Archives for November 2013

Security Seals: First Defence Against Cargo Theft

revfin_600x250Cargo theft is a serious threat that is affecting a lot of Canadian industries. For the transportation industry, it is a $5 billion problem. In the Greater Toronto Area alone, over $500,000 worth of property disappears everyday. It’s alarming that this kind of theft occurs everywhere – in freight forwarding yards, carriers/ terminal lots, warehouses, truck stops, and even during transportation. This is why cargo security measures have become an essential part of doing business for many organizations today.

Safety seals are you first line of defence against thievery and damage of goods. A seal is a tamper-indicating device that is designed to leave non-erasable, unambiguous evidence if any unauthorized access happens. It can be made of steel, plastic, wire, or metal for varying degree of strength and security. There are also seals and ties that are ISO-compliant and can be customized for your own specific needs.

To find out which type of  security seal is the best fit for your kind of cargo and level of protection, read on below:

Indicative Seals

This is a good tool for alerting shipping receivers of tampering, theft or combinations of both. You can use them to lock containers and trailers. This type of seal works by showing a “blush mark” or a white stripe, among other proof of tampering, in the area that has been compromised.  Indicative seals include tamper-evident tapes, locks, and labels, which is further discussed in this article.

C-TPAT Seals

C-TPAT (Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism) seals are best used when time is of the essence. C-TPAT is a voluntary supply chain security program led by the U.S. that focuses on the security of companies’ supply chains with respect to terrorism. Any cargo that are sealed with C-TPAT seals are move through customs more quickly. C-TPAT seals meet or exceed ISO/PAS 17712 standards for High Security Seals.

Plastic Seals

For a simple and practical way to secure your goods, plastic seals are the better choice. Use this tamper-evident marker to seal and secure valves, bags, containers, and more. Most plastic seals are for one time use and are more flexible than steel or wire seals.350x450

Tie Markers

Prevent unauthorized access to equipment, tools, and packages with this type of seal. It works by leaving trace evidence when it has been tampered with. There are even tie markers with write-on tags where you can put in your own instructions and messages for better security and handling of your goods.

Adhesive Seals

This type protects your goods against alteration, tampering and counterfeiting during shipping. Adhesive seals usually feature the words “TAMPER RESISTANT” or “VOID IF SEAL IS BROKEN” on the label itself. Use this to seal chemical containers, electronic equipment, and other items in your office, warehouse, shipping area, or manufacturing facility.

ISO Compliant Seals

Protect your company assets and shipment from damages, theft and unauthorized access and still comply with ISO 17712 regulations. ISO seal includes plastic padlock seals and bolt type barrier seals, which are perfect for use on ISO containers, trucks, shipments, air cargo containers, doors, hatches, and hazmat containers.

Steel, Cable, Metal and Wire Seals

Use this for industrial and commercial items that require heavy-duty protection. This type of seal is available in durable steel, metal, and wire materials with varying thickness. As a general rule, the thicker the diameter of the seal, the stronger the seal is.

Padlock Seals

This tamper evident seal is a popular type of safety seal used today. This one-time use padlock is available in a variety of styles and features, including plastic padlocks, heavy-duty tamper resistant padlocks which needs to be cut or broken to remove the lock.

Custom Seals

If you can’t find the right seal for your need, don’t worry! Custom seals allows you to create your own security seal and ties. You can put your own wording, numbering, bar codes,  colour, material, and even size of your seal to meet your own security system standards.

Always remember that the strength and effectiveness of your security seals depends on the proper way of using them. These means that the procedures that your company employs for procurement, storage, removal, disposal, reporting, record keeping, installation, inspection, interpreting findings, and training are being met. So to get the most out of your safety seals, follow these protocols to the letter. Not only will it enable you to provide the much needed security against cargo theft and damages, it will also add to a positive bottom line in the end.

