Seventy years ago, PK Safety was founded by Eric L. Pedley and ship captain, Josiah Knowles, in San Francisco, CA under the name Pedley-Knowles and Company. What started as one of a dozen Bay Area ship chandlery businesses expanded to include safety nets and eventually shifted to safety equipment and services.
Eric was known to be a tinkerer, which led to one of his biggest inventions: extremely durable safety nets. In the mid 1950’s Eric and his nephew, Phillip Pedley, formed Pedley Nets, a manufacturing and sales alliance in Glen Ellen, California. Through a patented manufacturing process on these practically indestructible nets, they were able to gain preeminence in the safety netting field.
They leased these safety nets to be used on high rise buildings, bridge construction and maintenance, and special nets for children to use at theme parks and playgrounds. Today these nets can still be found underneath the Golden Gate Bridge and in many amusement parks across the country.
The chandlery business continued with the addition of Eric A. Pedley (Eric L. Pedley’s son) and Mel Freeman in 1960. Eric A. Pedley came from Bethlehem Shipbuilding with expertise in mechanics of ships; Mel came from Tidewater Oil Company with expertise in and connections with the Philippine shipping industry, which gave the Company access to a new market.
By the early 1970’s the Company shifted its focus to safety equipment since the shipping chandlery businesses were all in decline and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) had just formed in 1972. Eric S. Pedley (Rick), PK Safety’s current President and CEO, joined the family business in 1979. In 1982, his grandfather Eric L. Pedley retired and the relationship with Pedley Nets came to an end.
The Company relocated to Illinois Street in San Francisco. In 1996 Rick took over the Company, shortening its name to PK Safety, and moved it two more times: from San Francisco to Oakland, CA in 1996, then to Alameda, CA in 2001. The following year he launched the Company’s first online store, expanding its customer reach both nationally and internationally. Year over year, PK Safety continued to grow and eventually got certified in 2014 to start servicing products like gas monitors.
In 2015, the Company stopped housing product in its own warehouse and shifted to using a third-party logistics (3PL) system with warehouses located in Fresno, CA, St. Louis, MO, and Carlisle, PA. This has helped the PK Safety scale with faster fulfillment and delivery along with shipping orders directly from manufacturers.
Although PK Safety has evolved over the years, one thing that still rings true is our commitment to outstanding customer service and industry knowledge— you get a real live safety expert to speak with, who will pick up the phone faster than 911. Our extremely knowledgeable safety experts receive regular trainings directly from manufacturers of the products we carry. We serve multiple industries — from construction and confined space to renewable energy and oil and gas.
We are so grateful for our customers’ support these past 70 years and look forward to serving them for many years to come.
On Aug. 21, 2017, for the first time in 99 years, a total solar eclipse will cross the US coast-to-coast. The shadow of the Moon will block the Sun, and daylight will disappear for around two minutes. Across the US, it will create a path of totality and those who live within this path will be able to see a total solar eclipse. Outside the path of totality, you will be able to view a partial solar eclipse – check out your zone on the 2017 Total Eclipse Path map.
The impact of the solar eclipse includes:
The sun has become an important source of electric power in the United States. During the eclipse, we will have a reduction in solar energy production, causing a higher demand on the grid for alternate power plant supply. Bloomberg estimated that solar energy production will be reduced as much as 9,000 megawatts. This could trigger a spike in power prices, and cause the shift of power source to extra power plants that rely on fossil fuels. You can help offset the drop in energy production by pre-cooling or automatically changing the temperature in your home by just a few degrees before the eclipse starts. Automated thermostat systems like Nest have rewards programs for reducing energy consumption at peak demand times, and the eclipse is a special event that will cause a shift in renewable energy supply, creating a special energy rush hour. Reducing your energy use during this peak demand time will help save money and reduce carbon emissions.
The only safe way to look directly at the Sun or a partial or annular eclipse is through special eclipse-certified glasses ISO 12312-2. Standard sunglasses or DIY filters will NOT protect your eyes from the intensity of even the crescent sun. This exposure can cause permanent retinal damage, especially when viewed through binoculars or other optical aids.
Want to capture the moment? Here is what you can do: clean your phone lens, hold solar glasses in front of the phone lens, and snap a picture. Don’t look at the sun when shifting the glasses from your face to the camera. Do not try to take a photo with a high-end camera without proper solar filters, because the rays can damage your eyes. Keep your eyes safe by wearing the proper eyewear, and don’t miss this rare astronomical event.
Crowds of eclipse-chasers will travel on August 21 trying to get the best chance of having clear skies for a better view. If you have planned a trip and are driving, print the map, and have alternative means of connection ready in case your cell phone ends up having reception or connectivity issues. Experts recommend using a 2-way radio, like a walkie-talkie, and texting to connect with your friends and family as more reliable means of communication. Leave home well in advance to make sure you won’t miss the event in case you get stuck in traffic. The cell phone or GPS malfunctioning is predicted as result of the huge increase in bandwidth usage. People will try to share photos, videos, or live stream the entire event on social media using their smartphones which may cause connection disruptions. Some service providers are boosting the bandwidth capacity by deploying a Cell-on-Wheels (COWs) and a Cell on a Light Truck (COLT) at several locations where most tourists will travel to get a better view of the eclipse. It is the same gear used by network disaster recovery teams after natural disasters.
For many people, the total solar eclipse could be a once-in-a-lifetime event. Enjoy the view, and stay safe! In case you miss this total solar eclipse, here is a Map of Total and Annular Solar Eclipses so you could prepare well in advance for the next one.
Atlas Obscura: The Unique Science Experiments Planned for the Eclipse
Chicago Tribune: Eclipse Offers Rare Opportunity to Study Sun, Atmosphere, Animals
Eclipse 2017: Eclipse 101
High Altitude Observatory: Eclipse Science Showcase
Interactive Map: Total Solar Eclipse 2017
Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences: Einstein’s Theory of Relativity Proven in Australia, 1922
Nest.com: Solar Eclipse, Meet the Nest Thermostat
Xavier Jubier: Pictures of Total Solar Eclipses
The weather is heating up. Outdoor sun and indoor heat at the workplace are dangerous because they lead to health issues ranging from not feeling well to life-threatening health conditions. OSHA encourages employers to know the following symptoms associated with heat-related illnesses:
The National Weather Service lists a daily heat index to alert people of the risks related to the air temperature and the humidity. It is extremely important to monitor heat indexes in closed indoor spaces like warehouses, for example, where high humidity adds to high temperatures and increases negative effect on workers’ health. A heat index of 80°F – 89°F may cause fatigue; 90°F – 104°F may cause heat cramps, heat exhaustion; 105°F to 129°F may cause heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heatstroke; 130°F or higher may cause heatstroke.
Most heat-related illnesses can be prevented by keeping the body cool and avoiding dehydration.
The following simple-to-implement steps work really well:
OSHA states that controlling indoor environments through adequate airflow and ventilation is an important method of improving air temperature and quality and preventing heat-related illnesses. Areas, where there is typically not enough ventilation, include confined spaces and other indoor areas without windows, like parking garages, hangars, and warehouses. Working in environments without continuous air flow makes people extremely vulnerable to the dangers of heat. We recommend using the following indoor and outdoor ventilation equipment that eliminates the threat of developing heat-related illnesses by increasing the air flow:
The 16 inch Confined Space Fan is a flexible tool that keeps your work area safe with fresh air. You can easily ventilate large confined spaces with this blower. The powerful fan works great for extraction as well as for aeration purposes, letting you quickly expel fumes, and increase the natural air level in enclosed spaces. It is perfect for a wide range of applications: explosive/flammable petrochemical operations (oil rigs, refineries, and gas works), wastewater management, sewer access, and chemical tank maintenance.
The ECKO K20 Ventilation Blower is a rugged, economical industrial fan. Designed for confined space ventilation, the K20 comes with a chemical- and UV-resistant molded polyethylene housing, and attaches easily to the ECKO-FLEX ducting.
The lightweight RamFan UB20 is our most popular blower. The double-walled housing is molded from a UV-resistant polyethylene making it dent-resistant and corrosion-proof. It meets stringent outdoor use requirements – CSA/UL (AC model) and is extremely quiet compared to other ventilators. Add a polypropylene blade, tough nylon motor mount, and thru-bolted motor, and this unit becomes even more powerful. It is ideal for shipyards, utilities, contractors, and rescue teams.
OSHA calls ventilation one of the most important engineering controls available to maintain a safe work environment.
If you have questions about the size or the capacity of the blower that’s right for your application, give our Customer Service team a call at 800-829-9580, or visit us online: www.pksafety.com.
By NSA Marketing team
Heat stress refers to the body’s inability to perform its natural cooling process, resulting in a failure to regulate body temperature. This can result in fatigue, dizziness and ultimately, heat stroke. While heat stress can be attributed to external factors like temperature, other factors such as workplace uniforms and work environment can also contribute to the impact of heat on the body.
A worker may not consciously realize the effect of his or her garments on core body temperature. In reaction to a rising body temperature, a worker may roll up sleeves, unbutton a collar or leave a shirt untucked, leaving them non-compliant and at increased risk of injury. OSHA cites the “use of bulky or non-breathable protective clothing and equipment as a factor that puts workers at a greater risk for heat-related illness.” As much as 89% of workers have observed fellow workers failing to wear personal protective equipment because of discomfort. When building a personal protective equipment (PPE) program for use in hot weather environments, special consideration must be given to keep workers as safe and comfortable as possible on the job.
Total heat loss (THL) is a method that measures the maximum workload or metabolic activity rate a person can sustain while maintaining thermal comfort in PPE. THL measures the amount of conductive (dry) and evaporative (wet) heat loss that occurs through the fabric of a PPE garment.
By placing fabric samples on specially designed plates that simulate hot, sweaty skin under controlled lab conditions, the ability of the fabric to transfer heat can be precisely measured. In hot conditions, a fabric that holds less heat is more desirable to allow excess heat to move away from the body. When specifying protective clothing, a garment’s THL performance should be taken into consideration. Employees in physical roles may face discomfort, physiological strain, decreased productivity and performance, and potentially increased accident rates on the job. A work uniform with better THL performance can have an impact on these challenges.
Comfort increases compliance…
Comfort reduces distraction…
Comfort reduces the risk of heat stroke…
Based on end user research, a comfortable garment has three important characteristics:
When evaluating uniform choices, specifiers should consider how each work uniform will affect worker safety and comfort level, which can have an impact on overall productivity5. Each garment should be assessed not only in terms of breathability but moisture-wicking ability and weight as well. The more employees can customize their personal uniform using garment layers, the better the chances they will remain comfortable, safe and compliant.
This article was originally published on the NSA Blog, July 17, 2017.
PK Safety experts are here to help you with finding the proper protection solution for your application. Call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
The U.S. Department of Labor first emphasized the life-threatening hazards of respirable crystalline silica in the 1930s. Today, according to OSHA, approximately 2.3 million Americans are exposed to silica on a regular basis in the workplace.
Heavy equipment operators, construction, and plaster/drywall workers are the most at risk to being exposed to silica. The most severe exposures to crystalline silica result from abrasive blasting. Additionally, exposures may occur in cement, brick, and asphalt pavement manufacturing, ceramic manufacturing, and the steel and foundry industries.
Inhaling silica dust causes silicosis and lung cancer. The symptoms of silicosis include shortness of breath, chest pain, and difficulty in breathing, however, this illness can show no symptoms for many years. These non-reversible lung diseases are the target of the new OSHA silica regulation.
On March 2016, OSHA issued a FINAL RULE to protect American workers, limiting their exposure to respirable crystalline silica.
Final Rule’s Key Provisions:
The final rule took effect on June 23, 2016. However, OSHA’s memorandum has delayed the enforcement of this rule in order to provide additional guidance for employers. The rule is comprised of two standards: one for Construction and one for General Industry and Maritime. These industries have 1-5 years to comply with the requirements according to the following schedule approved by OSHA:
The implementation of this rule will prevent about 900 new cases of silicosis each year, and save 600 lives.
3M compiled a brief overview of means of respiratory protection against silica dust:
How do you know if you are providing enough protection? Talk to us at 800-829-9580 or visit us online https://www.pksafety.com/mas.html. We have PPE to help you protect your crew and keep your company compliant.
Choosing the right respirator and protective clothing for your painting project depends on numerous factors. The most important being the type of paint that will be used (solvent-based, water-based or powder paint), and the kind of paint application you are going to use (spraying, airless spraying, roller painting, dip coating, brush painting). In addition to the painting process, personal protection is also helpful for the prepping stage of the project. When preparing surfaces for painting, cleaning and degreasing can expose you to numerous health risks. Along with the general protective measures, like working outside or in a well-ventilated area and covering up any exposed areas, wearing protective clothing and using personal protective equipment is extremely helpful.
The aerosol spray can was invented in 1927 by Erik Rotheim. Spray can insecticides were developed to protect US troops against malaria in the Pacific during the World War II. Today, more than one method of spray painting is used: air gun spraying, HVLP (High Volume Low Pressure), LVLP (Low Volume Low Pressure), electrostatic spray painting, air assisted airless spray guns, airless spray guns. These methods of painting are fantastic for paint jobs in the industrial sector, but they also create a toxic environment in the working area. You will need reliable well-fitted PPE to successfully complete your painting projects.
What to look for in a respirator? First, verify that it is NIOSH–approved, then check its filter capacity, a level of comfort, and determine if you need a disposable or a reusable respirator. The type of filter you choose should be based on the type of paint you use, your application method, and your budget.
We recommend this hassle-free Premium Paint Respirator kit for pesticide and paint spray.
Kit Includes a 3M 7500 series half mask respirator, a pair of 3M 6001 organic vapor cartridges, a box of 3M 5P71 P95 prefilters, and a pair of 3M 501 filter retainers. Add the alcohol-free cleaning wipes to your cart to make sure you are able to clean your respirator when needed. These wipes will not harm even the most sensitive parts of your respirator!
Read what our customers are saying about the benefits of buying the kit versus purchasing the items separately.
“I like that they set up the kit for you based upon your needs. I am far from an expert in respirators but I could probably have figured out what I needed after hours of research and a few phone calls. In this case, I just called and they hooked me up in a few minutes with exactly what I needed for a competitive price and oh yeah, I actually don’t mind wearing the gear! It’s a great fit and very comfortable. I figure I saved at least $100 or more in time using them.”
