Australia’s Absolute shocker of the week

Photo by WorkSafe Victoria, who offers the image freely for re-publication by others who will use it to promote safer work practices in construction, utilities, mining, and quarrying.

I like to see people offering their resources for free to others who share their goals.

“’If you’ve got it, share it, spread it around,’” wrote Aliza Sherman, in The 10 Golden Rules of Social Media, a 2010 blog post cited by many for its description of how we can do good with the tools at hand.

“I’m talking about information, time and knowledge. In social media, sharing is the fuel of the conversation engine.”

Speaking of danger

Have you ever noticed how much people like talking about danger? People who know I write about safety often tell me about dangerous things they see. One recently showed me photos on his phone of some workers doing dangerous landscaping activities. He said they were using the wrong cutting tools for the job, and it looked pretty scary, as he described it.

Talking about danger is a good segue into a discussion on safety. That’s why I like this “visual library of danger” – as I picture it – that WorkSafe Victoria is archiving online. People keep sending in photos – and the winner of this week’s challenge is “another in the series on the misuse of empty plastic drums on construction sites,” reads the Safety Soapbox by WorkSafe Victoria.

“While construction workers have a variety of safe uses for empty drums, using them in this way or as a working platform are not among them.”

The risk of being photographed is one reason to avoid unsafe practices in this day of phone cameras that upload images to the Internet with a few taps of the screen. It’s especially risky when your coworkers might be taking part in a contest to photograph dangerous actions – an unexpected, yet possibly effective, way to encourage safety.

Using empty containers

Here’s another example of unsafe use of an empty container. This WorkSafeBC hazard alert Metal drum explodes during welding describes how a worker at a kayak manufacturing company was killed in an explosion caused when his welding torch burned into the surface he was welding on. It was an empty metal container that once contained acetone.


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