 

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Securing Roadways And Pathways for Winter

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Roadways and pathways provide safe access for vehicles and pedestrians coming to and from your facility. However, the adverse conditions caused by snowing can cause problems even for the safest pedestrian or driver. The slippery ice and snow that builds up can cause everything from minor fender benders, skidding, overturns, collisions, and even pile-ups in vehicles to an increase in slips, trips, and falls in people.

While every facility will have different requirements when it comes to how one would go about securing avenues of travel, there are still a few basic things we need to keep in mind when doing so:

Snow RemovalGet the necessary equipment.

Piecing together everything you’ll need to get ready for winter can be a daunting task. At the barest minimum, you’ll need to buy ice melting salt, a spade, and a way to transport the snow such as a wheelbarrow.  It is advisable (and definitely cheaper) to pick up pre-made kits such as the RIM Ice Melter Kit and augmenting it with other items such as shovels and a good wheelbarrow.

Salt the snow for easier work.

The easiest and most common method of doing this is by using salt to soften the ice and shovelling it. The salt is important because it makes the task a lot easier. This is particularly important because the person shovelling will be working in very cold conditions which presents a hazard in itself. So lower accident risks and work easier by properly salting the snow.

Keep paths clear of the snow and ice that inevitably builds up.

This is pretty self-explanatory. Basically, keep every path clear of snow and ice. By every path, we mean even the paths and roadways that aren’t main thoroughfares. This ensures that if these pathways are needed, you can be sure that the vehicles and people will be safe when traversing it

Regular maintenance goes a long way.

This is a catch-all reminder to keep all your equipment, roadways, and pathways in good working condition. Having equipment break-down during winter can be a harrowing experience since replacements may not be easy to get during that time. In addition, it is almost impossible to fix roads and pathways during this time as well due to the constant snow combined with the freezing weather. So be sure to have a regular maintenance schedule for all roads, pathways, and equipment during the months with better weather.

The winter months presents the most number of challenges to travelers, both on foot and in vehicles. It is important that we secure our facilities to lower the risks to both our visitors and employees who may be visiting our work place.

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Safety Products: Customization is the Way To Go

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In today’s world, consumers are king. People know exactly what they want and they demand nothing less. Everyone wants to have their own identity – from the clothing we wear, to the house we live in, and even the food we eat. In fact, the term “one size fits all,” that we are all familiar with growing up, no longer seems applicable. The article that Huffington Post did on customization brought up good points to back up their statement that “every customer is his own market.”

Consumers are always looking for more product choices that reflect who they are and fit their particular needs and wants. This same concept applies to safety and identification products. There are times when a standard identification or safety product just won’t do. In these situations, customization is the way to go.

Customized products give you the versatility that ready-made goods can’t. You can put your own specific message to help communicate what you need to say more effectively. Putting your own mark on the product will also help you target your audience and users better.

Seton Canada’s custom line of safety and identification products lets you experience that. From pipe markers, safety signs, traffic and parking signs, tags, labels, and more, you have the option to make your product exactly how you want it. Seton Canada even has a very user-friendly online tool called Design-Your-Own where you can configure how you want your products to look like and see how it looks like as you create it. You can opt to:

Customize your text. If you have a specific message you need to communicate but can’t find the right product for this, then this is your solution. You can put your own safety message, company name, or the user’s name on your safety product. You can even choose the text alignment, font type, font size, and font colour to make it your own.

Choose your size. For large areas that needs signage visible from anywhere in the room, you will need a very large sign format. On the other hand, if you need to mark small items in your office, then you need a small enough label or tag that will fit the available surface of the items you need to label and still be readable.Custom-Shaped-Traffic-Signs-X85-ba

Add in logos or graphics. Putting your own logo or company graphics on your safety products is not only a theft prevention solution but also a smart marketing strategy. Displaying your company logo on your safety signs, labels or tags also help in promoting your organization, which can lead to more revenues and instant brand recognition.

