Welcome back and thank you for your time and consideration. Hope your 4th of July was relaxing, entertaining and invigorating.
The emotion of Fear and ignorance (a lack of knowledge) have been around since the dawning of humankind and when put together they are not a very good couple to have around. Also for as long, people of great wealth and power have manipulated communities spreading lies to feed fear and scare people while simultaneously playing on their ignorance to generate hatred. Motivating individuals to acts of violence against neighbors homes, businesses and up to killing if needed. The only sole beneficiary, the man of power who started it. When fire was first discovered I’m sure many were in fear of it. It generated heat, it danced, it hurt like hell to touch but was unpredictability due to a lack of understanding. The first person who learned to control fire no longer feared it as they knew how to use it safely and then could turn it into power as they used that fear of fire to their advantage spreading lies of its origin and why they could control it and by that alone is why they should be put in charge. The match of fear and ignorance was a hit and the trend continued.
With all the problems these two have generated throughout our history of the world imagine the effect they have on workplace safety! Companies and poor leaders keeping workers ignorant about their rights to a safe workplace. No training, no PPE, no safety meetings and if they question why they don’t have any of those items then Fear is used to intimidate them into silence and looking the other way or threatened with loss of their job so they become complicit, slowly eroding your morals or bullied into leaving the company for not going along with the program of tampered emergency shut-offs and no LOTO program so now the fear and ignorance boils over into hatred of the company and what they did to me and winds up in a mass shooting at the plant while the bobbleheads stare into the camera and shake their heads in disbelief. How could this happen?
The fear also includes that of OSHA. At one company, as soon as I started I was barraged with safety issues by the employees. “We have told the company about these issues for years and nothing gets done!” I asked since the company has ignored them all this time why haven’t they called OSHA? “Oh no man, we don’t want the plant closed down. We’ll all be out of work.” The fear of job losses, even though the plant wouldn’t have been closed but there should have been a lot of eyes going over every aspect of the plant.
Before you begin a job, learn about it first. What are the associated hazards, what kind of equipment is typically used, what kind of PPE and protection do I need and what kind of company am I working for? It is always a good idea to get several points of view and not just from your boss or company but research on the web. Read blogs like this and there are several out there, so look for your voice in a few of them. Once you get a job, don’t stop learning. New procedures, new techniques, new apps are coming every day and you can help your company as well as you yourself grow by reading and learning. This is also a tool you can put into use of everyday life. Don’t just take your neighbor’s advice, listen to it but see what other opinions are out there. There is always a solution to problems when people discuss without fear or ignorance pushing them. Don’t let fear and ignorance run or ruin your life. Don’t let hatred win. Stay informed.
Sometimes the company can actually be ignorant themselves of safety rules and regulations. It happens but when the company is the General Services Department of the State of California, Feces, blood, syringes at California Capitol: Workers unprepared for clean up, OSHA says, ignorance is not the problem, incompetent leadership is. I can’t believe the workers didn’t bring it up to management what they were found on the capitol grounds and how the hell can a state agency be that deaf, dumb and blind? Why it’s poor leadership and I’m fairly certain they’ll keep making the same mistakes down the road, incompetence in the state is rarely punished but usually leads to a promotion or running for state office, so workers, here’s a case where you need to know what your rights are and speak up. You do not have to operate under those conditions and CalOSHA agreed and fined a fellow agency for 9 violations.
Now I like gadgets just as much as the next guy/gal but I don’t think they should fully substitute the use of common sense or your brain. 8 Products to Help you Beat the Heat. When you’re working in excessive heat it can be dangerous. I know, I had crews unloading containers from overseas while the outside temperatures were 110 degrees and the temperature inside the container was at least 10 degrees higher. We always set up the water cooler right next to the container being unloaded and fans blowing and frequent breaks. Some guys would just push themselves to the limit and never say a word about feeling ill, cause that how guys are sometimes, it’s a form of ignorance. So it is very important to know the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Both if not treated properly and immediately can result in death. Learn how to identify and how to treat. This is the knowledge that can come in handy anywhere.
Then next time you may be the one to prevent this. OSHA investigating after man dies picking tomatoes in Colquitt County. A young man, only 24, beginning of his life and the heat killed him. Know the facts about the dangers of high temperatures, how to mitigate it and what your company must supply to keep you safe and healthy.
Some may say that you shouldn’t fear to work alone and that may be true in some cases but when the company tells you to work alone in the plant on an off-shift, just say NO. Worker Found Dead In Stadium Cooler Was Minnesota Inventor. You can never plan for an accident so why would you work alone. If something was to fall on you or you became pinned or knocked unconscious, and no one was there to help or call for help, you’ll become the morning news when they find your body. We always had a policy of two when work had to be done at night or weekends and others weren’t going to be around. It just makes sense.
When worlds collide. Tesla, union, workers, and CalOSHA are all trying to work out or work on issues of safety. Here is an example of fear and ignorance working together which is causing a little hatred right now. Some disgruntled employee stole data out of their system, fingers are pointing and the truth will eventually come out as we listen to the three sides of each story. Tesla workers say they pay the price for Elon Musk’s big promises and A former Tesla safety director claims he was fired after he raised concerns about unreported workplace injuries. Check both articles out and curious what you think. I don’t think he’s any more driven then Henry Ford, Thomas Edison or Howard Hughes were as I believe all geniuses are driven to the point of madness. Whether they cross the line or not is up to them as well as what we get out of it.
Well, that’s it for this month folks. Be kind to each other and never, never keep quiet about safety for the life you save may be your own. If you have questions about safety and regulation please don’t hesitate to ask.