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Archive for the ‘Transportation’ Category

Painting It: For Safety Sake

Painting is done normally for beautification, and for the protection of surfaces/areas from the elements.

Often, little attention is paid to the reasonswhy – it should be done for safety sake.

The main reasons why safety painting matters: To prevent injury and to draw attention.


The following is just a short list of applications where painting applies to safety:


1. Handicapped parking zone. The blue and white color code and wheel chair insignia designate it as an area for people with disabilities, who may require ease of access.

2. No traffic zones. The painted diagonal yellow stripes inform the driver of an automobile, or another vehicle, that the designated area should be avoided. It may be hazardous to anyone situated in that area.

3. Stop sign. The white lettering on a red background is universal in its understanding. It has saved more lives than can ever be estimated.

4. Color coding of piping and electrical conduit. Examples: black for gas pipes, blue for water. Tmost persons, these color codes may seem unnecessary. The colors are meant to inform people of the cautions that they should use in working around these areas. Use of these color codes assists in the avoidance of accidents.

5. Fire Zone. Normally painted in diagonal red lines, the area provides a safe access and water main hook up for the fire department. Also, it provides access for other emergency vehicles.


What might be the response if all of the areas, considered to be safety zones, were left suddenly unmarked or un-coded – without the use of color?


Safety experts and statistics show that the “accident rate” increases sharply.  The number and cost-liability levels of “insurance claims” rise dramatically.


Whenever you leave your home, the environment “out there” becomes more unpredictable. Your life carries with it a greater sense of risk wherever you go. Whether you’re shopping, going to work, or spending time with the family.


SAFE PAINTING: On the Job or at Home


Whether in your home or on the job, the painting environment should be a safe one. It should be free of all potential hazards, especially those which can cause injury.


How likely can any of us guarantee safe environmental conditions?  We can’t. We can, however, take certain precautions which may decrease our chances of getting hurt or seriously injured.


Common errors or areas that tend to lack our attention.


1. Standing on the top rung of a step ladder. You can fall by losing your balance.

SAFETY TIP:  Buy and use a utility or short step ladder with wide, deep and skid/rubber covered steps. For higher, hard-to-reach areas, recruit a taller person to use that same utility/short ladder. Approximate cost: $45.00


2. Over-reaching when on a ladder. You can lose you balance and fall.

SAFETY TIP: Get down, and move the ladder to an easy-to-reach position.


3. Painting overhead with eyes exposed. Prevent damage to your eyes.

SAFETY TIP: Wear a pair of snug-fitting safety glasses or goggles. Approx. cost: $12.00


4. Painting in area without adequate ventilation. Protect your ability to breathe.

SAFETY TIP: Buy and use large oscillating or stationary fan. Approx. cost: $30-60


5. Working with unprotected head in “construction”-type zone – eg. nearby beams, sharp objects/edges, protruding fixtures. Protect your brain from injury.

SAFETY TIP: Wear a hard hat or safety helmet. Approx. cost: $ 10-15


6. Painting without steady air supply. Protect your entire body.

SAFETY TIP: Wear designated, project-appropriate breathing apparatus. Approx. cost: $500-700.


7. Painting/finishing with skin exposed. Avoid skin irritation and burns from chemicals.

SAFETY TIP: Wear rubber gloves, also long-sleeved shirt and long pants; or full-body suit.

Approx. cost: $ 10 for gloves, $12 for suit.


8. Pointing a paint spray gun at a person or animal. You may cause an injury to others.

SAFETY TIP: Always point spray gun away – to the side or opposite direction of person. That includes yourself!


9. Lifting heavy buckets/objects with your legs stiff. Avoid getting a back injury.

SAFETY TIP: Bend to your knees close to object. Reach for and grasp object. Carefully lift, slowly straightening both knees, and keeping back straight.


If you find yourself questioning the safety of an on-the-job procedure, treatment, product or material, a tool or piece of equipment, consider consulting OSHA’s website on workplace safety.


Being safe is the only way to ensure the prospects for tomorrow.

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SAFETY ALWAYS MATTERS!     Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

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Copyright 2015. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

What to Carry on Your Painter’s Golf Cart

 golfcarts   In July, a painter with a four-star hotel and resort e-mailed me about his recently inherited golf cart. He’d just relocated from the East coast.

