The immortal words of Sgt. Phil Esterhaus ring true this month.
June is National Safety Month. Obviously that means that everyone should have safety on their minds; yet safety should always be on the mind.
Naturally this is more germane to those who perform “dangerous” jobs rather than those of us whose greatest threat to life and limb is usually the commute to work.
For tower climbers and builders, safety is paramount. Their national association, the National Association of Tower Erectors, stresses safety every day of the year. One mistake by a tower climber can be fatal, whereas one mistake by a standard issue broadcaster might result in a glare from the boss, a red face of embarrassment, a ticked off advertiser, an engineer frantically reaching for the dump button or a similar less-than-life-threatening ramification.
NATE’s motto is “Safety first, safety always.” Here’s NATE’s Safety and Education page. It is very useful, even if you aren’t a tower dog.
Broadcast engineers who don’t climb towers still encounter dangerous situations that demand attention to safety procedures. This is most obvious in transmission plants, wherein a mistake, an accident, can lead to electrocution or other serious injuries; yet the workplace presents plenty of other hazards too.
June is a good time for station personnel to review procedures and make sure that everyone knows whom to call or what to do if a dangerous situation develops. This would also be a good time to make sure first aid kits are complete and at hand.
Here’s a useful article from Buc Fitch (the closest thing Radio World has to a safety officer) titled “Fires, Your Station and You,” and a helpful Workbench column wherein Buc makes a safety suggestion, “A Paint Stick Guards Against Shock.”
The Society of Broadcast Engineers plans an SBE RF Safety Course webinar on July 24.
And here is the National Safety Council’s June Is National Safety Month Web page. They are the folks who promote National Safety Month. They are celebrating their 100th anniversary this year. Wish them a happy birthday by being safe.