Fort McCoy News July 26, 2013

Council addresses safety concerns at the installation

BY GENEVE N. MANKEL
Public Affairs Staff

The Fort McCoy Safety and Occupational Health Advisory Council/Community Health Promotion Council held its final meeting of fiscal year 2013 July 9.

Deb Heise-Clark, Installation Safety Office (ISO) safety specialist, advised caution be exercised in the areas of the installation where water main replacement projects and road-paving projects are in progress.

Photo for safety article
Employees from Gerke Construction of Tomah, Wis., replace water mains in the 700 block at Fort McCoy as part of infrastructure work in the cantonment area. Motorists traveling on the installation are advised to watch out for the heavy machinery and avoid it whenever possible. Photo by Rob Schuette

Although the projects might frustrate or inconvenience motorists, Heise-Clark said they are necessary to avoid infrastructure damage and safety hazards, such as those that can be caused by a water main bursting.

"If there is an incident, evacuate the immediate area and stay a safe distance away so crews can access the scene," she said.

During the explosive safety portion of the meeting, Don Vender, safety specialist, presented information about transporting ammunition.

Vehicles transporting ammunition/explosives must be inspected and documented on several forms.

A DD Form 626 (motor vehicle inspection) and a DD Form 836 (cargo manifest) must be completed. Drivers must be hazardous materials certified, and two serviceable fire extinguishers must be in the vehicle, Vender said.

Additionally, ammunition/explosives in vehicles must be secure and stable prior to movement; the vehicle must be placarded, and ferrous metal in the cargo area must be covered with non-sparking material. Passengers and smoking are prohibited.

Designated ammunition convoys routes must be used, he said.

Scott Zaehler, the Fort McCoy Employee Assistance Program (EAP) coordinator, said he is available to offer free help to Fort McCoy civilian employees who need to combat stress.

He said individuals may find themselves stressed about furloughs, and the EAP can assist in finding resources to help work through stressful situations.

Fort McCoy Garrison Commander Col. Steven W. Nott concluded the meeting and said the post will be entering its busiest period of the year so personnel should be aware that with increased traffic there is increased risk.

He said the most dangerous time for units is when they first arrive at a location and two to three days before they leave.
"Those are the times people should pay particular attention."

People should also pay attention and follow the posted speed limits while driving around the Challenge Academy in the 600 and 700 blocks, Nott said, because there are many teenage cadets in the area.

Nott reiterated that furloughs may increase the stress among civilian employees. He encourages supervisors to ask employees how they are doing and to let them know there are resources and help available if they need it.

For more information about Fort McCoy safety, contact the ISO at 608-388-3403, or contact your organization's collateral/additional duty safety officer.