Select the colour. You can customize the colour of your safety or identification product to match your company branding, colour-coding system or the products’ function. Or maybe you just have a favourite colour you want to use for your specific items. Whatever the reason for picking your colour, Seton Canada has got you covered.

Pick your own material. You need to make sure the material you pick for your safety signs, tags or labels is suited to the environment the product will be exposed to. For outdoor use, you should pick materials that can withstand harsh weather conditions. For indoor use, you can go with more budget-friendly materials and even save money as well.

Upgrade your topcoat. When making purchases, we all want to get the best value for our buck. Investing in a Duroshield topcoat for your sign or label guarantees a lifetime protection against harsh chemicals, UV rays, and even graffiti or Seton Canada will replace your item for free!

Choose the mounting method. Do you want your signs to be posted on the wall, mounted on a pole, or stuck to a door? There are a lot of choices to choose from – from self-adhesive mounting to sign poles to screws and nails. You just need to determine what is required for your safety sign or label.

Customizing not only addresses your specific needs when it comes to safety and identification products. Personalizing your own products can also be a fun, creative and liberating experience. When customers get what they want, then they are happy and satisfied. And when they are satisfied, they will be more likely to come back and do business with you again. It’s a win-win situation for everyone.

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Selecting Parking Tags For Safer Parking Lots

clear parking permit_body_300x450 In this day and age where almost every Canadian household owns at least one car, finding a vacant place to park, especially during peak hours, can be time-consuming and frustrating to motorists. It’s also a potential security nightmare for businesses with parking facilities that need to monitor access of vehicles in and out of the facility.

The good news is, it doesn’t have to be that way. A lot of businesses have discovered an easy solution to control access to their parking facilities and offer parking priority for employees and visitors. The simple answer is parking tags.

When you use parking tags, you ensure that only authorized cars and other vehicles are permitted access to your facility. This helps you identify which cars are trespassing or are parked in the wrong areas. You can even use parking tags to assign parking spaces to your employees and visitors. A dedicated parking space creates a feeling of confidence, improves morale, and lets the person know that they are thought of. Most importantly, it provides a sense of security in the knowledge that someone is looking after them and their car.

There are parking tags for regular users, visitors, and even for handicapped users too. These tags are available in different sizes, shapes, colours, and wordings. There are even parking permit tags that come with serial numbers or bar codes that you or your parking attendants can use to check the status of the motorist –whether it is trespassing, is parked in the wrong location, or has some outstanding balances with your parking organization. You can even customize your own parking tags and add in your own message, image, or numbering.

With all the options available on parking tags today, it can be pretty overwhelming to choose the right one for you.  But don’t worry; to get the most out of your parking tags, here are some tips on how to select the best parking tags for you:

  •  On deciding what type of parking tag to use. There are three main choices – hanging tags, decals, or stickers. These parking permit tags are usually plastic but they can also be made of vinyl, polyester, and even cardstock. Hanging tags can be easily transferred to another vehicle when the authorized user needs to switch cars without destroying the tag. On the other hand, stickers or decals are the more permanent option when you need to securely display your tags. A good tip is to make sure your parking tags are uniform throughout your facility or designated areas to avoid confusions or mishaps in the future.
  •  On choosing your design. Look for tags that stand out and are clearly visible even when displayed from inside the car. You can even go the extra mile by adding your own branding to your tags, such as company colour and logo, for easy identification, and recall.
  •  On choosing ink colour. Simple works; so steer clear of multiple colours. A strong standout colour such as black, red, or blue against a white or yellow background makes it easy to read the message in your parking tags.
  •  On fonts and additional text. Use a font that is clear and readable even from a distance such as: Arial, Times Roman, or Helvetica. Avoid using curvy, special, or whimsical fonts. These are not only hard to read, but can look tacky as well.

If you are going to customize your message, make it is short and sweet. Since space is limited, only put important wordings such as “Parking Permit” or date of expiry. If you need to add more motorists’ info, a bar code or identifying license tag number will do. You can just refer to the bar code or number to get additional information.

