The Edge - Second Quarter 2008 - (Page 36)

POOL & SPA SAFETY | by Brian P. Vines Make Safety Part of Your Work Culture NEARLY 6.5 MILLION people work at approximately 252,000 construction sites across the nation on any given day. Like all sites, the potential hazards that exist on a swimming pool and spa construction site are many. Regardless of what is written here about safety on the job, you have probably heard it all before. The problem is that these things need to be stated because safety on the job is not part of daily culture. Unfortunately, safety doesn’t just happen, particularly in a complex industry like pool and spa construction. These operations involve a variety of worksites, specialty trades and specialized equipment, as well as exposures to collapse, the weather and a multitude of other hazards. The focus of this article is on the potential hazards and/or the most frequently cited OSHA violations and solutions as they apply to the construction industry and, more specifically, the pool and spa industry. SOLUTIONS: • Never enter an unprotected trench. • Always use a protective system for trenches five feet deep or greater. • Always provide a way to exit a trench – such as a ladder, stairway or ramp – no more than 25 feet of lateral travel for employees in the trench. • Make sure that trenches are inspected by a competent person prior to entry. “COMMUNICATION HAZARD” Failure to recognize the hazards associated with chemicals can cause burns, respiratory problems, fires and explosions. SOLUTIONS: • Maintain a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for each chemical on site. • Make this information accessible to employees at all times in a language or formats that are clearly understood by all affected personnel. • Train employees on how to read and use the MSDS. • Train employees about the risks of each hazardous chemical being used. • Provide spill clean-up kits in areas where chemicals are stored and train employees to clean up spills, protect themselves and properly dispose of used materials. • Provide proper personal protective equipment and enforce its use. • Store chemicals safely and securely. TRENCHING HAZARD Trench collapses cause dozens of fatalities and hundreds of injuries each year, and deaths have risen since 2003. PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT HAZARD Failure to use proper personal protective equipment (PPE) can cause injuries and potential fatalities. SOLUTIONS: Eye and Face Protection • Safety glasses or face shields must be worn any time work operations can cause foreign objects to get into the eye, such as during welding, cutting, grinding, nailing or when working with concrete and/or harmful chemicals or when exposed to flying objects. continued on page 41 36

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Edge - Second Quarter 2008

The Edge - Second Quarter 2008
The President’s Message
Rashes – When Chemicals Bite Back
How to Get Started as a Hot Tub Service Technician
Hydraulic Design for Impressive Effects
Project Focus
Shotcrete Work in Hot Weather
Make Safety Part of Your Work Culture
Products to Make Your Pools and Spas More Enjoyable
Index to Advertisers

The Edge - Second Quarter 2008