Before the Flood
I was watching an old movie last week. One of the characters was making a point about being prepared. His line was “When did Noah build the ark? It was before the flood.” Preparing your company for a regulatory or legal problem begins with one of your first acts, purchasing insurance. Some owners stop there, thinking that they are now in good shape. In fact, that is just the first of many steps that will help protect all that you are working so hard to build. The greater your success, the greater your liability.
As concrete pumpers you are answerable to many regulating authorities. Some of these are your local codes, state laws, OSHA and the DOT. They each have an effect on how you structure and operate your business. They all have one thing in common; compliance is not optional. Aluminum air tanks are optional; compliance to all regulating authority is compulsory.
You, as the owner of your company need to be aware of your responsibility to these regulating authorities; not knowing is not a defense.
OSHA is a good example. Are you aware that before your operators can set foot on a construction project they are required to have been given, and understand federal ‘Fall Protection’ training? The documentation of this training is as important as the training itself. The DOT has its own idiosyncrasies. If the form that you use as an application for CDL holders is not DOT approved then you are out of compliance. Are the topics and attendance of safety meetings documented? Are your emergency action plans current? Do you have a signed permission slip from all of your CDL holders to inquire of their last employer as to their safety record and results of any drug testing in their personnel file? Did you make those inquiries? Are your operators OSHA compliant while on job sites? Are they DOT compliant while they are driving?
If the answer to these questions is NO or I don’t really know then perhaps you need some help; before the flood.
The flood could be a DOT inspection or an accident involving one of your operators. The time to prepare is now.
What if one of your operators injures a coworker on a job? Your insurance carrier will do their part; they will provide you with a lawyer and try and make the problem go away. They need your help. They need for you to be doing everything in your power to insure that not only are your people trained correctly, but that the training is documented. Your DOT logs, pre-trips and hours of service are all correct and up to date. Your personnel files include all applicable data. If a post accident drug screen is called for, was it done? Was it done in a timely manner? Do you have a detailed statement from your operator explaining the ‘what where how and why’ of the accident? Has he been given instructions to discuss the accident with no one? Are you doing your job for your insurance company?
SEI Safety would like to help you with these and any other problems or questions you may have. Concrete pump safety is my business. The training, the documentation, accident prevention, accident investigation, risk management, expert witness opinions or testimony; this is why SEI Safety was formed. SEI is unique in the concrete pumping business; and is here to help you prepare your company for a safe, profitable future. And, if while doing all this training and documentation, you prevent an accident or two; that’s not all bad either
I am available from 06:00 eastern time until 17:00 Pacific time to help with your company’s safety issues. I am looking forward to you call.
Bob Sanderson (770) 403-1444
Written By Bob Sanderson Published by ConcretePumping.com