If this is your first time to encounter parking tags, the tips above will make your life easier come purchase time. If you are a veteran parking tag user or purchaser, these will help you assess if the parking tags you have been using are efficient or if you need to stock up on other parking tags that will be fit the needs of your parking facility. Remember, you as business owner or parking manager have the responsibility of making sure that your parking facility is efficient, safe and secure.
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Creating Effective PPE Programs: Four Easy Tips

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Everyday, workers face potential hazards in the workplace. Slips, trip hazards, falling objects, ergonomic hazards, mechanical hazards, chemical radiation, and biohazards are all occupational hazards.  To ensure you and your workers are safe, you need to use proper protection.

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is designed to protect the wearer against safety and health hazards. These tools help prevent or reduce the severity of injury if an accident occurs. The PPE you will use will depend on the work conditions, the work environment, and the task being performed. You also need to consult with the Occupational Health and Safety ActRegulations for Construction Projects (O. Reg. 213/91), and the Canada Labour Code for legal PPE requirements.

A strong PPE program in your workplace will help address the safety hazards in your facility. An effective protection plan must consider these three elements:

1.) Protection of workers

2.) Compliance with government laws, regulations, and company standards

3.) Technical feasibility

If you don’t have a program in place yet, now is the best time to start one. To help you get started on creating an effective PPE program, here are the four major things you need to follow:

Assessment

First, you need to select the jobs, processes, or procedures you are going to assess. Do a survey of the worksite and identify hazards that workers will be exposed to while doing the work. Use a Hazard Identification Form to record all identified hazards. For each identified hazard, review and discuss ways of control and PPE options that may be used. Always remember to try and control the hazard first and see if it can be removed without resorting to using PPE .

PPE Selection

When you have determined that PPE is needed to address the hazards, list down which PPE will be used. You need to determine the degree of protection required and the appropriateness of the equipment to the situation. Here are some guidelines on available PPE to help you in your selection:

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a)       Skin Protection

PPE for skin protection includes protective gloves and clothing such as vests, aprons, raincoats, coveralls, and boots. These can be made from different materials such as rubber, latex, pvc, leather, Kevlar®, and many more. But no single material can protect you from all chemical hazards. Ask your PPE product manufacturer or supplier which specific protective materials are best for the chemicals you are working with. Also check your PPE if they meet temperature conditions, or can withstand punctures, tears and abrasions.

b)      Eye/Face Protection

You need to use eye and face protections if there is a possibility of injury from exposure to airborne particles or splashes of toxic or corrosive liquids. Safety glasses, chemical splash goggles, and face shields are some examples of this type of PPE. Safety glasses/goggles are worn when working with hazardous chemicals while a face shield should be used when there is a risk of splashing, leaks or dangerous reactions.

c)       Respiratory Protection

Respiratory protection is needed when airborne chemicals can’t be controlled below safe exposure limits. There are two types of respirators: air-purifying respirators and supplied air respirators. Air-purifying respirators use filters or cartridges to remove contaminants while supplied air respirators provide clean air for breathing. Selection of PPE must be done by a qualified person who has assessed the work situation in your facility.

d)       Fall Protection

Fall protection prevents workers in construction and other industries from deadly falls from high places. Lanyards, body harness, belts, carbiners, and straps are just some of the fall protection tools available.

e)       PPE Signs and Labels

PPE signs and labels help remind workers to wear the necessary equipment. These also identify and alert workers and visitors to hazardous areas or situations.

Training

After the assessment and selection, employers must ensure that workers are trained to properly use, maintain and store PPE. Employees must:

a)       Undergo hands-on training in the fit, use, and maintenance of assigned PPE

b)       Understand the limitations of PPE, and know what to do in the event of exposure or equipment failure

c)       Know when to discard or replace PPE

d)       Report any missing or broken device to the supervisor or person in charge

If a worker fails to meet any of these four conditions, or if the PPE requirement of the worker changes, he or she must repeat the training.