“I picked this up to replace an older, cheaper 2 canister respirator I had. The company that made it was bought by 3m and 3m no longer sold the canisters. I’m glad I upgraded. I picked the 7500 series over the next series down because of the soft silicone face piece. It is VERY comfortable. And PK has a part number which gets you all the necessary 3M parts to have a complete mask w/ dust pre filter. The first day I used it, a skunk had visited outside my shop, but the filters stopped even that odor, as well as the paint fumes :)”
Eye protection is critical in maintaining safety at a job site. Commonly called “chemical splash goggles,” the Pyramex G204 Goggles are a great choice for painting jobs because they contain indirect vents to restrict the influx of liquids and a convenient elastic headband.
Here is what one customer had to say about the product:
“If you are renovating, or demoing – these are a must have! They do an excellent job of protecting your eyes from falling debris or dust. We’re removing old plaster and lath, and these were a lifesaver. I looked a little like a mad scientist, but I wore them every day on site.”
If you are wearing prescription glasses, the most suitable option will be Pyramex Capstone Anti-Fog Safety Goggles with 100% polycarbonate, scratch-resistant lenses. The benefit of using them is that they have enough room to fit your prescription glasses. If you are painting outdoors, these goggles offer 99% protection from harmful UV rays.
Check out what a customer thought of these Goggles and the benefits they provide:
“I love these goggles. They fit perfectly over my prescription glasses. It has never fell down and won’t let anything in, except air to keep them from fogging up. These glasses are not costly at all and I’ve been searching forever. Hope they last a long time!”
Hand protection is vital when you are performing painting either on a regular basis or just from time to time.
The Memphis 9688 Flex Tuff II Gloves are among the most popular safety gloves. They feature a breathable 10 gauge grey cotton/polyester knit shell, coated with a grey latex dip to provide a rough finish for better grip and wear. The gloves are made in the shape of a relaxed hand for extra comfort. These general purpose safety gloves are great for painting and demolition work.
Check out our customers’ feedback:
“Purchased these gloves for hazmat work and found them more versatile and comfortable to wear performing a host of projects. They are flexible and allow for far better dexterity than lesser gloves at many times the price.”
Protective clothing is an essential part of your protective gear. Disposable coverall suits are the best for any painting applications.
This lightweight disposable Tyvek coverall features an attached hood, non-skid booties, and elastic wrist for the total body coverage. Wear it with a respirator and protective gloves to be completely covered. The suit can be used for asbestos removal, fiberglass insulation, painting, and insecticide application inside rafters.
Check out our customers’ feedback:
“Works great! It’s thin, and you will sweat like crazy in a warm attic, but it works great and I am buying more to have around whenever I need to go into the attic. We also used it to paint the ceilings in our entire house with a spray gun.”
When it comes to your safety, you should always put it first. We have what you need to complete your painting project safely. To easily get in touch with us for some good advice, call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online www.pksafety.com.
Temporary blindness. Have you heard of it? Chances are, you’ve probably experienced it. Think of a time on the job when you’ve gone from inside a building to outside and it’s extremely sunny. The change forces you to squint while you wait for your pupils to constrict and properly adjust to the brightness. During this time, you’re temporarily unable to see. Do this several times in a day and your eyes start to become strained and fatigued. This is a recipe for eye irritability and headaches.
Add in the safety element – the hazard of not being able to see for those few seconds on the job – and things become much more serious.
When you’re wearing safety glasses and need to be both inside and outside at work, what is the best solution? Depending on the situation, you have options.
For example, if you’re working on a construction site, you’re likely in and out of the shade often, going underneath overhangs or stepping inside to grab additional equipment. When you need to read something in these situations, the last thing you want is to have to take off your safety glasses because the tint on them is too dark. When you’re in the middle of the sunshine on the site and need to read something, you also need a solution to help with sun glare.
And no one wants to carry two pairs of safety glasses around and switch back and forth. So, what tint do you choose?
These changing light conditions would benefit from a Silver Mirror 53% lens tint. Silver Mirror keeps pupil change and eye strain to a minimum. A Silver Mirror tint is halfway between a clear and a gray lens and helps with brightness and sun glare, but also allows you to see well in shaded areas. Many workers in the safety industry refer to this as an “indoor/outdoor” lens tint. Its main purpose is to help with clear vision when you’re frequently going between the two.
For situations where you’re primarily indoors, but go outside from time to time or where you’re working before sunrise and into daytime, a Variomatic lens tint is the way to go. Variomatic lenses are nearly clear lenses when they’re not exposed to sunlight and darken when exposed to UV light. If you’re working inside, you can wear Variomatic lenses comfortably all day. When you go outside from the indoors, HexArmor Variomatic lenses progressively darken within 10 seconds to around a 12% light transmission. They then progressively lighten up within 30 seconds when you go back inside (versus other lenses that can take up to two minutes). These fast transition times help lessen the strain on your eyes and allow you to see safely, quickly.
This article was originally published on HexArmor Safety blog, July 27, 2017.
It is important that you take good care of your safety eyewear. Try the Allegro Cleaning Wipes for the best results.
For more information on protective eyewear, go to our website www.pksafety.com, or give us a call at 1-800-829-9580.
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The purpose of the OSHA’s final rule is to revise the outdated general industry Walking-Working Surfaces and Personal Protective Equipment (Fall Protection Systems) Standards on the slip, trip, and fall hazards, which are a leading cause of worker injuries and deaths. The Walking-Working Surfaces; Personal Protective Equipment (Fall Protection Systems) Standard, 29 CFR 1910.22, became effective January 17, 2017. The final rule covers general industries (building management services, utilities, warehousing, chimney sweeping, outdoor advertising) and aims to prevent workplace slips, trips, and falls.
OSHA expects employers to fully protect their employees from slip, trip, and fall hazards. For more details, go to OSHA.gov.
Falls from heights and on the same-level working surfaces are among the leading causes of serious work-related injuries and fatalities. Injuries occur as a result of the loss of balance most likely in the following situations: a foot/a leg hits an obstacle while an upper body continues moving forward, or while stepping down to a lower level. Falls can also result from working on the unstable surfaces, from misuse of the fall protection equipment, and if floor holes and wall openings are not protected or guarded. Most common slip, trip, and fall injuries include strains, sprains, bruises, fractures, and concussion, and are 100% preventable.
If you have questions or need help finding the fall protection equipment, please feel free to call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
All it takes is a few inches of water to cause an extensive damage to your property, which can quickly become irreversible. Water damage can be devastating especially to the building’s structure: it weakens the foundation, causes cracks, and creates easy pathways for water to enter the building. If water is not removed in a timely manner, mold and other microbial organisms can begin to grow, creating damage and health hazards.
So, when should you start worrying that moisture could possibly damage your property? When there is a problem with surface water, a soggy lawn, or when you notice that water easily gets into your basement. It is important to waterproof your property because unexpected raining and flooding can happen anytime. Remember that preventing water damage is less costly than paying for home repairs.
The basement and the floor perimeter drainage is essential for a building foundation protection. This is why you should install a good drainage system to keep the building structure intact. A minor water leak is usually not noticeable at first, but it can create major damage later. Persistent leaks lead to mold and mildew, and even termites and ants, as they love digesting softened wood.
When homeowners experience moisture in the basements for the first time, they have to determine if the water problem is likely to re-occur. To accomplish this, check the following: gutters should be free of leaves and debris, the drainage pipes must direct water 5-10 feet away from the building, the ground around the house has to be sloping at least 10 feet away from it, and the lawn irrigation system should not be placed too close to the building.
Don’t make a mistake of letting the soil around the house completely dry out, as it starts shrinking in dry conditions. Why is it important? Because a sudden expansion of soil during a rainstorm is inevitable and will cause the soil to move which puts extra pressure on the foundation. A solution here is to run a soaker hose at least 6 inches from the foundation on sunny days to prepare for the time when a storm hits your neighborhood. Clay soils are especially reactive to expansion and contraction, compared to sand and rock terrain that is usually not affected.
Here is your moisture prevention action plan: know the location of your water main, check home appliances and upgrade washing machine and dishwasher hoses regularly, install water detection devices to be able to easily find leaks and to fix them immediately. Monitor your monthly water bill to identify the unusual increase in water usage that might indicate possible water leaks.
Check your water pressure to prevent damage to the pipes: ideally it should be 40 – 70 psi. To test the static water pressure, you need a pressure gauge. If you get your water from the municipal utility, select a faucet or a hose bib near the water meter. If your water comes from a well, use an outlet that is close to the well’s pressure tank. To get an accurate reading, turn off washing machines, dishwashers, and sprinklers. It is a great idea to test water pressure even if you have a pressure regulator because it allows you to catch a problem with the pressure regulator before high pressure damages your plumbing.
Following these surprisingly simple steps will allow you to say Au Revoir to water leaks and prevent costly repairs. Now you know how to prevent water damage. Take the responsibility of protecting your property seriously.
We are here to help. Call our experts at 800-829-9580 for advice on what PPE you will need to accomplish your water damage prevention projects.
A davit is a popular crane-like device made of steel or aluminum and designed for supporting, raising, lateral moving, and lowering people, working platforms, boats, anchors, or other heavy equipment. Davit systems can be used to lower a lifeboat to the embarkation level for boarding. They can be utilized as man-overboard safety devices to retrieve people from the water. You can also see people using davits when they are working on buildings with various terrace levels.
Considering that applications can be so different, it is important to make sure that the system you want to use is rated for your specific application, what you need to use it for and the weight it needs to support: fall arrest, rescue, or material handling. As a rule, temporary assignments require systems with a portable base that can be easily moved from one location to another. More complex projects require multi-piece davit systems with a permanent base and a variety of arm sizes, capable of being adapted to numerous access challenges. For example, if a hazardous work area, such as a tank or a vat, has to be accessed frequently, a davit system with a permanently mounted base is the best solution. Before starting a task that involves davit systems, you should refer to the product manuals to verify the maximum rated load of your lifting device. Davits should be used with the approved bases rated to support a maximum davit reach that matches your application.
Confined spaces can be found on the majority of job sites. Every year workers are injured there because the confined spaces have limited ways of entering and exiting which complicates their rescue in case of emergency. In confined space entry or rescue situations, an advanced davit system is a perfect way to lift and to descend workers or equipment.
Since confined spaces significantly vary in size, shape, and location, confined space safety systems are categorized into vertical and horizontal entry types. Entering confined spaces, such as a manhole on a street, requires the vertical confined space safety equipment. Some confined spaces, such as a tank, allow only an entry from a side. For these, you will need the side-entry or the horizontal type of equipment.
All system components must be made from tough materials strong enough to withstand exposure to the elements. A good idea is to choose a system that maximizes strength while minimizing weight. Powder coated and anodized aluminum construction offers durability and reduces overall weight.
Here are some great options for you to consider:
The Jackpod Davit Top Entry Set by Skylotec consists of an upper pylon, a lower pylon, and a portable base. The portable system requires a small working base area and is easy to transport and store thanks to low weight and volume. It is recommended for use in confined spaces and for the rescue applications. High-quality finished aluminum and galvanized steel offer a high aging resistance. No tools are required for installation: the Hi-Viz, powder-coated, aluminum alloy components slide and click easily into work position.
The Davit Retrieval System by Pelsue provides an excellent method of confined space entry and retrieval. The benefit of this lightweight and easily assembled system is that it can be easily stored on your truck. It is adaptable to a wide variety of access challenges. Kit Includes a portable three-piece base adjustable from 36 to 56 inches inside diameter, a cast davit system with adjustable offset reach from 18 to 24 inches, a winch-mounting bracket.
The Jackpod Davit system does not require a lot of routine maintenance: tightening of any loose fasteners and basic cleaning performed as part of the annual inspection are sufficient. Use a solution of warm water and a mild detergent to clean the system and the labels. Do not use solvents, as this may damage the powder coating.
The Complete Quad Pod Davit Arm System by French Creek features a four-leg mobile base, a boom, a galvanized wire rope, and a winch. It can be used for confined space and rescue applications as an alternative to a tripod system. With the capabilities of an interchangeable arm, the quad pod base and the davit base can be shared between fall arrest, raising and lowering arm.
Call us 800-829-9580 if you have questions about what davit system will work best for your application, or visit us online: www.pksafety.com.
By Enviro Tech International
It’s often said that if something fits perfectly, it “fits like a glove.” However, workers using hazardous materials understand that not all gloves are created equally. Different gloves provide varying levels of protection against dangerous chemicals. Some gloves are more vulnerable to chemical solvents than others. If you’re in a lab, industrial environment or any workplace with hazardous chemicals, it’s essential to know how to protect yourself. The following infographic details glove safety.
Need new gloves? PK Safety experts are here to help you with finding the proper hand protection solution for your application. Call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
When working in tough environments, it is essential to be able to count on the performance and quality of your gear. Nothing is worse than a false sense of safety in a life-threatening situation. Petzl has developed harnesses that meet OSHA safety requirements for work-at-heights (fall arrest, work positioning, suspension, confined space entry, and rescue), and extreme sports (mountain and rock climbing, caving).
This comfortable lightweight harness is designed to provide a full range of motion for workers during their long shifts at heights. It meets ANSI Z359.1, NFPA 1983, CSA Z259.10 requirements, and features a semi-rigid waistbelt and leg loops for excellent support, and self-locking DoubleBack buckles for easy adjustment. The X-shaped dorsal construction wraps around to reduce pressure points during prolonged suspension. In the event of a fall, smart engineering distributes the weight of a user to leg straps while attached to the dorsal D-ring, which helps reduce harness trauma and allows a worker to remain suspended longer while waiting for a rescue team.
This harness is sturdy and durable. The waistband is slightly rigid for extra comfort and has a breathable mesh to prevent users from overheating and sweating. With its unique design, the harness provides even body weight distribution, so if you are leaning back in the harness, you will still be able to get the job done. The SIT features self-locking DoubleBack buckles on waist and legs, three equipment loops each capable of holding up to 22 lb of equipment, as well as one CARITOOL loop, which can take up to 33 lb load. A rear loop allows you to either attach a restraint lanyard, or a top harness and convert it into a rope access harness.
Both types of harnesses come in two sizes to suit all body shapes and to make sure you have the most comfortable fit. It is important to take good care of your equipment over prolonged use. Look for cuts and wear and tear due to use, heat, or exposure to chemicals. To ensure your safety, we (and OSHA) recommend a detailed inspection of your harness by a competent person at least once every 12 months.
