December 1, 2017 – On November 21, the Building Trades Employers’ Association (BTEA) presented Hunter Roberts’ Northwell Health CFAM team with the Safety Culture award as part of the BTEA’s annual Safety Awards program. Superintendent John Martin accepted the award on behalf of the team.
May 8, 2017 – For one week every year, Hunter Roberts’ employees take time out of their busy schedules to engage in an industry-wide celebration of safety. Safety Week 2017 (May 1-5), themed “It’s in Our Hands,” took the company’s previous Safety Weeks and upped the level of involvement from every member of the company.
Safety Week began on May 1 with the traditional 8:00am kick off phone call from Hunter Roberts’ CEO James C. McKenna. “We know that it’s the little things,” he said, “done well, every day and on every job, that make the difference.” He ended the call by reminding everyone to treat every week like Safety Week and wishing all a great week.
Led by new Company-Wide Director of Safety Shane Skennonto, each jobsite participated in daily huddles that focused on five main areas: hazard communication, ladders, daily huddles, respect, and distracted driving. Employees shared stories of what worked for them and what did not and learned from each other in order to keep both their job sites and homes safer. Talks were given not just by safety managers, but also by project managers, purchasing agents, business development professionals, and others- part of the effort to involve a larger number of Hunter Roberts’ employees in the activities.
At the Brooklyn Army Terminal, Hunter Roberts’ staff, laborers, and operating engineers gathered every morning over coffee and donuts to discuss that day’s topic. Since the project is so large (over 125 people work on site every day), the workers divided into four groups based on trades, each headed by either Project Manager Aeran Doron, Superintendent Steve Fleming, or Safety Manager Stephen Martin. “This gave each team member a chance to work in a smaller group session and meet face-to-face with the trades,” explains Aeran. “We found this created a better opportunity for open dialog.”
Of course, it would not be Safety Week without the traditional safety luncheon. Coworkers, both on site and in the office, gathered round the table to both eat and grow closer as a team. In the Philadelphia Office, Safety Manager Mike Kenyon ordered pizza for the staff on Friday. “We provide lunches to both contractors and Hunter Roberts’ staff to demonstrate our appreciation for the hard work, day in and day out,” he said. “It also gives an opportunity for safety stand-downs to discuss the importance of safety and why we strive for an Incident-and-Injury-Free culture.”
Safety Week 2017 was widely acknowledged to be a triumph. “Safety Week was a success again this year,” said Shane. “We received some great feedback on how we can improve, and I look forward to working with our subcontractor partners on safety and IIF.” With unparalleled participation from both employees and subcontractors, it looks like the year until the next Safety Week will be safer than ever.
April 5, 2017 – Hunter Roberts continues to demonstrate how We Care and We Deliver for our community, as staff members from the “City of Brotherly Love” volunteered their time and skills on April 1 to help provide critical safe and healthy repairs and improvements to 16 homes in the Belmont section of Philadelphia, part of a three-day Block Build organized by Rebuilding Together Philadelphia (RTP). RTP is a local, independent affiliate of Rebuilding Together, Inc., the nation’s leading nonprofit organization providing home repairs, modifications, and improvements for America’s low-income homeowners, many of whom are elderly, disabled, have young children, or are veterans.
RTP’s strategy is to target clusters of homes within certain neighborhoods and bring volunteers and communities together to make the necessary home improvements and repairs. With 100 to 200 volunteers each day during this three-day build event, streets were closed off in the neighborhood, and what seemed like a spirited community block party ensued.
Our staff members were proudly able to provide many repairs and improvements for the residents in need, such as patching and replacing drywall, replacing carpet with new flooring, spackling and painting, replacing ceiling tiles, removing and capping leaking sections of pipe in a basement, repairing a leaking hot water heater, removing a toilet that was leaking into the kitchen, replacing wax seal on the toilet and installing a new water supply line, and removing and repairing a leaking kitchen sink and faucet.