“Two questions: What are the must-haves, good-to-haves, etc. to carry on my cart? What should I carry to be ready for anything? With the larger property and greater flexibility and autonomy in this job comes more time management challenges.”

Golf carts are the standard mode of transportation and conveyance for hotel and other facilities’ painters, as well as engineering techs. They’re compact, and a real back saver and life saver.

They’re a necessity for (1) getting around the property fast, (2) responding promptly and efficiently to calls, (3) hauling materials, supplies and tools, (4) equipping oneself for completing scheduled and emergency tasks and projects, and, (5) performing those “other duties as needed.”

What things do you need to keep on your golf cart?                                     

1. The 24/7 basics

A. Products and materials: Joint compound mix, caulking, light-weight spackling, paint, texture patch, interior/exterior paint for touch-up work.

B. Supplies: No. 120 and No. 220 sandpaper, masking tape (3/8-inch, 1-inch, 1 ½-inch), masking paper, steel wool, “WET PAINT” signs, small bag of clean rags; dropcloths (clean), buckets.

C. Tools: Drywall pan, 6-inch knife, 10-inch knife, multi-sized screwdrivers, portable drill, drywall hand saw, caulking gun, assorted paint brushes and roller covers, utility knife, roller frame and screen, roller extension poles, wire brush, paint strainer.

D. Protective gear: Safety glasses, disposable bodysuits, gloves, rubber gloves, respirator, dust masks.

E. Disposal/garbage things: Plastic bags, rolls of paper towels.

2. Add: Painting-related work order essentials

A. Spray cans of fast drying primer (white, gray), latex caulking, joint compound

B. Small notebook

3. Add: Painting project essentials

A. Roll of plastic, garbage container, circulating fan, “CAUTION” Tape.

4. Add: Special painting and decorating project essentials

A. Sponges, cheese cloth, tack cloths, plastic wrap, masking tape

B. Glazing liquid, linseed oil, paint thinner, various faux finishing brushes

5. Add: Handy-to-have along items

A. Masking machine, heat gun, wallpaper steamer

B. Broom and dustpan, vacuum cleaner (portable, battery-operated)

6. Add: Engineering and maintenance tech basic supplies

A. Replacement parts for bathtub, sinks, electrical, light bulbs

B. Paint to touch up walls where necessary, caulking for tubs, sinks and counter-tops

C. Hammer, wrench, pliers, 2-4 clamps, sealant glue

D. Level, tape measure, picture hanging clips/fasteners

 7. Add: Containers, holders, etc. to keep things organized

A. Large portable tool container

B. Plastic tray (s) for small parts

Okay! What things should NOT be carried around on your work golf cart?

1.  Air compressor, pressure washer

2.  Anything that protrudes out from cart’s side or back, creating safety issue

3.  CAUTION: Hazardous materials should be removed from your cart as quickly as possible. Never leave them on the cart, when it is left unattended, or overnight.


1. Once a week

. Wash your golf cart and wipe dry with a clean, soft rag.

. Wipe down all other areas to keep them looking clean.

. Clean the windshield – as often as needed. Include windows, if cart is enclosed.

. Vacuum the floor, back areas, etc.

. Straighten out your supply and tool areas, while you’re at it.

. As a final touch, give the steering wheel and column, dashboard, etc. a good cleaning with a couple of disinfecting wipes.

2. Once a month, or more often

. Clean the seat upholstery. Spray on all-purpose auto upholstery product, or mixture of 1 part mild vinegar to 2-3 parts water. Wipe dry.

. Wipe down all surfaces.

3. Every six months

. Apply a coat of car/truck wax on metal surfaces. Buff out with soft rag/cloth.

. Apply a similar wax on plastic areas, such as the canopy.


1. Make sure the batteries are fully charged every day.

2. Check the tires for proper inflation at least once a week.

3. Always carry the ignition key with you. Never leave it in the cart.

4. Always park your loaded up cart as close as possible to your working area.

* CAUTION:  An unattended golf cart can be an “inviting enticement.”


What you carry on your cart depends a lot on your listed job description. Also, it depends on the other things that you may be responsible for handling. It depends on the size of the property. And, it depends on how much running you want to do – back and forth between your paint shop and the locations on your “to-do” list for the day or week.

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Enjoy your day!  Enjoy your life! And, thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

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