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2013SumShotcreteEMag

Safety Shooter Communication Is Key to Job-Site Safety Ycommunication is vital when it comes to should be used throughout the day. As a constructionother forms of nonverbal communication thatcan’t hurt you?” Guess what? IT CAN! Good By Cathy Burkert ou know that saying, “What you don’t know toolbox talks to explain various hand signals and job-site safety, productivity, and accident prevention. team performs its work, it is important for team One of my all-time favorite sayings in my daily members to communicate with each other, espe- crew talks is “Communication is key to any cially if they see something that another crew successful relationship.” member may not. In the shotcrete work environ- There are two ways to communicate: verbally ment, this necessitates the use of both verbal and and nonverbally. An example of effective verbal nonverbal communication. communication to employees is conducting Another crucial part of communication is toolbox talks. Gather your crew around before, active listening. Active listening is not only during, or after the work shift or during a break, “hearing” what your employees are saying but and then make everyone aware of the potential also taking the time to understand what they are safety hazards for the day’s operations. This is actually communicating. It is crucial that your also a chance to let your field team know the goals employees know that you are willing to listen to for the day and to motivate them; but, in turn, keep their input and suggestions, particularly when it them focused on the importance of job-site comes to safety; it is everyone’s job to take note safety. In the toolbox meetings, it is important of job-site hazards and point them out, especially to communicate and document upcoming changes ones that you may have missed. It is vitally important in the project and identify specific hazards that for teams to communicate with each other if they may arise with the changing work conditions. see a potentially unsafe condition. Ask for feedback When shotcrete is being placed, the use of to ensure everyone understands what you are earplugs or earmuffs often prevents personnel trying to express, and let them offer suggestions from using vocal communication between team on how to improve overall job-site safety. When members. Thus, in a high-noise environment, hand a crew member reports or remedies a potentially signals can be the most effective method of com- unsafe condition, be sure to give them a big pat munication among the shotcrete crew. Use the on the back in your next toolbox meeting in front Fig. 1: Noisy job-site conditions can sometimes reduce Fig. 2: Job-site meetings or toolbox talks are critical to effective communication informing workers of potential safety hazards 52 Shotcrete • Summer 2013


2013SumShotcreteEMag
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