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Confession is good for the soul...

Discussion in 'Safety Issues' started by digger242j, Feb 24, 2006.

  1. digger242j

    digger242j Administrator

    Joined:
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    Occupation:
    Self employed excavator
    Location:
    Southwestern PA
    Cat420 commented in another thread that he hoped he didn't sound arrogant at age 22, but he felt he was better able to figure out some things than people who've been "trained".

    My reply was essentially that if there was any arrogance in there, it'll get beat out of him soon enough anyway, because all it takes is one moment of inattention to really foul things up.

    I'd typed the following up, as an example, but decided not to hijack that thread with tales of my own stupidity, but it's too good (or bad, as the case may be), a story to waste.

    If anybody else has a story of something really stupid they've done, feel free to share it. I'd hate feeling like the only idiot here.

    Besides, putting it here may keep somebody else from making the same stupid mistake, and that's what the saftey forum is for.

    Lemme tell you what I did one day...

    We were on a job, and I needed to chase after a load of 15" corrugated plastic pipe, 20' lengths. For this, we wanted to hook the tagalong trailer to the dump truck. Just because of the way things were situated, it took a lot of messing around to get hooked up, and just when we finally got the trailer onto the pintle hook, something else (I don't recall what), came up. Twenty minutes later, I'm on my way, and about a mile down the road it occurred to me... I got out and looked, and sure enough, I'd never closed the hook, plugged in the lights, or connected the saftey chains.

    At the time, I had about 15 years of experience, and the guy helping me had about 40, so this wasn't from lack of experience. When I got back with the pipe, I told him I was firing us both.
     
  2. stuvecorp

    stuvecorp Senior Member

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    Location:
    lake wissota, wisconsin
    I'll share also. When I was first starting out I worked for landscaper and he was getting some equipment that we didn't use ready to sell. We had this big old soil pulverizer that was to be hauled up by the road, the Pete was gone so I was told to pull it up with the 621 loader. I hooked the tongue to the bucket with chains and started to pull it up. We had a railroad crossing that we had to cross over, small rise up and small rise down. The pulverizer passed me in the loader in a flash and I don't know how it stopped but it was about 12" from taking out the row of employee parking. It still gives me a shudder when I think about it because it could have taken out a bunch of trucks and if anyone would have been around.
    Unfortunatly that wasn't the last stupid thing but I always try to be safer/smarter now.
     
  3. Squizzy246B

    Squizzy246B Administrator

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    Digger Driver
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    Perth, Western Australia
    Now this is a thread I can get into:

    I was leaving early for a job 2 hours drive away so it was dark when I opened the gates and backed the truck in to hook up the trailer. As I was just about to hook up my 2 year old wanders out..so I'm well distracted, take him back inside and put him back to bed.

    I come out and the phone rings..its the guys in the other truck, am I ready yet?. So I jump in the truck, take off and rip the electrical wires out of the plug:mad:

    Try to hold torch in dark so I can see the colour of the wires and wire the plug back up. Finally get going across to a site where the other truck is waiting with the excavator to put the rock breaker in the back of my truck for the trip. To do this I need to unhook the trailer out on the road. I do that then swing the truck into the access road in reverse. As I come around the front bumper clips the tools trailer where I unhooked it on the side of the road and didn't put the brakes on.

    I sit there, helpless, watching the tandem axle trailer rocket off down the hill in reverse, mixer and wheelbarrows bouncing up in the air, shovels going everywhere. I didn't know wether to laugh or cry:Banghead . Luckily for me the trailer ran off with the camber in the road and stopped in a chain link fence. No damage. On the other side of the road was residences, cars etc.

    So when your in a hurry, try slowing down and getting it right, or you'll end up in more trouble than its worth.

    I've got more of these....
     
  4. RonG

    RonG Charter Member

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    Meriden ct
    In 45+ years I never made a mistake!!!!!!RON G:laugh :laugh :laugh
     
  5. Cat420

    Cat420 Senior Member

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    Construction, small engine and machine shop work
    Location:
    Pine Bush Ny
    I suppose it's only right that I add to this one.

    I once broke a small dead tree off and it fell the wrong way and ripped to phone and cable wires off the neighbors house.

    Our driveway was pitched the wrong way and my dad set up pins and told me to dig it to those points. Somehow by the time I got to the pins, I had dug almost 2 feet too deep:eek: . That was 2 years ago and now I check my measurements often.

    My dad has some good ones from the 70's when they did work in Jersey. I honestly don't know how people didn't die from the mistakes that some of the hired help made.
     
  6. Dozerboy

    Dozerboy Senior Member

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    Occupation:
    Operator
    Location:
    TX
    I got two off the top of my head.

