nearly 90% of these injuries are preventable. One in four people who sustain eye injuries must take time off school or work. 

So, why don’t workers wear safety glasses? There are a few reasons. For every 5 workers injured, 3 were not wearing eye protection. 

Common excuses for not wearing eye protection include: 

  • Don’t fit comfortably over their prescription glasses 
  • They don’t fit well, slip, are tight, etc. 
  • Think the rule doesn’t really apply to them or is unnecessary 

Yes, these issues can make PPE uncomfortable, but are easily remedied to give you comfort and safety. Low-cost, scratch-resistant prescription safety glasses or lens-covers are available. Yes, it’s important to wear a pair of comfortable glasses, and safety glasses are available in a variety of styles and fits so everyone can find a style that suits their needs. As far as being unnecessary, if there’s a rule in place that states you should wear safety glasses—You should.

Even if you’re just doing what seems like ‘a quick job’, accidents and injuries also happen quickly. 

So, why wear safety glasses?

Well, safety glasses are a defense against hazards at work that could injure your eyes (or other body parts, for that matter). 

safety glasses statistics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some of these hazards include: 

  • Dust, dirt and other debris 
  • Chemicals, like irritants and corrosives 
  • UV radiation from electrical or welding work 
  • Flying particles from cutting, drilling, digging, etc. 
  • Tree branches or other obstacles faced when working at heights or in natural environments 

Safety glasses are a great step to take to reduce these hazards, and eliminate eye injuries. In addition to safety glasses, employers and workers should take these additional steps to reduce, or eliminate hazards and prevent injury—To reduce eye-related hazards in general: 

  • Use protective screens/side shields with your safety glasses as needed to prevent particles from falling into eyes. 
  • Try to enclose sources of irritants (Gases, fumes, dusts, etc.) 
  • Isolate hazards whenever possible (EX. Keep equipment, like table saws, away from high-traffic areas or from workers who don’t use them). 
  • Keep work areas well-lighted to reduce glare from ignitions and other light sources 

Types of Safety Glasses

Good protective eyewear should be light, comfortable, allow a clear line of vision, block radiation if/when possible, be adaptable to working conditions, have good ventilation and be scratch-resistant. 

Certification or the manufacturer mark should be available on all safety glass lenses, frames, side shields and any other parts of the glasses. The frames should be designed to prevent lenses from dislodging from frames and into eyes, have more strength than typical optical glasses and are usually heat-resistant. 

There are 6 classes of eye (and face) protection. These are: 

CLASS 1: Safety glasses

CLASS 2: Safety goggles

CLASS 3: Welding helmets 

CLASS 4: Welding hand shields 

CLASS 5: Hoods 

CLASS 6: Face shields 

According to the Canadian Standards Association (CSA), safety glasses should be impact-resistant. They outline three different, common types of lens materials—But not all should be used. 

The three different and common types of lens materials are: 

POLYCARBONATE 

  • Strongest for impact-resistance
  • Can have scratch-resistant coating and UV protection

PLASTIC (CR39)

  • Lightweight (Weighs about 1/2 of what glass does)
  • Resistant to solvents & pitting 

GLASS

  • Highly-dense material
  • Loses impact-resistance when scratched, and are prone to scratching 
  • Glass lenses do not meet the CSA impact criteria

TRIVEX 

  • More impact-resistant than CR39 plastic 
  • Less impact-resistant than polycarbonate 
  • Has properties to help absorb UV rays 

HI-VEX

  • More impact-resistant than CR39 plastic 
  • Less impact-resistant than polycarbonate 
  • Has properties to help absorb UV rays 

So, why wear safety glasses? 

7 Tips to Protect your Eyes 

Now that you know why it’s important to wear safety glasses, check out our seven tips to keep your eyes safe and prevent injury at work (and everywhere, really).  

why wear safety glasses? tips to protect your eyes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


FOR RELATED READING, CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

TRAINING TUESDAY: TAGLINES

 TRAINING TUESDAY | CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS

RIGGING AND LIFTING SLINGS | TRAINING TUESDAY


HERCULES SLR PROVIDES MAINTENANCE, INSPECTIONS & REPAIRS FOR RIGGING EQUIPMENT

NEED A LIFT? GIVE US A CALL, OR DROP US A LINE.

