Injured on Your Day Off

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Man sustains serious head injury in industrial accident
Worker was picking up his paycheck on his day off.

Springfield News-Sun - October 5, 2012

By Mark McGregor

 A man was in intensive care at a Dayton hospital with a serious head injury after an industrial accident at a Springfield block and brick plant Friday afternoon.

Springfield Concrete Block & Brick Owner Robert Anderson said that off-duty employee Matthew Clay's head was pinned between a break in a wall where the company rolls products out of the building and a stacked load of cinder blocks being rolled out.

It was not immediately clear how or why his head may have been in the area, police said.

"We don't know whether the victim intended to enter the building again between those blocks or just sticking his head in to try to say something to his friend who was operating the blocks on the rail," Springfield Police Sgt. Barry Eggers said.

Clay, 25, of Pleasant Twp., was reportedly at the business, 1100 Mitchell Blvd., on his day off to pick up his paycheck.

"It's my understanding that they routinely go in and out of there, but they do it on the (left) side; it's 12 inches wide. But the side he was on is half that width," Eggers said. "I don't know if this young man knew that because he's only been here two weeks or if he's just hoping to say something quickly and get out of the way."

"I don't even know what he was trying to do," Anderson said. "I've been here since '67 and never had anything like that happen."

There is nothing worse than getting injured while at work . . . except maybe getting injured at work when you're not on the clock and there just to pickup your paycheck.

This recent news article from Springfield, Ohio highlights that industrial workplaces can be a dangerous place whether you're working inside the facility or just coming in to pickup your paycheck for the week. We don't know all the details of the incident yet but several things stick out from this article.

It seems obvious from the photograph that this would not be a safe entrance to the facility as you are going through a narrow opening that is lower than the typical door, roller conveyors on the walking surface and large objects coming through the opening occassionally. However the article also says that people routinely utilized it to go in and out of the facility. Bad habits and risky behavior are definately at play.

Also the article indicates that the injured person had only worked at the facility for two weeks. Did he not know the danger? Had he never seen loads of blocks come through the opening? Did he learn from coworkers this practice?

This brings to light that when dealing with new employees your actions are in the spotlight. They are like sponges and want to absorb everything they see veterans say and do so they too can perform a good job. What type of example are you setting? Think about that as you work today and look at each task you do. Are you doing it safely? Are there dangers? Would I want to teach someone that I care about that this is the way to do the task? All important questions to ask ourselves.

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