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FRI Blog

Safety Focus of Week September 9 - Padmount Transformers

Sep 09, 2019

Do you have a metal, box-shaped transformer near your yard? While it may be tempting to paint it to match your home or to enhance it with artistic flair, do not decorate, paint or landscape near the box, called a padmount transformer or pad-mounted transformer.

The neighborhood metal transformer covers are assigned a specific color (usually green, sometimes grey) so that utility workers can easily identify them. Also, hampering with the box by painting it could impair the lock, the equipment itself or cover the warning signs. For safety, the padmount transformer should always be locked and the warning signs visible.

Padmount transformers, which are typically installed on easements, are an essential part of the supply chain that provides power to neighborhoods with underground utilities. Their purpose is to step down high-voltage electricity to a lower voltage needed for the underground wires that supply power to the lights and appliances in homes. We must be able to access them at all times in case of a power outage or to perform routine maintenance. In other words, they are very important and due to their high voltage and function, they should be revered.

Safety Focus of Week August 12 - Black Widow Spider Safety

Aug 13, 2019

Joe Rains found this at the unit. This black widow spider. A reminder to be aware of the surroundings. Do you know what to do if you got bit by a black widow? Refer to the OSHA fact sheet.

Safety Focus of Week August 5 - Eye Injury Safety

Aug 05, 2019

I recently spent an afternoon trimming my roses. I thought I was doing a good job of keeping safe by wearing gloves, shoes, and glasses. The trouble was that while unloading all the debris, I had moved my glasses to the top of my head. As I pulled a large clump of cuttings from the truck bed, one popped loose and hit me above my eye. I was lucky. It reminded me that I still need to work on keeping safety in mind during the whole process, not just at the beginning.

Safety Focus of Week July 22 - Heat Safety, Weather and Cognitive Performance

Jul 22, 2019

I hope everybody is enjoying the sub 60's temperatures this week. Unfortunately, such nice weather will not last very long in Oklahoma summer. Forecast indicates that the temperature next week will be at high 90's and even above 100 degree with high humidity. The FRI experimental unit will be on revamp next week so a lot of us will be working outside for a long period. Just a quick reminder of staying safe in the heat, being aware of the dangers associated with high temperature, recognizing signs of heat-related illness, allowing for ample breaks out of heat, and most importantly, being hydrated all the time.

Safety Focus of Week July 15 - Never say “no” to a Job Safety Analysis!

Jul 15, 2019

The Job Safety Analysis (JSA) is a standard tool used to improve workplace safety in industry. A proper JSA outlies the steps required to complete a task or project, Identify potential hazards and implement safeguards. No task is too small for a JSA, especially if

Safety Focus of Week July 8 - Safety on bug bites, mosquitoes, ticks

Jul 08, 2019

Summer is a great time for outdoor activities, hiking, fishing, biking, camping, and beach. But the enjoyable time outside can also come with a serious buzz-kill: bug bites. I do go outside as much as I can this summer, and find myself very attractive for mosquitoes!

Safety Focus of Week June 24 - Back Sprains and Strains

Jun 25, 2019

You may not be aware, but the most commonly experienced workplace injury is also the most avoidable. 50% of US employees are expected to experience physical damage to their lower back at some point. Even if you believe you aren't susceptible to back damage where you work, it's important to re-assess. In any job that includes lifting any kind of object you might be vulnerable to back injury. Issues usually arise when an employee is uneducated on proper lifting procedures. Even in the absence of extra appliances or company programs, there are many ways to avoid this problem.

Safety Focus of Week June 17 - Arc Flash Explosions

Jun 17, 2019

Every day in the United States five to 10 arc flash explosions occur in electrical equipment. Anyone exposed to such explosions is at significant risk for death or serious injury.

Safety Focus of Week June 3 - Water Bottles Fire Hazard

Jun 03, 2019

If you are like me, there is always a half empty water bottle in your vehicle. I never would have guessed that it would be a fire hazard. In a test conducted by Oklahoma's Midwest City Fire Department, sunlight magnified by a water bottle reached 250 degrees. The sunlight uses the liquid and the clear material to develop a focused beam which can cause a fire. So be sure you take your water bottles with you when you leave your vehicle. For the full article and videos, click here.

Safety Focus of Week May 27 - Ladder Safety

May 27, 2019

All you DIY's that do home repairs, decorations, etc. Ladder safety at home is a thing to remember. Here are some safety tips when using a ladder at home:

Safety Focus of Week May 13 - Turn Around Don’t Drown

May 21, 2019

Today we had a reminder of the dangers of driving into flood waters. Several roads and major highways experienced flooding. Some were closed by barriers and some were not. Remember that driving into flood water can be hazardous even if it isn't marked by signs or barriers. As shown on the following video, several water rescues were still in progress this morning long after the rain had stopped: https://weather.com/storms/severe/video/water-rescues-underway-in-rain-soaked-oklahoma

Safety Focus of Week May 13 - Undetected Ball Valve Failure

May 13, 2019

Below is a safety beacon from the CCPS from March 2019. It talks about not trusting valves for secure isolations for safety reasons. We have made an effort over the last few years to accomplish this by either replacing the valves with blinds or removing the line all together.

Safety Focus of Week April 1 - Bring Your Child To Work Today

Apr 01, 2019

If you are like me, and have no one to take care of the kids during holidays or snow days, you bring your kids to work almost every time the school is closed. Almost 20 years ago an organization started encouraging employees and employers to have a designated take your child to work day at the end of April. At some places the practice has taken hold, at other, like FRI it hasn't. It's truly a novel idea and one we can utilize to work safer.

The suggestion would be to make every day bring your child or grandchild to work day, not in body, but in mind. As you go out to work today, I'd challenge you to do two things:

Safety Focus of Week March 18 - Tight Enough

Mar 19, 2019

I think this is a good reminder. We have specified torque specifications for some bolts for which we can use a torque wrench with the correct setting, e.g. on the column windows or the dome. For some others, we do not have such a specification.

Safety Focus of Week March 18 - High Winds Safety

Mar 18, 2019

The 'Bomb Cyclone' about two weeks ago reminded us how dangerous high winds could be. Severe wind storms are dangerous and difficult to predict with some gusts coming with little or no warning.