INFO@HERCULESSLR.COM  1 (877) 461-4876

 


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

Why confined space training?

why confined space training is important in sewers

Why confined space training? 

Why confined space training? Taking training courses before you enter, exit or work around a confined space has many benefits—The main benefit is having the knowledge to keep yourself and others safe.

Why is training to enter a confined space so important? What’s so deadly about a confined space that’s different from other types of dangerous, hazardous workplaces?

A lot, actually. 

We’ve talked about the dangers of confined spaces on the Hercules SLR blog before—But why should you train for them? You’re about to find out. 

In this blog, we’ll cover: 

  • What is confined space training? 
  • Why is confined space training important?
  • What are the OSHA/CCOHS standards for confined space training? 
  • How often is confined space training required?
  • What are the four main dangers of a confined space?  
  • Who can enter a confined space? 
  • Confined spaces & restricted spaces—What’s the difference?

WHAT IS CONFINED SPACE TRAINING?

Confined space training involves teaching workers who work in or around confined spaces the hazards, risks and dangers involved with them. It’s important that even people who aren’t planning to enter the space are trained on proper confined space entry and exit, since nearly 60% of confined space deaths happen to people who try to rescue others

What’s the difference between a hazard and a risk

WHY IS CONFINED SPACE TRAINING IMPORTANT?

Why confined space training? Confined space training is important because it helps workers and nearby personnel manage risk associated with work in confined spaces, which in-turn, helps reduce injuries & fatalities. How can you know what to do, look for and how to rescue yourself and others if no one tells you? 

This is where confined space training comes in. 

Like we mention in the paragraph above, almost 60% of confined space deaths happen to people who try to rescue those who are trapped or in danger—But there are other reasons why training to work in or around a confined space is absolutely necessary. 

Many hazards found in confined spaces are found in other, open work spaces, but become more dangerous, or even deadly when you encounter them in confined spaces. 

This is because there’s little room for error for work in a confined space. Physical hazards are more dangerous in a confined space, materials & chemicals can interact unpredictably and of course, they’re harder to get in and out of. 

Some of these include: 

  • Low air quality: Low, or poor air quality might happen from a toxic substance in the air (see ‘Aspyxiant hazards’ below) or from a lack of oxygen, and/or natural ventilation. 
  • Asphyxiant hazards: These are gases that become concentrated in a confined space and displace oxygen in the air, which leads to nausea, convulsion, coma, and eventually, this atmosphere becomes fatal. Asphyxiants are gases like argon, nitrogen and/or carbon monoxide. 
  • Exposure to harmful chemicals.
  • Fire hazards, like chemicals that could ignite if a spark is used in the space.
  • Physical hazards like noise, extreme heat or cold, radiation, vehicle & pedestrian traffic and even poor visibility. 

All of these hazards are amplified when you work in a confined space. We can’t stress the speed at which these hazards become fatal. Picture this:

You’re working on a water waste lift station (which controls waste water/sewage travel). Your co-worker has descended into a confined space to diagnose an issue, but the diagnosis should have been complete long ago—As in 45 minutes ago. “I’m gonna go check on him,” your co-worker shouts to you. Before you can tell him to stop, he enters the confined space. You call 911—Neither can be revived. Your co-worker who simply went to check on someone died instantly. You will never underestimate just how fast a confined space can take a life again. 

We don’t mean to be obscene, but this is a reality than unfortunately, happens more than it should, even with all  the knowledge available on confined space entry & exit. Hazards found in typical workplaces become much more hazardous when they’re confined, which is just one reason why confined space training is so important. 

WHAT ARE THE REGULATIONS FOR CONFINED SPACE TRAINING?

In Canada, provincial standards regarding confined space differ. Your organization may have also have requirements for confined space work specific to them, so take these as a general guideline.

