Presented by CEI Group

Category: Roofer Safety (Page 1 of 2)

Overview of National Safety Month

June is National Safety Month, established by the National Safety Council in 1996. This June, we joined other organizations and the National Safety Council to bring extra attention to safety issues in and outside the workplace. We shared safety tips and facts about safety issues each week, including safety awareness, roadway safety, risk reduction, slips, trips, and falls. In honor of National Safety Month, we wanted to share tips and facts about each issue.

Week 1: Safety Awareness

At CEI, safety is a major focus in all departments. Throughout the year, our employees undergo specific training, and we continuously share tips and facts to help them be aware of the safety risks they face daily in our industry. Safety awareness is important to keep our employees and others around us safe, whether on a job site or in the office.

Week 2: Roadway Safety 

For week 2, we shared tips about staying safe on the road. 

  1. Stay focused on the road and your surroundings. Never drive distracted.
  2. Do not use your cell phone or any electronic device while driving. If there is an emergency, safely pull off the road or into a “Texting Zone” before using your devices.
  3. Avoid arguments and stressful or emotional conversations with passengers.
  4. Avoid eating or grooming while driving.
  5. Be sure children are properly and safely Buckled in. Properly secure pets in a pet carrier or portable kennel.
  6. Drive sober. Never drive impaired by alcohol or drugs and discourage others from doing so.

Week 3: Risk Reduction 

For week 3, we discussed some basics of risk reduction plans for any industry. Regardless of your industry, target market, and personnel, you will always face a certain level of risk while operating. This is why you must find ways to reduce your company’s risk. Here are basic steps to approach risk reduction:

  1. Risk Assessment & Identification – Identifying and assessing the risk faced through operations.  
  2. Risk Mitigation – Find Practices to minimize or reduce the risks.
  3. Preventive Measures – Look for preventive measures to keep workers safe during operations.
  4. Contingency Planning – Contingency planning gives you a blueprint to follow in an emergency.
  5. Monitoring & Review – monitor your risk reduction approaches and practices to ensure they work.   

Week 4: Slip, Trips and Falls 

In the last week of National Safety Month, we discussed the risk of slips, trips, and falls in the roofing industry. Slips, trips, and falls account for approximately 20% of all work-related injuries. While the risk is even more common in winter, it can be present in any weather condition (rain, ice, snow, or sunny). Here are some things to remember to prevent daily slips, trips, and falls.

  1. Practice Good Housekeeping – removing clutter that can increase trips and slips is important to keep the workspace safe. 
  2. Adequate Lighting – Workers can navigate through spaces better with enough light. Given this, it’s best to place proper lighting in access and egress points such as halls, ramps, stairs, and exits. 
  3. Be aware of safety signs and markers- Watch out for safety signs telling you of hazardous space, as well as flagged-off areas that can show areas to prevent you from falling. 
  4. Clear the area from snow, ice, and spills- Properly clearing the workspace from slippery elements like snow, ice, or water is important to ensure safety. 
  5. Wear proper footwear – Wear Non-slip shoes with good traction to protect workers from static electricity, falling objects, explosions, exposure to hazardous substances, and other risks.
  6. Implement safety plans and protocols- A well-thought-out safety plan cements all efforts to promote fall protection, especially in high-risk workspaces. This plan must include in-depth risk assessments, safety standards and practices, training, regular inspections, equipment guidelines, and toolbox talks.

Heat Illness Prevention: How to Prevent Heat Stroke and Heat Exhaustion While at Work

Heat illnesses like heat stroke and exhaustion should not be taken lightly. As roofers, our daily exposure to heat is a significant risk. Roofs, with their ability to absorb heat, can reach temperatures up to 170° F, surpassing the outside temperature. This means that you’re still at risk even if you’re not working directly under the sun. However, the good news is that heat-related illnesses are preventable. Here are some essential tips for keeping yourself healthy and preventing summer heat illnesses!

Types of Heat Illnesses

Heat cramps 

Heat cramps are often the first sign of heat illness, resulting in dehydration and a lack of electrolytes. Painful muscle spasming or cramping, usually in the arms, legs, and abdomen, is the most obvious sign of heat cramps and excessive sweating.

Heat Exhaustion

If you are experiencing heat exhaustion, your body is overheating and cannot properly cool due to a lack of salts and fluids. Someone with heat exhaustion will exhibit excessive sweating, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, and headache. The excessive sweating associated with heat exhaustion is especially problematic because the body is already dehydrated and cannot replace the fluids lost through sweating, worsening the condition.

