WHAT IS CRYSTALLINE SILICA?
Silica is a mineral compound made up of one silicon atom and two oxygen atoms.
There are other compounds that contain silicon whose names are quite similar, such as silicate and silicone. Do not mistake these for silica. They are not the same thing.
There are quartz, cristobalite, tridymite, and other rare forms of crystalline silica. Quartz is so common that the term quartz is often used to refer to crystalline silica. And sand is often used to refer to quartz.
Persons working with silica can develop a disease called silicosis. This disease is 100% preventable if appropriate steps are taken. Individuals are at risk in the workplace if: 1) the silica can become airborne, 2) the airborne particles are a certain size, 3) the worker breathes in the silica.
THE BASICS ON SILICOSIS
Silicosis is a disease where scar tissue forms in the lungs and reduces the ability to extract oxygen from the air.
- Shortness of breath while exercising
- Occasional bluish skin at ear lobes or lips
- Loss of appetite
- Silicosis renders the victim more susceptible to infection and diseases such as tuberculosis and lung cancer.
- Smoking increases the damage. Silicosis and smoking are deadly together.
TAKING ACTION TO PROTECT AGAINST SILICA
You must implement the best possible permanent solution to reducing or eliminating the hazard. If such a solution cannot be enacted immediately, then you are required to implement a temporary control to protect your workers until the permanent solution is put in place. The following solutions are listed in order of preference. (Depending on the work site a higher choice may actually be less effective.):
SAFETY REMINDERS – SILICOSIS IS A DISEASE THAT IS 100% PREVENTABLE IF APPROPRIATE STEPS ARE TAKEN.
Is stress a good thing or a bad thing?
Each of you will view stress in a different manner, stresses come in all shapes, sizes, amounts and so on. We
all bring an element of stress to the job with us, what is important is how we handle the stress in our lives.
Job stress is the physical and emotional harm that occurs when the requirements of a job do not match the
capabilities, resources, or needs of the worker. Job stress can lead to poor health and even injury.
HERE IS AN EXAMPLE:
In 1990, a local court upheld a compensation claim by a construction worker who had difficulty keeping up
with the pressures of the job site. To avoid falling behind, he tried to take on more tasks and often got parts
mixed up. As a result, he was repeatedly yelled at by the foreman. He suffered a psychological breakdown.
ASK YOURSELF THESE QUESTIONS…
- Do you ever feel overwhelmed by the amount of work you have?
- How do you handle the pressure? (For example, do you talk with other workers, keep to yourself, or
discuss it with your supervisor?)
HANDLING WORKPLACE STRESS
- Tell your supervisor you are overwhelmed
- Reduce job stress by taking care of yourself
- Engage in regular exercise, it is a powerful stress reliever.
- Realize that your job may not be the best option for your personality or with your other
responsibilities (such as children, school, and medical conditions).
- Make sure you seek medical attention, if you begin to experience the following conditions:
- Frequent headaches
- Inability to sleep
- Difficulty concentrating
- Upset stomach
- Short Temper
WE DID IT! We have been named a 2017 NorthCoast 99 Winner! Donley's is extremely proud to be honored for a third year as one of the 99 great workplaces for top talent in Northeast Ohio. A special thank you to all our employees who make our workplace great. To find out more on how we won this award, visit www.northcoast99.org #NC99 #GreatWorkplace #NEO
Donley’s/Blair’s policy is that a fall protection system as outlined below, is required for all employees (Self-performed and Subcontractors) working at heights greater than 6 feet and this applies to all situations including General Fall Protection, Scaffolds, Over Hand Bricklaying, Crane activities, and Steel Erection Activities.
This policy does not apply to working from ladders as long as employees maintain three points of contact and ensure that the center line of their body does not go outside of the side rails of the ladder.
FALL PROTECTION SYSTEMS
The acceptable types of fall protection systems utilized by Blair’s and/or subcontractor employees are Barrier Systems, Personal Fall Arrest Systems, and Safety Net Systems.
Barrier Systems include:
- Guardrail Systems
- Positioning devices
- Warning Line Systems (Only when working on a low slope roof)
- Controlled Access Zones (Only for leading edge, precast concrete erection work, and steel erection activities)
- Covers. For all holes greater than 2” in the smallest direction regardless of depth.
Personal Fall Arrest Systems include:
- Anchorage Points
- Single point
- Vertical lifeline
- Horizontal lifeline
- Retractable lifeline
- Body (Full-body) Harness
- Connection devices (i.e. Lanyards with locking Snap Hooks)
Safety Net Systems include:
- Netting with border rope
Fall Protection Plans
- This option is available only to employees engaged in leading edge work, precast concrete erection work, or residential construction work who can demonstrate that it is infeasible or it creates a greater hazard to use conventional fall protection equipment.
SAFETY REMINDERS - FAILURE TO IMPLEMENT AN APPROPRIATE SYSTEM IS GROUNDS FOR IMMEDIATE DISCIPLINARY ACTION INCLUDING DISMISSAL FROM THE SITE.
DONLEY’S POLICY IS:
WHEREVER THERE IS A POINT OF ACCESS WITH A BREAK IN ELEVATION OF 19 INCHES OR MORE, PROVIDE STAIRWAY; LADDER; RAMP; RUNWAY; EMBANKMENT; OR PERSONNEL HOIST
- Use ladders mainly for climbing to or from other levels. o If you can, work from scaffolds or scissor lifts instead of ladders; they are safer.
- Employees must be trained in ladder use.
- All points of access between levels must be kept clear to permit free passage.
- When a ladder serves simultaneous two-way traffic or ≥ 25 employees in the area, use:
- A double-cleated ladder or ≥ 2 ladders.
- Ladders must not be tied or fastened together to create longer sections.
- ≥ 2 ladders used to access an upper level must be offset with a platform or landing.
- Wood ladders must not be painted with a coating that can hide defects or labels.
- Ladders must not be loaded beyond manufacturer's rated capacity.
- Ladders must be used only on stable/level surfaces unless secured.
- Ladders must have slip-resistant feet.
- Ladders that can be displaced must be secured or barricaded.
- Ladders must not be moved, shifted, or extended while in use.
- Ladders must have nonconductive siderails.
- Keep ladders and tools ≥10 feet away from live overhead power lines.
SAFETY REMINDER - ALWAYS INSPECT A LADDER BEFORE USE!