Managing Safety Performance NewsFlash

Second Thoughts

You’re in a rush. There’s a delivery about to show up and your crew has equipment to be repositioned to prepare for the arrival.

In the middle of all of that, you have a safety concern: something isn’t right. But it’s not something you can fix yourself, like an overhead power line that might not have adequate clearance for the piece of equipment you are moving. 

Do you press ahead? Or do you stop, and raise the issue with your boss?

The right thing to do is obvious. So, you raise the concern with your supervisor.

A good supervisor would certainly take the time to look into the situation: contact with high voltage electrical lines is a deadly serious hazard. But not every supervisor is a good supervisor, and even good bosses aren’t right 100% of the time.

So, suppose the boss tells you, “We don’t have time to take care of that. Just be careful.”

If you found yourself in that situation, what would you do?


Recently, A 17 year old working on a farm faced this exact situation. Here’s what happened:

Paul Balmert
May 2021

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