WWJ Closeup, June 2018

JOHN FOWLER, CSP
Safety Manager
National Exploration, Wells & Pumps
Gilbert, Arizona

THE BEST ADVICE I EVER GOT?
Don’t be a safety cop. Build a relationship where guys feel like they can ask you safety questions without worrying about getting in trouble for not knowing the answer.

ON MY DESK RIGHT NOW?
A competency-based training program used in Australia that we began using at the end of last year. The observations are done in the field on a smartphone. It will help us make sure our drillers and assistants are working safely and efficiently.

MOST SATISFYING PART OF YOUR JOB?
When I get calls from guys in the field asking safety questions or asking for my advice on how to safely approach a problem. That’s the kind of relationship that builds a strong safety culture.

TOUGHEST CHALLENGE FACING WATER WELL CONTRACTORS?
Finding high-quality people who work safely and hard every day, take care of their equipment, and want to learn so they can make drilling a career—not just a job.

SMART SAFETY FOR WATER WELL SYSTEM PROFESSIONALS MEANS . . .
Having leaders who have a good attitude toward safety and understand the importance of leading by example. You cannot build a safety culture with the “do as I say, not as I do” attitude.

THE MOST COMMON SAFETY MISTAKE I SEE?
When people think safety can be bought. Hands-free pipe handling machines and hydraulic make/break machines are some of the best ways to make your site safer, but never forget at the end of the day safety comes down to the attitudes and safety culture of the crews in the field.

YOUR FAVORITE SAFETY RESOURCE?
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration website is a well-organized place to find safety information. But the best way to stay up to date on the latest changes and requirements is by talking with other professionals at local water well association meetings and conferences like Groundwater Week.

 

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