We love to have happy, satisfied and safe customers. See what one of our customers has said about this product:
“We operate a waterfall rappel adventure for clients that visit our island of Kauai and this seat harness is excellent for what we do. The crew at times needs to do rescue operations, and testing this seat out on our waterfall is great. It’s comfortable, so easy on the back, and with all the extra features to it, we can hang a lot of rescue equipment in case of an emergency, therefore, be well prepared. Another beautiful thing about it, it is light but yet built strongly!”
If you are not sure what safety device to use for fall protection, ask PK Safety experts. Call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online: pksafety.com.
Stay safe up there!
By Samantha Hoch, Marketing, Haws
Federal safety regulations set forth by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) make the importance of safety equipment in potentially dangerous working environments clear. However, the stringent guidelines for emergency showers and eyewashes don’t extend to the inclusion of mandatory alarm and electronic monitoring systems on this equipment. This oversight can create unsafe working conditions in even the most well-equipped facilities. Not only is this dangerous, it’s also a potential liability.
Alarm and wireless monitoring systems are exactly what you’d imagine. An alarm system is intended to notify the management and personnel of a facility when and where safety equipment is being used.
Download the full paper: The Value of Wireless Alarms and Monitoring Systems on Emergency Equipment
This article was originally published on HawsCo blog, May 31, 2017.
Whether your 4th of July celebration will involve fireworks, grilling, or going to the beach, we have a list of easy-to-follow safety tips for you.
1. Grilling Safety:
2. Sun Protection:
3. Heat Protection:
4. Fireworks Safety:
Check out our previous blog post on fireworks safety: Learn to Be Safe: Responsible 4th of July Celebration Tips.
Here is an amazing sale on products you can use to ensure your safety. Check out these great deals!
It’s beginning to feel like summer, which adds challenges to those who work outdoors under the sun, or in warm indoor environments. Luckily, there is an amazing advanced AD-APT Technology that will help keep your hands drier and body temperature cooler throughout the work day without sacrificing grip or dexterity. This technology is used in a new version of the popular MaxiFlex® Ultimate safety gloves.
Designed as a breathable work glove with a new distinct cooling effect, the MaxiFlex® Seamless Knit Nylon/Lycra® Gloves with Nitrile-Coated Micro-Foam Grip use the Advanced AD-APT® Technology that offers a unique cooling property. How does this technology work? Microencapsulated, natural-based components integrated into the glove activate when your skin temperature rises, which initiates the cooling process.
In addition, these gloves are 25% thinner than others on the market and are 100% silicone-free. Another benefit of wearing these gloves is that they provide a comfortable form, fit and feel based on the manufacturing process. To reduce hand fatigue and increase comfort, the shape of the gloves’ mold mimic a “hand at rest” position. The thin, flexible nature of the gloves offers excellent dexterity. The glove is perfect for a wide range of applications: general purpose and precision handling work in dry environments, final assembly, micro-engineering, finishing and inspection, maintenance, logistics, and warehousing.
There is a scientific proof that continuous cooling down of your hands will quickly restore your normal physical condition when being exposed to heat in hot environments, and will improve your overall endurance and performance.
In the late 1990s, as part of their research on improving physical performance, biologist Dennis Grahn and his research partner at Stanford, Craig Heller, worked on creating and testing a Cooling Glove, designed for use by military forces. They have been exploring performance benefits that could be obtained from using a portable device, like a glove, for instance, to continuously extract heat from a body during endurance exercise in a hot environment, compared to commonly-used cooling maneuvers, like taking a cold shower, which requires taking at least 30 minutes break from the activities you are engaged in.
The researchers were stunned to find out how well the cooling down effect worked for enhancing human performance. In trying to figure out why the Glove worked so well, the researchers challenged the conventional scientific wisdom on fatigue being the reason of muscle exhaustion. As mentioned on WIRED.com in one of the articles on this subject, their scientific conclusion was: “Muscles don’t wear out because they use up stored sugars. Instead, muscles tire because they get too hot, and sweating is just a backup cooling system for the lattices of blood vessels in the hands and feet.” Per scientists, the Glove “overclocks the heat exchange system”.
“It’s like giving a Honda the radiator of a Mack truck,” said biologist Craig Heller.
Fun facts: By applying mathematical techniques from quantum information theory, mathematicians proved that no real system will ever reach 0 Kelvin: it would take an infinite number of steps. This statement puts a limit to cooling and proves that you can’t get to the absolute zero of temperature.
Interested in learning more? Give us a call at 800-829-9580 to chat with our product experts.
Father’s Day was not celebrated in the US until the 20th century. A big credit for promoting the Father’s Day celebration goes to Ms. Sonora Louise Smart Dodd from Spokane, Washington. She was deeply attached to her father, as she and her five siblings were parented by their father alone. Due to her efforts, it became possible that on June 19, 1910, Washington State started to celebrate Father’s Day. In 1972, President Richard Nixon established a permanent national observance of Father’s Day to be held on the third Sunday of June every year.
Father’s Day is coming up fast! Although any Dad will love any gift from his kids, one guy can only have so many ties hanging in his closet. Looking for something unique? We have you covered. We have put together some awesome Father’s Day gifts that your Dad will love! Let your Dad know how much he means to you by giving him a thoughtful present for Father’s Day. He will cherish and appreciate extra thought and effort you put into selecting a gift for him this year.
1. CORETEX PROFESSIONAL OUTDOOR SKIN PROTECTION KIT – a collection of sun and burn protection, insect repellent, anti-itch, and hand sanitizing towelettes and pouches
2. TELESTEP FOLDING ALUMINUM STEP LADDER – a lightweight aluminum step stool, perfect to have at home
3. KLEIN TOOLS TRADESMAN PRO ORGANIZER LIGHTED TOOL BAG – offers 31 pockets, an orange interior, and a built-in LED light to easily find tools in the bag
4. WATERPROOF REFLECTIVE BOMBER JACKET – provides excellent protection from the elements and offers superior visibility
5. LIFT RIGGER APEX GEL KNEE PADS – feature gel insert forms to patella and knee cap, maximizing comfort and protection
Discover more gift ideas in our previous blog post: Top 7 Gifts for Dads
It’s never too late to show yourself some love. Here is what we have for you: Best Buys for Yourself.
The OSHA Hazard Communications Standard (HCS) 1910.1200 is important because it prevents over 500 workplace injuries and about 43 deaths across the USA annually. Revised in 2012, it covers 43 million workers engaged in handling hazardous materials at work. The Standard mandates the identification of about 650,000 hazardous chemicals and enforces the appropriate protective measures.
As a Safety Manager at a facility that handles hazardous materials (even part time or on rare occasion), there are several factors to keep in mind to ensure employees remain safe on the job.
Here are 5 key elements of the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) and tips on how to implement them to keep your workers safe.
Have a list of the hazardous materials present in your work area.
Compile a detailed description of each hazardous material listed in the Materials Inventory.
Label all the containers with hazardous materials to identify the material and to warn employees of its potential hazard.
Train all the employees on the dangers of the particular chemicals they will be working with, and show how to use the required personal protective equipment at work.
Develop a written program which ties together all the materials and processes mentioned above.
Any job site that includes working with chemicals is required to have Hazard Communication Programs set up in order to educate workers on the various dangerous aspects of chemicals, like flammability and explosiveness. To ensure chemical safety at work, all the necessary information about the chemical hazards must be available – which can be done through the methods and practices mentioned above.
Violation of the HCS is one of the most commonly cited OSHA violations. Most cited industries include specialty trade contractors, fabricated metal, and machinery manufacturing, repair and maintenance, wholesalers, mineral product manufacturing, construction, wood manufacturing, and food manufacturing. The reason why some workplaces don’t enforce the Standard’s implementation is that they think that explaining the key dangers of various chemicals to their workers is too complicated and hard for them to understand. As a result, some employees start practicing unsafe methods while working with various chemicals. This is why Hazard Communication Training is extremely important in educating workers on the dangers of the chemicals they are working with.
One of the key aspects of a Hazard Communication Program is a careful review of the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheets) designed to inform workers about all they need to know about particular hazardous chemicals. Along with this information, workers also need to know the following: how to fully inspect the PPE required for their project before putting it on, and the emergency procedures in case of an accident.
It is extremely important to have eyewash stations set up in close proximity to the hazardous work site, regularly inspect and test them, and provide training for your employees on how to properly use them. Work sites that are required to have wash stations include laboratories, high dust areas, spraying and dipping operations, battery charging and hazardous substance dispensing areas, etc. Learn more from our previous blog post: How to Comply with Important Requirements for Eye Wash Stations.
Following these rules and requirements will create a much safer environment at your work site. If your company is not already HCS compliant, now is the time to act.
Download Hazard Communication Pictograms
Go to the OSHA’s Hazard Communication web page to learn more about the standards and resources available.
If you have questions or would like help selecting the right PPE, please give us a call at 1-800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA) reports that falls remain a leading cause of occupational injury and mortality nationwide. The industries cited for OSHA violations include wholesalers, specialty trade contractors, civil engineering and building construction, real estate, equipment and machinery repair and building maintenance. Here are some examples of why and how fall-from-a-ladder accidents happen: workers utilized the wrong type of ladder for their job assignment (ladders were too heavy for the job, which caused sprains and strains); workers used a wrong way of leveling ladders (boards or bricks instead of leveling devices); employees tried to over-reach which caused trip-and-fall accidents (they should have added outriggers to the bottom of an extension ladder to increase the footprint or just moved a ladder closer to the job area).
It doesn’t take expensive equipment to prevent these kinds of accidents. All it takes is common sense, backed by effective training and a thorough development and enforcement of best practices.
Working on and around stairs and ladders is common to many workplaces. Basic safety rules that apply to most tools also apply to ladders. And because it seems like an ordinary tool to use, most workers do not take them seriously which increases their chances of getting injured while using ladders.
Here are the main requirements:
OSHA requires that portable wood ladders be inspected frequently. Before using a ladder, inspect it to make sure it is in a good working condition.
Ladder Inspection Checklist:
Fixed ladders are ones that can be fixed in place on a building; portable ladders are movable. If you require a portable ladder, assess whether you need a self-supporting ladder, like an “A” frame, or a straight or extension ladder.
Since ladders are usually not assigned to a particular worker, consider buying a ladder suitable for the heaviest person in your team. Ladders are rated at 200, 225, 250, 300, and 375 lbs of the maximum recommended total load (including worker’s weight, clothes, tools, shoes, and the load a worker is carrying). Construction jobs should use a Type 1, 1A, or 1AA, which hold up to 250, 300, and 375 pounds, respectively.
Fiberglass ladders are best for electrical work since they are non-conductive. Aluminum ladders are lighter and more durable than wooden ladders, but their disadvantage is that they cannot be used around electricity. When using a wooden ladder, be sure it’s treated but not painted so you can tell if the ladder structure is sound. Defects may be hidden by the paint. Wood preservatives or clear coatings are usually safe.
If you have a 6’ step ladder, don’t climb above the 4th step. Step ladders are not designed for climbing to the roof, use an extension and a lean-to ladder instead.
According to the American Ladder Institute, workers can reduce chances of falling during a climb by:
Workers who use ladders are at high risk of injury or death from falls. This hazard can be eliminated or substantially reduced by following the safety regulations mentioned above, and by the enforcement of these best practices in the workplace.
Learn about OSHA Safety and Health regulations for construction; specifically the use of ladders at work sites.
OSHA Quick Card: Portable Ladder Safety offers instructions on preventing falls from portable ladders.
Think of the hundreds of times you’ve completed a task at work without eye protection, injury free. Perhaps the application doesn’t seem that hazardous, or maybe the safety glasses you have are uncomfortable, scratched up, or they fog too easily. Plus, you’re good at what you do. You’ve been doing this job for so long that being careful is second nature.
Until that one time when “being careful” wasn’t enough. It wasn’t your fault. In fact, you did everything right. Unfortunately, the tool you were using randomly failed, a coworker didn’t set up the workspace properly, a machine malfunctioned…whatever it was…IT happened.
Accidents happen every day, and usually, in situations you’ve become all-too-comfortable with.
300,000 workplace eye injuries send people to the emergency room each year nationwide. In most cases, safety eyewear is not being worn, it doesn’t fit, or doesn’t provide the appropriate protection for the application.
Of these 300,000 eye injuries, it’s estimated that 90% of them were preventable if the workers had been wearing (appropriate) eye protection.
That’s 270,000 workplace injuries that could be avoided each year.
Consider these other eye-opening injury statistics:
Considering these staggering stats, why aren’t workers wearing their safety eyewear? Here are a few common reasons we’ve heard from customers:
Remember, the best eye protection is the protection that’s worn.
This article was originally published on HexArmor blog, April 25, 2017.
Many workers are required to spend hours on their feet during their work shifts. Did you know that excessive standing is as detrimental to your health as prolonged sitting? The usual complaints are lower back and knee pain, shoulder and neck stiffness, sore feet as a result of too much standing at work. To reduce the negative effects, it is recommended to change working positions frequently, avoid extreme stretching, allow regular rest periods, and use anti-fatigue standing mats.
By law, employers must provide a healthy and safe environment for everyone in the workplace. This is why in working environments where employees stand for a long time, employers should provide anti-fatigue mats that will significantly reduce the chances of getting a workplace muscular skeletal disorder (WMSD). Studies have shown that the use of specially designed anti-stress and anti-fatigue mats eliminate discomfort. With so many mats available to choose from, how do you know which one is the best for you?
In damp environments, some types of mats could absorb moisture and potentially breed bacteria or mold. An open-surface mat that provides good drainage or a sealed mat with a textured surface will work in this case. This is particularly problematic in workplaces where various chemicals are being handled. It is important to verify that the materials from which the mat is made and the chemicals being handled in the area will not start a chemical reaction and will not cause mat deterioration.
If the workers are walking more often than standing, a firmer mat is needed to avoid sinking in with each step. For those who are kneeling a lot while performing their work assignments, an extra-cushioned kneeling mat is recommended.
Work mats come standard in rectangular and square shapes and are available in various sizes. To avoid tripping hazards, sometimes customized mat sizing might be a better solution for a large area, or when mat installation is needed under heavy equipment.
Another thing to keep in mind is that mats that will be heavily used have to be of the highest quality possible to avoid the need to replace them frequently. Anti-fatigue mats constructed from various durable materials including PVC, nitrile, polypropylene, and natural rubber are available for you to choose from. A cost-effective mat solution can be a good choice for the situations when only limited use is expected.
