Better Roads

October 2014

Better Roads Digital Magazine

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Page 22 of 35

Better Roads October 2014 21 Applications & Innovations T he brave men and women who don their steel- toed boots and neon green safety T-shirts to build the nation's highways and byways put their lives on the line every day to create the road systems that motor- ists may take for granted. It's not easy work when all of the variables of working in such a hazardous environment. Cars and trucks speed by at 80-plus miles an hour; inhalation of jobsite debris can sometimes be the root cause of both minor and major respiratory issues; and working at height on our bridge systems can result in serious injury or death with just one small misstep. Not only are road workers dealing with traffi c whizzing by them, they're also likely manipulating equipment to car- ry out their tasks at the same time. It's a dangerous job in a dangerous setting. Again, there's nothing easy about it. As manufacturers in the construction industry, it's ex- tremely important to do our part in supporting the folks who are out there making our country better one road, one overpass, or one pothole at a time. Many manufactur- ers are already making strides in making their equipment the "safest on the market," and incorporating protection systems like roll over protection (ROPS), and falling object protection (FOPS) for their riding equipment. However, it's not just excavators, skid steers, and rollers that need to focus on safety. Speak with a contractor, and they will most likely tell you that for a standard road construction project, for every one skid steer or excavator, there are ap- proximately 10 smaller pieces of equipment that are equally as important to the success of the project — anything from dowel pin drills to generators, rammers, light towers, and everything in between. Each piece of equipment has its pur- pose, and choosing the best equipment can often lead to a cohesive, productive, and safe working environment. That being said, as the people who manufacture the equipment that construction crews work with every day, manufacturers' messages need to be less about using safety as a way to market our products, and more about how our equipment fi ts into creating a safer all-around jobsite. It's the least we can do to support our industry. Safety is not a Building a Better Jobsite Contractors should always have the best interests of their crews in mind when making their purchasing decisions to combat common safety pitfalls on any jobsite, regardless of the manufacturer. by Todd Jurjevic, sales and marketing director, Minnich Manufacturing

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