    The first on I was within 6 months 18 birthday and of working for the first company I had work for besides my dad. We where putting in a water line and had to go through a creek. The creek was 10' down from the elevation we where running our pipe at, so we had to 45 down and under the creek bed 11'. The creek banks where steep and about 15' tall. Everything went fine until we had to star going back up the other side of the creek. I had my self benched into the bank so I had enough reach, but not well enough. After getting to big of bucket of wet sand to bed the pipe and reaching out to far, over I went. I looked almost like that pic Pullpan posted of that hoe over the side of that building. Lucky for me I got my feet up against the cad to hold myself in, because I didn't have my seatbelt on and the front window was open. And yet even more luck yet I was still swinging when I went and I didn't hit our pipe layers or the pipe they where standing on.

    This was my last bit of luck about 6 months ago.

    I was pulling a water buffalo full of water chained to my backhoe, like I have done several times down a flat road. But this time the road wasn't flat in fact I was going up a 7% or 8% grade and I heard a load pop. I tuned in time to see the chain coming undone. There just happened to be no traffic right behind me, I threw it in reverse got along side the trailer and swung my boom over in behind the trailer and stopped it, before it really got going and hit all of the cars at the 4 way stop behind me.
     
  7. D10N

    D10N Well-Known Member

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    Occupation:
    Catskinner extraordinaire
    Location:
    Morenci, AZ
    I've done a few memorable ones - most I'd not care to admit:angel

    Funniest was about 10 years ago - tramming a D11 between jobs, stopped to get fueled and just kind of forgot something.......there's STILL a beautiful set of ripper marks in that road.

    Most memorable as a learning experience involved a homegrown towing setup. Tried using 5/16" hardware chain double wrapped around the drawpin on a 988 loader to pull a slag kettle - only problem was pulling the kettle onto the tail of the loader prior to breaking the chain.....bad idea hall of fame there:thumbsup
     
  8. rino1494

    rino1494 Senior Member

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    Location:
    NEPA
    When I was 16, I was backfilling a 4ft trench with a PC150. I backed up and one side of the tracks went right in the trench. The rear of the machine was partly in the trench, so I couldn't swing around and boom myself out. My dad had to push me out with the 955 whileI drove it out at the same time. Needless to say, it never happened again :wink2
     
  9. JimBruce42

    JimBruce42 Senior Member

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    Occupation:
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    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    This is my first claim to making an opps and probably not my last. At our school's training site everyone (technican, landscaper, and operator students) digs trenchs, mock basements, or just down right big holes. The bigger holes get filled in lifts, but nothing ususally gets compacted back in (except for any roads or "grading pads" we might be actually making). That being said, this whole field is nothing but red clay, and it LOVES to hold water, so between that and lack of compaction you can get a soft spot real quick. I had three passes left before i'd graded almost the whole field, and to this point had navigated around any wet spots, when I did this...:Banghead I guess it's also a good lesson on watching for color changes in the soil too. :thumbsup

    -Jim
     

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    Last edited: Feb 25, 2006
  10. Dusty

    Dusty Charter Member

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    it happens sometimes
     
  11. littledenny

    littledenny Well-Known Member

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    Occupation:
    Owner, 2Vets, LLC
    Location:
    Ellijay, GA
    I had one just the other day-

    I'm a volunteer with the local EMA/Fire Dept. In my position, I have my own emergency vehicle at home, an older S-10 blazer. Took it to the pumps early one morn and filled it with diesel. (Didn't know it at the time, but someone was working on the pumps, and reinstalled the system with gas and diesel signs reversed. ) Figured out the mistake in about one minute, when the truck simply quit.

    Called in the shop super, who confirmed the reversal of the pump signs, then we started to figure out who else might have pumped either fuel, since the reversal. We had visions of half the cop car/highway dept vehicles/ ambulance fleet being cross-contaminated.

    Turns out one of the two front line, brand new, fire engines now had 20 gals of gas in a 50 gallon diesel system. :eek:

    To shorten the long story, we managed to cure the fire engine problem with no major mishaps, or serious damage, and after a new set of plugs, and a few other things, I've got a vehicle that now actually runs decently.

    Still, the pump repair guy is paying for the serious damage caused to one of the highway dept trucks, that basically blew up because of gas in the diesel system.

    (Now ask yorself, how many of you guys carry diesel in red cans? ) :nono
     
  12. Dusty

    Dusty Charter Member

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    not me yellow all the way
     
  13. Electra_Glide

    Electra_Glide Senior Member

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    Location:
    Western Pennsylvania
    I'll second that...

    Last fall I was scheduled to put in a storm water management system for a guy remodelling a doctor's office. Had to trench down the side of the existing parking lot to the back of the property where a large drywell was to be built.

    Went ahead and scheduled the job and set the start date. A few days prior to the start, I'm driving home from another job, and realize I forgot to place the "one-call" for the utility markout. Make the call and hurry over to the site to do the mark-out before going to my next appointment.

    I jump out of the truck and grab my can of marking paint. Take a few quick measurments, and get ready to mark it when I realize the paint can is clogged. Turn the can over to unclog it, and in the process manage to spray some paint, which promtly lands all over the side of a car parked in the lot...:Banghead .

    Cost me a couple-hundred bucks for the lady to get it buffed out...
     
