Be The Example

Setting a good example is not a “put-on”. It’s simply working safety into your daily routine at home and on the job. When we all work safely, everyone’s job is safe and their future more secure.

New employees certainly benefit by seeing operations conducted the safe way. As you all know from experience, people new on the job take a while to adjust and to discover who they are in the overall set-up of the plant. New employees who have never held a job before or were employed by a firm that had a weak safety program probably will need considerable safety instruction. We’ll attempt to give it to them, but naturally, they also observe and seek advice and information from fellow workers. These early impressions of you and of safety operations will be at least partially formed through these contacts and observations.

On the other hand, newcomers formerly employed by a firm that emphasized safety will probably think more of you personally if you measure up to the caliber of people they are accustomed to working with.

“Don’t do as I do; do as I say” is a pretty tired expression, and it got tired because we all have repeated it many times not just verbally but through our actions; and actions speak louder than words. When we leave our safety glasses resting on our foreheads rather than in place over our eyes, or when we kick an empty milk carton under a bench rather than pick it up, we’re selling safety but it’s a useless soft sell. Our actions are saying, “I believe in wearing eye protection but not in protecting my eyes; and I know trash can cause a tripping accident, but it isn’t important enough to make me pick it up.”

There’s another angle to setting good examples. Too often people dress to impress others with their good taste rather than their knowledge of safety. Wearing rings, bracelets, and other ornaments is dangerous around machinery and in many other jobs where it’s possible for jewelry to be caught by moving parts of machinery, thus cause injury to the wearer. Long sleeves, floppy pant legs, and long hair can be hazardous on some jobs, too.

So we should always dress for the job. Our image as a fashion expert may suffer, but it will give way to the more important and more beneficial image of safety.

Maybe some of us feel we are already setting good examples for safety, but maybe this self-image isn’t too accurate. Think just for a moment isn’t it strange that we always think about having the nice things happen to us and when we think about an accident, it’s usually happening to someone else?

Accidents are a reality. Make your personal safety just as real and you’ll have a good chance of not becoming the other person to whom accidents are always happening.

We also might remember that our children someday will be entering the work force. And they, like the newcomer on the job, can benefit by our actions that exemplify safety consciousness.

Most of us try to demonstrate to our kids how to cross streets or how to light matches when they’re of age. If, through the years, your kids learn from you how to use a ladder correctly, or that it’s good practice to keep tools in their proper places or that there’s a right way to lift things, you’ve given them an additional opportunity for the better life the future promises.

Thanksgiving Safety

Thanksgiving Day has more than double the number of home cooking fires than an average day according to the U.S. Fire Administration. In fact, each year more than 4,000 fires occur on Thanksgiving Day.

“Unattended cooking is the leading cause of Thanksgiving Day home fires, and it’s easy to understand why,” said Red Cross preparedness expert Heidi Taylor. “People can easily become distracted and lose track of what’s happening in the kitchen when they are enjoying spending time with family and friends.”

To help prevent home fires this Thanksgiving, the Red Cross suggests the following tips:

  • Keep potholders and food wrappers at least three feet away from heat sources while cooking
  • Wear tighter fitting clothing with shorter sleeves when cooking
  • Make sure all stoves, ovens, and ranges have been turned off when you leave the kitchen
  • Set timers to keep track of turkeys and other food items that require extended cooking times
  • Turn handles of pots and pans on the stove inward to avoid accidents
  • After guests leave, designate a responsible adult to walk around the home making sure that all candles and smoking materials are extinguished

Even with the best preparation and precautions, accidents can happen. Thanksgiving is high time for cooking related burns. Minor burns can be treated easily if you remember to save the butter for the rolls and not a burn. For a superficial burn, cool the area by running it under cold water until the heat eases and then loosely cover the burn with a sterile dressing.

Courtesy American Red Cross

Fall Protection

Fall Protection Barrier Systems

Controlled access zones and their use (Only for leading edge, precast concrete erection work, and steel erection activities) shall conform to the following provisions.

