Safety Inspection: make your harness a habit

safety-inspection-safety-equipment

Safety Inspection: don’t fear the inspector

We get it—no one likes a safety inspection. However, having fall arrest and other PPE inspected is a reality everyone in the industrial trades must face. Part of this fear comes from the thought they’ll find things wrong, but have you ever considered…inspectors aren’t trying to make your work more difficult? 

Though it seems that way at times, Inspectors see accidents on worksites that are very avoidable and often happen during routine parts of the work day. Simply put, they want to help you, help yourself.

Safety inspection ensures you maintain productivity, keep costs low and have everyone home safely at the end of the day.

Read on for essential tips from one of our Hercules SLR Inspector’s to make sure you’re always inspection-ready.

Training is Key

Our Inspectors have seen the benefit of hands-on training directly at the Hercules Training Academy.

“The rigging fundamentals course at the Training Academy was amazing—everyone loved it. The experience was vital, and gave me so much more insight into how the rigging hardware I inspect works on the job,” says Quincy Warner, an Inspector from Hamilton, Ontario.

“Safety training can be, for lack of a better word, boring—especially when it only focuses on bookwork. Training for fall protection and safety should take a hands-on approach. For example, strapping someone into a safety harness and letting them fall from a crane to demonstrate the benefits of fall protection tends to stick with them better than reading from a manual. Experience is a great teacher.”

Safety training and physically showing workers the importance of safety harnesses and fall protection like self-retracting lifelines (SRL’s) makes all the difference between them wearing it or not.

Video via 3M showing hands-on safety training 

Inspect the Worksite

Something our Inspectors can’t stress enough is surveying the land you’ll be working on. Assess the area, the job and the safety equipment you’ll need to complete it. What are your fall protection needs—a lanyard, SRL or rescue line? What are the provincial PPE and safety requirements in your region?

Scouting the ground is an important part of assessing. Is the ground wet, are there high winds, is the site elevated—how is weather going to impact the work you’re doing? For example, ironworkers or roofers with jobs in light rain can make the site slippery, which increases the risk for injury.

Our Inspectors recommend a tripod, 3-way winch and/or an SRL for workers in sewers or the gas industry (anyone in confined spaces and/or working with hazardous materials) so you can be lifted and get out as soon as possible. A great option for lifting are a SRL and winch meant specifically to lift—these can be purchased at a lower cost as a packaged deal, and when used properly won’t need repairs. 

Assessing the land of your worksite and wearing the recommended PPE for the job type makes all the difference during safety inspection.

Fall Protection: not a fashion accessory

Many workers don’t realize that just simply wearing your safety harness or SRL isn’t enough, and unfortunately, many managers don’t either.

“A common issue I had while inspecting SRL’s and fall protection were workers only putting their PPE on when I’d show up—which defeats the purpose. How do I know that their harness fits them properly, that the worker has been trained on its proper usage if wearing PPE only happens when the Inspector’s around?” explains Warner. He stresses the importance of knowing the function of each piece of equipment to ensure it’s used properly.

Continues Warner, “Once, I repaired an SRL for a customer. who then fell using it. When I opened the SRL up and examined how it was used on the site, I realized they weren’t using it properly and it wasn’t even hooked up properly. Simply training workers on proper equipment usage can save a lot of money in repairs, extensive paperwork, productivity and most importantly, can save lives.”

Workers should be familiar with the proper fall protection equipment to be lifted, lowered or to move horizontally.

safety-inspection-safety-harness-ppe
Worker at height with safety harness and lanyard. 

Safety Inspection Reduces Costs

No matter what the outside looks like, the inside of a SRL always tells a story. Our inspectors often find issues when they cut open a SRL. The inside can show whether it was used in a fall, or used improperly. This often results in large bills, which are preventable with the right training.

For example, a large company may have around 20 fall protection units. On average, the bill to repair a SRL and tripod is about $1200. A stretched-out wire rope could cost nearly $800 to repair, and bent tripod legs are on average about $200 to repair. These repairs are often the result of using equipment improperly or for the wrong job.

For employers and project managers, safety can be a large financial cost that’s easy to reduce when you invest in the right training and equipment. 

Be your Own Inspector

Always have your PPE on you and make it a habit. Our Inspectors recommend always keeping your PPE in your work truck, like you would with any other tool. Treat your PPE like a car—to drive it safely, you must care and maintain for it.

To inspect your SRL:

  1. Check impact indicator to ensure the SRL has not suffered any falls.
  2. Check hardware to ensure it is not heavily corroded.
  3. Check conduit and webbing to make sure there are no cuts to the webbing. If the SRL has a cable, ensure there are no kinks or strands in the cable.
  4. Ensure the SRL activates and retracts properly.

See your PPE as something essential, not optional and you’ll always be prepared for safety inspection.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

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.

New: MSA Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus

self contained breathing apparatus by msa at hercules slr

A new, first-of-its-kind, self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), named the M1 SCBA by MSA was unveiled in September of this year.