“Living in the city, I pass by homes all the time where the conditions are visibly worn,” said Assistant Project Manager Vince Farace. “It was nice to be able to use the skills that I have developed over the years to help others in need and help make the community a better place for all.”
“It was a lot of fun working with the homeowners and to be a part of making their living conditions more enjoyable and safer, said Assistant Project Manager Kevin Dillon. “Nothing is more IIF than providing people in the community with a safe place to live.”
Some homeowners and their family members worked alongside the volunteers in making the repairs, adding to the community spirit and comradery. The homeowners were overjoyed with the work that was provided and the energy and sweat equity brought by all of the volunteers. The homeowners were overjoyed with the work that was provided and the energy and sweat equity brought by all of the volunteers. “My life has been truly affected by Rebuilding Together Philadelphia,” said homeowner Deborah Laurence. “I can function much better. The volunteers were fantastic. I can’t thank you enough. Little things are what really impact a person’s life. You just don’t realize – this has been nine years that we have been waiting for this. We’re so very appreciative.”
October 3, 2017 – On September 27, representatives from the project team for Ford Amphitheater and Seaside Park Community Arts Center attended ENR New York’s Regional Best Projects Awards Breakfast at the Sheraton Times Square to receive the award for Best Landscape and Urban Development Project. Vice President and Project Executive Sean O’Connor, Director of Interiors Pre-Construction (and former Senior Project Manager) Paul Wassenbergh, and Senior Director of Business Development Kevin Zimont were joined by Associate Eric Wright from iStar, the project’s developer, at the event, which recognized projects in 18 categories.
The Ford Amphitheater, which holds 5,000 seats and is the first covered open-air venue in New York City, opened last year for the 2016 summer concert series. The remainder of the campus, including the restored historic Childs Restaurant building, opened in time for the 2017 season. The judging committee recognized the project for its attention to detail with the terra cotta restoration on the Childs Restaurant building as well as the cultural contributions the facility has made to the Coney Island community.
“Safety Week gives us the opportunity to remind ourselves about the importance of caring about our people and their safety at work and at home. Safety and IIF are causes that are very near and dear to my heart, and I am proud to be the leader of a company that makes safety its top priority.” JCM
Halloween is fast approaching, and as the days get shorter and the nights get colder, the scariest monsters aren’t ghouls and goblins, but new safety concerns. Trick-or-treating and costumes make this holiday a favorite among children (and some adults), but the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has reported that Halloween is one of the top three days of the year for pedestrian injuries and fatalities, while the Center for Disease Control estimates that children are four times more likely to be struck by a vehicle on Halloween than any other day. Fortunately, with proper gear and good housekeeping, we can keep the night safer for trick-or-treaters of all ages.
Heat season in New York City officially began October 1, meaning landlords are required to provide tenants with heat once the outside temperature dips below 55 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 40 degrees Fahrenheit at night. While this season is great for pulling out the flannel and cozying up with hot apple cider, there is also an increased danger of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning, which can be generated by fireplaces, furnaces, and stoves.
Every September, approximately 50 million students around the United States return to elementary and secondary schools. Of those 50 million, half of them take the bus every day. While buses are safer than driving or walking to school, accidents can and do still happen. Much like we give toolbox talks on the jobsites, we should make sure we have school bus talks with our kids before they go off to school.
Thousands of thunderstorms form across the United States every year as part of the average weather cycle. Thunderstorms bring lightning, heavy rain, high winds, and in some cases, hail. Since being struck by lightning is more likely to send you to the hospital than turn you into the Flash, it’s important to know what to do before, during, and after a storm.
The average high temperatures in New York City and Philadelphia during July and August are in the mid-to-upper-80s, but as this summer has proved, it often feels a whole lot hotter. Even for those of us not working on a jobsite, the daily tasks of commuting to work, performing chores around the house, and getting in regular exercise can be exhausting and, possibly, dangerous. So grab a glass of water, and let’s talk about heat illnesses.