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The Hazard Communication Standard States:

  • Every company which produces and uses hazardous materials must provide their employees with information and training on the proper handling and use of these materials.

  • You, as an employee, have a Right to Know about the hazardous materials used in your work area and the potential effects of these materials upon your health and safety.


Key Elements of the Osha Hazard Communication Standard

  • Materials Inventory - A list of the hazardous materials present in your work area.

  • Material Safety Data Sheets - A detailed description of each hazardous material listed in the Materials Inventory.

  • Labeling - Containers of hazardous materials must have labels which identify the material and warn of its potential hazard to employees.

  • Training - All employees must be trained to identify and work safely with hazardous materials.

  • Written Program - A written program must be developed which ties all of the above together.

Controlling Physical and Health Hazards

  • Product Substitution

    • Because many chemicals do similar jobs, it is important to select chemicals that do a good job, while being less toxic.

  • Engineering Controls

    • Well-designed work areas minimize exposure to materials which are hazardous. Examples of engineering controls would include exhaust systems and wetting systems to control dust.

  • Safe Work Practices

    • Safe work practices will insure that chemicals are used correctly and safely.

  • Personal Protective Equipment

    • Masks, eye protection, gloves, aprons, and other protective equipment and clothing are designed to protect you while you work. USE THEM!

  • Training and Communication

    • Knowing how to work safely with chemicals that pose a hazard is an important activity. You have a right to know, but you also have a responsibility to use the knowledge and skills to work safely.

  • Environmental Monitoring

    • Industrial hygiene personnel regularly sample the air and collect other samples to insure that hazardous chemicals do not exceed established acceptable exposure limits.

  • Personal Monitoring

    • Monitor yourself and others. Be on the lookout for any physical symptoms which would indicate that you or your coworkers have been overexposed to any hazardous chemical. Symptoms, such as skin rashes, dizziness, eye or throat irritations or strong odors, should be reported to your supervisor.


About 26 construction workers die each year from using aerial lifts. More than half of the deaths involve boom-supported lifts, such as bucket trucks and cherry pickers; most of the other deaths involve scissor lifts. Electrocutions, falls, and tip-overs cause most of the deaths. Other causes include being caught between the lift bucket or guardrail and object (such as steel beams or joists) and being struck by falling objects. (A worker can also be catapulted out of a bucket, if the boom or bucket is struck by something.) Most of the workers killed are electrical workers, laborers, painters, ironworkers, or carpenters.


On Oct. 12 in downtown Philadelphia, a 41-year-old employee was using the 125-ft-tall AWP to inspect the façade of the city’s First Presbyterian Church. Investigators believe the employee, who was running the unit on an urban sidewalk, drove over a vault lid with the boom extended. The lid collapsed under the weight of the 20-ton machine, throwing the machine off balance and causing it to tip over. “He was very experienced,” says the owner of Masonry Preservation Group Inc. The lid that collapsed is a common sidewalk covering made of “a composite fiberglass” material, says Al D’Imperio, Philadelphia-area director of the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. “We are looking at all aspects of the site,” he adds. City officials say the vault cover, about 1 ft. wide, 2 ft. long and owned by cable company Comcast, was up to code.

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Before Operating an Aerial Lift


  • Check operating and emergency controls, safety devices (such as, outriggers and guardrails), personal fall protection

  • gear, wheels and tires, and other items specified by the manufacturer.

  • Look for possible leaks (air, hydraulic fluid, and fuel-system) and loose or missing parts.

  • Check the area the lift will travel and be used.

  • Look for a level surface that won’t shift.

  • Check the slope of the ground or floor; do not work on steep slopes that exceed slope limits listed by the manufacturer.

  • Look for hazards, such as, holes, drop-offs, bumps, and debris, and overhead power lines and other obstructions.

  • Set outriggers, brakes, and wheel chocks – even if you’re working on a level slope.

  • Check the wind speed. Are you above the manufacturer’s maximum wind speed



When the word audit is mentioned, people generally think of a negative experience, an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax audit or of a confrontation. However, it is possible for audits to be positive.


First, let's consider the definition of audit.


Audit: A systematic or methodical review; to examine with intent to verify.


Audits can apply to your job. From a safety standpoint there is only one way to do a job - the safe way. Safety needs to be the first consideration in everything we do. It is possible that we may not always be doing this, so our continuing efforts to review or think about our jobs are auditing.

Contrary to an IRS audit which evaluates what we did not record, our job audit should evaluate what we did record. If we take the time to at least mentally think out the steps that we go through to perform a task, we can audit it to ensure we are safe.