Documentation

You need to keep records of every step of your PPE program – from assessment to implementation. This will help you in your annual assessment of your program, including determining if areas need improvement or if you need additional PPE for your tasks.

Using the right PPE in your workplace is very important. Though it may not totally eliminate workplace hazards in your facility, you and your workers are assured that you have the proper tools to protect from these hazards.

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Material Handling Equipment: An Overview

 

Did you know that three out of four Canadians whose job involves Manual Material Handling (MMH) have suffered pain due to back injury during their career? According to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS), several thousands of Canadian workers are permanently disabled by back injuries each year. These MMH-related injuries account for about one third of all lost work and even more in compensation costs.

Material handling equipment (MHE) plays a vital role in addressing hazards related to MMH. These versatile tools make it easy to move, transport, store, protect, handle, and dispose goods, materials, and products in your facility. It also simplifies the tasks of manual workers, which results to increased worker performance and productivity. Even incidents of serious MMH-connected injuries and accidents such as muscoskeletal injuries are reduced. As such, it should come as no surprise that material handling equipment is a necessity for industries such as warehousing, shipping and logistics, food industry, construction, and manufacturing .

Investing in proper standard material handling equipment makes for good business. But, as with any investment, you need to be smart about your purchases. Before buying, figure out  your needs carefully. One way to do this is by educating yourself on the different types of material handling equipment and their functions:

Transportation

This covers any industrial handling equipment that moves material from point A to point B. Transportation items such as conveyor belts, carts, hand trucks, forklifts, and loaders let your workers move goods with ease and speed – whether from one end of your facility to the other, or from your docking platform to a storage area. Trucks can move material anywhere, for example, while conveyor belts move material along a single path.

Positioning

Positioning tools ensure that a material to be transported is positioned appropriately for moving. This can mean turning, pivoting, or stacking the material using tools to ensure worker safety as some of these goods are dangerous, heavy or awkward to move manually. Examples of this type of MHE include lift tables, dock levelers, part feeders, hoists, and balancers.

Unit Loads

Unit loads such as pallets, bags, baskets, crates, and straps help stabilize or hold goods to avoid movement during transport or storage. This type also allows more than one item of the same material to be held by one unit load equipment.

Storage

Storage equipment lets you store or hold goods for a set period of time until the said items are needed. Bins, racks, frames, shelves and pallets are common examples of storage tools. With these, you can keep surplus goods from overproduction, allowing production to still continue. You can even customize your packaging and shelving scheme to save up on space while products are still in inventory.

Identification and Control Equipment

Large manufacturing, storage, and disposal facilities need a system to keep track of all their goods. This is where identification and control equipment come in. Bar codes, radio frequency tags, magnetic strips, portable data terminals, and machine vision are just some examples of this type of MHE that collects information and coordinates flows inside your facility.

Every piece of material handling equipment is designed to meet the varying needs of your facility but you must also know its limitations. To get the most out of your MHE, you need to comply with the regulations in the Canada Labour Code. Lastly, always follow the safety instructions mentioned by the manufacturer.  It’s always better to be safe and sure!

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Save Lives With Lockout/Tagout Tags and Labels

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There’s no room for error when it comes to dealing with electricity. It takes a shock of 6/1000 Amps to fatally electrocute a person, something that industrial machines can easily produce. It should come as no surprise that lockout programs have become one of the touchstones in electrical safety.

While a properly constructed lockout program ensures that every worker doing maintenance is protected and safe, it simply is not enough. Proper information about the hazards of the different devices must be effectively communicated to the workforce as well.

That’s where lockout tags and labels come in. Lockout tags and lockout labels provide that vital information at a glance and will keep information flowing to your workers as long as they’re within viewing distance.

Lockout Labels: The Point of Contact

While on-site training and basic instruction can do wonders for ensuring your workers are properly versed in safety procedure, reminders are always necessary. In fact, they’re often the law!

