This week (March 23-27) is National Work Zone Safety Awareness Week. Alabama Struck-By Alliance will be using this week to publicize potential dangers to workers and motorists in highway work zones and is asking that companies throughout Alabama participate in a "Safety Stand Down" focusing on work zone safety by hosting a tool box talk anytime during the week. The theme for this year's National campaign is "Expect the Unexpected."
White-Spunner Construction has pledged to take part in this year's Safety Stand Down and will be holding mandatory tool box talks to discuss work zone safety and distracted driving at all our job sites. Although we aren't road builders, our company does plenty of work next to roadways, we have friends or family that work for road building companies, and all of us frequently drive through areas of road work. The men and women working in these areas are mothers, fathers, sons or daughters and deserve the respect from all of us to slow down and help keep them safe.
However, it's not just the workers in these road work zones that we need to protect. From 2004-2013, there were more than 5,500 work zone crashes in Alabama resulting in injuries and 232 fatal crashes. Four out of five fatalities in work zone accidents are drivers and passengers. Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of these crashes, and the three main types of distractions are visual (taking your eyes off the road), manual (taking your hands off the wheel) or cognitive (not paying attention to what you're doing). While all distractions can endanger drivers and others, texting is the most alarming because it involves all three types of distractions (visual, manual and cognitive).
Some tips to remember while driving through a work zone include:
The 26th Annual American Cancer Society Chili Cookoff was a huge success! The event, presented by Trax Tire Pros, was held at The Grounds on Saturday, March 7 and raised more than $170,000 to support the ACS's fight against cancer. More than 15,000 people came out to try the wide variety of chili recipes from the 75 teams competing for Best Chili in Mobile.
The competition definitely saw some interesting recipes with unique ingredients such as elk, snapping turtle and kangaroo. WSC's Chicken Chili recipe placed us on this year's leaderboard, but the overall winner of the Chili Cookoff was Faulkner State Community College.
This event is highly anticipated each year among White-Spunner employees, and we always have a blast being able to enjoy some great food with our friends and family while supporting a great cause.
WSC would like to welcome back Amy Anderson as our Human Resources Consultant. Amy previously worked for WSC as Human Resources Director from 2006-2009. She is currently consulting for White-Spunner Realty, Inc. as well.
Amy grew up in Mobile and attended Baker High School. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Spring Hill College in 1997. Prior to her first few years at WSC, Amy spent her HR career in the healthcare industry and worked at Providence Hospital for 15 years. She has spent the last five years working as Vice President of Human Resources for a local rehabilitation management company.
Amy’s husband, Robert, is a Manager at Trax Tire Auto Service Center. They have two sons, Noah who is nine years old and Jonah who is seven. Amy’s hobbies include reading, singing, outdoor sports with her boys and college football.
The demonstration was a perfect example of how stress is created. Many of us have a routine we follow every day, similar to the pattern in which the balls were thrown. Now imagine each item on your daily to do list as another ball being added to the circle. As your list grows, it becomes harder and harder to juggle everything at once and eventually it becomes too much for one person to handle.
Following the demonstration, Ross went over a few strategies that have been proven to reduce stress including body relaxation such as breathing techniques and guided imagery, physical exercise such as yoga and other workout routines, meditation and counseling. Effectively managing stress can yield several benefits including improved physical health, increased energy, stabilized emotions, a more positive attitude, happier moods, improved focus and ability to learn and achieve. Some other helpful tips for managing stress include changing perceptions and expectations, breaking tasks into manageable parts, setting reasonable and realistic goals, avoiding procrastination, setting boundaries, refusing to compromise values, and scheduling some personal time for yourself to relax.
This was a very fun and imformative lunch and learn for our employees, and we plan to have several more sessions like this throughout the year. Our goal at WSC is to provide our employees with plenty of opportunities to learn more about safety, health and wellness and to remain knowledgable and up to date on topics, techniques, trends and changes within our industry.
WSC would like to congratulate Debbie Johnson on her retirement! Debbie has worked as a Project Assistant for WSC for 12 years. Today marks her last day with the company, and a luncheon was held in honor of her 12 years of hard work and dedication.
Debbie plans to travel as much as possible with her husband, Bill, after he retires at the first of next year. They are hoping to plan their first trips to the Florida Keys, New Orleans and Disney World. They also plan to attend several Nascar races and a couple of PGA golf tournaments as well. The couple plans to put their house up for sale next spring and would like to purchase land for hunting and fishing near Birmingham where their son and his family lives.
Congratulations, Debbie! We wish you all the best and a happy retirement!
WSC would like to introduce our new project manager, Paul Lewis. Paul grew up in Mobile and attended high school at UMS-Wright. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Auburn University in 2000.
Paul previously worked as a project manager/estimator at Roy Lewis Construction from 2000-2011, where he specialized in design-build contracts in all types of commercial construction with some limited work in some higher end custom residential work. He then worked for two years as project manager/estimator for C. Sharpe Co. in Orange Beach, where he specialized in waterproofing and restoration projects.
Paul's wife, Candice, is a fine arts instructor at Cottage Hill Christian School and Academy. They have two sons, James Holston who is eight years old, and Roan who is five. Paul's hobbies include all things outdoors such as kayaking, inshore fishing and hunting.
Hello everyone, my name is Thomas Cotton and I am an Assistant Project Manager on the RSA jobs. I attended college at Auburn University and earned my degree in Building Science. I have worked with White-Spunner Construction on various jobs through college internships, and I have always thought it was a great place to work. The men and women that I worked with on those projects taught a great deal about construction and real life experiences. With that knowledge I was vastly above the learning curve in my class and was able to graduate in 3-1/2 years.
After graduating from Auburn in 2010, I started with Southern Pipe in their Management Program. Shortly after completing the program, they assigned me to inside sales where I did most of their bidding out of the Mobile Branch. About a year later, the company asked me to move to outside sales to help grow their commercial, industrial and HVAC market. I gladly accepted and for the past two years worked my way up through the ranks until I was approach with a position here .
I grew up here in Mobile. I married my high school sweetheart, Monica, and we do not have any children at this time. I can only hope to be like everyone else at White-Spunner and earn a tenure here. I look forward to working with each and every one you!
I want to thank you for the opportunity to work for such a great company again!
This week, June 2-6, is OSHA's National Stand Down on Falls in Construction. To help raise awareness about fall prevention, Capital Safety, a manufacturer of fall protection equipment, has launched its Every Worker Every Time initiative, which is a five-day fall protection and training program.
To further raise awareness about fall prevention, Capital Safety created the following infographic. Please share this information about fall protection to others in the construction industry as we strive to bring every worker at height home safely, every workday.