Grim Stats re Falling Down OTJ

Work weekend at Whispering Pines Campground was fun and all – but not the same as camping.

Repairing treads on a trail is really just basic carpentry with much bigger nails.

I did more damage to my hands in that weekend than I did all week at work. Speaking of which…

We had a safety seminar on Tuesday. While most of the 3 pages of notes are company specific, I can share a few general facts:

AZ Workman’s Compensation is deliberately set up as a “No Fault” system. That was the compromise with the business community for their mandatory participation.

One of the calculations AZ Workman’s Comp uses to determinethe premium cost is the Experience Modifier, or E-mod which factors the Frequency of injury with the Severity of injury. The baseline for these calculations are based on “industry average” which, in turn, seems to be based on alchemy.

What actually interests me about this is that FrequencyxSeverity is the basic formula I use to calculate development costs for non-tactical powers in my RPG game. Great minds think alike.

The only surprise about all the stats we covered was how few surprises we found in the stats: 23% of injuries are to the hands, 20% occur in the loading dock area, in an industry where 3-5 hour calls are the standard, most injuries happened in the first three hours – I could go on for pages.

What didn’t show up in the stats was sleep deprivation, because there was no way to track how much rest a given stagehand had before reporting to work.

Here’s something to consider for everyone climbing on truss:

OSHA requires a Horizontal lifeline, and a harness wit a zip or screamer extension, a portion bunched together and sewn in place so that it extnds relatively slowly under shock load (like falling) so that the sudden stop at the end of your tether doesn’t crack your pelvis. Both the lifeline and the harness add six feet to your overall falling distance.

So consider:

6′ stagehand falls

6′ to the end of his lanyard and another

3.5 feet for the screamer plus another

6 feet for the stretch in the lifeline (which also has a screamer)

That’s 21.5 feet. If you’re only 18′ above the top of the drum riser – guess what?

Allowing for a 3′ margin of error, that means a truss has to be trimmed at 24′ or higher before your “fall-arrest” will actually arrest your fall

BUT, you’re required to use such a system anyway whenever the truss trims higher than 6′. That’s how the government keeps us safer.

The key, then, is to not fall off the truss.

Finally, inside terminology about freeway design from my new favorite source The Infrastrucurist.

Now You Know

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