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Weekly Toolbox Talk: Struck by Moving Objects

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Note to Supervisors: If there have been struck-by accidents in your area, be prepared to discuss them with employees. Listen to their ideas; they may have the answer you have been looking for. Also, mention any hazards that may be unique to your operation.

Probably the most unpredictable type of accident is being struck by a moving object, because it is usually out of the routine.

What do you look out for? What do you have to guard against? You should be careful at blind intersections in and around the worksite, and look out for stacked materials, equipment, sharp objects, overhead work and hidden debris. Rolls or pipes improperly stacked and unguarded can give way and roll into you, causing serious consequences. Always barricade materials to keep traffic away from them and aware of hazards.

Watch for co-workers carrying objects too long for them to handle--a slight change of direction by the carrier can cause the object to swing into someone else. Workers carrying objects that obscure their vision are a real threat to themselves and co-workers.

On the job is no place to daydream. You could bump into co-workers or stacked material. Unbalanced loads on lifts, trucks or materials stacked too high or too wide should not be allowed.

In addition to the more or less unpredictable causes of struck-by accidents, there are some that are predictable, like slivers from machine tools, particles from abrasive blades from chop-saw, chips or splinters or chisels against wood or metal, breaking glass, and co-workers swinging sheetrock, metal studs, and moving sheetrock dollies without looking at their path.

There is another important struck-by hazard--horseplay. While the intent of horseplay is quite innocent, the results can be extremely serious, even fatal.

There are case of lost eyes, broken bones, severe bruises and lacerations, and even deaths. Think before you take part in any horseplay, and discourage others from doing so.

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