There is some legislation that involves training and confined spaces in Canada—The Canadian Occupational Health & Safety Standard 11.5 on emergency procedures says:

  1. Where conditions in a confined space or the nature of the work to be performed in a confined space is such that the specifications set out in paragraph 1.4(1)(a) cannot be compiled with during all times that a person is in the confined space, the employer shall 

a) In consultation with the work place committee or the health and safety representative, establish emergency procedures to be followed in the event of an accident or other emergency in or near the confined space, which procedures shall specify the date on which they are established and provide for the immediate evacuation of the confined space when

i) an alarm is activated, or

ii) there is any significant change in a concentration or percentage referred to in paragraph 11.4(1)(a) that would adversely affect the health or safety of a person in the confined space.

b) provide the protection equipment referred to in paragraphs 11.3(b), (c) and (d) for each person who is about to enter the confined space;

c) Ensure that a qualified person trained in the entry and emergency procedures established pursuant to paragraph 11.3(a) and paragraph (a) is 

i) in attendance outside the confined space, and 

ii) in communication with the person inside the confined space; 

d) Provide the qualified person referred to in paragraph (c) with a suitable alarm device for summoning assistance; and 

e) Ensure that two or more persons are in the immediate vicinity of the confined space to assist in the event of an accident or other emergency. 

2. One of the persons referred to in paragraph (1)(e) shall 

a) Is attached to a secure anchor outside the confined space,

b) be the holder of a basic first aid certificate; and 

c) be provided with the protection equipment and emergency equipment referred to in paragraph 11.3(d). 

3. The employer shall ensure that every person entering, exiting, or occupying a confined space referred to in subsection (1) wears an appropriate safety harness that is securely attached to a lifeline that

a) is attached to a secure anchor outside the confined space;

b) is controlled by the qualified person referred to in paragraph (1)(c);

c) protects the person from the hazard for which it is provided and does not itself create a hazard; and 

d) is, where reasonably practicable, equipped with a mechanical lifting device. 

HOW OFTEN IS CONFINED SPACE TRAINING NEEDED?

Anyone who is about to work in or around confined spaces should receive training—It’s often beneficial to train new employees on specific confined space entry, exit and rescue procedures for your organization even if they have training from previous work, since practices may be different. 

Confined space training should also be held when policies or regulations change. Training should also be held if policies and procedures are ignored. As we know, this can be deadly. 

The Canadian Occupational Health & Safety Standard 11.11 states: 

  1. The employer shall provide every employee who is likely to enter a confined space with instruction and training in,

a) the procedures established pursuant to paragraphs 11.3(a) and 11.5(1)(a); and

b) The use of the protection equipment referred to in paragraphs 11.3(b), (c) and (d).

2. The employer shall ensure that no person enters a confined space unless the person is instructed in,

a) the procedures to be followed in accordance with paragraphs 11.3(a) and 11.5(1)(a); and

b) The use of the protection equipment referred to in paragraphs 11.3(b), (c) and (d).

WHAT ARE THE 4 MAIN DANGERS OF WORK IN A CONFINED SPACE?

We’ve covered some of the main hazards to look for in a confined space, but as we know, they are magnified in a confined space—So it’s worth going over again.  

The four main dangers of work in a confined space are: 4 main confined space hazards

WHAT ARE SOME TYPES OF CONFINED SPACES? 

It’s easy to think of confined spaces as work spaces that you descend (go down) to, but confined spaces can be nearly anywhere, above or below ground.

So, why confined space training? Because it’s likely many workers in industrial jobs will work in one of these spaces at least once. 

By definition, a confined space:

  • Is not meant to be occupied by humans (Especially long-term)
  • Has limited entries and/or exits, or a layout that could hinder emergency responders, or movement from humans or machines. 
  • Represents a risk to health & safety because of:
    • The design, construction, location or atmosphere of the space
    • Materials or substances found/used in the space
    • Any other conditions that contribute to safety risk or hazards. 

Types of confined spaces include: 

  • Sub-cellars
  • Tanks
  • Culverts
  • Silos
  • Vaults
  • Open Ditch  

why confined space training is important

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


FOR RELATED READING, CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

TIPS FOR TAGLINES | TRAINING TUESDAY

STUCK IN A TIGHT SPOT? WHAT TO KNOW IN A CONFINED SPACE

CONFINED SPACES: CHOOSE THE BEST FALL PROTECTION EQUIPMENT


STAY SAFE IN & AROUND CONFINED SPACES.