Here are a couple of amazing, high-quality mats you are guaranteed to be satisfied with:
Working Concepts ErgoKneel mats are designed for all-day standing or kneeling. They are extra comfortable, durable and are proven to improve your overall health. These ergonomic mats are made of heavy, resilient, closed-cell foam rubber, and are non-conductive, resistant to petroleum, and will not absorb liquids. They can also self-extinguish if accidentally exposed to fire, and are great for standing or kneeling on cold or hard surfaces, like steel, concrete, or gravel.
The ErgoKneel 5010 Extreme Standing Mat is a workstation mat with tapered edges that offers great relief from pain associated with standing all day while operating heavy machinery at work, or doing DIY projects at home.
The ErgoKneel Kneeling Mat 5050 with a built-in handle is perfect for utility workers (telecommunications, plumbers), petrochemical workers, and electricians, or for use at home (gardening, DIY). The advantage of this mat is that it is easy to clean because it is made with closed-cell rubber not plastic like some kneeling mats so you can use soap, power wash, or even some harsh solvents.
Top occupations for WMSDs that could benefit from high-quality standing mats are nurses, aides, attendants, truck drivers, assemblers, janitors, cleaners, stock handlers, baggers, cashiers, construction workers, carpenters. Some of the benefits of using anti-fatigue matting include an increased blood flow, stress-relief on legs, the back, and joints, and the prevention of slips and falls.
For more information, check the selection of work standing mats at PK Safety and learn more from these resources:
CCOHS.ca: Anti-Fatigue Mats
OSHA.gov: Ergonomics: The Study of Work
Make projects easier and more efficient with Klein Tools Tradesman Pro tool bags, backpacks, and specialized cases or an aerial apron. Whether you work on site or travel from one job to another, you have to keep your tools and instruments transportable, accessible, and secure. You can save yourself a lot of time by storing tools in professionally designed and engineered portable, impact-resistant containers that will protect them against tough environments, accidental misplacement, or even theft. Most likely, you have invested a lot in tools, so protecting them from possible damage and getting them to your job site in a secure and organized way is a top priority.
PK Safety carries several storage options that are made in the USA: tool bags, cases, buckets, aprons, and backpacks. Consider which features are most important for your application to narrow down the options in order to choose the right container. Whichever tools you are using, if the container is functional, it will streamline your work and help reduce stress on the job.
Rolling Bag for Tools
The Tradesman Pro Rolling Bag is a heavy-duty wheeled tool bag featuring a telescoping handle and rugged 6-inch wheels that can easily handle any rough terrain. This rolling bag includes 24 pockets for a great space to hold all the tools you will need on a job, and the interior is orange for easy visibility. This rolling back is very durable and great for moving tools from your truck to the site. It is load tested for up to 200 lbs. of contents for your best tools.
Keep your hands free and your tools organized and easily accessible with the Tradesman Pro Hi-Vis backpack. The high-visibility interior makes it super easy for you to find small tools. The outer reflective stripes create a much better visibility in low light conditions.
Lineman’s Tool Bucket
For portable and long-term storage, many professionals who work at heights need to use tool buckets. Constructed of rugged denier polyester to resist wear and tear on the jobsite, the Hard-Body Aerial Bucket provides abundant and secure storage with its 15 interior pockets and 14 outside pockets. These are great for linemen and electricians.
When it comes to performing many electrical or mechanical jobs, a tool bag provides an easy access to all the necessary tools. For carpenters, mechanics, repair people, and DIY homeowners, tool bags are an essential part of their working day. The Tradesman Pro Organizer Lighted Tool Bag features 31 pockets and a built-in LED light to see the tools in your bag. The LED light can also be removed and comes with a hook to hang in place while working in dark environments. The 1680d ballistic weave bag and molded plastic bottom provide long-term durability and protection from the elements.
The extra-sturdy Klein tool case is a great solution for bringing your tools into tough environments like construction sites or manufacturing plants. The piano-hinged case cover has both a combination lock and two key-locked latches for security.
The Klein Tools Aerial Apron features a large pouch for a hot stick and attachments as well as pockets many other tools. The apron includes 10 hand tool pockets, two pouches reinforced with heavy duty rivets, holes for hanging, a hammer loop and a drill bit pocket. The sewn-in magnet for small pieces like screws and bolts won’t catch on your gloves.
Having a good storage container for your tools also contributes to your own safety and allows you to avoid a dropped tools hazard and a tripping hazard. Our tool storage selection will keep you safe and organized, save space, and get your projects completed with ease.
Need help to determine the best way to store your tools? Give us a call at 800-829-9580.
Effective September 2015, the NFPA 652 Standard outlines the requirements for controlling combustible dust hazards. The Standard specifies guidelines on dust combustibility and emphasizes the importance of fire protection and explosion prevention. It states that within three years, starting from October 2015, a Dust Hazard Analysis (DHA) must be performed by all enterprises that generate combustible dusts. It is also good to know the difference between NFPA 652 and NFPA 654 standards: the first one focuses on combustible dust hazards, the second one – on explosion protection in chemical processing facilities.
Combustible dust explosion hazards exist in a variety of industries including:
In general, about 70% of dusts are explosive. In addition, non-explosive materials (sand or silica, for example) could become explosive when mixed with other explosive materials (such as organic or metal dust) in sufficient concentration.
The five factors – oxygen, heat, fuel, dispersion, and confinement – are known as the “Dust Explosion Pentagon”. A rapid combustion of dust particles is more likely to happen in a closed area where their concentration in the air is the highest. Keep in mind that secondary explosions could be even more dangerous than the initial ones: they claimed many lives of workers who were not aware of this danger. Why do secondary explosions occur? Because a primary explosion may release more accumulated dust into the air, or may damage a containment system (such as a vessel or a duct), which may cause multiple secondary explosions.
OSHA recommends identifying factors that may contribute to an explosion and completing a thorough hazard assessment of all materials handled, all operations conducted (including by-products), all hidden spaces, and all potential ignition sources.
The Standard dictates the following 10-step action plan that you need to implement in order to comply:
Unfortunately, combustible dust fires and explosions continue to occur on a regular basis. For example, 14 workers were killed in a sugar dust explosion in Georgia in 2008, and 3 workers were killed in a titanium dust explosion in West Virginia in 2010.
When properly designed, installed and maintained, explosion prevention systems protect well from the explosion hazards posed by combustible dusts. However, these systems provide little protection for the employees being exposed to combustible dust flash fires. Some employers tend to focus on wearing simple PPE (safety glasses, hearing protection, gloves) that only protects workers from easily recognized hazards. OSHA’s Personal Protective Equipment Standard (29 CFR 1910.132(d)(1)) requires employers to “assess the workplace to determine if hazards are present, or are likely to be present, which necessitate the use of PPE.” Often overlooked, Flame-resistant garments (FRGs) and ARC Flash Clothing can help protect employees from thermal and other hazards associated with combustible dust.
A significant portion of industrial explosions and fires are attributed to static electricity: fine dust in grain elevators has been ignited by static electric sparks, coal dust explosions happen in coal mines, and explosions in wood-working facilities have been reported every year. Preventing these explosions is possible by the elimination of static electricity with the help of grounding devices. Heavy-duty grounding clamps and static grounding cable reels from Stewart R. Browne are built for grounding in various industrial applications. These products are designed to prevent static build-up and control static charges in hazardous environments where equipment may be surrounded by dust or flammable liquids.
Download Combustible Dust poster: osha.gov
Check out OSHA website: Hazard Communication Guidance for Combustible Dusts
If you have questions or would like help selecting the right PPE, please give us a call at 1-800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
Simply wearing any old pair of safety eyewear isn’t enough to protect your eyes. Sure, it decreases the possibility of an injury, however, if your eyewear fits poorly or incorrectly, your putting yourself at a higher risk for injury.
For too long, safety eyewear has been treated as “one size fits all.” Head and face shapes are so different, how is it possible to find one pair that works for everyone? It’s not. That’s why finding properly fitting eyewear is so crucial to wearability, especially when 90% of recorded injuries are due to poorly fitting eyewear or workers not wearing eyewear at all.
Eyewear that fits well helps reduce injuries and increases compliance, whereas poorly fitting eyewear often leads to workers removing it throughout the workday, making them susceptible to eye injuries.
When trying on new safety eyewear, we recommend using this fit guide and reviewing eyewear descriptions and materials.
Remember, safety eyewear isn’t one size fits all. If you’re not able to pass the fit test above, try on another pair of safety glasses until you find the perfect fit. You could be saving yourself from a future injury.
This blog post was originally published on HexArmor blog, April 25, 2017.
To read the full article, go to HexArmor.com.
Let the Cinco de Mayo festivities begin early! Find your sombreros, grab some amigos, and shop our top 5 must-have safety products, perfectly paired for your easy everyday protection.
The BW Clip4 Four‑Gas Detector provides portable, easy-to-use multi‑gas detection that’s always on. It detects Oxygen (O2), Hydrogen sulfide (H2S), Carbon monoxide (CO), Lower Explosive Levels (LEL) of a variety of combustible gases. It offers a full 2‑year warranty including all sensors.
The IntelliDoX Docking Station is a bump test and calibration station for BW Clip4 four-gas detectors that performs the quickest bump test in the industry for increased uptime and no wasted calibration gas.
The 2-Year BW Clip H2S is a maintenance-free, single gas detector for hydrogen sulfide detection. Just turn on the device and it runs continuously — no need for calibration, sensor replacement, battery replacement or battery charging. That means great reliability and no downtime.
The BW Clip Hibernation Case is an excellent companion to for two-year BW Clip gas detectors for H2S or CO. It is able to hibernate monitors for a week or more, for up to 12 months of extended service.
The BW Honeywell GasAlert Max XT II Confined Space Muti-Gas Monitor is one of our popular multi-gas monitors that comes calibrated with a fully-charged battery, and is ready to use right out of the box. The handheld gas detector displays levels of all four gases on its bright, backlit LCD screen (which also shows you battery levels and pump activity). It allows you to clearly monitor your environment no matter how dark and dingy your confined space may be.
Your gas monitor needs to be bump tested and calibrated regularly to make sure it is functioning properly. This standard Bump Test and Calibration Gas for BW Honeywell gas detection units contains specific gas concentrations: Methane (CH4) – 2.5 percent, Oxygen (O2) – 18.0 percent, Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) – 25 ppm, Carbon monoxide (CO) – 100 ppm.
The low maintenance 3M 6000 Series Full Face Respirator is light and well-balanced. An innovative lens design offers a wide field of vision. The polycarbonate lens is rated as primary eye protection, meaning that you don’t need safety glasses when wearing one. Mask comes with a peel off clear lens cover to protect it from paint and debris.
The 3M 2091 P100 (HEPA) Filter is sold by the pair and features extremely fine filtration that traps all but the most minuscule particles. Our customers use them to protect against asbestos and lead dusts in particular, as well as a host of other dusts, allergens, and fumes.
Allegro Manhole Guard Rail is designed to protect an area of 33 in. x 33 in. This 42 in. high guard rail collapses to only 44 in. by 4 in. square for easy storage. The entire unit weighs only 34 lbs. Made from one inch tubular .078 gauge steel construction, the Rail is powder-coated in safety yellow for a durable finish and high visibility.
The Allegro Guard Rail Winch is a necessity for workers who need to lower gear into a manhole. With its 300 pound capacity, you can lower most gear down, but this winch is not man-rated and not subtle for lowering workers.
The 5th of May is nearly upon us! Stock up on our best personal protective equipment, and fiesta like there’s no mañana!
If you have questions, please feel free to call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
Did you know that every year thousands of people get injured at work? Having a well-stocked portable first aid kit is extremely important, regardless if it is at work, at home, in a car, or outdoors, because if an accident occurs, an immediate First Aid response can reduce the severity of injuries. All employers have to ensure that they fulfill their legal responsibilities by offering immediate and appropriate first aid help to employees, as well as supporting them with taking care of their work-related health issues.
Here is a list of what is necessary to ensure that the first aid requirements are met for your specific location:
The 1910.266(d)(2) OSHA Standard can be used as a guide to determine which type of first aid kit is necessary for each particular environment. The required content of a kit varies from one worksite to another. Some workplaces have greater risks of injury and illness because of the sort of work they do. Low-hazard environments include shops and offices. High-hazard environments are warehouses, factories, oil and gas operations, and construction sites. Where there are unusual hazards that have been identified during a risk assessment of a particular environment, workplace first aid kits should be supplemented with the appropriate components. For example, first aid kits sold for use in watercraft may contain seasickness remedies. A travel first aid kit may contain these items: antihistamine cream, sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more, and insect repellent.
The OSHA Standard on Medical First Aid Kits also gives recommendations on key features of a First Aid container. It should be clean and dustproof, have enough space to fit all the relevant components, and must be closed securely.
The following table can help you make an informed decision about the correct size and content of the kit that is required for your environment:
|Category of Hazard||Number of Employees||Size of First Aid Kit|
|Low hazard||Less than 25||Small|
|More than 100||1 Large kit per 100 employees|
|High hazard||Less than 5||Small|
|More than 25||1 Large kit per 25 employees|
It is important to maintain adequate supplies in the first aid kits. Here is a minimally acceptable number of first-aid items:
In an emergency situation, you have to act quickly, so it is vitally important to be familiar with your first aid kit and know what to use for different kinds of injuries. Call our product experts for additional information about first aid kits: 800-829-9580.
Operational shutdown/turnarounds are when maintenance and renewal work is performed in oil and gas refineries. They can occur at any time between three to five years and allow for businesses to maintain safe operations, stay competitive and meet government regulations.
Poorly conducted shutdown/turnarounds can cost businesses millions of dollars in lost revenue and drive up operating costs, so it’s crucial they’re performed correctly. Some refineries are even requiring that their employees switch from single-gas to multi-gas monitors. Many of our customers have chosen BW Honeywell’s multi-gas monitors with their shutdown/turnaround needs.
Here’s a list of our of our top five multi-gas monitors:
This is our most popular multi-gas monitor thanks to its small size, durability, extended battery life and ease of use. It can be used up to 18 hours on a single 4-hour charge. The MicroClip XL is a rugged diffusion monitor ideal for a range of industrial work sites and confined space entry.Thanks to the one-button user interface, workers can easily access all major features with very little training required to use the device on site.