Heat Stroke

Heat stroke is the most serious form of heat illness, arising from untreated heat exhaustion or independently.

When heat stroke occurs, the body has overheated to the point where the organs malfunction and shut down. The brain swells, the intestines become more permeable, and the blood vessels dilate, causing blood pressure to drop. On the outside, a person experiencing heat stroke will display a fever, dry and hot skin, nausea and vomiting, dizziness, confusion, agitation, and lethargy.

Extreme cases might even result in seizures or a coma. Note that once a person has reached the heat stroke level, they stop sweating excessively and show dry, hot skin. This is because the body has become dehydrated to the point where it can no longer produce sweat to cool itself down, and it marks a significant progression from heat exhaustion to heat stroke. If you or someone else is experiencing a heat stroke, call 911 immediately, start cooling that person down with water and ice, and remove unnecessary clothes. 

Signs Of Heat Illnesses

There are common signs and symptoms to watch while working in extreme heat conditions.

  • Cramps and fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Weakness or dizziness
  • Heavy sweating or hot, dry skin
  • Elevated body temperature
  • Thirst
  • Decreased urine output

If you or someone you see are experiencing these symptoms, take action by:

  • Give them water to drink
  • Move them to a cooler area
  • Cool them with water, ice, or a fan
  • Remove unnecessary clothing
  • Do not leave them alone
  • If in doubt, call 911 or seek medical care

Tips to Prevent Heat Illnesses

  • Drink water before, during, and after work. Avoid energy drinks or sodas while working in the heat or direct sun, as these can quickly dehydrate you.
  • Take your break in the shade or cool area. Find a cool, air-conditioned, or shaded area on lunch and breaks. If someone or yourself is beginning to experience heat exhaustion or cramps, it’s a good time to take a break to cool off and rehydrate!
  • Dress appropriately for the heat. Even if the morning is cooler, wear layers that you can take off for warmer afternoons!
  • Understand your risks when it comes to heat! Working indoors and outdoors can put you at risk for heat illnesses. 

Now that you know the signs and symptoms of heat illnesses, you can better prevent them at work. Watch out for yourself and your crew members during these summer months! 

Resources:

Foster, K. (2019, June 19). Heat Illness Prevention: Keeping Your Roofing Crews Safe. AccuLynx. https://acculynx.com/keep-your-roofing-crew-safe-from-heat-illness/

Prevent Heat Illness at Work Ways to Protect Yourself, and Others Ease into Work. Nearly 3 out of 4 fatalities from heat illness happen during the first week of work. (n.d.). https://www.osha.gov/sites/default/files/publications/3431_wksiteposter_en.pdf

Tips for Driving Safely in Winter Weather Conditions

Cars driving on a highway are stuck in traffic because of a snowstorm.

We all know that winter weather can cause hazardous road conditions. Whether snow, sleet, or ice, preparing yourself – and your vehicle – for the winter weather is vital to making winter driving as easy as possible. We found a few tips from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for winter weather driving.

The Basics

Most importantly, slow down! Controlling or stopping your vehicle on a slick or snow-covered surface is more challenging. Increase the distance between you and others ahead so you have plenty of time to stop your car. 

Also, don’t crowd a snow plow or travel beside the truck. Snow plows travel slowly, make wide turns, stop often, overlap lanes, and exit the road frequently. If you find yourself behind a snow plow, stay far enough behind it and use caution if you pass the plow.

What to Do in an Emergency?

If your car gets stopped or stalled, be sure to focus on you and your surroundings. Here are a few pointers to keep in mind:

  • Stay in your vehicle, and don’t overexert yourself. 
  • Let your vehicle be seen. Turn on your emergency flashers, put bright markers on the antenna or windows, and keep the interior dome light on. 
  • Be mindful of carbon monoxide poisoning. Ensure your exhaust pipe is clear of snow, and run your car just long enough to stay warm. Don’t run your car for long periods with the windows up or in an enclosed space.

Prepare Your Vehicle 

  • Check your headlights, brake lights, turn signals, emergency flasher, and interior lights. 
  • During the winter, you can quickly go through windshield wiper fluid. Be sure to fill your reservoir with “winter” fluid with de-icer before winter snowfall. Also, check your windshield wipers to see if they need to be replaced. Consider heavy-duty windshield wipers!
  • Make sure your vehicle has enough coolant. If not, check the cooling system for leaks, test the coolant, and drain or replace the old coolant. 
  • Also, it is always a good idea to visit your mechanic to check your vehicle for the basics –  oil changes, tire rotations, leaks, and any need for replacements or repairs.

