Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Drivers beware - Construction Zone

Road Work Safety

The article below by Joe Gorman of the Tribune Chronicle relates to the death in a vehicle collision in a Road Work Construction Zone.

This incident didn't directly involve Construction Workers, but did not harm any of the workers on this section of roadway. This involved three vehicles in a "sandwich" incident caused by the third vehicle not anticipating and obeying posted save speed in that zone.

It is VERY IMPORTANT that ALL vehicles obey posted speed limits in areas of long term construction zones as well as to slow down in temporary work zones with only signs and cones.

Come on folks. Slow it down!

Officer: Drivers beware

By JOE GORMAN Tribune Chronicle

Construction zone accidents are all too common, the head of the Trumbull Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol said in the aftermath of a triple fatality on Interstate 80.

Monday's accident in which an SUV was crushed between two tractor-trailers was unusual in that three people were killed, but the crashes themselves are not uncommon, patrol Lt. Michael Orosz said.

Drivers have to be extra alert for sudden stops when they are in a construction zone, he said.

''Be as cautious as you can be,'' Orosz said. ''Sometimes backups happen very abruptly. You just have to be very careful.''

The eastbound lanes of I-80 were closed for about six hours after the accident, which happened about 1:50 p.m. when a FedEx tractor was stopped in front of a Ford Explorer in the right lane not far from a construction site in which traffic lanes had merged. A third vehicle, a tractor-trailer driven by Eugene R. White, 62, of Shiloh, failed to stop and rammed into the Explorer, pushing it into the FedEx trailer.

The driver of the Explorer, Shirley Gilmore, 66, of Warren, was killed, along with her brother and sister, David Westenfelder, 56, and Wendy Frost, 59, both of Surprise, Ariz.

Gilmore and her husband, Larry, own Larry's Super Pawn in Warren. Westenfelder and Frost were in town to help the Gilmores celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary.

Employees at the pawn shop declined to comment Tuesday.

Gilmore's daughter is Warren police Capt. Janice Gilmore, a third-generation city police officer. Police Chief Timothy Bowers said he was fielding calls Tuesday from colleagues in law enforcement asking what they can do to help.

''It's a horrible tragedy,'' Bowers said. ''The entire law enforcement community has reached out to her. Anything that we can do for the family, we'll do.

''She always seemed like a sweet person,'' Bowers said of Shirley Gilmore.

Statistics by the Ohio Department of Public Safety show that from 2005 to 2008, 67 people were killed in work zone traffic crashes, with a high of 20 in 2005 and a low of 13 in 2007. Statistics for 2009 have not yet been completed.

Orosz said troopers are investigating and that toxicology tests will be done on White, and his truck also will be examined for any mechanical deficiencies, which is normal in any accident involving a commercial vehicle.

For her part, there was not much Gilmore could have done, Orosz said. Drivers need to be looking in their mirrors for vehicles coming from behind, but there was no place for her to go in the stalled traffic, he said.

There was no special detail to enforce safety regulations at the construction site, but a trooper was working a side job Monday for the construction company, Orosz said. The company was performing resurfacing work and bridge repair on I-80, which goes from Mount Everett Road to the Pennsylvania state line.

Shortly after the crash, the Ohio Department of Transportation detoured vehicles from the site, ODOT District 4 spokesman Justin Chesnic said. However, vehicles caught past an exit ramp were stuck the entire time.

Chesnic said trying to get traffic turned around is often done on a case-by-case basis, and sometimes local emergency management agencies assist, but that was not done Monday.

Monday's accident is the second triple fatality this year in Trumbull County in which a semi was involved.

On March 31, three U.S. Marine recruits were killed at state Route 82 and Burnett Road in Warren Township after a semi driven by Donald Williams of Austintown plowed into the back of the car in which they were traveling.

No charges have been filed yet in the accident that killed Joshua Sherbourne, 21, of Southington, Michael Theodore, 19, of Howland, and Zach Nolen, 19, of Newton Falls, although Trumbull County prosecutors have reviewed the crash report and charges are expected.

The three were heading to Cleveland in a car driven by Marine Sgt. Charles Keene to sign final enlistment papers. Also injured in the accident was Carl McDermott III, 18, of Masury, who suffered two broken bones in his neck.

In that accident, state troopers have said Williams' semi struck the rear of the car carrying the Marines just after a red light changed to green and pushed it through the intersection into the path of several other cars.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Oil Clean Up

OSHA Warns About Oil Spill Cleanup

The following article was posted in the May 4th issue of the Mobile Press-Register. It was written by Jeff Amy, Business Reporter.

It kinda took me by surprise when I noted that OSHA has warned workers of dangers in the Gulf Oil Spill cleanup. However, in thinking about it, it just makes Horse Sense for them to do what they were organized to do - Help Keep Workers Safe On The Jobsite. This is truly a HUGE worksite.

I appreciate the Press-Register passing this warning for all and any persons being cautioned about the perils dealing with the oil.

OSHA - Cleanup Workers Warned
By Jeff Amy
Business Reporter

As temporary labor firms began to recruit workers for oil spill cleanup, the head of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration said the workplace safety agency wants to make sure workers aren't harmed by the oil.

"Our objective is make sure that the cleanup is safe," said David Michaels, the assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health.

Michaels visited Louisiana on Monday, along with other health and safety agencies, to consult with well owner BP PLC about training. BP's Deepwater Horizon well has been leaking for some two weeks since the rig involved exploded and sank.

OSHA warns thta cleanup workers could face hazards from oil byproducts, dispersants, detergents and degreasers, as well as drowning, heat, falls, insects and snakes.

OSHA requires a four-hour training class before people can clean up oil. That class is not required for people who are helping to set floating booms, although BP has been requiring a separate safety class for them.

Although BP is offering to pay all cleanup workers, Michaels said that if volunteers are used, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires volunteers to receive this same training that OSHA requires.

Michael's visit came as recruitment of workers geared up.

In Alabama, Houston-based Advanced Industrial Services was trying to hire general laborers with port security identification at hourly rates of $10 to $12. The company was also looking for supervisors and safety representatives.

Construct Corps LLC, a construction labor temporary firm, was advertising for general labor in Pascagoula and Gulfport, paying $9 to $10 an hour. The firm, based in Tampa, Fla., also was seeking 200 people with OSHA hazardous waste and emergency response certification.
OSHA oil spill cleanup safety: