Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Safety First!

   As we stated in our previous post, we have been spending sufficient time this off-season on our administrative duties.  A very important aspect of our administrative duties includes employee training and safety. This winter, we are dedicating ample time to ensure our staff is properly trained and ready for emergency events.

   Our first step to improving employee safety was to update our Safety Data Sheets (SDSs), formerly known as Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs).  Each chemical manufacturer or distributor provides SDSs to communicate important safety information regarding their specific hazardous product.  

   We began updating our SDSs by creating a list of every single chemical or fertilizer that is applied on our golf course, or currently being housed in our Haz-Stor storage unit. We also compiled a list of every potentially hazardous product or material located inside our maintenance facility; products ranging from household cleaners to gasoline and oils used in our equipment.  Once we were satisfied with this list, we scowered the Internet searching each chemical manufacturer’s website for our specific product or material and their accompanying SDSs. Each product’s SDS was printed, stapled, and placed in a new three-ring binder in an easy-to-locate location inside our facility for any of our employees to view.

   A great addition we’ve made to our safety training this fall has been the purchase of an AppleTV. This easy-to-use product allows us to wirelessly stream any video content of our choosing to our TV, as well as numerous other functions. How, specifically, is this beneficial to us here in the ground’s department? Well, we utilize various websites that contain safety videos and content and then broadcast these videos to our TV using AppleTV to show to our entire staff. For example, we subscribe to McCord Golf Services and Safety (www.mccordgolf.com), which produces numerous safety videos specifically aimed for golf course maintenance employees. Stihl (www.stihlusa.com) also contains many videos that help us properly train our employees on string trimmer, blower, and chainsaw use.

   Finally, every winter we inventory all of our first aid and safety supplies. It is very important that we have sufficient first aid supplies to support any issues that can arise during a long, work season. At this time, we also order gloves, safety glasses, ear protection, and many other supplies, which are necessary for our staff to work in a safe manner at all times. 

   It is our goal to create a safe workplace every year. Hopefully our commitment to preparedness and training will result in yet another safe and successful season!