Lastly, before you go out, make sure you gas up, stock your car with essential items – like ice scrapers and emergency kit, and plan your route.  

As always, ensure you are safe when driving in extreme winter weather. Go slow and be aware of your surroundings and other vehicles! 

References

Insurance Information Institute. (2020). Driving in winter? Be prepared and stay safe | III. Iii.org. https://www.iii.org/article/winter-driving

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. (2022). Winter Weather Driving Tips | NHTSA. Www.nhtsa.gov. https://www.nhtsa.gov/winter-driving-tips

OSHA Safe and Sound Week 2018!

Safe + Sound Week

At CEI, we value keeping our workers safe and healthy on the job and making sure they go home to their families every day. That’s why CEI is participating in Safe + Sound Week, August 13-19, 2018.

Safe + Sound Week is a nationwide event to raise awareness and understanding of the value of safety and health programs in workplaces that include management leadership, worker participation, and a systematic approach to finding and fixing hazards.

About 7 years ago, CEI decided that they were going to add a full-time Safety Director to their team. This was the beginning of the Safety Department. In 2016, they created the Safety Manager position. At CEI, we always met our safety requirements but in 2011 we decided that as a company we wanted to excel at safety. to have a safe job site and overall workplace it involves everyone being apart of the Safety Department. When it comes to this department, everyone must focus on the details to keep our projects safe and quality for our customers!

During Safe + Sound Week, we will show our commitment to safety by sharing information about our safety department and articles on safety through our blog/social media. These are designed to raise awareness of workplace safety and highlight the hard work that CEI’s crews and staff put into reaching our safety goals!

Safety Counts!

Safety is all about details! When details are focused on we produce a better, safer and more efficient job. When you focus on the details ahead of time then they won’t slow you down later. This has been and continues to be the focus of our Safety Department. CEI safety team is holding themselves to higher standards, working on a constant pursuit towards excellence. Their overall goal is always to create a safer work environment for all CEI employees.

Disclaimer:  This document was created by the Safe + Sound Campaign organizers, OSHA, AIHA, ASSP, CPWR, NIOSH, NSC, and VPPPA. The Safe + Sound Campaign organizers do not necessarily endorse or sanction the company-specific statements in this document.

 

Heat Safety for Roofers

The weather is going to be getting extremely hot in the upcoming month. Being informed on how to properly work in the heat is more than important. The weather in the following weeks is looking to reach record high’s. Roofers are placed out in the sun high up with often times nothing to cool them off, no shade and a hot roof. This can make for an even hotter environment. Being informed about taking care of yourself and your crew in these conditions is important for making a safe and productive job site.