GIVE US A CALL, DROP US A LINE OR COME ON IN TO LEARN ABOUT UPCOMING CONFINED SPACE TRAINING COURSES AT THE HERCULES TRAINING ACADEMY:

TRAINING@HERCULESSLR.COM  1 (877) 461-4876

 


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

ISO and Road Vehicles

roads and transportation at night

ISO AND ROAD VEHICLES iso and road vehicles statistics

DID YOU KNOW? Anyone who has driven a road vehicle of almost any make, almost anywhere in the world, will have directly benefitted from ISO 2575, which specifies the familiar symbols for controls and indicators we are accustomed to seeing on the dashboard. 

Who benefits from ISO standards for road vehicles? 

We’ve discussed ISO and energy, construction, the supply chain and we’ve debunked some myths – But what about ISO and road vehicles? Read on to learn why ISO and your vehicle are so important. 

Consumers 

ISO standards make driving a vehicle simpler and safer, while protecting passengers (especially children) and pedestrians, and lower the cost of buying vehicles.

Regulators

ISO standards gives technical basis for regularly reviewed & improved legislation on things like safety and pollution. 

Manufacturers 

ISO Standards give specifications for safety, quality, performance and environmental impact. They set out harmonized requirements that enable outsourcing, fair competition, the participation of suppliers from developing countries and drive down costs as they facilitate competitive tendering. 

What do ISO Standards for road vehicles cover? 

iso and road vehicles

 

 

 

 

 

Much of the work in these areas is the focus of the ISO technical committee, called ISO/TC 22, Road Vehicles, which has developed more than 820 standards & updates worldwide. The committee’s made of 75 different participating and observing national standards bodies, as well as automotive-sector associations and international bodies such as the World Health Organization.

These standards aim to: 

  • Improve compatibility, interchangeability and safety
  • Specify the requirements for harmonized test procedures to evaluate performance.  

iso and road vehicles

Why do we need ISO standards for road vehicles?

why we need ISO standards for road vehicles

Electric Vehicles 

ISO/TC 22 Road vehicles has also developed a range of standards specifically for electric, hybrid and fuel-cell road vehicles. A number of these provide requirements for functional safety, test methods, on-board energy storage systems and measuring fuel consumption.

ISO 17409 Electrically Propelled road vehicles connection to an external electric power supply—Safety requirements 

ISO 234741, Hybrid-electric road vehicles exhaust emissions and fuel consumption measurements—Part 1: Non-externally charged vehicles. 

Intelligent Transport Systems 

Increasingly, road vehicles are being equipped with systems and networks based on information and communication technologies intended to improve safety, traffic control, navigation, fee collection and identification. Today’s communication capabilities give vehicles the potential to anticipate and avoid collisions, transmit their position to emergency services in case of an accident, navigate the quickest route to their destination, take advantage of up-to-the-minute traffic reports, identify the nearest available parking space, minimize their carbon emissions and provide multimedia communications.

ISO/TC 204,Intelligent transport systems focuses mainly on this area and has developed more than 220 standards*. 

*These include the ISO 15638 series on telematics applications for regulated commercial freight vehicles (TARV) and ISO 11067, which gives performance requirements and test procedures for curve speed warning systems (CSWS).

Tyres and Other Components 

ISO/TX 3, Tyres, rims and valves has developed 78 standards, including the ISO 4000 series on passenger car tyres and rims and the ISO 4249 series on motorcycle tyres and rims. 

Road Safety

ISO 39001, Road traffic safety (RTS) management systems—Requirements with guidance for use, developed by ISO/TC 241, road traffic safety managementis widely regarded as a major contribution to the United Nations’ Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020. 

Future ISO 39002, Good practices for implementing commuting safety management, aims to reduce the amount of fatalities and severity of injuries caused by road accidents, by providing solutions and recommending measures that organizations can use to protect their staff.

 Road-safety-related standards are also developed by other ISO technical committees, for example to make crossing the street safer for disabled persons. 

