PLH GROUP NEWS
Choosing Safety One Tool at a Time
Date: January 21, 2022
Choosing the correct tool for the job not only ensures pipeline integrity, but also employee safety, such as protecting the experts at Snelson Companies who are specialized in diversified pipeline services.
Tools date back millions of years to the Early Stone Age to make the work of humans easier. However, imagine early humans using a cutting tool to haul a heavy load and a hammering tool to skin their dinner. Tools’ benefits are only present if chosen and used correctly. This does not only apply to the effectiveness or efficiency of the tool, though. When used incorrectly, tools can cause serious harm to the user, others on site, or the equipment. Choosing the correct tool not only saves time, but also ensures worker safety.
PLH Group employees provide comprehensive, energy-focused construction and specialized services to customers throughout the electric power line, pipeline, oil field electrical, and industrial markets. Their wide range of tasks include pipeline and powerline construction, helicopter airborne operations, station and facility construction, directional drilling, distribution and substation construction, underground utility, and specialized foundations. Because the work of each PLH Group business unit is so diversified, there is not one standard approach to each task. Instead, employees and supervisors must ensure that appropriate steps are taken to safely complete each project, including identifying and correctly using the right tools for the job.
But how can employees ensure they are using the correct tool? Important questions to consider include:
- Will the tool, when used the way the manufacturer intended, safely complete the necessary task?
- Can you safely complete the task without modifying the tool?
- Is the tool in good condition, such as not damaged or wet?
- Can you comfortably operate the tool?
- Can you operate the tool while correctly wearing necessary personal protective equipment (PPE)?
- Do you feel that you have control over the tool?
- Does the tool fit the available workspace?
California Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Cal/OSHA), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) created a booklet to assist workers by examining specific considerations. This booklet includes a checklist to simplify the decision-making process.
Also ensuring that safe work practices are integrated into every step of the job is PLH Group’s specially designed PREVENT safety program. This proprietary program puts visual and practical teaching tools into the hands of every employee by using the latest technology to access a short video that can be viewed by personnel anywhere, at any time.
Employees should talk to their supervisor if they are still unsure about which tool to select or if the correct tool is missing or damaged. Damaged tools must be promptly removed until deemed acceptable by a supervisor. Never modify a tool to complete a task. This only poses risks for personnel injury and equipment damage.
PLH Group and its business units provide the tools and equipment for employees to safely deliver quality projects. A questioning attitude and methodical decision-making, partnered with a team approach to all decisions will not only increase the efficiency of work, but also the safety of the entire jobsite.