  • Stay Hydrated- This means drinking lots of water (even if you are not thirsty) and avoiding sugary or caffeinated beverages because they speed up dehydration. According to NERI, 1 quart of water per employee per hour is ideal.
  • Sun Protection- Wear sunscreen and light-colored, loose-fitting clothing that covers as much skin as possible.
  • Get out of the sun- during breaks sit in the shade or someplace with air conditioning. Those not accustomed to the heat should take more frequent breaks or limit the amount of physically demanding work.
  • Sunglasses- make sure you are protecting your eyes from the sun with a proper pair of sunglasses.
  • Know the sign and symptoms of heat sicknesses- Watch out for your fellow crew members and help them if they show any signs or symptoms of heat exhaustion.
Signs and Symptoms of Heat Illness (From NERI Insurance Group) 
Heat Rash:
Heat rash occurs when the skin’s sweat glands are blocked and the
sweat cannot get to the surface of the skin to evaporate. This causes
inflammation which results in a rash, which appears as reddened skin
with tiny blisters. It often occurs in skin creases or areas where your
clothing is tight against your skin restricting air circulation.
Common symptoms of heat rash included; red bumps on the skin
and an itchy or prickly feeling to the skin, also known as prickly heat.
Heat rash will usually fade away when the skin is allowed to cool.
Medical treatment is only necessary if the area becomes infected.
To avoid heat rash, try and avoid or minimize the duration of time spent in hot and/or humid
conditions, wearing loose-fitting clothing and use air conditioning or fans to allow air to circulate
over your skin.
Heat Cramps:
Heat cramps are an intermittent, involuntary spasm of larger muscles which occur in individuals
who are physically active in hot weather conditions. While heat cramps are the least serious
form of the heat-related illnesses they still may be very painful and also serve as the first
a warning sign or symptom that you are suffering from heat exposure.
The primary symptom of heat cramps is profuse sweating with involuntary spasms of the large
muscles in the body and could also be the first sign that you’re suffering from heat exhaustion.
Heat cramps most often affect the lower extremities and abdominal cavity.
The treatment for
heat cramps include; rest, cooling the body, hydration and stretching the muscles that are
cramping.
To prevent against heat cramps, try and avoid or minimize the duration of time spent
performing physical activities in the heat, drink plenty of water and rest in a cool or shaded
area.
Heat Exhaustion:
Heat exhaustion is often caused by ignoring the signs of heat cramps and can quickly
progress to heat stroke. This occurs when the body’s temperature regulation fails. The person
often exhibits a change in their mental status, becomes confused, lethargic and may even suffer
a seizure. When experiencing the effects of heat exhaustion, the skin stops producing sweat
and their body temperature significantly rises. This is a life-threatening condition and
immediate emergency medical attention is required. Additional signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion include; profuse sweating (at its earliest stage), weakness, nausea, vomiting, headaches, lightheadedness, and muscle cramps.
Treatment for heat exhaustion starts with being able to recognize the signs and symptoms, stopping the activity you were performing, moving to a cooler environment and rehydration with water or a sports drink which is high in electrolytes. Rehydrating yourself is the most crucial treatment procedure for heat exhaustion.
Heat Stroke:
Heat stroke is a form of hyperthermia, in which the body temperature is elevated dramatically.
Heat stroke is a medical emergency and can be fatal if not promptly and properly treated.
Heat stroke is caused by an elevation in body temperature, often accompanied by dehydration.
The signs and symptoms of heat stroke are; confusion, agitation, disorientation, the absence of
sweating and coma. The most effective way to prevent against heat stroke is to stay hydrated
and be aware of the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat cramps to avoid reaching
the level where heat stroke will come into play. If anyone is exhibiting the signs of heat stroke
911 MUST be called immediately, as it’s a matter of life and death.

CEI Insight: Stretch and Flex Program

Workplace stretching programs are on the rise and a new hot topic for the construction industry. Roofers and other construction employees are often subjected to routine movements, heavy lifting, and strenuous body positions. This daily wear and tear can leave employees with pain and discomfort. After years of being in the industry, this can result in soreness and injury. A 2018 goal for CEI was to craft and implement a Stretch and Flex Program for our employees. Our program was recently launched, checking that goal off of our list!

Benefits of Stretching

  1. Flexibility
  2. Promotes Strong, Health Muscles
  3. Improves Joint Range of Motion
  4. Improves Performance in Physical Activities

Most of the benefits of stretching come from developing better flexibility. Being flexible and having long and lean muscles can result in prevention of injury and can reduce pain. Athletes do it all the time, they focus on muscle groups specific to the sport to stretch and strengthen the ones that are actively used. Our workers do just as much as most athletes, they bend, lift, climb carry and so much more. Why shouldn’t they have the same routine of stretching? The answer is that they should! Stretching before doing physical work can only help.

CEI’s Daily Stretching Routine

As a new add-on to our safety program, all field and service crews are required to perform a daily stretching routine every morning before getting on the job. This is to length and strength there muscles before getting to the physically demanding part of their day. Most of the crews enjoy it and believe they feel better after doing it. Each morning on the job, the foreman host a huddle with the crew. In this huddle, they talk about the day’s event and go through there checklist together. Before this program, they would head onto the roof after that was complete. Now that this has been put in place the foreman leads the stretching session with the entire crew. Every day he goes through the same stretching checklist and signs-off that the crew participated in the Stretch and Flex program. Since this has gone into place, office staff have also taken to doing the stretches. They believe that it helps them stay loose and not get sore from sitting or working on a computer all day. It also allows them to break up there day and add some movement.

CEI’s Stretch and Flex Program-

  1. Neck stretch
  2. Quad Stretch
  3. Calf Stretch
  4. Inner Thigh/Groin Stretch
  5. Chest Pull
  6. Forearm and Wrist Stretch
  7. Shoulder Stretch
  8. Lower Back Stretch

Source: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-importance-of-stretching

#NATIONALROOFINGWEEK- Employee Training

Happy National Roofing Week to everyone! Yesterday we kicked off with a wonderful employee appreciation day! All of the  CEI team had got pizza or breakfast delivered to them as a token of our appreciation. It was a great start to an exciting week.

Every day this week has a theme or focus to be talked about. Today’s (Tuesday) focus is on Employee Training!

