A lot of companies talk safety but when it comes to acting on it, they lack luster or even ambition. It is easier to keep doing things the same way that they have always been doing it, then changing. One may think, no one has been seriously hurt, at least not that I know of.
I have heard of cars being pushed into people. I have seen videos of people being run over by loaders and cars that have fallen off forks and even in some cases crushing people. I have personally witnessed a guy in a yard standing under a car lifted by a forklift, using a pickaxe to punch a hole in the gas tank of the car to drain the fuel into a 55-gallon drum.
How can these safety hazards be avoided?
First we have to start each day with safety first. This needs to be emphasized from the top of your company all the way down the ranks. It cannot be a “do as I say not as I do” type of task. It cannot be acceptable to practice unsafe actions by anyone in the company.
You must supply the proper equipment and require it to be used. If this equipment is not being used or not being used properly, the employee doing the task is not a good employee no matter how much you think they are They do not have your best interest as an owner/manager in mind. We want everyone to go home safely, just the way they arrived that day.
Practicing safety makes everyone conscious of it and they will participate. If you start a safety program, continue it. Train and make it a monthly and yearly routine to continue to improve your safety program. Make sure all of your employees are working safely. If you see someone doing something well, publicly praise them. Make a point to tell everyone how their safe actions increase everyone’s safety. If someone messes up, immediately retrain. Do not wait as this will become a habit and habits are hard to break.
Change is always difficult and can be a challenge, but at the cost of not doing something safe, it is very valid undertaking. Once the mind is changed, the body will follow. Bad habits will be a thing of the past. “Dumb” mistakes will take a back seat to a better way of doing things. Which will translate to higher profits, a cleaner yard and a happier life for everyone involved.
Stay safe, happy and profitable.
Adam Lindley, Sales and Marketing Manager, SAS Forks, 12yrs.
Adam grew up working in his family business of Semi-tractor/trailer repair, specializing in tank trailers. He attended and graduated NWTC weld/fabrication as a Certified Welder. He started his career as an automotive repair technician and became ASE Certified Master Tech, then moved on to heavy equipment. Adam travels to customer’s yards assisting with equipment installation, training and repairs as well as forklift training for groups and tradeshows. Working at SAS we strive to design and develop new products for the Auto Salvage industry. Adam is in the forefront of this industry and currently has 4 patents.
SAS Forks, 877-727-3675, www.sasforks.com.