Friday, June 29, 2007

I must be crazy

A couple of thoughts came to me over the last two days. I normally don't talk much about my work because it's something you'd like to forget as soon as you can. I'm presently working in a very old section of a factory that uses some nasty chemicals. That section of the factory is being demolished so they have two cranes and a large track hoe with big steel jaws parked right at our entry. The noise is deafening. The place is beyond dirty with a six inch layer of soot covering everything. Dead pigions and poop are all over the place. The smell of the place is beyond discription. There are live steam lines (some leaking). All the metal steel supports are rusting. Rain water streams down the interior from the rotted roof. There's several inches of black water on the floor. And it's dark inside. This place would be make Steven King envious.
Once per week they test their emergency sirens in the event of a chemical release. When the time came for their test we heard nothing. The noise of the machinery drowned out any sound of a siren. And there I was two stories in the air squeezed between pipes of acid and who knows what tied off with a safety harness about two feet from water running down a column onto a hot steam pipe. Then that epiphany hit me. If something happened there was no way I'd get out of the place alive for it had taken me nearly fifteen minutes to get to this akward position.
Today I got to work most of the shift over a tank of sulfuric acid. Went to the store after work and you know how the clerk asks that "How are you doing today?" "Well, I said, at least I'm still alive."


J. Marquis said...


pygalgia said...

That's pretty scary. Is the project OSHA compliant? Not that OSHA enforces anything anymore, but there are certain safety rules.

Demeur said...

There's an on site safety officer who watches us like a hawk. And most of us have been doing this for so many years we know what to do.

Demeur said...

Oh and by the way, I've never seen anyone from OSHA on a job site in my 18 years of doing this. Have seen the EPA and L&I a few times.