A key part of being a quality roofing professional is ensuring that all members of your team are properly trained. CEI focuses its training efforts in two major areas; safety training and job skills training.

Safety Training

CEI started a bigger push on safety about 7 years ago.

“We had a couple of tough safety years before that and there was also a big push from our Consumers to step up safety. It had always been something we did, but we started to make it something we live everyday.” -Kristine Cook Lindsey, Vice President

CEI always met safety regulations but after those couple of years, they decided it was going to be one of their main goals to excel in safety. They posted a large board that read “Days since an accident”. The goal was to publish what was happening in regards to safety and make everyone responsible for safety on the job.

Joe Fulton- CEI Safety Director

In 2011, they added a full-time Safety Director to there team. He was tasked with keeping up with regulations and revamping the training program.

Jacob Rosiek- CEI Safety Manager

CEI safety standards started to grow and in 2016 they added another full-time position to the Safety Department, a Safety Manager.

 

 

 

In 2017, CEI was awarded the NERI safety excellence award for there efforts. Today, CEI’s safety training looks like this.

  • Monthly Foreman Safety Committee Meetings- To review how the company is doing and identify where and how to improve. Critical feedback from the field participation is key in these meetings.
  • Six Company Wide Safety Meetings- Every other month there is a different focus presented by our Safety Director or we bring in guest speakers to keep safety in the minds of the Foremen.
  • Weekly Toolbox Talks- These also focus on important safety issues but are run by the Foremen to stimulate discussion on safety and provide training opportunities for our crews.
  • Daily Hazard Identification Checklists
  • All Foremen are required to be 30hr OSHA Certified 
  • All other workers are encouraged to be at least 10hr OSHA Certified 
  • CEI’s insurance group also has its own Safety Requirements that CEI is annually audited on.

Job Skills Training

The other focus area for training is skills training. CEI as a union contractor is supportive of apprenticeship programs that serve to develop skilled professional Roofing and Architectural Sheet Metal Journeymen. Some of the ways that CEI supports skills development are-

  • Manufacturer Training-  CEI is certified in almost every type of roofing system. CEI sees this as a way to open doors for new and interesting projects. We want to know how to do it all so we can take on any project start to finish.
  • Local 70 Union Block Training- CEI helps support their local union by participating in block training programs. They often help with the Crane and Lift classes.
  • Employ apprentices- To provide critical field training experience

Photo of the Month: May

CEI has asked their staff to send in picture and videos of the job sites and happenings around the company. These help us build content for social media and our website. Each month we will be sharing the best or most interesting photo that was sent in by one of our employees. This is also an edition of our company newsletter that goes out internally to all of our employees.

May is the first month that we are starting to add the photo of the month contest. You will be able to view all the monthly photos in our gallery on the Roofer Madness Blog.

May Photo of the Month-

This months photo was sent in by Kristine Lindsey who is our Vice President. She often attends the monthly safety meeting to connect with the foreman and crews on extra safety training. She snapped this (and many more) photos from May’s safety meeting. CEI was visited by Guardian Fall Protection who showed off some different safety equipment and gave a couple short demonstrations.

The Insight: Safety Segment

In the last couple weeks, CEI had their monthly safety meeting. Safety concerns for roofing can come both on and off the roof.  With 12 service trucks on the road, it is always important that we stress safety when driving.
The crew members reviewed some of the basics in safe driving techniques, being in control of the vehicle, being aware of the drivers around you, distracted driving and being courteous on the road. That way they are prepared for anything on the road.
Having our crews be safe drivers protects…
·        Our crews and workers
·        Company vehicles or materials
·        Most importantly, other people on the road.
As we prepare for the busy roofing season, we understand the importance of safety throughout the entire work day and pride ourselves on limiting job site accidents. In 2018 we are striving to achieve even higher safety standards.

Project Spotlight: Crisler Center Arena

A look at the multiple stages, CEI installed roofing and metal wall panel project that not only gave a new vibe to one of the University of Michigan’s architectural gems but also incorporated safety features such as a railing system and permanent anchor tie off points, installed by other contractors, right into its design!

The challenging task of renovating and adding to the U of M’s Crisler Center Arena was broken into multiple projects. Working with general contractors Clark Construction, CEI installed EPDM roofing and standing seam metal roofing on the renovated main section of the arena. Then working with general contractors Spence Brothers CEI installed composite metal wall panels, EPDM roofing, PVC roofing, roofing pavers and sections of live green roofing across various portions of the new additions!

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