Saturday, June 11, 2011

Don't Do a Job Unsafely

One of the reasons I retired early is because I wanted to retire in one piece. Too many bosses at NIPSCO were more interested in getting the job done quickly without seeming to care much about doing the job safely.

No worker has to do a job in an unsafe manner. That's why I never refused to do a particular job. I have however, refused to do a job in the manner that the boss wanted me to do it.

I remember one time down at Royal Center Underground Gas Storage, the boss wanted me to reattach a guy wire on a chimney. The way he wanted me to do it would require me to get into a 55 gallon drum which had been reinforced with steel rods and then be lifted up by the use of a crane.

I had seen crane cables slip before, and told this boss that I would be happy to attach the guy wire by use of a bucket truck but I wasn't going to be lifted up with a crane.

So what did the boss do? He found another worker who was willing to break this safety rule to do the job. That happens a lot.

Sometimes taking the time to do the job safely is a pain in the butt, especially when it's noisey, dirty and hot, but what the heck, it's the right thing to do and the smart thing to do in the long run.

Always remember that you are replaceable and the boss knows it and companies know that to disregard safety doesn't cost them anything if the worker knew the safe way to do the job.

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