CYS Is A Great Idea For Tower Climber Compliance

Discussion in 'Wireless Estimator Site Discussions' started by Kelly Calders, Sep 12, 2013.

  1. Kelly Calders

    Kelly Calders Frequent Poster

    Everyone is entitled to their kneejerk reaction and comments to solve safety problems. Here are mine.

    Your story about compliance is neither kneejerk nor nonsensical. It’s the truth and it’s a great start if we can get our fellow companies to embrace it.

    I agree that climbers are not tying off because they become COMPLACENT as we all are at times no matter how much training we’ve had and no matter how grave we realize the consequences can be.

    In 2007 I had to take a driver’s education program to get points shaved off of my license. The program worked and I realized the consequences. But three months later I found myself doing the same thing which I was ticketed for.

    If I had someone telling me to Check Your Six I would have been looking to see if I was speeding and would have slowed down.

    It’s no different than working on a tower.

    I think it is a great idea if companies use this method, not to make sure that OSHA doesn’t grab your ass, but to make sure that velocity doesn’t.
  2. longtimer

    longtimer First Time Poster

    Seems like a common sense approach to keeping the guys safe. Every company has its own rules and training requirements and expectations of crews and this seems like a good policy to keep the guys alert to basic site conditions and the condition of each climber. I think this guy needs our applaud.

    OH BTW, I drove by a monopole with an LTE upgrade in process just north of Hartford, CT on 9/10...no hardhats for the two climbers up there on the platform and both guys had there lanyards firmly clipped to the side of there harness, but nothing else. I was driving the other direction and had a median in the way, so I didn't get a chance to photo or get the name off the truck, but its hard to believe people are still this stupid.
  3. Tower Tech 79

    Tower Tech 79 First Time Poster

    COMPLACENCY-This word was used in a recent column to describe a very viable concern in the industry and for safety in general. This is a word that comes to mind for me frequently whenever I hear of an accident or fatality in our field. Someone once stated to me that one reason for the high level of incidents may be due to the fact we typically work 200' +/- above the ground and become complacent with the fact that we don't think we're high off the ground any more.

    I have been in this industry since 1979 having started out as a Field Service Technician for the founders of Flash Technology(yes, some of you may now know who I am) I have worked on tall structures up t0 2049' all over the country and some of the world. I have had the experience of working with some of the most well known erectors in the industry, Jimmy King, Ron Waldron, Hank Kelly, Dan and John Webernick, Jim and Walt Coleman, Stan Klebe, Troy Kyman, Bob Shirley, Don Doty and Pat Moore, SG Communications, to name a few. Working on these structures we didn't see the number of fatalities from those heights that the industry sees today from tower hands/techs falling. Fatalities were usually result of catastrophic failure, engineering issues, steel fatigue etc. The memory of the Senior Road Tower Collapse in Missouri City TX is still very vivid and serves as a very firm reminder of how quickly things can go bad and be so tragic.

    I grew up in the old age of tower work, where safety was in its cusp and starting to take hold. I started out with a linemans belt, graduated to a Klein Tree Climbers Belt and thought that was state of the art at that time. It was not unusual for us and our techs to climb a Mile or more in a week, climb to the top of a 2000' tower in the middle of the night to repair the light on top of the antenna, (not all tall towers have elevators) Carry 60+ pounds of parts and spend 12+ hours on the tower, in places like TX, LA, FL in July. We typically free climbed every tower we went to. It was the standard practice then.

    Todays safety standards and policies are much more stringent and regulated, for a reason! Almost every safety standard that has been implemented has been done so at the cost of someone's injury or worse. I've ranted my piece here, my stories are valid, I would not have been able to write this if I had been complacent in my job. It is an awareness we need to instill in ourselves and practice.

    Cover Your Six is a good place to start. Thank you for bringing complacency to the forefront.
  4. Climber 1997

    Climber 1997 Industry Observer

    Cover Your Six is an excellent idea!!!! I hope NATE picks up on it and its members set an example. They tweet everything under the sun. Let's see if this something they think is worthy.
  5. KLB Welding

    KLB Welding Industry Observer

    That's a good idea. I have been on the tower several times and it's not complacency but busy getting the job done. Hanging from your positioning lanyard after moving then realizing that you have been working for 10 minutes with your safeties hanging on your harness. I've pointed it out to others on the crew when I've noticed it but having code words like "Check your Six" and keeping that in the minds of the folks up there with you is a good idea.

    I worked with a company doing some work on the ground, big contractor and each morning we gathered to have a safety meeting. We had electricians, welders, plumbers and we discussed what each trade would be doing during the course of the day. Then each of us pointed out the hazards of our jobs and what we should watch for, trips hazards, fall hazards, etc. As a welder working in a building with others is tricky. A code I've used over the years before I strike an arc is to shout "Eyes!". I use this on the tower as well and the guys up there with me reply, "Eyes!".

    Good communication and being alert to your surroundings as we all have momentary brain fades.

Share This Page