Vehicle Safety

With the latest technological progress bringing us everything from advanced navigation systems to driverless cars, putting measures in place to spot potential risks across the whole vehicle lifespan is more important than ever.

ISO 26262 (series), Road vehicles—Functional safety, outlines an automotive-specific risk-based approach to help avoid any potential system failures. 

Looking Forward

Cyber Security 

A quick look at your dashboard will give you an idea of how connected vehicles are – and it is only increasing. From your GPS to other gauges and sensors telling you when your tyre pressure is low, there is constant interaction between in-vehicle embedded systems that communicate wirelessly. As this interconnectivity grows, so does the risk of cyber-attacks, threatening not only our safety but our personal information. Work has recently started on standards to address these issues by providing recommendations and solutions for building cyber security into vehicles

Hydrogen Vehicle Stations

If fuel-cell, electric and alternative-fuel vehicles are the future, there need to be adequate stations for refuelling them.

A new technical specification, ISO/TX 19880-1, Gaseous hydrogen—Fuelling stations—Part:1 General requirements, will contribute to the proliferation of hydrogen fuelling stations by providing important guidelines on their safety and performance. It covers everything from hydrogen production and delivery, to compression, storage and fuelling of a hydrogen vehicle, and provides a useful stepping stone to an International Standard in this area, due to be published in 2017.  

This article originally appears on iso.org


CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS FOR RELATED READING:

STUCK IN A TIGHT SPOT? WHAT TO KNOW IN A CONFINED SPACE

NATIONAL EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS WEEK | WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW


HERCULES SLR PROVIDES REPAIRS, INSPECTIONS & MAINTENANCE FOR RIGGING EQUIPMENT

INFO@HERCULESSLR.COM 1 (877) 461-4876  


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

Our Testing’s in the (Water) Bag | #TrainingTuesday

water bag testing with crane

WATER BAG TESTING AT HERCULES SLR

We’ve covered the importance of pre-use checks & inspections on the Hercules SLR blog before, like visual inspections, proof-testing and non-destructive testing – One thing we haven’t covered, however, is what water bag proof load testing is and why we do it here at Hercules SLR. 

So, to start—What’s a water bag, anyway?

Well, it’s a little less exciting than a water-ballon (only a little bit, promise) and is a method used to proof load test cranes that uses water instead of traditional, solid weights.  

There are quite a few benefits when you load test with a water bag versus traditional, solid weights. But what are they? In this article, we’ll cover:

  • What water bags are used to test for
  • The benefits of using water bags
  • Useful hardware for securing & rigging a water bag 
  • Safety tips 

WATER BAG TESTING | BENEFITS 

Water bags testing is for:

  • Cranes
  • Lifeboats
  • Elevators & conveyors 
  • Load-bearing structures & lifting equipment
  • Counterweights 
  • Bridges 

WATER BAG TESTING | BENEFITS 

What are the benefits of using water bags to test crane strength? Well, there is: 

  • If you’re close to a water supply. water bags: 
    • significantly reduce transportation costs, storage and handling issues 
    • rigging time
    • overall expense 
    • test load applied gradually and precisely 
    • problems identified and dealt with long before max. load is reached, and allows for safe controlled environment during testing conditions. 

Water bags are best used with spreader beams for offshore application. If you’re operating a crane or any piece of hoisting or lifting equipment, you must test it before using it for anything

A proof test is a test used to check the condition of any load-bearing structure. Often, during a proof test weight is applied beyond the working load limit to test how much strength a structure, like a crane, can truly take—This is important in case the crane is someday loaded beyond capacity. 

