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Safety Shooter Fig. 4: Nozzleman shooting overhead in a tightly confined area. In areas where visibility and ventilation are concerns, adequate lighting should be provided and the appropriate personal protective equipment should be worn requirements for the entry supervisor, the atten- Fig. 5: Dry-process shotcrete being gunned overhead in an dant, and the entrants that must be followed. underground culvert Before the initial work assignment begins, the employer must provide training for all employees It is good practice to identify all the potential who are required to work in permit-required hazards beforehand. Make sure that the workers spaces. If anything changes, additional training have received the necessary training, that they becomes necessary. Atmospheric testing is wear the proper personal protective equipment, required for two reasons: evaluation of the potential and that all OSHA requirements are addressed hazards of the permit space and verification that and followed. No one wants to see an injury or acceptable atmospheric conditions exist for entry a fatality; the OSHA standards were established into the space. for this reason. Therefore, in addition to your There are many additional OSHA requirements concerns involving the performance of the work, regarding written safety plans, entry permits, take the additional measures to ensure a retrieval and rescue operations, identification of safe workplace. hazards, and training, so please refer to OSHA Standards 29 CFA 1910.146 for all the specific requirements and procedures. In addition to the specific OSHA requirements, Ted Sofis and his brother, there are a few rules of thumb that warrant William J. Sofis Jr., are the mention and are specific to shotcrete applications. Principal Owners of Sofis First and foremost is having and maintaining good Company, Inc. After graduating communication. It is imperative that clear from Muskingum College, New radio or wire communication exist between the Concord, OH, with his BA in nozzleman and others working within the confined 1975, Ted began working full space, and with the equipment operator outside. time as a shotcrete nozzleman In the event of a problem, such as with a plug-up and operator servicing the steel industry. He or an injury, the material flow can be shut off began managing Sofis Company, Inc., in 1984 and quickly. Also of concern is visibility; in enclosed has over 38 years of experience in the areas, it is important to have adequate lighting. It shotcrete industry. He is the Treasurer for ASA, is not only necessary for the nozzleman to Chair of the ASA Publications Committee, and a see well for his gunning but it is also imperative member of multiple ASA committees. Over the that those inside the space can see and clearly years, Sofis Company, Inc., has been involved in identify any obstacles and potential hazards. bridge, dam, and slope projects using shotcrete Finally, with confined spaces, ventilation options and refractory installations in power plants and can often be limited, so care should be exercised steel mills. Sofis Company, Inc., is a member of to provide proper respiratory protection for the the Pittsburgh Section of the American Society of workers (refer to Fig. 4 and 5). Highway Engineers (ASHE) and ASA. Shotcrete • Spring 2013 39


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