PLH GROUP NEWS
Safe Work Requires Healthy Minds
Date: December 1, 2021
PLH Group employees watch out for one another’s’ physical and mental health and safety.
Safe work requires both a physical and mental component. After all, physical work cannot be completed safely if the mental knowledge and decisions aren’t first established. PLH Group’s PREVENT safety program prioritizes both a physical and mental wellbeing with a focus on potential hazards – both the seen and unseen.
The holiday season sees a rise in mental health cases. According to the American Psychological Association (APA), 38% of people feel their stress levels increase during the holiday season. On top of that, the APA also reported that over 80% of U.S. adults feel additional anxieties stemming from economic, political, and pandemic-related stresses. Other factors – including seasonal affective disorder – also impact mental health this time of year. But just because mental health hazards aren’t often physically noticeable doesn’t mean the stresses and anxieties can’t impact employees’ daily lives. In fact, mental health hazards create a severe and often unseen safety hazard that must be addressed to ensure site-wide safety.
Safe work requires attention to hazards that can impact a worker’s physical and mental wellbeing.
“Our jobs at PLH Group are about more than energy-focused construction work. We truly care about our employees’ mental and physical health and safety in and out of the workplace. This time of year, there is an innate rise in stress and anxiety,” said Safety, Health, and Environmental Vice President Elsie Bentley. “Unfortunately, it is natural for humans to carry that stress and anxiety with them throughout their days and weeks, in and out of the workplace. PLH Group management and safety professionals train our employees how to manage these added pressures so they don’t turn into safety hazards at home or on the job site.”
With safety as a workplace priority, PLH Group teams take time each day to talk about how to identify and mitigate potential hazards. Tips for managing mental health include:
- Take time for yourself. Amid the chaos, focus on your wellbeing.
- Take breaks throughout the workday. Even if you do not feel you need one, regular breaks give your mind and body a rest.
- Avoid complacency. If you feel you are just going through the motions, take a break to refocus before returning to the task.
- Practice healthy habits. These include avoiding alcohol and other mood-altering substances, eating healthy meals and snacks, getting plenty of sleep, and exercising regularly.
- Talk to a supervisor if you feel you or a teammate are not fit for duty.
- Visit a healthcare professional if you feel overwhelmed by stress and anxiety.
“Because mental health issues are often difficult to identify, we work with our employees to keep a pulse on their personal mental health, as well as train them on how to look out for one another. After all, safety can only be achieved if we work as a team,” added Elsie.
PLH Group is a leading full-service construction and specialty contractor that serves the electric power and pipeline markets. PLH Group has assembled a North American team of top-quality companies that deliver services covering the broad range of needs of its customers – from pipeline construction and related directional drilling to electric transmission, distribution and substation construction, including specialized foundations and helicopter airborne operations. Safety, expertise, and collaboration distinguish PLH Group’s diversified infrastructure service solutions.