More than 3,000 workers at 100 jobsites in the Chicago area participated in the third-annual Builders Association (BA) Safety Stand Down on June 3, demonstrating the construction community’s safety focus and achievements.
Workers at several high-profile sites took time to discuss and learn about safety planning. These included employees of Pepper Construction at the Chicago Cubs’ Wrigley Field project, Bulley & Andrews at Northwestern University, Tribco at 1000 S. Clark, AMS Mechanical at the Kimpton Hotel site at 39 S. LaSalle, and The Hill Group and United States Alliance Fire Protection (see separate stories).
The BA provided Safety Stand Down participants with curriculum materials and hard hat stickers, along with a memento hard hat for every company to display.
“Companies that stand down for safety during this event know the value of safety training and comprehensive jobsite inspection, and voluntarily cease work for approximately 30 minutes to provide focused training on a particular topic,” the
BA Safety Stand Down announcement said. “This meeting provides effective communication of safety policies, goals and expectations through all levels of your team, and improves employee morale.”
“Our Safety Stand Downs’ successes are the result of our very dedicated Safety and Health Committee,” said BA executive director Dan McLaughlin. “The safety professionals who sit on this committee coordinate our safety awards program, forums and training opportunities, and the Safety Stand Down. They are committed to safe practices throughout the industry for all companies.”
The Safety Stand Down started as a local initiative, but has been taken up by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OHSA) and similar programs are now held in communities across the nation.
“It is critical for all jobsite team members to ‘think about planning to be safe,’ and there is much more to that concept than meets the eye,” the BA says. “Dozens of safety directors and superintendents had their own way of delivering this message to their firms’ employees. Builders Association Stand Downs reiterate the overall goal of having all workers return home to their families safely day in and day out.”
The four-year, $575 million Wrigley Field 1060 project – certainly one of the most high-profile and visible Chicagoland construction initiatives – includes “structural updates, improved player facilities, new signage, including video boards in left and right field; expanded concessions; new and improved restroom facilities
and much more,” says a Cubs press
Meanwhile, Bulley & Andrews is completing a full-scale renovation of Northwestern University’s Kresge Centennial Hall at 1800 Campus Drive in Evanston. The 90,000 gross sq. ft. building houses a significant portion of the university’s arts and humanities classes. Nearly every Northwestern student has used the building since its original construction in 1954.
“Working in the midst of an active campus with students present potentially at all hours of the day requires a much tighter footprint around the building. The team frequently operates outside normal working hours, doing much of the work and receiving most deliveries very early in the morning, before the heaviest student traffic begins,” said senior superintendent Charles Poglayen.
Bulley & Andrews combined its general contracting responsibilities with extensive masonry restoration work through its specialty division, Bulley & Andrews Masonry Restoration. Safety director Greg Marquez said pre-task planning is vital. “When safety operates well, it is approached in a proactive manner. Bulley & Andrews always strives to manage safety proactively.”
BA health and safety committee members included: Dan Ruane of W.E. O’Neil Construction (chair) and members Nancy Bero, Oakwood Contractors; Shane Deaton, Henry Bros. Co.; Paul Flentge, Pepper Construction Co.; Bradley Hartmann, Red Angle; Greg Marquez, Bulley & Andrews; Luke Lukowicz, W.B. Olson, Inc.; Matt McKeon, The Hill Group; Mike Polacheck, The George Sollitt Construction Co.; Dennis Rumshas, McShane Construction; and Austin Stanton, Valenti Builders.