This gas monitor has an internal pump that detects and monitors toxic gas levels for remote sampling. No matter how dark and dingy your confined space may be, it displays levels of all four gases on its bright, backlit LCD screen (which also shows you battery levels and pump activity).
Once activated, the BW Clip4 is always on. Two years of runtime with no charging, no maintenance or servicing, and no battery replacements. The BW Clip4 has a two‑year warranty to cover its entire service life.
Slim, compact and easy to wear, the X3 protects you from gas hazards that are ever present at job sites, especially in cold weather. This monitor uses a new revolutionary O2 sensor which allows the manufacturer to provide a three-year warranty. This significantly reduces the cost of ownership over the life of the monitor.
The Quattro we stock comes with changeable rechargeable batteries, offering hours of run time. Should it be needed, you can easily swap the batteries for alkalines in the field, though this does require purchasing the alkaline battery pack.
Every month our Product Experts offer top product picks for a given category. This month we select our favorites for hard hats because they are some of our most popular head protection products that are vital for workplace safety.
Petzl Alveo – the most comfortable, light, best-looking helmet on the market (in our opinion). The best-looking one keeps you nice and cool too.
Petzl Vertex Vent – More durable than the Alveo but not quite as comfortable. If you don’t want to replace your helmet after every little impact, this is a top pick for you!
PIP 280-EV6151V – Simple, basic hard hat. Reasonably comfortable and gets the job done. If you frequently loose your things, this is a great option (because it’s inexpensive to replace).
The previous posts in this series are:
If you have questions or need help finding the head protection equipment, please feel free to call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
We have heard from a couple of our top sales reps in the gas monitor industry that Chevron refineries are moving forward requiring the use of 4-gas monitors in their process units instead of the old requirement of just single H2S gas monitors. This is a big shift for contractors and the oil giant’s in-house team to switch from using single-gas to 4-gas monitors. This change is slated for official launch in the fall of 2017, but they are already beginning to have their in-house team use 4-gas detectors and are promoting acquisition and use of them with contractors who work at their sites all over the nation.
Neil Dwyer, Regional Sales Manager of BW Honeywell said that the new BWC4 gas detector would be a great option for these particular jobs because it eliminates the need and expense of on-site recharging stations because it runs continuously for two years without the battery needing to be charged. It is recommended that these have a routine calibration every six months.Dwyer said on-site recharging stations at Chevron can be costly since they use power and time of contractors while monitors are being recharged. The BWC4 will give added protection of 4-gas detection in addition to eliminating the need for all of this, saving both the contractors and Chevron time and money.
Ramey Packer, Northern California Regional Sales Manager for RKI Instruments, said he recommends the GX-2009 Confined Space 4-Gas Monitor because it’s lightweight, small in size, and can easily be clipped in the “breathing zone” (within a foot of your nose and mouth – on your upper chest, shoulder, or hard hat) which OSHA and Chevron is strict about. He added that the battery life is 20 hours under normal conditions and 10-14 hours in real-world conditions (if the alarm sounds off, or you frequently bump test, etc.) — enough to last a full shift.
Dwyer expects other companies to follow suit within the coming year to two years. Other oil companies could be held liable in the case of an incident, and potentially be cited for non-compliance by OSHA down the road. They could be liable for not having the same safety standards as a leading refinery such as Chevron, and worse, ultimately risking the lives of contractors and workers.
Chevron will be hosting a safety fair in mid April for industry contractors to connect with the leading manufacturers and check out 4-gas monitor options.
PK Safety’s “From 1 To 4” is a series of blog articles following the switch Chevron will be making from single-gas to 4-gas monitors in the fall of 2017.
Kevlar, a lightweight material five times stronger than steel, was discovered by a chemist Stephanie Kwolek half a century ago. Today, it is a component material used in numerous products ranging from protective vests and helmets to airplanes and cell phones. Per Scientific American, “Kevlar fiber has a density of 1.4 grams per cubic centimeter compared with iron’s 7.9 grams per cubic centimeter … Offering strength under heat, Kevlar protects against thermal hazards up to 800 degrees Fahrenheit.” Although new versatile materials have emerged in recent years, some companies are still buying the same kind of Kevlar gloves that they’ve been using for many years. Kevlar has proven to be so dependable that experts predict it will be used for another fifty years.
Selecting the right pair of gloves can be challenging because protection requirements are different for different kinds of jobs. Here is your easy-to-implement 6-steps action plan which will help you find the appropriate hand protection solution faster.
1. Choose between three basic types of Kevlar gloves
|Knitted Kevlar® gloves without coating||Commonly used in automotive industry and metal stamping||Perfect for handling large metal parts, sheet metal; easy-to-wash for a repeated use, cut-resistant||Dexterity is good, but not as great as in palm-coated gloves|
|Kevlar® Gloves with a palm coating||Perfect for a wide range of applications from parts assembly and work with electricity to construction||Great dexterity and grip for handling fine parts, cut protection; will not melt, ignite, or conduct electricity, cut-resistant||When coating wears out, the gloves should be replaced|
|Leather gloves with a Kevlar® lining, PVC palm||Applications include oil and gas industry and construction||Extremely durable, great abrasion resistance, flame- and cut-resistant||Dexterity is good, but not perfect, compared to palm-coated gloves|
2. Decide what cut-resistance level you need
The latest cut-resistance levels defined according to the new ANSI/ISEA standards were explained in the previous blog post: Understanding the New ANSI/ISEA 105 (2016) Hand and Arm Protection Cut Level Classification. Check it out – it should help you select the right cut resistance level of protective gloves required for your job.
3. Identify additional hazards you’ll be exposed to on the job: chemicals, extensive heat, and puncture
While finding the right glove to protect you from the multiple workplace hazards can be challenging, the protective gloves that will be effective against multiple threats do exist. The biggest trade-off, however, might be losing some dexterity.
4. Determine if 100% Kevlar or composite Kevlar is more beneficial for your application
The higher level of cut protection can be achieved by using the high-performance material, like Kevlar, and composite yarns made with fiberglass, steel, or synthetic materials, as well as by increasing weight of the material measured in ounces per square yard. Composite gloves typically provide higher cut resistance and better abrasion resistance compared to 100% Kevlar gloves and are often cost-saving alternative solutions.
5. Evaluate Durability
Durability is a critically important feature in a glove. To save cost, requesting a glove sample is a good idea. You can do a glove trial to evaluate durability and workers’ glove style preferences.
6. Prioritize comfort
Even if you chose a glove with the highest cut level and durability, if it does not provide some comfort while performing the job, your employees are not going to wear it. Making comfort a priority will help you make sure you are wearing the best gloves possible for your application.
Here are a couple suggestions for the following applications: material handling, general assembly, sanitation, general maintenance, woodworking, waste handling, fishing industries, recycling:
G-Tek® KEV™ Seamless Knit Kevlar® Blended gloves 09-K1618 with Nitrile-coated foam grip on palm and fingers. Key features: seamless knit construction provides comfort without sacrificing dexterity; gray 18 gauge shell for maximum dexterity; Kevlar® fiber is inherently cut resistant and will not melt, ignite or conduct electricity; foam nitrile coatings are compatible with light oils, and will provide excellent grip and abrasion resistance; touch screen capability allows users to operate any touchscreen device without removing gloves; knit wrist prevents dirt and debris from entering inside the glove. Performance properties: ANSI Cut Level A3 (Adopted by ANSI/ISEA 02/16), ABRASION 4, CUT 4, TEAR 2, PUNCTURE 1.
Want even stronger gloves? Check out G-Tek® KEV™ Seamless Knit Kevlar® Blended gloves 09-K1600 with Nitrile-coated foam grip on palm and fingers, 13 gauge shell, made with engineered yarn (Kevlar/Nylon/Steel Fiber), which are also touchscreen compatible. Performance properties: ANSI Cut Level A7 (Adopted by ANSI/ISEA 02/16), ABRASION 4, CUT 5, TEAR 3, PUNCTURE 2.
They have a touch screen capability and excellent dexterity paired with superior durability and high cut resistance.
Need new gloves? Take your time, do your research, and if you have any questions, call our product experts at 800-829-9580. Hopefully, this article will be helpful, too.
The number one reason for scratched lenses is improper cleaning. The second reason is poor handling and storage of safety eyewear.
It’s no surprise that the best way to make sure your eyewear is long lasting and high performing is through proper care, cleaning, and storage.
Take a moment to think about how you clean and care for your safety eyewear. Do you hold the lens to your shirt to rub it clean? Do you use a paper towel and regular soap to clean the lens? Or, do you (gasp!) use your saliva to clean your lenses?
We actually recommend avoiding all of those options. You could be scratching your lenses cleaning them with the materials above and the soap (and saliva) will leave a film over your lenses, which defeats the purpose of why you were trying to clean them in the first place!
Instead, try these steps to help you properly clean and care for your safety eyewear.
Step 1: Lightly blow off any loose dirt or debris from your lenses.
Step 2: Rinse your lenses with cool water.
Step 3: If you have an eyewear cleaning station at work, spray the cleaning solution directly onto the lenses.
Step 4: Use a lens-safe tissue provided at the cleaning station to dry and wipe clean. Let the lenses air dry before re-wearing.
Note: If you don’t have an eyewear tissue dispensing or cleaning station, use a soft microfiber cloth or eyewear approved tissue to dry the lens after rinsing off with water.
Step 5: If you’re not immediately putting the safety eyewear on, store it in a secure spot like a locker, or in a pouch. Never put unprotected safety eyewear in your pocket.
Following these steps will help you increase the longevity and usefulness of your safety eyewear.
This article was originally published in HexArmor Safety Blog, March 20, 2017.
If you have questions about the eye protection equipment for your specific application, please contact one of PK Safety Customer Service experts at 800-829-9580, or visit pksafety.com.
Reason #1: Petzl gear is a highly respected brand in the climbing industry for quality and reliability. It will keep you alive, and it’s 20% off at PK Safety. Petzl equipment has been thoroughly tested, re-tested, and meets the relevant certifications as well as the approval of rope access experts around the world. Those are two things in our first reason, but how can you afford to buy anything less than the best for your dangerous work and climbing?
Reason #2: Free shipping. If your order is over $99, we’ll cover the shipping. So whether you need a bunch of OXAN Steel Carabiners or an AVAO Harness, we’ll put that order together and ship it out right away – for free!
Reason #3: Because of us. We are really nice, honest, knowledgeable, and easy to deal with (not to mention modest!). We work hard to make sure you get what you need, and get it when you expect it. You can count on us to get your Petzl equipment to you and answer any questions you may have. Feel free to give us a ring at 1-800-829-9580, or contact us online at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to help you out.
Reason #4: Timing is everything. Doesn’t it feel better to get a great deal? PK Safety is taking 20% off all our amazing Petzl equipment through April 19, 2017. Petzl equipment doesn’t go on sale often, so don’t let this opportunity pass you by!
If you have questions that our 4 Great Reasons to Buy Petzl From PK Safety didn’t cover, please give us a ring or contact us online Monday through Friday 6 a.m. – 5 p.m. PST.
The smart approach to work-related heat stress prevention includes setting up a wellness program for employees at risk. This can include those who work outdoors and in hot environments, like firefighters, farmers, miners, bakery and boiler room workers, construction and factory workers, who wear PPE according to their work requirements.
Wellness programs aim to educate teams on how to pro-actively ensure their health is not affected in any way by working in the extreme conditions. It includes training on using PPE correctly, and on being aware of resources that are available, and of the preventive measures that need to be taken before going to work in the heat.
Industries most affected by heat-related illnesses are construction, agriculture, building and grounds maintenance, landscaping, transportation, utilities, and oil and gas operations. Protect your workers from potentially fatal heat stress by training them on the dangers, symptoms and appropriate response measures.
If you have questions, please feel free to call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
Anyone climbing outdoors or indoors, for work or for fun, needs a helmet. A helmet or a hard hat should be considered a fundamental part of PPE. Why? Direct head trauma from a height of about 10 feet is sufficient to cause permanent brain damage or even death. Accidents while working at heights happen all the time: climbers can fall or bump into equipment at heights, drop equipment, rocks fall, massive plumes of snow or ice can appear out of nowhere. Check out the reported accidents database, you will be surprised, as these reports prove that care and attention are necessary even on the seemingly easy ground.
What should you be looking for in a helmet? Focus on these characteristics: foam types (EPP or EPS), ventilation, weight, comfort, sizing, adjustability, and headlamp compatibility.
Need a headlamp? Today most helmets provide headlamp compatibility. Some helmets have removable headlamp clips which save you weight when you unclip them. However, constant clipping-on/unclipping might decrease the lifespan of your helmet.
Of all the helmets we sell at PK Safety, this one is one of the most popular options for safety. Petzl has engineered this helmet for comfort as well as safety, and they have always been at the top of the industry in terms of intelligent design.
This helmet is used by cellular and wind energy technicians, tower climbers, rescue workers and many people working in industrial production facilities where climbing for maintenance is required, such as pharmaceutical manufacturing, petrochemical and gas production facilities. It has a smart fit adjustment system that keeps the user’s head centered in the helmet. The fit-adjustment wheel can be easily used even without removing gloves. Complete accessorization includes optional VIZIR face shield, PIXA headlamps, or headlamps with elastic bands that can be attached directly to the helmet.
Because it does not have side vents, the VERTEX BEST helmet can get warm while you are doing some types of work in a warm environment. If your work allows you to have a ventilated helmet, the VERTEX VENT is recommended.
This helmet is well-ventilated, with optional shutters to give you a certain degree of control in various weather conditions. It meets the requirements of the EN 397 and EN 12492 standards for protection against impact, as well the requirements of the EN 397 standard for lateral deformation and the use in low temperatures. The VERTEX VENT Helmet is ideal for rope access, confined spaces, technical, on-site, rescue jobs, framing, roofing, and tree care.
Watch this video to compare pros and cons of wearing these two styles of helmets.
Our safety experts are here to help you with finding the proper protective solution for your application. Call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com. Follow us on Twitter: @PKSafetydotcom.
By Matt Murdock, COO at Wind River Investments and Alert Plus, LLC
Across the northern regions the leaves have changed color and fallen from the trees, the sound of chainsaws fills the forests as people gather firewood for the coming winter, and homeowners have begun winterizing their houses as temperatures drop.
Mean winter temperatures in much of North America will go well below 0F this year, but what can be done for the average natural gas employee whose sole source of gas detection is a portable gas detector whose lower operating temperature is -4F? How can gas leaks and air quality be known in weather conditions well below the operational rating of their equipment? This very problem struck our community only last year.
