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Published: April, 2014; Vol 10, Num 11

 

Message from the Co-Chairmen (Spring 2014)

Stay Safe as Construction Picks Up

With construction ramping up as we move into spring, there is no better time to look at what employers can do to make worksites safe and what Laborers can do to ensure they are at their best on and off the job. No one likes to think their workplace could become the scene of a tragedy, but every year 5,000 workers across the country leave for work and never come home again.

Workers' Memorial Day, observed on April 28th, honors the memories and sacrifices of those workers who have lost their lives and aims to reduce future tragedies by recommitting to worksite safety. This edition of LIFELINES covers several important site safety issues and offers easy, low-cost ways to improve health and wellness.

Reducing the risk for serious injuries and fatalities on the job starts with planning for the worst. Preparing emergency action plans for events ranging from severe weather to contact with an electrical line or chemical spill can save lives when disaster strikes. Another important calendar event in April, National Work Zone Awareness Week, reminds motorists to use caution when traveling through work zones. This issue of our magazine reminds employers and Laborers to take special care at night, when decreased visibility creates an added danger.

Construction is a bricks and mortar profession, but the industry continues to feel the influence and benefits of technology. In this issue we take a look at a number of free and low-cost phone and tablet apps that are particularly useful for Laborers.

When it comes to workplace wellness, working on a construction site presents unique challenges. Many construction sites are temporary or short-term, making it more difficult to reach workers about improving their health when not on the job. But there are easy, cost-effective methods to succeed in bringing health and wellness materials into the workplace. This issue discusses those options, and we encourage readers to take advantage of the many publications and wellness resources the Fund offers.

April is National Stress Awareness Month, and with spring a busy time of year as the weather turns nicer and activities heat up, it’s more important than ever to be aware of stress. As part of LIFELINES’ ongoing series on high blood pressure, this edition covers the effects of stress on this common, life-threatening condition. Learning to recognize and control stress can translate into increased safety on the job and mean better health at home. And ultimately, those are the two goals the Fund wants to achieve for every LIUNA member.