About Those Pictures!

 In 2023, Tip of the Week

Last week we shared some pictures with you, promising that we’d give you some insight this week. As we said, there are some good things to see in the pictures, and some not-so-good things to share. Here’s what we think:

Picture 1- If you look at the whole picture, you see a tidy storage area. Items are neatly placed on the shelves. The aisles are clear and not cluttered. But in the center of the picture is a grinder. One of our regular readers, John in New Hampshire, had this to offer: The light bulb is missing, which I assume the light may be energized when the grinder is on, and the shields are tilted up, which may be just temporary, but probably is not. What may not be so obvious to some is that both metal supports that prevents items from going for a spin around the grinding wheel are missing. The gap between the grinding wheel and the wheel housings is so large that there is a high risk of having an issue…. No question in my mind that this has to be taken out of service until it is repaired.

Right on target, John! (If you have comments on our safety tips, please pass them along!)

Picture 2 – This is a neatly kept battery charging area. The floor around the charging unit is clean. Knowing that spills happen, a spill kit has been placed next to the charging unit. While this is not a regulatory violation, we have a different idea how to store the spill clean-up kit. We atSCM believe that the spill kit should be placed away from the area where thespills could occur. Because, if there are spills, there may be possible puddles of acid, wouldn’t it be safer to not have to risk exposure to the acid just to reach the clean-up kit? It is the same principle with fire extinguishers. You want extinguishers placed near doors or along exit routes, not necessarily right next to where the fire hazard is as that area may be involved in fire were one to occur. Don’t tempt your team members by having poorly placed emergency supplies. Keep the defensive tools where you can use them while staying safe.

Picture 3 – We had with a few concerns with this scene. First, the large tank is stenciled with the warning“no flammable liquids.” When a warning is given in a negative tone, people may receive the warning in a positive tone, mentally crossing out the word “no.”Additionally, the tank is sitting in the sun, which may cause the word “no” to fade. Either way, there is a potential for flammable liquids to be put into this tank. And the tank should contain some labeling to tell you what it contains. Does it contain toxic liquids, corrosives, or oxidizers? Who knows?

Second, what is the purpose of the ladder? If the ladder is to be used to access the roof, the ladder is the wrong type of ladder, and is not tall enough for someone to access the top of the tank properly. If the ladder is there for storage, that is not a good idea. The ladder should be stored out of the sun, as UV rays can weaken the ladder over time. Also, the location of the ladder is an error trap, encouraging someone to use it incorrectly to access the tank.

Third, depending on what is in the tank, secondary containment may be required.

Fourth, in the left side of the picture, we see a yellow drum. What is in it? We can’t tell because it is not labeled, at least not from where we are looking.

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