On the morning of November 22, 2013, 5 natural gas employees in Wyoming went to work as usual. At 10:15 a.. they began to weld repairs on a condensate tank, the resulting explosion hospitalized 4 of the 5 men and the fire was not put out until 1 p.m. (Casper Star Tribune, Nov. 22, 2014). The cause? Despite practicing normal safety procedures, the welding ignited ambient natural gas in and around the tank. The obvious question is why would anyone in their right mind begin welding when gas levels were so high? The answer is simply nobody – unless they didn’t know the gas levels were so high. On that day at approximately that time, the weather services recorded temperatures at -6F and wind speeds at 4.6mph bringing the wind chill down to -13F or even lower out on the Mesa. This is 9F below the rating of their handheld gas sniffer. This story, minus the explosion, is lived out day in day out throughout natural gas fields across North America and Europe 6-8 months a year.
In a post entitled “Baby it’s cold outside…” an Industrial Scientific writer advises his readers about using gas detection in cold weather. “The low temperature rating for continuous operation of most Industrial Scientific portable instruments is -20 degrees Celsius. However, they may be used at lower temperatures for intermittent periods… The response of the instrument will get sluggish at temperatures below -20C… The display may get dim and even go blank if it freezes… Battery run time will be reduced at low temperatures. Below -20C expect at least a 30- 40 percent reduction in run time… A good rule of thumb for using your gas detector in cold temperatures is that your gas monitor can generally stand to be out and working in the cold as long as you can. If it’s too cold for you, it’s probably too cold for the instrument as well.” Two things should be noted at this point: 1) -20C is only -4F and in cold regions that’s considered a balmy day, 2) while many natural gas employees must regularly work in temperatures below what is comfortable to them, production equipment does not have the luxury of jumping into the cab of a truck to warm up for 5-minutes before going back to work.
Read the full article: OilPro.com
The Bureau of Labor and Statistics report that the majority of workers who have suffered from head injuries were performing routine jobs, yet most of the workers were not wearing any form of head protection equipment. Wearing head protection is the most important thing that you can do to protect yourself from injuries. However, statistics don’t affect us, people do! So here is a real story.
The story of a lifelong rock climber Laura Bylund is powerful. She is an Outdoor Education and Rope Rigging Professional, a certified Single Pitch Instructor with the American Mountain Guides Association, an NFPA-Certified Rope Rescue Technician through Peak Rescue Institute, and a Course Provider for the Climbing Wall Instructor program with the Professional Climbing Instructors’ Association. She remembers that even though she started to learn rock climbing at a very young age and was trained by her father, she was not wearing any head protection. As a teenager, she realized that wearing a helmet is a must if you want to do rock climbing and stay alive. “I remember the top of my backpack catching a rock the size of a baseball, and after that, I was sold!” she says.
Now Laura enjoys wearing the light (and well-fitted for her small size) KASK Plasma helmet. She confirms that it is the most comfortable helmet that she has ever worn. No wonder, since it’s ergonomic turn-style knob allows the helmet to be easily adjusted with one hand. Another benefit of this helmet is that it provides enough room for long hair, making the helmet especially suitable for women. Laura says: “Just as seat belts in cars have proven to save lives, helmets are statistically championing the prevention of brain damage and death. In the words of my boss, they are simply “cheap insurance.” Even old timers … are jumping on the brain bucket bandwagon. I guess if you spend enough time dodging bullets, you get wise.”
Read Laura’s full story on the CMC Rescue Blog.
Not convinced yet? Check out these Crash Stories where other people have been grateful to their helmets for saving their lives.
The newest evolution in helmets – Kask Super Plasma Helmet – is specifically designed for work-at-height and rescue applications. It is compact, lightweight, comfortable, well-ventilated with 10 air intakes, and equipped with aluminum anti-intrusion grills to protect against debris and water. The helmet’s outer shell is designed to withstand significant impact. The four fastening points of the chinstrap are engineered to eliminate the risk of helmet loss in case of an impact during a fall. This helmet works perfectly with the SUNBRERO™ to block the sun and rain from your face, ears, and the back of your neck.
OSHA Standard 1910.135 states that “the employer shall ensure that each affected employee wears a protective helmet when working in areas where there is a potential for injury to the head from falling objects.” Workplace occupational health and safety is an obligation that must not be ignored.
If you are looking for an incredibly comfortable and quality helmet, Kask designs some of the best in the industry. PK Safety now carries Kask helmets in addition to other innovative, high-quality fall safety and rescue equipment. Call us 800-829-9580, or visit us online: https://www.pksafety.com/. Follow us on Twitter: @PKSafetydotcom.
When working in confined spaces, it’s critical that workers stay safe from hidden and potentially deadly dangers. These spaces – which, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Health and Safety Administration, are usually small and difficult to exit – can include places like coal mines, manholes, grain elevators or wine tanks, along with many others. OSHA recognized this and created more confined space regulations in 2015.
The danger of these spaces is the buildup of colorless, odorless toxic gases like carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide, or ammonia that can come from gas lines, HVAC systems or idling vehicles. Without any ventilation to ensure a moving airflow, they can quickly build to unhealthy – or even fatal – levels. In addition, when working in spaces like manholes, mines or a farmhouses, it can be difficult to enter and exit quickly should gas levels rise. As a result of these tight spaces with static air, it takes a smaller concentration of these gases to become deadly. Our latest white paper can help workers identify the risks of these enclosed spaces and help them stay safe.
There are three ways workers and managers can create safe work environments when working in confined spaces:
Going on-site with a properly calibrated gas detector ensures your device can measure noxious gases. This device will alert you when dangerous gases like hydrogen sulfide (H2S) reach harmful levels, before your senses can even detect them.
If a gas detector alerts to high levels of toxic gas (or a low level of oxygen), workers need to address this quickly. An important step is properly ventilating your workspace. Appropriate ventilation blowers and ducting that create a moving air supply will help move toxic gases out of the work area.
Most injuries that occur in confined spaces are from people working to rescue someone. To avoid that outcome, have a rescue plan in place before entering a confined space.
Want to learn more about how to work safely in confined spaces? Our new white paper, 3 Tips For Safety in Confined Spaces, breaks down the different types of confined spaces workers can encounter. When faced with working in these tight quarters, knowing how to prepare – and how to respond should gas levels get too high – can help workers stay safe. Download the white paper today to learn more.
St. Patrick’s Day is a traditional Irish feast day that takes place each year on March 17 to honor Ireland’s patron Saint Patrick for his extensive missionary work. Holiday parades and the custom of pinching people for not wearing green are fun! However, most people look forward to St. Patrick’s Day for eating traditional St. Patrick’s Day dishes, like corned beef and cabbage and Irish soda bread, and for social drinking. This is why drunk driving is a special concern for the state and local law enforcement agencies and should be taken very seriously. The NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) reports that 252 people died in fatal auto accidents involving drunk drivers during St. Patrick’s Day weekend from 2011 to 2015.
1. Celebrate at home: it’s much safer to host the party since you don’t have to drive after it’s over. If your guests drink too much, provide a safe place for them to rest until morning, or help them call a taxi or Uber or Lyft for the ride home.
2. Know where you are going: map out your travel to the place where the party will be hosted, and check for traffic delays which are very likely to occur due to bad weather conditions, transportation issues, or big crowds. If you have enough time to get there, you will not drive aggressively, which makes your trip much safer.
3. Keep contact with your family and friends: get a good phone charger to make sure you keep your cell phone charged at any time, so you could contact them in case of emergency.
4. Hydrate well and eat more: don’t drink alcohol when dehydrated or on an empty stomach: have some a shepherd’s pie or a corned beef sandwich. Drink lots of water to stay hydrated.
5. Have a designated driver in your party. If your friends are intoxicated and you do not have an assigned driver, you should arrange a different way to get home.
6. Buckle up to save lives and be cautious. Watch out for pedestrians: they may be drunk. If you are a designated driver, drive carefully, slow down, and remember: you might be sober, but you’re not the only one on the road.
7. And finally, if you walk or to bike to a party, wear high visibility clothing (it actually can be in hi-vis green), so vehicles could easily spot you on the road or sidewalks.
Unlike traditional family holidays, like Thanksgiving when most people prefer to celebrate at home, St. Patrick’s Day is an event which leads people to dress up in green outfits and go out to pubs and bars. So, follow these tips above and have a safe and festive holiday! Remember – you will have to go to work tomorrow, so be responsible!
No matter what color you are wearing this St. Patrick’s Day, we will be happy to answer your questions, just call us at 800-829-9580.
By Brian Mitchell, HSE officer, and drilling consultant
The rig count is climbing once again, and completions activity is increasing. Personnel who have been out of the business for a period of time and new hires are being put to work. With that, many are expressing concerns about restarting effective safety programs and avoiding serious injuries that come with the early stages of a boom.
In 2006 Patterson-UTI had 5 fatalities in 6 days. They did a company-wide safety stand down, and as a third party supervisor, I was required to attend a safety meeting conducted by the regional safety manager. At the beginning of the meeting, he asked the four crews, “Who has more than a year’s experience in the oilfield?” One person raised his hand and he wasn’t a driller. That rig went on to have a number of serious incidents, but no fatalities. They took several kicks, crowned the rig and dropped the blocks to the floor. 2017 may not be that bad, but every new hand and every hand who has been out of operation for a while is at risk.
There is an engineering axiom that simply states – “The more complex the system, the higher the probability of failure.”
Anyone who doubts the veracity of this statement has never stood in the door of the VFD House while a tech tries to figure out what is wrong with the Top Drive.
Engineers thrive on complexity to our benefit while a roughneck thrives on practicality and getting things done. Nowhere can this contrast create more problems than in Health, Safety and the Environment. As the rig count begins to tick higher there is a corresponding increase in concern for rig, completions and related safety.
No denying, Safety Engineers have made huge strides forward for the people in the field. The International Association of Drilling Contractors reported prior to the bust of 2015 that since 1968, Lost Time Incidents have declined 98%. Regulatory compliance requires that certified people hold HSE positions. While justified, the policy makes no allowance for the value of experience and outstanding past performance.
Watching a Derrickhand climb to the board I think about how many times I climbed without being tied off or the benefit of a derrick climber. If you were too tired and slow climbing the ladder, the driller would send you to the board on the blocks. Eventually, we started using a belt that had a better chance of breaking your back if you slipped than breaking a fall. I brought a climbing harness I used for rock climbing because it made working in the derrick a little more comfortable. What a far cry from the fall protection on every rig today.
But as with anything that requires an engineering degree, complexity has increased in the safety category to the point that there was this report in eNews from DrillingContractor.org, ”at the 2015 IADC Drilling HSE&T Asia Pacific Conference on March 11 in Kuala Lumpur, Alain Moonen, Manager Wells Safety at Shell, noted that the industry’s safety performance is tailing off even though we are still going in the right general direction. ‘It’s unacceptable that we create an environment where people still get hurt,’ he said.”
HSE has become more complicated with the addition of one more letter to become HSE&T, and presumably another certification to be competent in safety. I’m only guessing the T stands for Training, or is it Technology, or maybe Terminology? I better ask a safety engineer.
Each basin and state has different safety standards and operational procedures, and most companies have specific safety standards. Rig crews often complete classroom, computer-based and field- specific training before they can deploy. The IADC is trying to standardize safety, with most programs oriented to offshore and reacting to the Macondo blowout, and this may not be a good solution. Safety shouldn’t shift to a one size fits all mentality.
Having participated in many different safety programs, I’ve seen which are most effective and which programs aren’t. The trend is always toward increasing complexity. The IADC adds more requirements with every committee meeting, OSHA has historically added more requirements with each passing year and every state regulatory agency is compelled to add standards for compliance as well. Operator safety departments address specific incidents in their operations. While equipment gets safer, the culture of safety becomes more difficult to navigate.
Many of you will recognize a company who uses a “safety wheel” which lines out nine specific safety areas that each rig is to be concerned with. I’ve completed this training with a number of crews and very intelligent hands and attended daily safety meetings where each of these points is highlighted. Yet at the end of the day, even the sharpest men on the rig are hard pressed to recite the entire nine components of that safety program.
Read the full article: OilPro.com
The potential hazards of welding include harmful smoke (a mixture of fine particles – fumes – of metal and toxic gases), intense heat and sparks, loud noises, bright light, ultraviolet and infrared radiation. Exposure to welding fumes has been a common problem for welders, especially for those involved in railroad track and shipyard welding, automobile industry, construction, and heavy equipment manufacturing. Welding fumes are internationally classified as carcinogenic to humans (IARC classification group 2B).
The composition of welding fumes depends on the type of metals and the kind of welding rods being used. If they are made of iron or steel, the main component of the fume will be iron oxide. Welding on plated, galvanized, and painted metals generates fumes with cadmium, zinc oxide, or lead. Depending on the composition of their coating, welding rods can also generate fluoride and silica. Stainless steel fumes will contain Chromium Oxide and Nickel Oxide that can cause asthma. For this reason, stainless steel welding fume is considered to be more harmful than mild steel fume.
Other toxic gases that are created during welding include Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen Dioxides, Cadmium, and Ozone. If welding operations are being done in the presence of Chlorinated Hydrocarbons, hazardous concentrations of highly toxic Phosgene and Hydrogen Chloride may be produced.
If you cut a metal coated with paint that contains lead, welding fumes will contain Lead Oxide, which may cause lead poisoning that is harmful to your nervous system, kidneys, and reproductive system.
When galvanized steel is arc-welded, the heat of the welding arc vaporizes the zinc coating, because the boiling point of zinc is below the melting point of steel. Adverse health effects of exposure to welding fumes and gases include chronic and acute poisoning, metal fume fever, irritation of the respiratory tract, emphysema, pneumoconiosis, and other diseases.
