Asphalt Pavement Magazine - July/August 2016 - (Page 34)

NAPA Operational Excellence Awards: sAfEty AwArds Smart Ideas, Simple Solutions Enhance Safety On-the-job fixes that make employees safer and jobs easier By Mary Ann Melody W hen the well-being of employees and the public runs on a continuous loop through the minds of all personnel, safety operations never take a back seat. What may seem like an insurmountable upfront expense can pay itself forward in terms of reduced liability costs, employee satisfaction and, perhaps most importantly, peace of mind. This year, four companies are recognized for steering their entire asphalt operation toward saving lives. Each of the following companies is a winner of this year's Asphalt Operations Safety Innovation Award. Some of these winning inventions are simple and inexpensive solutions to problems that have plagued asphalt companies for years. Others involve a little more time, effort, and expense to put together. The end result is the same either way: a creative device aimed toward accident prevention. WINNER Oldcastle Materials-Montana Cos. Helena, Montana Management at Oldcastle Materials- Montana Cos. was concerned about employees whose job it is to climb inside an asphalt drum to check, clean, and replace the damaged parts. Often a considerable amount of time is spent inside these drums, inspecting the thousands of little paddles called flights, used to blend and mix the asphalt. The workers replace the flights as needed, a task that involves a torch to be brought into the 34 * View past issues online at confined space as well. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) rules require a non-entry rescue plan to be in place when workers complete this confined-space permit work. "OSHA says we have to have a way of getting you out without me going in to get you," said Skyler Willard, the company's Safety Director. The current plan of rescue if something went wrong didn't sit well with Willard. He started asking around, wondering how other facilities handled the confined-space permit tasks. Turns out, other places didn't have a good system, either. "In fact, most people didn't have anything in place," Willard said. "Most would just call the fire department and instead of a rescue it would be more of a recovery if something went wrong." Willard decided there had to be a better way, so he approached his co-workers-the very ones who put their lives at risk to do the necessary required maintenance. "We're the experts," he told them. "We can't look to some outside consultant or engineer. You guys work this stuff every day -what do you think?" Josh Mix, the company's hot plant manager, and his co-workers dabbled with ideas and experimented with a couple of the concepts and equipment. After a bit of trial and error, they devised the Asphalt Drum Non-Entry Rescue System. It costs $1,500 to make "and that's on the high end," Willard said. "A lot of items a hot plant will already have around," Willard said.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Asphalt Pavement Magazine - July/August 2016

President’s Perspective Dedicated to Your Success
Industry News
Creating a Sustainability Program: Selecting Goals to Measure Deployment
The NAPA Operational Excellence Awards
Brochures Draw Big Picture
Web Designs Link to Success
Smart Ideas, Simple Solutions Enhance Safety
Fresh Ideas for Greener Plants
Building Community While Building Roads Local outreach efforts reap dividends
Calendar of Events
Index of Advertisers/

Asphalt Pavement Magazine - July/August 2016