Auditing ourselves Look at these things prior to completing a task:


  • PPE, do we have the correct eye protection? The correct gloves? Protective footwear?

  • Do we need any special PPE such as a chemical apron or a harness?

  • Is our PPE in good condition?

  • Do we have the correct tools and are they in good shape?

  • Do we know how to operate the tools or equipment?

  • Do we know how to accomplish the task safely?

  • Do we know the harmful energy sources around the area and have we isolated them?

  • Do I have the training to do this job?

  • Who is working around me?

  • Would I want my family watch me do this task this way?


These are a just a few of the questions we should ask. However, they include some of the most important ones. Ensure you do a quick audit, prior to accomplishing a task. A more thorough one should be done if we're doing something for the first time or for the first time in a long time.


Take the time to ask yourself these questions, do not become complacent that the work is the same as it was yesterday.




  • Injury: an incident to the body that requires more then just first aid
  • First aid: an incident to the body that does not require seeking medical treatment off site
  • Incident: anything that results in mechanical or equipment theft or property damage
  • Near Miss: Anything that happens that did not have one of the outcomes listed above.


  • Your Supervisor
  • The Safety Department


  • As soon as possible.


  • Contact safety department prior to going for any medical attention (refer to hard hat sticker) other then life  
          threatening emergencies.
  • If your injury is a first aid or non-life threatening situation DO NOT go to the Emergency Room or Urgent Care,
         wait for direction from the Safety Department, or go to the nearest
    NON-EMERGENCY or Occupational
          Medical Center (referenced in the Project Safety Plan)


  • Be sure to give a copy of all paperwork you receive from the medical facility to the Safety Department.
  • If you are given restrictions from the physician you must be in constant communication with the Safety
          department so we can meet those restrictions and get you back to work as soon as possible, we will work with
          you through the entire process. (This is called a Return to Work program.)
  • You are responsible to meet your follow-up appointments


  • If you fail to report an injury/first aid/accident promptly, it will result in disciplinary action; which includes but 
           not limited to 1-5 days off without pay.


  • Sticker and Medical Info card should be placed on the inside of your hard hat for quick reference.
  • The purpose of the sticker is to provide you with the Safety Department cell phone numbers to report an
  • The Medical card is up to you whether you want to put the information on the card. This medical card is
          designed to help provide emergency medical teams with information about yourself if you should be unable
          to communicate due to an injury.

It's that time of the year again when driving can be treacherous. Many accidents could be avoided if drivers took time to learn and practice these tips for driving safely during snowy and icy conditions.

Perhaps the deadliest danger of all is "black ice." Black ice is ice which forms on a roadway, usually due to snow melting and re-freezing. Since it is almost invisible, drivers fail to recognize black ice conditions and may drive at normal speeds-often resulting in very serious accidents. Always be alert to the possibility of black ice when temperatures are near or below freezing. Pavement that looks dry but appears darker in color and dull-looking should alert you to the presence of black ice.

Failing to allow yourself enough time to stop is a major cause of winter driving accidents. During slippery conditions stopping distances can triple. Driving at a slower speed, anticipating stops at traffic lights and intersections, and applying brakes sooner than normal will help ensure accident-free stops.

Acceleration, turning, and passing also present dangers during winter. Again, leave extra space between yourself and other vehicles so there's room to maneuver in case something goes wrong. During a skid, steer cautiously in the direction you want the car to go. REMEMBER KEEP YOUR WINDOWS CLEAR.

The best advice for driving in bad winter weather is not to drive at all, if you can avoid it. Don't go out until the snow plows and sanding trucks have had a chance to do their work, and allow yourself extra time to reach your destination. If you must drive in snowy conditions, make sure your car is prepared and that you know how to handle road conditions.

Safe Driving Tips For This Winter

  • Bridges and overpasses freeze first, so always slow down and avoid sudden changes in speed or direction.
  • To make antilock brakes work correctly, apply constant, firm pressure to the pedal. During an emergency stop, push the brake pedal all the way to the floor, if necessary, even in wet or icy conditions.
  • If you get stuck, do not spin your wheels. This will only dig you in deeper. Turn your wheels from side to side a few times to push snow out of the way. Use a light touch on the gas, to ease your car out. Use a shovel to clear snow away from the wheels and the underside of the car and wheels, to help get traction. Try rocking the vehicle by slowly shifting from forward to reverse, and back again. - In addition, if you are driving long distances under cold, snowy, and icy conditions, you should also carry supplies to keep you warm such as heavy woolen mittens, socks, a cap and blankets.
  • If you become stranded, do not leave your car unless you know exactly where you are, how far it is to possible help, and are certain you will improve your situation.
    • To attract attention, light two flares and place one at each end of the car a safe distance away. Hang a brightly colored cloth from your antenna.
    • If you are sure the car's exhaust pipe is not blocked, run the engine and heater for about 10 minutes every hour or so depending upon the amount of gas in the tank.
    • Keep at least one window open slightly as heavy snow and ice can seal a car shut.

Rigging looks like an easy operation, one that doesn't seem to require any skill or experience. But don't be fooled. Many people who've thought that "anyone can do it" have lost fingers or hands, or suffered more serious injuries. We don't want any one injured while rigging on this job. So, I'm going to point out some of the "do's and don’ts." Pay close attention.

PROTECT YOUR HANDS. If it isn't possible to release the chain, sling, or choker, be sure your hand is clear of pinch points. In fact, keep your hand far enough away so that a frayed wire or splinter on the chain can't catch your glove and jerk your hand into a pinch point.

WATCH OUT FOR ROCK AND ROLL. It's almost impossible to position the hook over the load center. So, watch out for a swing or roll. Anticipate the direction of the swing or roll and work away from it. Never place yourself between material, equipment or other stationary objects and the load. Stay away from stacked material that may be knocked over by a swinging load.

STAY OUT FROM UNDER. Never get under a suspended load, and keep out from under the crane's boom too. The chances are that nothing will break. But are you willing to bet life and limb that it won't?

SET IT DOWN CAREFULLY. When it's necessary to guide a load, use a tag line or hook. If you must walk with a load, keep it as close to the ground as possible. Beforehand, look over the spot where the load is to be landed. Remove unnecessary blocks or the objects that might fly up when struck by the load. When lowering, or setting a load, keep your feet and all other parts of your body out from under. Set the load down easily and slowly. Then, if it rolls on the blocking, it will shift slowly and you'll be able to get away.

TEAMWORK IS THE SECRET OF SAFETY. Teamwork is important on any job to prevent injury to yourself or others. But on a rigging job, this goes double.


Any Critical lifts (Greater than 75% capacity) require the completion of a Critical Lift Rigging Plan that must be reviewed with crew prior to work commencing (Documentation of review is required)

When rigging is used the rigging work is done by a qualified rigger, synthetic slings are protected from: abrasive, sharp or acute edges, and configurations that could cause a reduction of the sling’s rated capacity, such as distortion or localized compression, and when synthetic slings are used, the synthetic sling manufacturer’s instructions, limitations, specifications and recommendations are followed.

The latch must close the throat opening and be designed to retain slings or other lifting devices/accessories in the hook when the rigging apparatus is slack.

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 be 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.

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

Donley’s Concrete Group is excited to be receiving the Carolinas Chapter ABC Eagle Award (Excellence in Construction) for Duke Cameron Parking Deck.  The project won in the category for concrete projects over $10M. The Excellence in Construction Awards celebration honors Carolinas members’ most innovative and high quality construction projects, and safety programs. 

The Duke Cameron parking garage, designed by Walker Parking, the engineer of record, created a very challenging 2,000 car structural concrete parking structure. The 775,000 sq. ft. structure was completed in 12 months. The aggressive schedule proved challenging with the design requiring very strenuous specification requirements, calling for very specific quality control measures start to finish to produce the desired finished product for Duke University. A separate QA/QC person was hired to be at the site full time to test every truck for the deck pours at the end of the pump, correct and timely installation of reinforcement and post tensioned cables and double check the reinforcing subcontractor’s daily installations.

The 12 month schedule was challenging, but Donley’s Concrete Group’s daily planning and first run study reviews became the key to the safety, scheduling and success of this project. Through use of maturity meter testing for in place concrete strength and visual planning tools for daily tasks, the team was able to use their valuable time in the most productive way possible.

Another obvious challenge of the project was working on this massive structure within a fully operating campus. The overall logistics of the site, schedules, deliveries and safety became paramount with students and faculty constantly moving around the construction site in close proximity. The solution to working on a fully operating campus was to implement night concrete pours. A large majority of the concrete that was placed on the parking decks was placed at night, with concrete pours between 500 to 600 cubic yards per placement and taking 8 hours to place.

With the many challenges faced in the beginning, Donley's utilized scheduling tools to manage the team and complete construction. Which in the end, helped Donley's team finished the job three weeks ahead of schedule.