In the blog.

Weekly Toolbox Talk: Absenteeism and Safety



Bob NoPay has a problem that affects a lot of employees; he is speaking to his Production Manager on Friday about a short check. When all the facts are reviewed, Bob finds out that his attendance is the problem, not a clerical error from his foreman or payroll.

Absenteeism impacts MAREK in many ways. Your foreman and Production Manager can explain the economic impact of lost production or making the customer angry because we were unable to man a job. But let’s look at the safety issue of how “not being there” causes problems for the company.

Bob NoPay missed last Tuesday. On his job in Dallas, there were 45 men scheduled to work, installing exterior heavy-gauge framing. The work required the use of Web-Tex scaffolds, wheel pulleys, tag lines, and personal fall arrest equipment. But Bob NoPay had missed the last Monday on another job, and the week before he had missed another day. (Bob must like the four-day workweek)

Unfortunately, two of his missed three days were scheduled safety meetings where the company demonstrated scaffolding and personal fall arrest equipment. So, when Bob showed up on Wednesday to work without safety glasses, he got irate when he was sent home. You see, the safety meeting last week that Bob missed covered safety glasses, and the fact that our customer always requires 100 percent eye protection. It seems that Bob’s partner got hit in the face near his eye because he was struggling to do a framing task that required two people. Because Bob did not show up, his partner was stuck taking up the slack and working hastily to make up time – and that’s the main ingredient for an accident.

But our story about Bob NoPay is not over – not yet. The same day that Bob called in sick, four other employees no-showed so the foreman had no option but to work the crew overtime to make up the difference. And because of haste, too many work hours, or just being tired, a new employee made a poor decision and fell off a ladder, injuring his wrist. Bob didn’t think about his partner’s safety when he no-showed last week. He did not think much about it the week before, in fact, right now Bob is on the way to the doctor with a fractured leg because he fell from a Web-Tex scaffold.

You see the meeting he should have attended when he “no-showed” covered the hidden dangers in Web-Tex scaffolding. In fact, the foreman demonstrated a scaffold and reminded all employees to double-check the truss locks to make sure the scaffolding could not spread and cause the wallboard to fall out. The foreman spent as much time as it took to make sure that every employee understood the meaning of the word “inspection” when it came to scaffolding.

Unfortunately, Bob NoPay missed that meeting. When the accident was investigated, it was discovered that one of the truss locks was indeed not working correctly and allowed the scaffold to spread apart and Bob to drop to the floor.

Hopefully, Bob learned his lesson. It was a very expensive lesson via reduced paychecks and an injury that may scar him for life.

Attendance impacts your ability to perform your job safely and productively. Attendance can mean the difference between getting the information on time or not being informed and contributing to problems for your co-workers.

REMEMBER!! Your attendance affects everyone. Don’t be a Bob NoPay.