  • When used to control access to areas where leading edge and other operations are taking place the controlled access zone shall be defined by a control line or by any other means that restricts access.
  • When control lines are used, they shall be erected not less than 6 feet nor more than 25 feet from the unprotected or leading edge, except when erecting precast concrete members.
  • When erecting precast concrete members, the control line shall be erected not less than 6 feet nor more than 60 feet or half the length of the member being erected, whichever is less, from the leading edge.
  • The control line shall extend along the entire length of the unprotected or leading edge and shall be approximately parallel to the unprotected or leading edge.
  • The control line shall be connected on each side to a guardrail system or wall.
  • Control lines shall consist of ropes, wires, tapes, or equivalent materials, and supporting stanchions as follows:
    • Each line shall be flagged or otherwise clearly marked at not more than 6-foot intervals with high-visibility material.
    • Each line shall be rigged and supported in such a way that its lowest point (including sag) is not less than 39 inches from the walking/working surface and its highest point is not more than 45 inches from the walking/working surface.
    • Each line shall have a minimum breaking strength of 200 pounds.
  • Covers for holes in floors, roofs, and other walking/working surfaces shall meet the following requirements:
    • A hole is any opening greater that 2” in it smallest direction. All Holes must be covered or protected with guardrails and toe boards.
    • Covers located in roadways and vehicular aisles shall be
      capable of supporting, without failure, at least twice the maximum axle load of the largest vehicle expected to cross over the cover.
    • All other covers shall be capable of supporting, without failure, at least twice the weight of employees, equipment, and materials that may be imposed on the cover at any one time.
    • All covers shall be secured when installed so as to prevent accidental displacement by the wind, equipment, or employees.
    • All covers shall be color coded or they shall be marked with the word “HOLE” or “COVER” to provide warning of the hazard.


    Winter Weather Hazards

    The mention of winter evokes images of sparkling snowflakes and skaters gracefully gliding across the ice. But winter can also be a time of illness and injury, if people fail to take adequate health and safety precautions.


    More than 100 viruses can cause colds, the world’s most common illness, so few people escape being exposed to at least one of them. In the United States, most people average about three colds every year.
    Once it enters the body through the nose or throat, the cold virus begins to multiply, causing any of a number of symptoms: sore throat, sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes, aches and pains, mild fever, nasal congestion and coughing. A cold usually lasts a week or two.
    The best way to treat a cold is to take a mild pain reliever, avoid unnecessary activity, get as much bed rest as possible and drink plenty of fluids, especially fruit juices. Over-the-counter cough and cold remedies may relieve some of the symptoms, but they will not prevent, cure or even shorten the course of the illness.
    While there is no vaccine to protect you from catching a cold, there are ways to lessen your chances of coming down with the illness. Keep up your natural resistance through good nutrition and getting enough sleep and exercise. Turn your thermostat down and keep the humidity up in your home. Dry air dries out the
    mucous membranes in your nose and throat and causes them to crack, creating a place where cold viruses can enter your body. Avoid direct contact with those who have colds and wash your hands frequently.


    A contagious respiratory infection, influenza is not a serious health threat for most people. However, for the elderly or those who have a chronic health problem, influenza can result in serious complications, such as pneumonia.
    Symptoms of the flu usually develop suddenly, about three days after being exposed to the virus. They include fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny nose, and soreness and aching in the back, arms and legs. Although these are similar to those caused by cold viruses, flu symptoms tend to be more severe and to last longer. Abdominal cramps, vomiting or diarrhea symptoms of what is commonly called stomach or intestinal flu do not accompany influenza.
    The flu is highly contagious and, if it occurs in your family or community, there is no practical way to avoid exposure to the virus. Bed rest, a mild pain reliever and lots of fluids are the best treatment. (Caution: Unless
    advised by a physician, a child or teenager with a flu-like illness should not take aspirin. Its use in the presence of a flu infection is linked with an increased risk of Reye syndrome. Instead use another mild pain
    reliever that does not contain aspirin.) Antibiotics are not effective against flu viruses.
    Flu vaccines, while not always effective in preventing the illness, do reduce the severity of the symptoms and protect against complications that could develop. The shots are strongly recommended for persons 65 years of age and older and those who suffer from such chronic health problems as heart disease, respiratory problems, renal disease, diabetes, anemia or any disease that weakens the body’s immune system. Infants, children and young people up to 18 years of age who are receiving long-term treatment with aspirin should also get a flu shot. Persons allergic to eggs or who have a high fever, however, should avoid or postpone getting a flu shot.
    Because influenza vaccine is only effective for one year and viruses vary from year to year, it is necessary to get a flu shot every year. In Illinois, the flu season usually begins in November and lasts until around the middle of April. If you plan to get a flu shot do so early since it takes about two weeks to develop full immunity. However, even a shot in January may protect against a late winter outbreak.