WATER BAG TESTING | HARDWARE 

So, what kind of equipment should you use with a water bag? Here’s some rigging equipment that might help you to secure the load: 

  • MasterLink  
  • Round Sling(s)
  • Shackles (Various or specific types of shackles may be required to secure the water bag—Check with manufacturing/provincial regulations to make sure your rigging complies). 
  • Lifting straps 

WATER BAG TESTING | SAFETY TIPS

  • Don’t load bags beyond the working load limit (WLL)
  • Use a calibrated monitoring device to measure the load of the water bag 
  • Remember, the water bag is considered the load, not lifting equipment & the lifting set for the water bag is separate—Keep this in mind when using water bags to test load-bearing structures. 
  • Optimal water bag design has a load carried by the web lifting set, not through the bag’s material. 
  • Be sure to perform a risk assessment before you test a crane or other load-bearing structure with water bags—There are instances that a water bag will fail, and riggers and nearby personnel must have a plan in place if failure occurs. 
  • Inspect water bags before each use 
  • Do not hang more than three water bags from a single attachment point 

FOR RELATED READING, CHECK OUT OUR BLOGS:

CRANE SERVICE: LIFTING YOU IN SUDBURY, ONTARIO

CRANE & HOISTING SYSTEM—THE DANGERS OF SIDE PULLING

CRANE EQUIPMENT: CRANES, CHAINS & AUTOMOBILES


HERCULES SLR PROVIDES REPAIRS, INSPECTIONS & MAINTENANCE FOR RIGGING EQUIPMENT—WE ALSO PROVIDE WATER BAG TESTING & EQUIPMENT RENTALS FOR YOUR LOAD-BEARING STRUCTURES. 

NEED A LIFT? GIVE US A CALL, OR DROP US A LINE.

INFO@HERCULESSLR.COM  1 (877) 461-4876

 


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

How to Handle a Workplace Emergency

workplace emergency toy responder

How-to Handle a Workplace Emergency

We’ve discussed Emergency Preparedness Week earlier this week on the blog – But what about how to handle a workplace emergency? Emergency Preparedness Week is held for one week each year, and this week it’s May 5-11.

To celebrate, we’re sharing some of our best tips for emergency preparedness. 

Emergencies don’t wait until you’re home. We’ve covered general emergency preparedness, like what your emergency plan & kit should include, and that you should keep a version of both an emergency plan and kit in your workplace. 

It’s smart to be prepared for emergency situations no matter where you are. Many tips for emergency preparedness in the home apply to the workplace, but there are a few other situations and procedures unique to work that are worth being prepared for. (It’s also an essential part of any Occupational Health & Safety program). 

Emergencies you could encounter at work are:

  • Fires/Structural failures 
  • Medical emergencies
  • Attacks (Shootings, active assailants, etc.) 
  • Industrial accidents (Ex. hazardous chemical spills, burns, etc.) 

How can you prepare for emergencies in the workplace? We recommend: 

  • Conduct a workplace risk assessment
  • Hold emergency drills at least once a year 
  • Have an emergency kit in your office or workplace (Consider where the highest risk is, the amount of people and gather materials like blankets, food & water accordingly) 
  • Have a rescue procedure for falls, slips and other accidents relevant that are relevant to your workplace 
Four elements of a workplace emergency management program are:
  1. Prevention: Policies and procedures that minimize emergencies 
  2. Preparation: Hold drills and activities to make sure personnel is familiar with the procedure 
  3. Response: Action to take when emergency occurs 
  4. Recovery: Practices to resume normal business operations 
Here are six steps to plan for a workplace emergency: 
  1. Establish a planning team. The team should include representatives from different departments including senior management. 
  2. Assess the risks and how the company can respond.
  3. Develop an emergency response plan.
  4. Implement the plan—Get supplies, communicate & train others 
  5. Test the plan—Hold drills or exercises 
  6. Improve the plan continuously. Revisit the plan at least once a year.

So, what should you include in step 3? Here are some things you should include in your written workplace emergency response plan: 

  • Scope and outline potential emergencies 
  • Alarms and other methods of initiating a response 
  • Site-specific response procedures 
  • Command structure, roles & responsibilities 
  • How to shut down power & relevant machinery 
  • How to evacuate the premises
  • Communication systems and protocols 
  • Emergency contact lists 
  • Resource list 

Extra Workplace Emergency Tips  

  • Hold random emergency drills now and then—It can be worthwhile to show employees what a perceived threat is like, and how to ‘jump into action’ when you’re unprepared, and the hazard or incident is unplanned. 
  • Don’t forget about visitors—If you have customers, clients or other personnel that are likely to be in the workplace, don’t forget to include provisions for them in your plan 
  • Have accessible emergency information available—Having accessible emergency information includes posters and training videos 

We hope this gives you an idea of what to include in your workplace emergency plan. This is a loose guideline for handling workplace emergencies, as we mention at the beginning of the article it’s wise to prepare for emergencies that are relevant to your workplace—For example, if you work at heights often, an emergency plan for workers who have arrested a fall will be a necessary emergency plan to have. 