Before this, respiratory protection for firefighters was unvarying, and this was the industry norm. However, fire stations have different needs. Each has specific preferences, expectations and needs from their respiratory protection.

MSA designed and developed the M1 SCBA over three years, by listening to industry and customer concerns, and rigorous development and testing.

The M1 SCBA is fully customizable and can be arranged to meet a wide range of needs. The M1 SCBA has customizable features to improve hygiene, ergonomics, and comfort. These features include being machine washable (without having to disassemble), a water-repellent padded harness, one-handed height adjustment, the industry’s lightest-weight backplate and a hip belt which evenly distributes the weight of the breathing apparatus.

Additionally, The M1 SCBA reduces overall cost-of-ownership. How? It includes a high-pressure cylinder connection for fast cylinder exchanges, configurations with and without integrated, electronics and telemetry—it’s also compatible with MSA’s G1 face-piece. If you desire better voice enhancement, it contains a state-of-the-art communications system named the C1 headset that attaches easily to the outside of the facepiece.

Work safe and stay protected—find MSA self-contained breathing apparatus’ and other MSA brand products at Hercules SLR.

Original article here: https://bit.ly/2DegKQc

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

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.

 

Women in Industry – Inspection Technician Heather Young

Heather Header

Heather Young is one of our Inspection Technicians here at Hercules SLR. We asked her some questions about herself and what made her decide to choose this career path.

Heather Young 1

Tell us about your educational background?

Heather: About 3 years ago I attended CONA , College Of The North Atlantic, in Port Aux Basque NL to start my career as an NDT Technician. NDT is also knows as Non-Destructive Testing. This trade specializes in using various methods to of welding defect detection, methods such as Magnetic particles in a flux field , bright red liquid penetrants, Ultrasounds and X-rays.

My most recent  educational milestone was obtaining an engineering course; LEEA (Lifting Equipment Engineers Association)

What made you decide to go into this industry?

Heather: I have obtained knowledge over the years from previous jobs about industrial tools, welding, hydraulics and so much more. I took more of an interest in the welding side of things and decided it was time to start a career; a career that was welding related of course.

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

Heather: I worked at Princess Auto for 8 years, This is where I obtained the knowledge that over time became the reason why I was interested in becoming an inspector. I have learned a incredible amount of useful information in those 8 years from some incredible employees. Princess Auto was basically the jump start to the rest of my career.

What made you want to transition into Inspections ?

Heather: I wanted to work hands on with the products instead of just selling them . I wanted to solve problems associated with industrial applications, I wanted to learn how to use the tools, even how to fix them. I wanted to preform tests that were non-destructive and experience the fun side of destructive testing as a Heather Young 2bonus.

Why did you decide to work for Hercules SLR?

Heather: Hercules is a place that continuously gives opportunities to learn, I have learned beyond what I thought I could ever learn being an Inspections Technician. I wanted to be a part of Hercules as it enabled me to use the skills I learned in college and apply them to real life scenarios. Hercules also offers a wide broad range of different types of jobs which has gained me amazing experience. Everything from inspecting small shackles to working on the inside of large machinery.

Where have you traveled during your time as a Quality and Safety specialist for Hercules SLR?

Heather: I have traveled to other Hercules branches mostly to teach other inspectors the procedures and standards regarding offshore inspections. I also traveled to New Brunswick as an aid for a big job as well as for training purposes. I have been to numerous places here in Nova Scotia also, so many, that its often hard to remember all of them.

Where have you enjoyed traveling to most for your job at Hercules?

HeatherI enjoyed Travelling to Newfoundland the most. A few simple reasons for this, it is where I am from, I was able to see family while I was there and I also really liked the Hercules employees there, I felt welcomed instantly upon arrival.

Is there anywhere that you would like to travel to in the future with Hercules SLR?Heather Young 3

Heather: I would like to travel anywhere really. It is all good experience, everywhere is different and unique.

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

Heather:  I enjoy what I do here at Hercules, so I do have set goals in mind. I would like to continue with the next levels of LEEA, gain more experience as a NDT Tech, and learn more regarding fall arrest equipment.

Lastly, is there anything about you that most people would not know?

Heather: About 6 years ago , I assisted with 2 roofing jobs on houses that needed renovating so they could be sold. It was a summer thing, both houses were located in NB. Since it was part time summer project, it didn’t last very long. I had no experience with using coil roofing nailers, (I only ever sold them) or placing shingles on a roof. It was very physically demanding and I got severely sunburned. I learned a lot from this experience though, I learned that pizza can be delivered to rooftops in NB if you ask .
I came to the conclusion that I enjoyed roofing, but carrying bundles of shingles up a ladder. wasn’t for me…No, not ever again.

——————————————————————————————————————————————————

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.

If you are interested in working for Hercules, we are always looking for talented people. Check out our careers page here.