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JUNE – JULY 2024 Archive

Photo courtesy of Bulwark

Innovations in FR/AR Clothing: Elevating Comfort for Optimal Performance

In the utility industry, the reliance on flame-resistant (FR) and arc-rated (AR) garments has been a longstanding practice to safeguard workers against arc flashes and flash fires. Crafted from specially engineered, self-extinguishing fabrics and adhering to stringent testing standards, these garments play a crucial role in preventing or minimizing the severity of injuries. You should […]

DOT Compliance Considerations for Electric Utilities

The roar of diesel engines fills the midnight air as a crew of linemen prepares to depart for a critical repair job. Their trucks are loaded with tools and equipment, ready to tackle a downed power line that lies miles away. But before they hit the open road, there’s one crucial hurdle to clear: ensuring […]
Ergonomics june-july 2024

Ergonomics for a Multigenerational Workforce

Gray wave. Silver tsunami. Population aging. We’ve all heard the names and metaphors, and experts have talked about the phenomenon for years. In 2024, it’s truly upon us: The population, both in the United States and abroad, is getting older, with major implications for the workforce and how employers manage it. But these descriptors don’t […]

The Transformative Impact of Training for Frontline Managers

Frontline managers are crucial because they bridge organizational goals and frontline employees. They significantly influence workplace dynamics and performance outcomes. In this context, my company surveyed 110 safety professionals and interviewed 10 safety professionals across various industries – including construction, utility, wind energy, public works and manufacturing – to gain insights into the current state […]

Apprentice Development Programs: What Should be Included?

Over the years, I have received many questions asking what it takes to become a journeyman lineworker after being hired as an apprentice. In response, I have prepared the following overview of the skills training I believe needs to be covered. Please note that this is only an overview; some companies will need to deliver […]

Don’t Abuse OSHA’s Digger Derrick Exemption

This isn’t the first time – and I suspect it won’t be the last time – that I have addressed the question of what work can be done under the digger derrick exemption found in OSHA’s Cranes and Derricks in Construction standard (29 CFR 1926 Subpart CC). The issue has come up constantly since the […]

June – July 2024 Q&A

| Jim Vaughn, CUSP |
Q: Why don’t all utilities use rubber gloves with hot sticks? A: One of our supporting consultants sent us this question that he gets all the time. The answer is simple: There is no requirement in any standard to use rubber gloves with hot sticks. Rubber-gloving hot sticks has evolved as a work practice in […]

START Work Authority

Stop-work authority is crucial in our industry. Understand me when I say this: If people aren’t using stop-work authority, they don’t have that authority even if it’s promoted on a bulletin board somewhere. With that said, I want to propose START (self, task, assess, reduce, thrive) work authority to reduce the number of times you’ll […]