Alabama Construction News

OCT-DEC 2017

Alabama Construction News is the states only bimonthly magazine dedicated to the commercial construction industry.

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R 49 OCT-DEC 2017 AL CONSTRUCTION NEWS RJ MECHANICAL HAS LONG MAINTAINED ONLY the highest standards for its safety program. And now, the company is implementing new technology to make the program even safer. Earlier this year, RJ Mechanical Safety Director Mike Rodda was looking at ways to make managing safety requirements easier to manage for not just the company, but employees as well. Having a longstanding relationship with Will Rushin at Alabama Construction Supply, Rodda began working with Rushin to find a solution. "Mike always works hard to make sure all of their employees are up to OSHA standards, and he was looking for a way to help ease the difficulty in doing so while also keeping employees on the job site safe," said Will Rushin of Alabama Construction Supply. "That's when we began looking for answers, and we found the EZE-Trac® system." The Elk River EZE-Trac system uses a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags to provide companies with a better way of tracking their fall protection assets, eliminating paperwork and providing needed information in a usable format for safety management. To make it happen, the RFID tag is sewn into the fall protection gear, under labels of harnesses and lanyards, and keeps track of all of the necessary safety information, from the employee's training and credentials, the manufacturer of the product, how long the product has been in use and when it needs to be re-evaluated. Through a program on a smartphone, tablet or computer, Rodda can perform quick and accurate safety inspections with access the data— which is easily captured through the system and stored forever—and he can even set up other employees or administrators to access the data as well. " We can even set up certain employees to receive emails through the system to ensure they are keeping up with inspection schedules or any related topic," Rodda added. The RFID tags are virtually indestructible, as they are waterproof, dustproof, shock proof and even resistant to abrasions, impacts, vibrations, chemicals and corrosion. They are also incorporating the idea into employee badges that will have the ability to be scanned on a smartphone or tablet to show training information, credentials and other safety-related information OSHA officers or safety management on the job site would need to know. "If Mike's not there on the job site and a safety professional onsite needs to know an employee's safety credentials, he or she can simply take his or her tablet, scan the badge and get the info right there on the spot," Rushin explained. The system allows Rodda or others on the safety team to add features as needed, add or remove employees, set up inspection schedules and even customize reporting. " We can have reports sent to us or a particular individual we deem necessary about if a harness should be inspected," Rodda said. "Or we can use it to notify us about someone who needs training." The benefits of the tracking system, which RJ Mechanical is acquiring through Alabama Construction Supply, go beyond the RFID chips. The customized harnesses and safety gear is providing Rodda with another way to track the age and usage of the items. "There's a lot of forethought going into the process that Mke has put together," Rushin said. "He's developed a system to select specific colors for fall protection so that employees will know when they go out of compliance and when it's time to update the equipment. So not only does this provide asset tracking, but it's providing visual help so, for example, if someone's harness is red, we can know how old the gear is and when it should be updated. It's really allowing for a complete safety program." MAKING SAFETY SAFER by PAIGE TOWNLEY Will Rushin, Alabama Construction Supply

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