Notable Events Call for Reminder to Stay Focused, Safe on the Job

Three events have occurred recently at Jefferson Lab that appear to involve forgetting important steps in a rush to complete the work.

1.  On Monday, Dec. 16, a GERT-trained subcontractor moved a Radiation Control Department Controlled Area sign, which was hanging on a fixed ladder, in order to gain access to the area located directly above the VTA (Vertical Test Area in the Test Lab), while the VTA was operating. The signage was attached to the ladder by a magenta and yellow bungee cord, but the contractor did not pay attention to the sign.

2.  On Dec. 17, it was discovered that a Physics employee moved some radioactive material (RAM) from a properly posted RAM storage bin in the EEL high bay area to an un-posted work area without contacting the Radiation Control (RadCon) Department as required. The employee was trying to complete measurements on the radioactive components.

3.  On Dec. 18, around 2 p.m., while trying to diagnose why the North Linac would not go into sweep mode, a member of the Safety Systems Group (SSG) discovered that a Personnel Safety System (PSS) connection to the DOG1E Box Power Supply had been removed. An employee, performing diagnostic work on the DOG1E Box Power Supply, had removed the PSS connection to install a test box.

All three events appear to have a common theme: an employee trying to complete an assigned task too quickly. Whether by conducting task steps out-of-sequence or by taking apparent short-cuts, each of these events could have had serious safety implications had the circumstances been slightly different.

Remember that being in a hurry is not an acceptable reason for taking shortcuts; indeed, if you are in a hurry, that is the time for extra vigilance and focus.

Prepare for the upcoming holiday break by working safely around your colleagues and on behalf of your family. When you return, take time to re-focus your thoughts and energies on the work you will be accomplishing.

This message was sent out on Dec. 20, 2013.