DEALING WITH A WORKPLACE EMERGENCY? CHECK OUT THESE BLOGS: 

STUCK IN A TIGHT SPOT? WHAT TO KNOW IN A CONFINED SPACE

NATIONAL EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS WEEK | WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW


HERCULES SLR PROVIDES REPAIRS, INSPECTIONS & MAINTENANCE FOR RIGGING EQUIPMENT

INFO@HERCULESSLR.COM  1 (877) 461-4876  


Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com

Confined Space Hazards | Training Tuesday

man entering confined space

4 CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS | TRAINING TUESDAY

Welcome to Training Tuesday! This week, the focus is on confined space hazards and the top 5 hazards you should know about before you enter, exit, or just work around them.  

This article will cover

  • How to define a confined space 
  • 4 specific confined space hazards 
  • What needs to happen before you enter a confined space 

We’ve covered what a confined space is on the blog before—But what specific hazards should you be on the lookout for?

Confined spaces pose hazards by their very definition—The Canadian Occupational Safety and Health Regulations define a confined space as ‘a partially or enclosed space, that may become hazardous to an employee who enters it due to’: 

  • Its design, construction, location or atmosphere 
  • The materials or substances in it, or
  • Any other conditions relating to it. 

4 CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS

When investigating accidents that occur in confined spaces, reports show they occur because worker’s aren’t well-trained or informed on the potential hazards when they enter confined spaces.

Oxygen deficiency causes about 50% of confined space deaths, and often, no testing is done before these accidents. Over 50% of confined space deaths are from rescue attempts by other workers. 

Four specific hazards workers face in confined spaces are: 

  1. Oxygen deficiency and oxygen enrichment
  2. Fire and/or explosion
  3. Toxicity
  4. Drowning in liquids and/or entrapment in free-flowing solids. 

Why are these things so hazardous in confined spaces? Read on to find out. 

CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS | OXYGEN DEFICIENCY—AND THE OPPOSITE

Lack of oxygen is the first hazard facing workers who must enter a confined space. Before entry (and if your risk assessment calls for it) you must test the space for oxygen with an oxygen monitor. You may also need to test the air while you work in the space.

Oxygen deficiency is caused by:

  1. Gases like nitrogen that displace flammable gases   
  2. Oxygen is taken by: 
  • Combustion of flammable substances, like in-welding and other ‘hot work’ 
  • Explosions or fires (Oxygen levels can be dangerously low after a fire is out, since oxygen replaces the products of combustion) 
  • Chemical reactions like metal rust
  • People who work in the space and use available oxygen as they breathe 

Normal air has 21% oxygen by volume—These are the effects of reduced oxygen levels: 

  • 16% Oxygen: Judgement and breathing become impaired—You become quickly exhausted
  • 12% Oxygen: Worker becomes unconscious, and will die unless taken to fresh air
  • 6% Oxygen: Breathing difficulty—This level of oxygen is fatal immediately 

OXYGEN ENRICHMENT—THE OPPOSITE

Too much oxygen is just as bad as not enough oxygen. An oxygen-enriched atmosphere has more than 23% oxygen by volume. 

What’s the risk of too much oxygen? Flammable materials like clothing and hair will burn immediately. Do not use pure oxygen to ventilate a confined space—This is a fire and explosion hazard.  

CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS FIRE AND EXPLOSION

Combustible gases have an explosive range with a lower explosive limit (LEL), and an upper explosive limit (UEL). If the fuel and air mixture is below the LEL or over the UEL, ignition won’t take place—Gas is combustible between its LEL or UEL. 

What else contributes to explosions or fires?

  • Chemicals
  • Poor ventilation 
  • Static electricity 
  • Machinery 

WHAT’S HOT WORK? 