That’s why you should take advantage of lockout labels and use them as teaching and awareness tools especially where your people might be most at risk: while they’re working with electrical equipment and machinery.

Lockout labels can take many forms, from detailed instructions of lockout policy and procedure to hazard warnings and indications of lockout points or emergency shutdown controls. Be sure to choose the right label to suit the needs of your business and workers, so their point of contact remains safe and efficient.

Lockout Tags: Reminders of Work Done Right

Locking out equipment is only the first step in electrical safety. Your fellow workers – and occasionally safety inspectors – need to know the who, when, and why of a lockout. This is where lockout tags take the stage, where you put down the details you and others need when you lock out. That’s why lockout procedures are also known as “lockout/tagout”, since they involve the use of lockout tags in addition to the equipment.

Never skimp on safety, and never skimp on due diligence, which is a properly filled and attached lockout tag. Select your tags to match your needs, from simple write-in lockout tags for one-off occurrences to tags that double as photo IDs, telling your people just who locked out a machine and for what reason.

Prevention Through Proper Procedure

Electricity is a very powerful force, and proper procedure should always be kept in mind when dealing with it. Preventing accidents before it happens is everyone’s responsibility and the best way is by taking electrical safety seriously by employing lockout tags and labels.

Don’t forget to keep checking back here for more safety tips and tricks you can use for your facility.

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Facility First Aid: The Basics and More

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First aid is the means by which an initial and immediate medical response is given to a person or persons in need of assistance. In the event of an emergency, knowing how to respond quickly, can greatly reduce the degree of whatever potential risks are involved. In some cases, this properly administered care does mean the difference between life and death.

The First Line of Emergency Medical Treatment

First aid in the workplace must be easily accessible to all those in the facility. It should not take more than a few minutes before first aid can be administered. As such, first aid stations need to be situated in more than one area, especially for large locations or workspaces that include multiple floors.

Minimum Requirements. Regulations and standards for first aid in the workplace often vary by province or territory. These also depend on other factors such as the field of industry and the size of the facility. At the very minimum, regulations require a first aid kit and trained employee for every workplace in every jurisdiction in Canada.

In general, employees must be instructed on proper emergency protocols for emergencies. With regards to first aid, they should be trained in:

  • Identifying where first aid stations/kits are located
  • Identifying an emergency list of first aid responders and other relevant personnel. This should include prioritization of who to call first, as well as location and contact numbers of personnel
  • Familiarity of a list of nearest medical facilities (name, address, operating hours and telephone numbers).
  • Following proper first aid procedures during actual situations.  This includes identifying the types of injuries that should be reported, who to call for assistance, and accompanying the victim until first aid arrives.

Benefits. Here are a few reasons why first aid is important:

  • Saves lives. With proper first aid training, immediate medical action can be provided to those in need. This reduces the number of potential casualties while increasing the number of lives that can be saved.
  • Contains hazards. Though first aid is meant to administer temporary treatment, it is also important to prevent hazardous conditions from deteriorating. Dangers and transmittable diseases can be contained well enough by following the proper first aid procedures until professional help arrives.
  • Increases safety. Since prevention is an integral part of first aid, the knowledge and availability of first aid supplies promotes an increased safety awareness and well-being among people. This keeps them more alert and safe in their immediate surroundings.
  • Relieves pain and other symptoms. Some injuries require simple remedies, like generic prescriptions or applying ice packs. In these instances, going to the emergency room is not necessary to alleviate the symptoms. With simple procedures, first aid alleviates pain and discomfort, at least temporarily.
  • Provides a sense of security. First aid training and supplies help increase reliability and confidence among employees. This in turn promotes a healthy and efficient work environment.

At the end of the day, first aid training and supplies are useful not only to employees and employers, but to their immediate community as well. So let’s remain safe and ensure that our facilities have properly trained and well equipped staff.

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