On Wednesday, May 15, 2013 the AGC Annual Safety Stand Down was held on commercial construction projects throughout the Greater Houston area. It was a day dedicated to emphasizing the importance of each construction worker returning home safely every day. I was fortunate to participate in two separate events.
With the impressive ExxonMobil construction project in the background, David Doucet, Mark Briggs (Area Directors for the North and South Occupational Safety and Health Administration offices, respectively) and I met that morning to sign a Safety Training Alliance agreement, an agreement that reinforces the need for a safety first work environment. Located on 385 acres, the giant jobsite will be completed in 2015 to become the company’s largest worldwide, consolidating 10,000 employees.
The signing was just another step in the great working partnership AGC Houston enjoys with the local OSHA team. We are especially proud of the OSHA participation and support of the safety components of the industry-wide Construction Career Collaborative (C3).
During the lunch hour, I had the opportunity to attend a Safety Stand Down held by AGC member W.S. Bellows Construction Corp. Led by the company’s safety director and safety coordinators, every worker on the jobsite heard a message of proper procedures and methods. The one-hour safety demonstrations were done both in English and in Spanish and focused on a variety of topics such as hazard awareness, stairways and ladders, and accident prevention. As a visiting observer and listener, the repetition of the words “returning home safely” is what continually caught my attention.
Approximately 40 different general contractors were delivering a similar message on their projects around the region. It’s a message that everyone seemed to understand and needs to be emphasized the other 364 days as well.