Hot work is considered work that can produce an ignition. It’s important to 

Hot work can be:

  • Welding
  • Cutting
  • Grinding
  • Work with non-explosion proof electrical equipment 

Before you perform hot work in a confined space, you should:

  • Purge/ventilate the area to reduce combustible concentration of airborne dust or mist to a safe level 
  • If ventilation or purging can’t reduce combustible dust, the space must be made inert—This is done by adding an inert gas to alter oxygen levels. The space must be monitored continuously to make sure the atmosphere stays inert. 
  • Wear proper respiratory personal protective equipment, and have the right gear on-hand to rescue or let nearby personnel enter (Like we mention, over 50% of confined space deaths happen to people who try to rescue others, so this is very important). 
  • Make sure the space is purged and consistently ventilated to maintain an atmosphere of less than 5% the LEL
  • Make sure the space is purged and consistently ventilated to maintain an oxygen concentration under 23% 
  • Continuously monitor atmosphere levels in the space
  • Have an entry permit that includes provisions for hot work and includes the appropriate measures to take. 

CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS TOXICITY

There are two huge risks posed by toxic gas in confined spaces. 

  • Chemical asphyxiation 
  • Irritation to respiratory system, skin or eyes 

Especially harmful toxic gases include: 

  • Hydrogen sulphide (H2S): Hydrogen sulphide is a by-product of sewage treatment, petroleum and other industrial processes. Hydrogen sulphide is particularly dangerous as it has a noticeable smell in small concentrations, but hydrogen sulphide gas takes away your sense of smell too, which can make a worker think they’re safe or the smell has dissipated, when in reality, it still lurks. It’s important to note that hydrogen sulphide collects in low areas since it’s heavier than air. 
  • Methane (CH4): Highly explosive. Methane is a by-product of sewage that leaks from gas lines, and can be found in coal mines. Methane displaces oxygen, which can smother workers.  
  • Sulphur dioxide (SO2): Colourless with a strong smell, sulphur dioxide is poisonous in small amounts. 
  • Carbon monoxide (CO): Colourless, odourless, tasteless and fatal in very small concentrations. It comes from incomplete combustion. Being overexposed to carbon monoxide can cause ears to ring, nausea, headache and sleepiness. 

TEST CAREFULLY FOR TOXICITY BEFORE PERSONNEL ENTERS A CONFINED SPACE.

CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS | DROWNING IN LIQUIDS AND/OR ENTRAPMENT IN FREE-FLOWING SOLIDS 

This one is pretty self-explanatory, but in confined spaces where liquids or flowing solids are present (and they often are) there’s always risk of these substances drowning, suffocation, burns or other injuries.

Some of these substances include: 

  • Water (in a tank, for example) 
  • Grain (in a silo) 
  • Materials, like soil, that fall into an excavation or trench 

AVOID CONFINED SPACE HAZARDS—DO THIS BEFORE YOU ENTER: 

Before a worker enters a confined space, these steps must be followed: 

1) Identify the confined space 
2) A plan for entry and work is in place
3) Training is given to all employees who work in or near the space
4) Entrant training
5) Attendant training
6) Training in the use of Personal Protective Equipment
7) Provide the PPE
8) Air Monitoring Protocols, which include possible purging or inerting of the space and then ventilation

GOOD RULE TO FOLLOW: IF YOU CAN’T TEST, IF YOU CAN’T VENTILATE, IF YOU DON’T HAVE BREATHING APPARATUS, IF YOU DON’T HAVE AN ENTRY PROCEDURE DON’T GO IN. 


VISIT OUR BLOG FOR RELATED READING:

CONFINED SPACES: HERCULES’ SAFETY TIPS

STUCK IN A TIGHT SPOT? WHAT TO KNOW IN A CONFINED SPACE

CONFINED SPACE: RESCUE & RETRIEVAL—3M GUEST BLOG


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Hercules SLR is part of Hercules Group of Companies, with locations and unique businesses coast-to-coast. We provide securing, lifting and rigging services for sectors in Canada and Internationally. Hercules SLR serves the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, 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 hoisting solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876 or email info@herculesslr.com