  14. Grader4me

    Grader4me Senior Member

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    Location:
    New Brunswick, Canada
    Might as well add one to this as well...we were out patching one day and me and another guy was going ahead spraying a tack coat on the road for the asphalt. We had a 1/2 ton truck (new) with a barrel of colas and a pump on the back. On the spray wand there was a handle to shut off the spray. I noticed at one point it stopped spraying and I seen that there was a kink in the hose. Instead of shutting off the handle, then take the kink out.....you guessed it, I gave the hose a twist around and sprayed the whole side of the truck with tar and what was worse...the window was down:Banghead dam that stuff comes off hard :yup I still remember the look on my Superviors face :laugh
     
  15. Jeff D.

    Jeff D. Senior Member

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    Location:
    MN.
    I pulled a couple of real boners just this winter.:thumbsup

    The first: We had a snowstorm,and after trucking most the day,I made it home and proceeded to plow snow.I'll usually do my driveway last,and get to the rest of them straight away.It was getting late,and I finally got everything else plowed out,and had only to do my own.I was getting tired,and cold(cuz I ain't got the enclosed cab like Squizzy do!)and was in reverse full tilt in the Bobcat,when WHAM,I smashed right into the side of my semi.I'd forgotton that I'd left it pulled ahead,as I didn't want to back all the way up flush with the pole barn,incase I needed to get it rocking back and forth if it was stuck in the snow.It doesn't help that my truck is white either.That split second of forgetfullness and inattention cost me alot.:crying

    The second: I live on a rural dirt road,and they(The township) take a day or so before they'll get around to plowing it.I end up plowing it with my dumptruck,just so I can get out with the semi when I need too.I'm usually careful not to get to close to the ditches when I plow so I won't get sucked in,but we'de had an 18"er,and it was hard to tell where the edges were.I had the truck scootin' along around 25mph,when the right steer suddenly dropped in the ditch.Not wanting to pay an enormous tow bill,I pushed it on the floor,tried steering left as much as possible,and was able to get it back on the road after about 50ft.What a ride that 50ft was though.I had the seat sucked up my rear,all the way to the pedistal.

    I'm STILL suprised it drove itself out.The plow wanting to push the front of the truck left and the momentum of 34,000lbs must have kept it moving.Whew!!:cool:
     
  16. Squizzy246B

    Squizzy246B Administrator

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    I'm sorry Jeff but I p*ssed myself laughing at that one:)
     
  17. Steve Frazier

    Steve Frazier Founder Staff Member

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    Location:
    LaGrangeville, N.Y.
    My worst came just the other night and is similar to Jeff's story. We got 8" of snow and I was plowing a client's driveway at 11:30 pm. She had parked her minivan in an unusual spot instead of in front of her garage as is the usual practice. While clearing the area in front of the garage, I backed into the minivan with my truck which sports a flatbed. I was barely going 5mph and was a foot from coming to a complete stop, but I tapped the rear quarter panel of the minivan and stoved it in. The force blew both side windows out, the back of my truck is now covered with tiny pieces of privacy glass. Turned out to be $3300 in damage. Fortunately this is my first claim in 8 years, so it shouldn't hurt too bad. The customer is being understanding too, so it's working out OK, but I sure did feel stupid when it happened.:beatsme
     
  18. jmac

    jmac Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
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    Location:
    Central NY
    Thank god for insurance, as long as they don't drop ya:cryin
    I to backed into my wife's new trailblazer this year plowing $2000. No insurance claims because I just changed companies and would hate to put in claim so soon, I would have no insurance.
    Then backed into a truck in lot I was plowing at 6 am about a week ago when he pulled behind just after I made a pass and I didin't see him. I have to use mirrors only because of salter and fuel tank in back. Still waiting for that bill.
    Then my snowmobile crapped out 4 miles in the woods two days ago. I have lots of storys to tell. Lets just say that I don't win at poker with my freinds every week. I do have some bad luck. Cup is 1/2 full !!
    John
     
  19. V10Fordman

    V10Fordman New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
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    Location:
    Shakopee, MN
    Greetings everyone. New to the forum here, been over at the LTS forum for about 6 or 8 months now.

    I had to share this gem with everyone.. even though it has little to do with the heavy equipment side of things, still qualifies on my Top 10 stupid moments.

    About a year ago, late at night, around midnight or so, me and the little woman were in my truck leaving the local Wal-Mart. I passed a large Ryder moving van that was out in the boonies of the lot. Right next to it was a small car.. as I glanced over to the right, I saw two people in the back seat.. :bouncegri Well I stopped a few feet past and started to back up real slow to see if they were doin what I think thought they were doin.. Next thing. Smash. Right into the front end of the moving truck. A tweaked bumper and cracked passenger taillight was my reward, along with a hefty bill to fix the front bumper and replace the steering components I snapped when I hit the front wheel of the truck.

    Just goes to show.. the thought of a nude female will time and time again suck all the intelligence right out of a man. :Banghead
     
  20. Jeff D.

    Jeff D. Senior Member

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    MN.
    Hee-hee!!:bouncegri

    Well,did they atleast get to finish up??:rolleyes:

    Welcome to the forum fellow Minnesotan!!