    Hypothermia a drop in body temperature to 95 degrees or less can be fatal if not detected promptly and treated properly. In the United States, about 700 deaths occur each year from hypothermia.
    While hypothermia can happen to anyone, the elderly run the highest risk because their bodies often do not adjust to changes in temperature quickly and they may be unaware that they are gradually getting colder.
    The condition usually develops over a period of time, anywhere from a few days to several weeks, and even mildly cool indoor temperatures of 60 to 65 degrees can trigger it. If you have elderly relatives or friends who live alone, encourage them to set their thermostats above 65 degrees to avoid hypothermia.
    When the body temperature drops, the blood vessels near the surface of the body narrow to reduce heat loss. Muscles begin to tighten to make heat. If the body temperature continues to drop, the person will begin to shiver. The shivering continues until the temperature drops to about 90 degrees. Temperatures below 90 degrees create a life-threatening situation.
    Signs of hypothermia include forgetfulness, drowsiness, slurred speech, change in appearance (e.g., puffy face), weak pulse, slow heartbeat, and very slow and shallow breathing. If the body temperature drops to or below 86 degrees, a person may slip into a coma or have a death-like appearance.
    If you notice these symptoms in a person, take his or her temperature. If it is 95 degrees or below, call a doctor or ambulance or take the victim directly to a hospital. To prevent further heat loss, wrap the patient in
    a warm blanket. A hot water bottle or electric heating pad (set on low) can by applied to the person’s stomach. If the victim is alert, give small quantities of warm food or drink.
    There are several things you should not do to a hypothermia victim. Do not give alcoholic beverages. Do not give a hot shower or bath, since it could cause shock. Generally, do not try to treat hypothermia at home. The condition should be treated in a hospital.


    The parts of the body most affected by frostbite are exposed areas of the face (cheeks, nose, chin, forehead), the ears, wrists, hands and feet. Frostbitten skin is whitish and stiff and feels numb rather than
    painful. When spending time outdoors during cold weather, be alert for signs of frostbite and, if you notice any, take immediate action.
    To treat frostbite, warm the affected part of the body gradually. Wrap the area in blankets, sweaters, coats, etc. If no warm wrappings are available, place frostbitten hands under the armpits or use your body to cover the affected area. Seek medical attention immediately.
    Do not rub frostbitten areas; the friction can damage the tissue. Do not apply snow to frostbitten areas. Because its temperature is below freezing, snow will aggravate the condition.


    Tech posted an article featuring Donley’s intern and future full-time project
    engineer, Allie Jo Vogrig. The article discusses how Construction graduates
    are the job market’s hottest thing.

    out the article and see a video of Allie discuss her experiences at Virginia
    Tech’s recent career fair.

    Summa Health Rooftop Rendezvous

    October 4, 2017, friends and benefactors of Summa Health gathered on the top
    level of the Adolph Street parking garage for the Rooftop Rendezvous, an
    exclusive, invitation-only event, to view progress on the construction of the
    West Tower on the health system’s Akron Campus.  Donley’s-Shook, a
    partnership between Donley’s Inc. and Shook Construction, is building the West
    Tower, the centerpiece of the health system’s investment in the health of the
    community.  Representatives from Donley’s-Shook were on hand to give
    personal tours of the construction site.  Colleen O’Connor, a Summa Health
    donor and employee, was among the special guests at the event.  Don Dreier
    and Rachel Lanyi gave Colleen her own private tour. Susie Chaplin,  who
    has training in sign language, used her communication skills to make the event
    even more special for Colleen.  Jessie Muhic and Kelsey Greco also served
    as tour guides. The successful event was a memorable one for all guests,
    especially those who had never before set foot on a construction site. Thank
    you, Summa Health, for allowing Donley’s-Shook to be a part of such a special

    Tool Box Talk – Power Tools


    • Damaged or cracked housing, power source, or bits/accessories
    • Dull blades are often more dangerous than sharp blades
    • Missing guards or protective devices
    • Leaking gasoline, oil or other fluids
    • Tool appears to be in poor condition
    • Does the tool have a 3 wire cord, if not is it double insulated?
    • Ensure area is free of any potential trip hazards
    • Do not underestimate the importance of a clean work area

    Plug Not Rated For Outdoor Use.
    Not Water Tight.

    In construction portable power tools with defective wiring cause many injuries.
    The following safe practices will help to make sure you stay safe:

    • Ensure you are wearing the correct PPE
    • You should always wear eye protection
    • Use the proper tool for the job
    • Use tools with three wire plug and make sure connections are tight.
    • Disconnect tool before making adjustments or repairs.
    • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions
    • If unsure about use, ask a supervisor or coworker
    • Insure tools are not pointed at or operated in close proximity to other individuals
    • Use spark resistant tools when working near a fuel source
    • Do not use excessive force to cut/drill through hard materials
    • Never place your hand behind the material you are working on when the tool could push through.
    • Gasoline/Mixed Fuel Powered Tools must be off and cool when re-fueled, use only in well ventilated areas.