In addition to health hazards of metal fumes and toxic gases, welding operations involve hazards of burns from flame, arc, molten metal, heated surfaces, and metal splatter. If arc welding is done near solvents containing Chlorinated Hydrocarbons, the ultraviolet light can react with the solvents to form Phosgene, a gas that is deadly in any amounts.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) should always be used along with, but never instead of, engineering controls and safe work practices. Proper eye shields, helmets, and a powered air respirator (PAPR) system can provide protection for your lungs, head, and eyes. With proper PPE the amount of gas and hazards welders are exposed to can be significantly reduced. These items include N95 respirators, flame-resistant gloves, safety glasses or goggles, welding helmets with appropriate filter lenses and plates, leather aprons, and long-sleeved welding jackets. Even if you wear a welding helmet with a filter plate to protect from arc rays and weld sparks, safety goggles can protect further against slag chips, grinding fragments and other hazards that can ricochet under the helmet. Welding helmet filter lenses and plates must meet the test for transmission of radiant energy prescribed in ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2015, American National Standard for Occupational and Educational Personal Eye and Face Protection Devices. According to OSHA 29 CFR 1910.252 (b)(2)(ii)(B), “Helmets and hand shields shall be arranged to protect the face, neck, and ears from direct radiant heat from the arc.”
Flame-resistant pants or overalls and steel-toed shoes are also required. Many work sites need to have ventilation in addition to ANSI standard PPE for welders and workers in the area to stay safe. Ventilation equipment that meets UL specifications, such as a RamFan Blower with ducting that eliminates the presence of harmful fumes in the welding area. This will help prevent welders and other workers from breathing high levels of airborne contaminants and provide adequate breathing air. Adequate ventilation depends on a few factors:
Since welders work with highly toxic materials, lockers should be provided so work clothes can be stored separately from personal clothing.
40-50 welders are hospitalized every year with pneumonia caused by welding fumes, and 2 of these welders die. It is important to encourage welders to protect themselves and to report any respiratory health concerns to their managers and seek medical help in case of exposure.
If you have questions, please feel free to call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
March 12, 2017 — a day many dread. Daylight Saving Time is responsible for you losing an hour of sleep, causing your internal clock to suffer.
On the (literally) brighter side, you get more sunlight. A huge plus for those no longer having to commute in the dark during rush hour. Though you lower your risk of accidents thanks to increased visibility, there are still other safety measures you should consider during this time of year.
1) Replace Batteries In Your Smoke & Carbon Monoxide (CO) Alarms
Check that these are working properly and replace the batteries. Replace CO alarm units older than 5 years old and smoke alarm units older than 10 years old. In addition, if you don’t have one already, create a fire escape plan in the event of a fire. If you already have one, now would be a good time to brush up on it — it could mean the difference between life and death.
2) Prepare An Automobile Emergency Kit
If stuck in bad weather while driving, this kit could be a lifesaver. Make sure to include items like warm, hi-vis clothing, blankets, flashlights or headlamps, batteries, water, non-perishable snacks, flares, jumper cables, and anything else you think you may need.
3) Recharge or Replace Fire Extinguishers
Check the pressure gauge at the top of your extinguisher. If it’s green, the extinguisher is still functional. If it falls anywhere else, especially in the red area, it is unreliable and should be serviced or replaced. For older models without a gauge, have it checked by a professional.
Every month our Product Experts offer top product picks for a given category. This month we define our favorites for harnesses because they are some of our most popular fall protection products that are crucial for workplace safety.
DBI-SALA ExoFit Harness – The daddy of harnesses. Comfortable, light, a shining example of how well American-made products can be.
Delta No-Tangle Vest Style Harness – Nice mid range harness, universal sizing so you can lend it to a buddy and durable enough that you’ll get it back in good shape (assuming your buddy will actually give it back).
Latchways Personal Rescue Device – A niche product and the coolest harness on the market. It is so good that some adventurous people wearing it could be tempted to fall on purpose just so they could drop out of the sky like spider-men. But we don’t recommend that.
Check out our previous blog posts in this series.
Product Experts’ Picks:
If you have questions or need help finding the right fall protection equipment, please feel free to call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
By Samantha Hoch, Marketing, Haws Corp.
From the oil industry to mining, agriculture to research, any working environment that puts employees in close proximity to occupational hazards, such as potentially harmful chemicals, must make workplace safety a priority. The food processing, meatpacking, and poultry processing industries are no exception.
In addition to physical hazards like high noise levels, cuts, and musculoskeletal disorders, exposure to substances like ammonia, carbon dioxide, and carbon monoxide can pose another risk to employees in the meatpacking and food processing industries.
In March of 2016, OSHA fined a Texas-based poultry plant for allegedly allowing the release of anhydrous ammonia, a gas commonly used in significant quantities as a refrigerant across a variety of food processing facilities. This colorless gas, classified as hazardous by the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard, is known to be highly irritating, with a very sharp, suffocating odor. Immediate health effects of exposure to anhydrous ammonia include:
• Burning of the eyes, nose, and throat
• Coughing and choking
• Swelling of the throat and/or chemical burns to the lungs
Prolonged exposure can lead to eye damage, severe burns, and even death.
Another OSHA violation occurred in December 2012, when a food manufacturing facility did not provide an emergency shower or eyewash in the immediate vicinity of a forklift battery charging station.
Immediate first aid for exposure to anhydrous ammonia or battery acid includes providing fresh air and immediate flushing with water for no fewer than 15 minutes. Safety data sheets for many chemicals require that eyewash stations and safety showers are close to the workstation location as a protective measure. And OSHA 29 CFR 19010.151(c) states “where employees were exposed to injurious corrosive materials, suitable facilities for quick drenching or flushing of the eyes and body.” This kind of emergency response access necessitates appropriate safety equipment and proper employee training – hallmarks of industry guidelines set forth by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).
ANSI Z358.1 is a comprehensive guideline that outlines specific parameters for the appropriate design, installation, performance, certification, use and maintenance of emergency eyewash and shower equipment across a range of industries. Failure to comply with all aspects of ANSI Z358.1 not only puts employees at risk, it opens a facility to potential liabilities and penalties. When working with chemicals, such as anhydrous ammonia, taking preventative measures is your safest bet. By supplying the appropriate emergency eyewash and shower equipment, you’ll be able to prevent further injury as well as reduce the risk of OSHA and ANSI non-compliance.
This post was originally published on HawsCo.com blog, February 8, 2017.
By Dusty Henry, Sevan Locks & Doors
When you consider occupational safety, there are a lot of different occupations that may come to mind first for needing protective equipment – construction workers, welders, etc. Being a locksmith can actually be rather hazardous work for your health as well. There is, of course, the inherent danger of dealing with going into a stranger’s home, business, or locked car. But there are even more dangers than this to consider. Protective equipment is a must, as with any occupation using powerful tools to shape and cut materials.
Metal shavings can be produced by many of the different tasks done by a locksmith. This is one of the biggest dangers that a locksmith faces during their schedule. Their small sizes make them likely to be brushed off without thinking. Metal shavings are a small annoyance, but ask anyone that has to deal with them, and they’ll tell you that they can be painful if you get them in your eye, under your nails, or embedded in your skin. Speed is an important factor in getting any job done, and this can cause metal shavings to fly. Protective gear like gloves or eyewear can be a good investment that keeps these pesky shavings at bay while still being able to work efficiently.
Just like metal shavings, splinters are another hazard that doesn’t seem like a very big deal until you get one stuck under your skin. Locksmiths that are installing new locks and equipment in buildings will potentially come into contact with cut wood. This means that splinters will be a likely possibility.
The metal shavings that locksmiths come into contact with may have an added detriment – lead. Brass keys that are machined to fit into client’s locks often contain 1.5 percent to 2.5 percent lead. This small amount of lead can have some serious health consequences when locksmiths come into contact with it. Some may scoff that this small amount is nothing to be concerned about, but participants in a research study found that they had elevated levels of lead in their system and they urged for further investigation on this issue.
Lead at high enough levels can result in death, and medical professionals note that even small amounts can be bad for a person’s health. There’s a lot of attention given to the symptoms that can happen to infants and children from lead exposure, but this can also have negative health consequences to adults as well. There are some symptoms that can occur to adults from exposure to lead, such as reproductive health issues, high blood pressure, pain in your muscles and joints, mood disorders, headaches, and memory issues.
Equipment Must Haves
For locksmiths, there are three areas of protective equipment that should be addressed if it’s not already: eye protection, hand protection, and skin protection. Eye protection through safety glasses is necessary to protect eyes from any flying debris that comes from cutting and drilling through materials or machining keys. There are a variety of glasses available that have the options that will work best for the particular tasks at hand.
Hand protection through gloves will help to protect the sensitive skin of your hands and the nail beds. A good choice here is cut resistant gloves that fit the hand closely allowing for an easy freedom of movement for handling any task.
The final aspect is protective clothing. This is probably the easiest to convince anyone to wear since they’ll be wearing shirts and pants anyway. This clothing is useful because it can give that extra protection to sensitive areas of the body. In addition, you can find reinforced elbows and knees that can help make this clothing last, compared to clothing that isn’t reinforced. In an occupation that can result in a lot of arm movements and kneeling, this can truly come in handy. This is especially true in the case where you’ll be kneeling right where the metal shavings and splinters are located.
The safety and security of a locksmith are more than just ensuring that they have personal safety in their surroundings. There are innate dangers that exist in this line of business that may be overlooked by some, but the best way to handle these issues is by getting the proper protective gear necessary for the job. The safety glasses, protective gloves, and protective clothing can be beneficial in providing you and your locksmiths a better working condition.
Sevan Locks & Doors is an award-winning locksmith and garage door company based out of Seattle, Wash. They offer fast response times, reasonable rates, and crucial security services for homes and businesses.
The ANSI/ISEA Z358.1-2014 American National Standard covers emergency eye/face washes, showers, and combination units. It is important to know that emergency showers are designed to flush the user’s body, and should not be used to flush the eyes as the high water flow pressure can damage the eyes. Eye wash stations are designed to flush the eyes/face area only. Combination units contain both features: a shower and an eyewash station.
The main requirements for eyewash stations include providing a controlled flow of flushing fluid to both eyes simultaneously, at low velocity, and no less than 0.4 gallons per minute for the duration of 15 minutes. Ensuring that the appropriate flushing system is installed within 10 seconds or 55 feet from the hazardous area is critical. The first 10-15 seconds after exposure to hazardous substances are vitally important. Medical specialists define that the correct way to irrigate eyes is from the inside-out. Washing from the outside-in has the potential to increase the damage by pushing chemicals further into the nasal cavity and the lungs.
OSHA has adopted several regulations that refer to the use of emergency eyewash and shower equipment. The primary regulation is contained in 29 CFR 1910.151, which requires that “…where the eyes or body of any person may be exposed to injurious corrosive materials, suitable facilities for quick drenching or flushing of the eyes and body shall be provided within the work area for immediate emergency use.”
The ANSI/ISEA Z358.1-2014 establishes minimum performance, installation, use and maintenance requirements for eyewash equipment in the emergency situation under hazardous conditions.
Here are some of the most common causes for ANSI/ISEA Z358.1-2014 non-compliance: missing dust covers expose nozzles to airborne contaminants, lack of proper signage on the equipment, poor lighting around the wash station, providing the improper equipment for the application (for instance, an eyewash instead of a face and eye wash), physical obstructions on the way to eyewash stations (a closed door), incorrect assembly of the unit parts (improper alignment of showerheads), lack of flow control to the eye wash, not providing the tepid water, insufficient water pressure and flow rate.
Statistics shows that the most common reason for non-compliance is the inability to maintain the required flow rate when both shower and eye/face wash are activated at the same time (a standard requirement since 2009).
For the first time in 25 years, OSHA penalties for non-compliance have increased by 80 percent starting from August 1, 2016 in all states regulated by OSHA. It is time to ensure your workplace emergency response equipment meets the ANSI/OSEA Z358.1-2014 Standard to keep your workers safe and avoid those costly penalties.
To ensure you are meeting all the necessary requirements, activate all eyewashes, drench showers and drench hose systems to ensure they are fully operational in case of an emergency. Replace any broken or missing parts immediately. Remove any obstructions or trip hazards on the way to the wash station area. Protect equipment against the extreme temperatures. Today, just providing emergency showers and eyewashes isn’t enough, monitoring their condition is as important.
Get started by taking the following steps:
Work sites that are required to provide wash stations include laboratories, high dust areas, spraying and dipping operations, battery charging and hazardous substance dispensing areas, etc.
If you or your employees are working in conditions with low light or poor visibility and are not wearing appropriate high visibility clothing, the risk of being struck my moving equipment or vehicles is much higher than when you are. Hi-vis garments include vests, shirts, jackets, coveralls and rainwear made with yellow-green, orange-red, or red ANSI-compliant fabric. These pieces of high visibility workwear can also have additional heat transfer reflective tape on arms, chest, legs, waist, and/or back areas. The specific function of high visibility clothing is to alert drivers of your presence on the site as early as possible, so they have more time to react and prevent an accident.
The American National Standard for High-Visibility Apparel (ANSI/ISEA 107-2015) provides guidelines for road construction, railway and utility workers, law enforcement, emergency response personnel, field surveyors, and airport crews.
The need to be seen while working in any lighting conditions and against any complex backgrounds is recognized as a critical issue for worker safety.
To be compliant with the ANSI standard, the material that hi-vis clothing is made of must be in one of the following three colors: yellow-green, orange-red or red. Fabrics that maintain fluorescent qualities after washing include polyester, nylon, and acrylic. While the fluorescent material is effective during the day, it doesn’t provide much of a visibility improvement for low light periods and at night. That is why OSHA requires that high visibility garments also be fitted with retro-reflective components, such as heat transfer reflective tape. While fluorescent fabric improves daytime visibility, reflective tape shoots light back at the source in the absence of natural light. When combined, these two applications can significantly improve visibility in a 360 degrees radius.
Different situations require different levels of visibility. Reflective vests are placed into three different HVSA types for uses, and performance classes for the level of visibility.
The distinction between types lies under the required minimum amount of background material. Hi-vis pants, bib overalls, shorts, gaiters are non-compliant if worn alone. Optional high visibility accessories, such as headwear, gloves, arm/leg bands are also non-compliant if worn alone.
The distinction between performance classes lies under the specified minimum design requirements for the background materials, retro-reflective and combined performance materials, and the width of reflective materials.
