THE SHOP

Performance & Hotrod Business May '14

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May 2014 n Performance & Hotrod Business n 103 where the body work is done, which can be the messiest part of the shop." Heckman advises shop owners to think of their facilities like homes, which often become messy if not kept cleaned on a regular schedule. Automotive shops can avoid the accumulation of dust and grime by hosting spring and fall cleanup parties for employees or scheduling events in their facilities for customers to come see the shop's builds, which encourages the staff to tidy up. "I think the best-run shops have a clean- ing schedule," Heckman says. "It could be as often as every week or every night. It really depends on the circumstances and what they're working on. It's not a bad idea to have an hourly kid that comes in after school and does the cleanup for them. It keeps the artists at work." A clean shop means increased effi- ciency, says JH Restorations' Henke. "When you're cleaner, you're more efficient," Henke says. "And you get to impress your customer because you have a clean and organized shop. If a customer is coming in, we make sure they call and have an appointment, so we know the shop is clean." Employees, as well as customers, should be encouraged to wear safety wear such as goggles and non-heeled or open-toed shoes. Constantly reminding employees to comply also doesn't hurt, according to Indy Street Rods and Classics' Nickelson. "You can't overemphasize safety," Nickelson says. "I mostly don't want them to get hurt for their own selves, because nobody can afford to be out of work, and I can't afford to be without them. People get in a hurry, and I always tell them, 'I don't care how long it takes you. I just want it to be right, and I want it to be safe.' You can lose yourself in a job and get in a hurry because you're excited about what you're working on. I like to keep it in their minds to be safe. It helps if you keep it to where they're thinking about it all of the time." 4. Safeguard Your Equipment Maintaining safe equipment is benefi- cial to a shop's employees and can keep insurance costs down. Nickelson makes sure there are shields on all of his shop's Safety Resources Website Automotive Lift Institute www.autolift.org American National Standards Institute www.ansi.org National Safety Council www.nsc.org Society of Automotive Engineers www.sae.org Occupational Safety & Health Administration www.osha.gov Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety www.ccohs.ca U.S. Environmental Protection Agency www.epa.gov Northeast Waste Mangement Officials Association www.newmoa.org National Fire Protection Association www.nfpa.org Auto Glass Safety Council www.autoglasssafetycouncil.org grinders, guards on saws and other machinery and that fire extinguishers are accessible. "That really makes a dif- ference," he says. "Because if they walk around your shop and you've got a bunch of old tools that don't have safety equipment or guards on them, it can increase your premium." Scheduling regular checks to make sure all equipment is well maintained and safety features on machinery are not disabled is a good practice, according to The Wright Group's Rossi. Any safety hazards should be well marked, so people can avoid them. For example, if a shop has lowered pits, the areas should be clearly marked, so people can avoid tripping or falling in them. Vehicle lift safety also should be a pri- ority to shop owners, who can put their employees at risk for injury and face fines and citations from health and safety offi- cials, according to Bob O'Gorman, presi- dent of the Automotive Lift Institution (ALI), which promotes the safe design, construction, installation, inspection and use of automotive lifts. ALI is a third-party certification agency that acts as a resource to lift owners and operators. The American National Standards Institutes (ANSI) requires lifts to be annually inspected by a qualified automotive lift inspector, who can be cer- tified by ALI. "When health and safety officials inspect lifts, they will not only notice obvious mistakes, such as overriding safety equipment, but they will also notice if a lift is not functioning as intended," O'Gorman says. "In order to keep a lift work- ing properly during its pro- jected lifespan, users should be familiar with maintenance practices specific to its design and follow a struc- tured maintenance schedule. Although it is easy to put off when the shop is busy, daily inspection and planned maintenance pro- tects equipment, employees and owners." Shop owners can enhance the safety of their facilities and decrease the risk of receiving citations and fines by training lift operators, performing planned main- tenance and buying and installing ALI- certified lifts, O'Gorman says. 5. Be Active It is extremely valuable for shop own- ers to stay connected with organizations such as ALI, which provides training for lift operators. Other resources include national and state safety associations, which can help businesses comply with the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards. "Insurance policy holders can join state safety associations, which offer train- ing." Rossi says. "There are a lot of OSHA requirements, as well, so if you join an organization like the Colorado Safety Association, they can help you with train- ing on various requirements." You can't overemphasize safety. PHBMAY.indd 103 4/2/14 2:06 PM

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