Caught in the in BITE

When It’s Your Child That Gets Caught in the in BITE

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The Phone Call

I just received a call that NO safety professional every wants to receive. What do you do When It’s Your Child That Gets Caught in the in BITE. My son who is 20 years old, in the trades, learning concrete forming, and a NEW and YOUNG Worker.  He was on a Marcon Construction Site and un-rigging a load of lumber when his hand got caught in the chain. The crane then lifted him off the ground for what I was told was 10. His hand and wrist are sore, a little swollen but nothing broken, nothing lost, but one hell of a wake up call for him.

I know all of us as safety professionals have had that same thought. What if it’s my kid? I can tell you this. I am just so happy that it was my son calling and not the CSO * OFA of the site, or the hospital. However I’ve always been of the theory that one truly doesn’t fully understand the concept of ‘Safety’ until they are apart of an accident. It would be so nice to be wrong. Yet experience, and being hurt myself at a young age has confirmed that theory so far.


The Reason 

So as a father my concern is over the top. When It’s Your Child That Gets Caught in the in BITE,  you can beat on one thing.  As a Safety Professional with over 30 years in the trades in some way or another , I’ll be using that to give him an orientation on Safety in construction and on the Job Site that is going to rival the ones we got in the Oil Sands. Back to basics and including a section that will be titled “You are not a Rigger”. Which leads me to the question, “Why was he unrigging a load anyways”? That’s part of the reason I have a section on this site for Tool Box Talks 

We have all done it, and to say ‘I haven’t’ is just not true. Doing the task, or job of another because it’s quicker, easier, and production must continue, and that’s when it happens. We stress so hard to the ones we watch over to never get caught in it. “Don’t get caught in the BITE” is what we say, the pinch points, moving parts that can grab, devices that will cinch you in. But it is still happening today and this time it hit home.


The Suggestion 

I suggest we go back to basics. I’ll personally use this as a Tool Box * Safety Meeting. It will center on not rushing the task, complacency and especially about not doing what you are not trained to do. I also suggest that if you have a child in the trades, or any dangerous job for that matter, call them tonight and tell them how much you love them. Because the fear you might develop  When It’s Your Child That Gets Caught in the in BITE, is something you do not need to feel. 

A special THANK YOU to the CSO * OFA who took care of my son.

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With several years in Construction, a vast amount in Masonry, when I turned 40 it was time for a change. Occupational Health and Safety was a calling I wish I discovered when I was younger. With over 30 years experience now in the trades, I have a knowledge base I wish to pass on.

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