Monday, January 23, 2017

This safety talk will cover GFCI (also known as ground fault circuit interrupters); OSHA says regarding Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters: All 120-volt, single-phase 15- and 20- amp receptacle outlets on construction sites, which are not a part of the permanent wiring of the building or structure and which are in use by employees, shall have approved ground-fault circuit interrupters for personnel protection. To make the job as safe as possible GFCI should be used whenever one is using electric tools. HOW GFCIs WORK: GFCI is designed to prevent fatal electric shock. A shock is felt when electricity uses your body as path-to-ground. A “ground-fault” occurs when there is a break in the ground path from a tool or electrical system. Ground-fault is the MOST COMMON electrical shock hazard. Ground-faults occur as a result of “leaking” electricity. Leakage current occurs when an electrical current escapes from its intended path. When the body provides this “path to ground” burns, injury and death can occur. The GFCI compares the amount of current going to and returning from equipment along the circuit conductors. The GFCI senses any loss of current. If a loss of current is sensed by the GFCI, it quickly shuts off the power. Takes a fraction of a second – a shock may still be felt, but the continuous current will be shutdown. All GFCIs have a built-in test circuit, with test and reset buttons that trigger an artificial ground-fault to verify protection. Test portable GFCIs each time they are used. Generally, to test your GFCI, simply press the “TEST" button in. You will hear a snap sound that trips the outlet and cuts power off to the plugin connections. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for specific testing procedures. A GFCI that trips is indicative of an electrical grounding problem. The GFCI will not protect you from line contact hazards (i.e. a person holding two "hot" wires, a hot and a neutral wire in each hand, or contacting an overhead power line). there are several types of GFCIs available - The Receptacle Type, Portable Type and Cord-Connected Type. THE DANGERS OF ELECTRIC SHOCK: The severity of an injury depends on the amount of electrical current and the length of time the current passes through the body. Example: One-tenth of an amp passing through the body for 2 seconds can cause death. Currents over 10 mA (milliamps) can cause muscle freezing, and in many cases can cause a tighter grip on tools. This continued grasping of an electrified tool can cause paralysis of the lungs. This “freezing” is what makes shocks through handheld tools so dangerous. If you can’t let go of the tool, the amperage will continue to flow through the body. Heart paralysis can occur at 4 amps and tissue is burned at greater than 5 amps. Voltage over 600 volts causes internal hemorrhage & violent muscle contractions. Remember that when working at height an electrical shock can also result in a dangerous fall.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Hard Hats

This safety talk will cover hard hat dos & don’ts; ANSI (American National Standards Institute)-approved hard hats are designed to protect you from the impact of falling objects, and with some types, from accidental contact with electrical current. Also the suspension system is designed to be a sort of shock absorber and the user must keep a safe distance between the head and the shell, approximately an inch to an inch and a half; The brim of the hat helps to prevent spilled or splashed liquids from running into your eyes. However, the way we take care of our hard hats can have a big impact on how well it does its job. Here are a few DOs and DON’Ts regarding the use and care of your hard hat: DO CLEAN your hard hat as needed, using a mild soap and water solution or other solution recommended by the manufacturer. DO STORE your hard hat as recommended by the manufacturer, which means keeping it out of the direct sun (like on the back dash of your car) and out of areas with high heat (like in the car trunk) while you’re off the job. DO INSPECT your hard hat shell and suspension for damage and deterioration every day before use, as well as after any event that may affect its integrity (such as being struck by a falling object or crushed). Properly adjust suspension systems to maintain clearance between your head and the shell of the hat. DO REPLACE your hard hat shell or suspension when it shows any signs of damage or deterioration. DO NOT PAINT your hard hat. Hard hat manufacturers typically forbid using paints because they can degrade the strength of the hard hat shell, making it easier to break. However, you can put stickers, such as first aid training stickers and other safety stickers, on your hard hat. DO NOT USE SOLVENTS to clean your hard hat. Just like with paints, solvents can also degrade the strength of the hard hat shell. DO NOT ALTER OR MODIFY your hard hat. Drilling holes and/or inserting screws in your hard hat so you can add attachments (or for any other reason) can weaken the shell of your hard hat, and can also allow electrical current to pass through. Don't cut holes for ventilation; don't heat and bend. DO NOT WEAR YOUR HARD HAT BACKWARDS unless specifically approved by the hard hat manufacturer and your employer. DO NOT WEAR A BALL CAP OR TOBOGGAN (Beanie cap) BENEATH YOUR HARD HAT. Doing so could interfere with the suspension and shell, which work together to reduce the force of an impact. Cold weather liners approved by the hard hat manufacturer are available. Obviously, your hard hat won’t protect you unless it’s being worn. But to give you the maximum protection offered, they must also be worn in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations for the particular brand and model in use, as well as in accordance with the policy of your employer. So please take care of your hard hat, so it can take care of you. Don’t be a hard head, get in the hard hat habit

