Minimal: Payroll stuffer
Good: The above with a safety meeting with extinguishers and instructions;
Better: The above and a demonstrational video;
Best: The above with the local fire department providing hands-on-training.”
After this information was presented to us, we decided that we needed a program so we took a tour around the office, shop, warehouse and vehicles. We had a company coming in every year to inspect the extinguishers, including the ones in the vehicles.
As far as payroll stuffers, we found a very good one on the Web. I also called the company that inspected our fire extinguishers to see if they had an instructional video we could borrow. They did. So now the next step was a way to present the information. That came in the form of a safety meeting.
One industrywide suggestion you will hear is the value of a safety meeting not just yearly, but monthly. They don’t need to last for very long. But they do need to accomplish something. You can also contact your insurance company to see what help they can offer. Even OSHA can help. They will actually come to your place of business and help you make your shop more compliant. It may seem like a lot of trouble to take over fire extinguishers, but it is well worth it to protect your people and your shop from tragedy.
The countertop industry has so many areas where safety is an issue. Not having a safety program would be downright negligent. Please do not minimize the importance of this; stay safe. Stay tuned for more safety information and how to incorporate this into a productive safety meeting.
About the author: Jon Olson is the production and operations manager for Sterling Surfaces in Sterling, Mass. He has been a solid surface fabricator since 1982 and can be reached at email@example.com.