Use the table below to understand Fabric and Reflective Requirements Broken Down by Type and Class:
|HVSA Garment Type||O||R||R||P||P|
|ANSI Performance Class||1||2||3||2||3|
|Background Material Amounts||217 in²||775 in²||1240 in²||450 in²||775 in²|
|Reflective Material Amounts||155 in²||201 in²||310 in²||201 in²||310 in²|
|Width Minimums of Reflective Material||1″||1.38″ (1″ for split trim designs)||2″ (1″ for split trim designs)||2″ (1″ for split trim designs)||2″ (1″ for split trim designs)|
Challenges of Using and Maintaining Hi-Vis Gear:
Keep in mind that enhanced visibility garments are not the same as high visibility garments. For instance, regular apparel having just a reflective tape is called an enhanced visibility garment. This type of clothing typically is non-ANSI-compliant and may be used only for workers in low-risk areas and in non-complex work environments. Performance Class 2 or 3 meet the requirements of the ANSI Standard for High-Visibility Safety Apparel and Headwear. Construction, maintenance, survey, landscaping, towing, paving, flagging, emergency, and utility workers are required to wear certified Class 2 or Class 3 high visibility gear.
Don’t be invisible while working in a dangerous work area, wearing proper hi-vis safety clothing will prevent accidents and save lives.
Mold remediation is the process of removing mold and repairing mold-related damage in buildings. There are two important things to remember when dealing with mold: it is easier to prevent mold by controlling moisture and monitoring humidity levels; and when you face the mold danger, it is urgent that you take care of it immediately since it is harmful and is able to spread very fast. Studies have found that mold grows on materials that remain wet for 48 hours. A simple and easy way of preventing mold buildup is keeping moisture away by ventilating, ensuring there are no water leaks, and that the plumbing system is functioning well. Sinks, toilets, tubs, hot water heaters, roofs, and attics need to be checked for leaks. Windows and doors on exterior walls have to be tightly sealed. If the basement smells damp or musty, use a dehumidifier to prevent mold.
People can be exposed to mold through skin contact, inhalation, or ingestion. The majority of fungal spores have aerodynamic diameters of 2–10 µm, which allows particles to be deposited in the respiratory system. Prolonged exposure to high levels of mold can cause hypersensitivity pneumonitis – an immune-mediated disease also known as woodworker’s lung, malt worker’s lung and farmer’s lung disease.
The Department of Health has developed guidelines for cleaning up mold contamination. The following 4 basic steps are necessary for quickly remediating mold problems:
Step 1: Perform mold growth assessment
First, calculate the extent of the contamination. Assessing mold growth involves more than just looking at what is visible: mold can be an invisible threat. Behind any mold growth there is a moisture problem. Identifying the source of moisture will help you locate all mold, not just what is visible. Next, repair water leaks to prevent new growth by addressing the moisture source: fixing the plumbing system or sealing the windows, doors, and roofs.
Step 2: Remediate mold contamination
Remediation involves cleaning up existing mold-infected areas while avoiding exposure to mold. Calculating the scope of contamination is necessary: DIY project is possible for Level 1 (up to 10 square feet) and Level 2 remediation (from 10 to 30 square feet). For contamination areas larger than 30 square feet, only mold remediation specialists are qualified to perform the cleanup.
Step 3: Cleanup
The cleanup process is the same for Level 1 and Level 2 mold remediation and consists of these 5 steps:
1. Repair the water problem.
2. Isolate the contaminated area.
3. Clean. The cleaning process for Level 1 differs from Level 2 at this point. For Level 1, it is enough to clean the area with a damp cloth and a detergent solution. Level 2 requires vacuuming all the surfaces with a HEPA vacuum and then cleaning all surfaces with a damp cloth. Remove all wet and mold-damaged porous materials and discard them in plastic bags that are at least 6 millimeters thick, tie the bags closed. Wipe the outside of the bags with a damp cloth and a detergent solution prior to leaving the contamination area, and dispose of them in a regular trash can.
4. Visibility test. All areas should be visibly free of contamination and debris — no dust and dirt means no mold.
5. Dry. Cleaned materials should be dried to allow leftover moisture to evaporate. To speed up the drying process, use fans, dehumidifiers, or raise the indoor air temperature.
Step 4: Determine if the cleanup has been successful. The fact that there is no visible dust or dirt does not mean that you are done with your mold remediation project. The final step is to check if there are still signs of mold-damaged materials or moldy odors.
Minimizing exposure to mold involves administrative and engineering controls, and using PPE.
Administrative controls include identifying and restricting access to mold-contaminated areas and minimizing aerosol-generating activities by suppressing dust.
Engineering controls include ventilating mold-contaminated areas and using heavy equipment with sealed positive pressure, air-conditioned cabs that contain filtered air recirculation units to protect workers.
The main purpose of PPE in a mold-contaminated environment is the prevention of the inhalation and the ingestion of mold spores and eliminating the possibility of mold contact with skin and eyes. The minimum personal protection equipment for mold remediation includes goggles without vents, a respirator, a coverall, and rubber gloves.
Long gloves that extend to the middle of the forearm are recommended. When using the chlorine bleach or a strong cleaning solution, gloves made from natural rubber, neoprene, nitrile, polyurethane, or PVC are an ideal solution. When using a mild detergent or plain water, household rubber gloves can be used. Latex or non-latex medical examination gloves should be used if hands are likely to be in contact with infectious materials. The appropriate personal protective clothing (reusable or disposable) is recommended to minimize cross-contamination between work areas and clean areas. Tyvek coverall suits with attached hood and booties are perfect for mold remediation since they protect your whole body and are easy to put on and take off.
Safety glasses or goggles with open vent holes are not a good choice for a mold remediation project. To protect eyes, a full face respirator or goggles designed to prevent the entry of small particles are needed.
The best respirators for mold remediation include full face and half mask models: an N-95 Respirator Mask, an N-99 Respirator Mask, an N-100 Respirator Mask, a half-face respirator, and a full-face respirator. Some of the most popular brands that offer good protection against mold are 3M and Moldex.
You also need additional equipment for your mold remediation project: a vacuum with a HEPA filter and large sheets of heavy plastic to tape over doorways and air vents to prevent the spread of mold spores to other areas of the building. A negative air machine is also recommended to help with removing airborne mold.
When it comes to mold, the key is to implement a comprehensive moisture management strategy. For more info go to: https://www.cdc.gov/mold/cleanup.htm
Every month our Product Experts offer top product picks for a given category. This month we provide our favorites for single-gas monitors because they are some of our most popular gas detection products that play a pivotal role in ensuring workplace safety.
Check back soon to see Top 3 Hard Hats recommended by PK Safety!
The previous post in this series was Top 3 Multi-Gas Monitors.
If you have questions or need help finding the right gas detection equipment, please feel free to call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.
PK Safety Supply announces the addition of the wearable BW Clip4 (H2S, CO, O2, LEL) Gas Detector from BW Technologies by Honeywell to the line of products offered. The BW Clip4 joins the elite group of portable devices specifically engineered for gas detection in extreme environments.
The innovative feature of this portable detector is that once activated it remains on without charging, battery replacement or repair. You can enjoy two-year continuous operation. The advantage of using this new generation of gas detectors includes a low cost of ownership due to low to no maintenance needed. It provides two-year continuous runtime, so there is no need for sensor or battery replacement. It is built with infrared technology which gives this detector a number of advantages: IR technology based devices are reliable, fast-detecting, power-saving, and accurate. This is the reason why there is no need for battery charging over the life of the detector. It’s never been easier to have reliable gas detection on the job, you just have to clip it on!
Note: Remember to calibrate every six months and regularly perform bump tests.
PK Safety Supply has been keeping people safe for nearly 70 years. The brands that the company offers have been vetted over the years by customer feedback and experience. PK Safety provides customers with the latest, most dependable technology, the best value for the money, and exceptional support. In addition to selling occupational safety gear, the company is a Factory Authorized Service Center for BW Honeywell, Gas Clip Technologies, RAE Systems, RKI Instruments and Draeger gas monitors.
CMC Rescue is known for excellent fall protection, rescue equipment, and training. The new FreeTech™ Harness is designed for extended wear and for various work and rescue applications. The harness uses a patent-pending SwitchPoint™ System, which provides a significantly more comfortable position to a fallen, suspended worker.
The FreeTech™ Harness is a figure-8-style fall protection harness that incorporates the patent-pending SwitchPoint™ System. This newly engineered system can save lives by substantially delaying the effects of suspension trauma in a post-fall situation. Many safety professionals assume that once a fall has been arrested, the fall protection system has been successful and completed its job. Unfortunately, this is not the case. A worker suspended in an upright position with legs dangling in a harness of any type is potentially subject to suspension trauma.
It’s an orthostatic shock or intolerance, also known as HHS (harness hang syndrome). The most common cause of suspension trauma is an accident in which a worker remains motionless and suspended in a harness. Leg circulation becomes compromised, then heart circulation and potentially diminished blood flow to the brain can occur. Typical symptoms, like pallor, sweating, shortness of breath, blurred vision, dizziness, nausea, hypotension and numbness of the legs, usually occur after 15-20 minutes of free hanging. If the worker is not rescued in time, fainting and death due to the lack of oxygen in the brain are imminent.
Its unique release mechanism provides a way for the user to safely and easily transfer their body weight from the dorsal connector on the upper back to the front waist location of the harness to reorient the user into a seated position. This re-positioning helps the worker by providing relief from loss of leg circulation, which delays suspension trauma.
Other Prominent Features of the FreeTech Harness Include:
This item, like many CMC Rescue items, is made in the U.S.A. and is UL Classified to ANSI Z359.11.
OSHA requires that fall protection is provided at elevations of four feet in general industry workplaces, five feet in shipyards, six feet in the construction industry and eight feet in longshoring operations. Generally, fall-protection harnesses are application-driven.
This harness is ideal for rescuers. Safety, efficiency, and speed are the main principles of any rescuer’s work. You also have to factor your gear into this equation. A harness is vitally important for rescuers because they are in continuous physical contact with this piece of equipment on a daily basis. This is why if the harness is uncomfortable, it may disrupt the worker’s ability to perform their job. The FreeTech harness gives the user the features they need to avoid disruption and stay safe in case of a fall incident.
CMC Rescue manufactures and ships products out of Santa Barbara, CA the same day an order is placed. Today, all CMC Rescue, CMC ProSeries, CMC ProTech, and CMC/Roco Industrial Rescue Brand Harnesses, Straps, Packs, and Bags are manufactured at their Santa Barbara, California facility.
Today we invite you to take a closer look at what makes 3M DBI-SALA® Fall Protection products a great choice for all your fall safety needs. Fall safety includes any situation where you or your workers are in danger of death or injury in the event of losing your balance or grip while on the job. This includes climbing a ladder, pole or conducting a roof inspection, to doing suspended platform work, or being lowered into or entering a confined space.
DBI-SALA folks are masters of building tripods, winches, and harnesses. Tripods are used to provide anchorage during confined space entry, a rescue, as well as positioning, fall arrest, and material handling support. DBI-SALA aluminum tripods are lightweight and easy to set up. Their winches that are durable and robust, and their harnesses will keep you safe in conjunction with the other equipment. Virtually all DBI-SALA products include i-SAFE™ functionality. The RFID tracking software allows you to track safety equipment and manage your safety inspection program on any asset or fall protection products with i-Safe™ tags.
Tripods work well for lowering workers into confined spaces and also for retrieval. For most confined space entry teams, we recommend the DBI-SALA 7 ft. Confined Space Tripod and Winch Combo that meets all applicable OSHA standards. The benefits of using a complete system are obvious: you have all-you-need devices guaranteed to be compatible with each other. The components included in this popular unit are extremely efficient. For instance, the rated working load of this combo is 350 pounds for work support (raising or lowering equipment) and 310 pounds for fall arrest. Let’s review some key features of the combo’s components.
The 7 ft. aluminum tripod is lightweight, portable, can be easily set up by one worker and transported from one location to another very easily.
The Salalift II Retrieval Winch has a feature that is very unique to this product is that this tripod has rollers at the top. This setup allows the winch to come up through one roller, through the next roller and down which ensures an easy descent in a going down scenario. A simple flip of a switch quickly returns the winch back into a retrieval mode. This is a tremendously convenient feature. Most of other tripods use the hanging bits.
Want to see a live demonstration of this Combo? Check out this video.
Why DBI-SALA harnesses?
You can always depend on DBI-SALA harnesses to save your life. You just have to choose the right one for your application. Their advantage is that they are thoroughly engineered for a specific type of operation, and meet all OSHA and ANSI standards, including the stringent ANSI Z359.1. When you look for a harness, first of all, you are looking for the highest quality of the following parameters: dorsal connection, webbing, adjustment points, leg straps, pelvic support, stitching, padding, seat slings, impact indicators, and lanyard keepers. DBI SALA has the products and expertise to help you stay completely safe and comfortable.
Top 6 Harnesses – Choose the Best One for Your Application:
1. Are you a tower climber? ExoFit will be best for you if you are working on a cell, radio, water, and many other types of towers or antennas. It features front and back D-rings, belt with a back pad and side D-rings, removable seat sling with positioning D-rings, quick-connect buckles. Seat sling features cushioned padding for the ultimate comfort and performance. Back D-ring is perfect for connection to fall protection system and front D-ring is ideal for use with a ladder safety system. We strongly encourage you to use a 100% tie-off lanyard when in tower climbing scenarios.
2. The Wind Energy ExoFit Harness is designed for anyone building, maintaining or transporting wind turbines and similar equipment. It has a sewn-in reinforced lumbar support to ease the strain on your back and hips and all D-rings are PVC-coated to prevent scratches to the nacelle and other sensitive surfaces.
3. Check out ExoFit Iron Workers Harness with an excellent tool-carrying capability. Extra tough tubular web encases sub-pelvic webbing for added wear resistance for straddling beams.
4. Construction harnesses are made for general construction work, and have a sewn-in hip pad and removable body belt. This harness and tool bag combo provides space for tools, comfort, and fall safety in one.
5. Delta Oil and Gas Harness harnesses are designed specifically for workers who operate the monkey and tubing boards on oil rigs. These models include connections for an optical derrick belt, which provides comfort while positioning for the next drilling pipe.
6. Don’t forget about the Delta Arc Flash harness! This model is equipped with webbing attachment loops instead of metal, which makes it perfect for use in any industry where high voltage electricity is a concern. The harness is made with cut- and abrasion-resistant Nomex® and Kevlar® materials to make it highly resistant to heat – up to 40 cal/cm2. This piece of equipment meets ASTM F887-05 Standard specification for personal climbing equipment.
Despite special emphasis from OSHA, falls from heights remain a serious occupational safety challenge. The main reason: not using fall protection equipment. Don’t wait for a fall to occur before taking action to update your fall protection equipment.
If you have questions or need help finding fall protection solutions, please feel free to call us at 800-829-9580, or visit us online at www.pksafety.com.