Articles by Phil La Duke

Is yours a fear-driven culture?

On Friday I went to the neighborhood bar as I am wont to do from time to time. While there I saw a regular who works with my brother in an open die forge. I passed the pleasantries with him and asked him how he was. He said he was doing a lot better and was healing.


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What exec ever said, “Let’s just be profitable enough”?

This doesn’t mean executives are heartless capitalists willing to break the bodies of workers just to earn an extra couple of bucks, and it doesn’t necessarily mean they care any less about safety than the rest of us; as Michael Corleone might have said, “it’s just business.”


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Where’s the value In “Safety Day”?

Next week I will be conducting the activities surrounding “safety day.” As leader and as a safety practitioner I was the logical selection. The notion of me getting up in front of a group of associates and trumpeting on about safety one day a year may seem laughable to some of my more loyal readers and downright hypocritical to my devoted detractors.


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Risky stunts, skydiving and SFX: Movie production safety supervisors

On February 20 during a camera test for the film, “Midnight Rider,” (a new biopic of Gregg Allman), a freight train slammed into the production crew on a narrow railroad trestle bridge in rural Georgia


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If the middle class continues to shrink, safety loses an important ally

IF the middle class continues to shrink, worker safety loses an important advocate. I think we are seeing the beginnings of the impact already.  When politicians openly question the value of “overly protective” safety laws and decry an overly litigious society as the bane of modern society it's because they believe saying such things will get them elected.


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If a temp dies on the job, does it count?

 “There’s a sense that a new guy’s life isn’t worth as much ‘cos he hasn’t put his time in yet.” Chris Taylor, Platoon. “Temp” as in temporary; a temporary person. The designation shows how much value we tend to place on those in the workforce who won’t be around very long.


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Don't get zapped - six electrical safety scenarios

There’s a good reason we keep writing about electrical safety. It’s not going away.


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OSHA has no regulation for sleep deprivation – but you must know who is fit for duty

Before you blame the worker, or even the PPE itself for some workplace incident, consider that the worker may be sleep deprived. Often, when a worker is confronted for violating a policy, he or she will shrug and say, “I forgot.” Many safety professionals are realizing that human errors, behavioral drift and even recklessness can be traced to a growing threat to workplace safety –a lack of sleep.


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Six simple ways to change your life

Years ago I worked in talent development for one of the largest faith-based healthcare systems in the United States. I left it to pursue other career goals but it never left me, at least not completely.


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I would never belong to a group that would have me as a member

The rise of the self-loathing safety professional

Recently I was talking to colleagues on the subject of talking to strangers on airplanes. Like many safety professionals I spend a fair amount of time crammed into an uncomfortable seat, breathing stale air, and having my space invaded by a mouth-breather whose idea of a good trip is chatting up the stranger beside him.


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Sights, signs & symbols from the National Safety Congress & Expo held in San Diego, CA, September 15-18

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Why Flame Resistant Workwear? Understanding Workplace Hazards and OSHA Compliance

By defining the leading causes of flash fires, electric arc and molten metal splatter, we will address the ways in which companies can better protect their employees from such hazards through proper staff outfitting. In the topic, we will discuss the benefits of – and recent developments to – flame-resistant workwear and what to consider when creating a program for your employees.

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