Monday, October 24, 2016


This presentation will cover explanation of safety data sheet related acronyms, the new SDS sections & container labels. A new acronym GHS - GHS is the “Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals”. Manufacturers and distributors of hazardous chemicals and products must begin to standardize how they categorize the hazards of their products, as well as the information and format of their container labels and Safety Data Sheets. Here is an overview of some of the changes you will start seeing very soon, if not already: • Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS’s) have been replaced by Safety Data Sheets (SDS’s); • The new SDS’s are divided into 16 sections, with information about the product’s chemical hazards appearing in a standardized established order; 1. Product Identification. 2. Hazard(s) identification. 3. Chemical composition/ information on ingredients. 4. First-Aid measures. 5. Fire-fighting measures. 6. Accidental release measures. 7. Handling and storage information. 8. Exposure controls/personal protection. 9. Physical and chemical properties. 10.Stability and reactivity. 11. Toxicological information. 12. Ecological information 13.Disposal considerations 14. Transport information 15. Regulatory information 16.Other information, including date of preparation or last revision. • Container labels are to all display mandatory information, including a product identifier that is exactly the same as that appearing on the corresponding Safety Data Sheet (SDS); • Container labels will also have standardized signal words, hazard statements, and precautionary statements to help ensure users are alerted to applicable dangers and necessary safeguards you should follow when working with that product; o Product identifier: Specifies the product code or product name and should match the SDS information. o Supplier identification: Includes the name, address and contact information for the chemical supplier and must include an emergency telephone number. o Precautionary statements: Describes the suggested measures that should be taken to minimize/prevent adverse effects resulting from exposure to the chemical or improper storage or handling. o Hazard pictograms: Include a symbol on a white background framed within a red border, and represent distinct hazard(s). o Signal word: This will be either “danger” or “warning.” Danger is used for more severe hazards and warning for less severe hazards. o Hazard statement: Assigned to a hazard class and category that describes the nature of the hazard(s) of a chemical, and can include the degree of hazard. o Supplemental information: This will include (as needed) directions for use, weights and expirations dates. • All container labels will also display one or more of nine pictograms, which are basically icons that appears in small red boxes to help users to quickly identify the specific hazard or hazards associated with the product.

Friday, July 22, 2016

CO2 Safety

This presentation will cover certain physical properties of CO2, aspects of CO2 in a Speedway store, some model building code items & NJ field inspection nuances that may apply in other states too. CO2 gas in a beverage system is heavier than air therefore leaking CO2 gas can accumulate at the floor level in an improperly ventilated or unventilated room. CO2 gas is colorless & odorless. Exposure to high levels may cause unconsciousness or death within minutes. Per the equipment schedule on some Speedway remodels a 20” diameter x 60” high pressurized tank is provided that construction coordinates for install. This tank size can hold approximately 300 lbs. of CO2 @ 125 psig. If the pressure inside the tank exceeds 300 psig for any reason a primary relief valve on the top of the tank will vent the excess pressure. CO2 can only exist as a liquid while under pressure. If pressure is lost, liquid CO2 turns to dry ice. Dry Ice can start to form any time pressure drops below 60 psig. Speedway vendor, Nuco2, notes that some exterior frost can collect on the tank during normal & high demand periods. Beverage Grade liquid CO2 mixes with filtered water inside of a “carbonator” (typically located below the counter under the soda fountain machine) to produce carbonated water that is then mixed with syrup to make soft drinks. The following are some new requirements that were approved for addition into the 2015 International Fire Code for CO2 beverage systems: *Areas where a leak of CO2 could collect will be required to be provided with either ventilation OR an emergency alarm system consisting of CO2 detectors and local alarm. If ventilation is the remedy in the drawings: *Exhaust must be taken from a point within 12 inches of the floor. Typically the remodel designs use an emergency alarm system which should include: 1. Continuous gas detection sensor provided to monitor areas where carbon dioxide can accumulate. 2. The threshold for activation of a detector is not to exceed 5,000 parts per million. 3. A local alarm device (e.g. a strobe/flashing light) shall also be installed at an approved location. On a sidebar, NFPA 55 chapter 13 calls for a warning sign to be posted at the entrance to the room or confined area where the container is located; The warning sign shall say: CAUTION — CARBON DIOXIDE GAS. Ventilate the area before entering. A high carbon dioxide (CO2) gas concentration in this area can cause suffocation. In NJ, fire officials finding installations that have not been approved by the construction official can issue a violation notice and notify the construction official. When a business owner opts to install a local detection system, it may be approved by the fire subcode official. Also in NJ, the pressurized tank is regulated by the Department of Labor, Boiler and Pressure Vessel Bureau. An inspection sticker has to be issued by the NJ DOL for the use of the pressure vessel. The Bureau will perform a site inspection every three (3) years. A NJ construction final approval may not be issued for these installations until the NJ DOL registration has been verified.

Sunday, April 24, 2016