Prohibited Telecommunications and Video Surveillance Equipment and Services


Source: INDOT email sent 09/01/2020: INDOT-Attention Contractors Effective Immediately

Contractors,
To the attention of all INDOT contracted service providers.

Effective Immediately

This clause will be added to all INDOT professional services and construction contracts so that INDOT will be in compliance with federal requirements:


Prohibited Telecommunications and Video Surveillance Equipment and Services.
In accordance with federal regulations (including 2 CFR 200.216 and 2 CFR 200.471), the Contractor is prohibited from purchasing, procuring, obtaining, using, or installing any telecommunication or video surveillance equipment, services, or systems produced by:
(A) Huawei Technologies Company or ZTE Corporation (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities), OR
(B) Hytera Communications Corporation, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Company, or Dahua Technology Company (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities), for any purpose to fulfill its obligations under this Contract. The Contractor shall be responsible to ensure that any subcontractors are bound by and comply with the terms of this provision. Breach of this provision shall be considered a material breach of this Contract.


BACKGROUND: On August 13, 2018, the President signed the FY 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Section 889(b) prohibits Federal agencies, after August 13, 2020, from obligating or expending financial assistance to obtain certain telecommunications and video surveillance services and equipment from specific producers.

On January 22,2020, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that outlined revisions to 2 CFR 200, in part, to implement section 889 of the FY 2019 NDAA. Today, the Federal Register Notice issued the Final Rule and states that the amendment to 2 CFR 200.216 is effective on August 13, 2020.

The new 2 CFR 200.471 regulation provides clarity that the telecommunications and video surveillance costs associated with 2 CFR 200.216 are unallowable for services and equipment from these specific providers. OMB’s Federal Register Notice includes the new 2 CFR 200.216 and 2 CFR 200.471 regulations.

Thank you,
Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT)
100 N. Senate Ave., IGCN
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Heat Stress is Serious

Originally published on June 20, 2016

Working in a hot environment, such as a construction site, puts stress on the body’s cooling system. When heat is combined with other work stresses – like hard physical labor, loss of fluids, or fatigue – it may lead to heat-related illness, disability or even death. There are three stages to heat-related illness: heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

Heat cramps are painful, brief muscle cramps that are brought on because the body has lost minerals through sweating. If cramping occurs, move to a cool area at once. Loosen clothing and drink cool water or an electrolyte replacement beverage. Seek medical aid if the cramps are severe, or don’t go away.

Heat exhaustion can occur after you’ve been exposed to high temperatures for several days and have become dehydrated. Symptoms include confusion, dizziness, headache, fatigue and sometimes nausea. Without proper intervention, heat exhaustion can progress to heat stroke. If you experience heat exhaustion, get out of the heat immediately and rest, preferably in an air-conditioned environment. If you can’t get inside, try to find the nearest cool and shady place. Slowly drink fluids. If possible, lie down with your feet and legs slightly elevated.

Heat stroke is the most serious form of heat illness and is a medical emergency. It often occurs after heat cramps or heat exhaustion are not properly cared for. But it can strike even if you have no previous signs of heat illness.

Heat stroke can kill, or cause damage to the brain and other internal organs. Symptoms are similar to heat exhaustion, but the skin is hot and dry and breathing is deep and fast. The victim may collapse. The body is no longer able to sweat, and the body temperature rises dangerously. If you suspect that someone is a victim of heat stroke – also known as sun stroke – call 911 immediately. Move the victim to a cool area and remove excess clothing while waiting on help to arrive. Fan and spray them with cool water. Offer sips of water if the victim is conscious.

There are things you can do to prevent heat-related illnesses.

  • Drink plenty of fluids. Consider beverages that replace electrolytes. Stay away from beverages with caffeine. Caffeine contributes to dehydration.
  • Slow down in hot weather. Your body’s temperature-regulating system faces a much greater workload when the temperature and humidity are high.
  • If possible, get accustomed to the heat gradually.
  • Dress for hot weather. Light colored clothing reflects heat.
  • Get out of the heat occasionally. Take breaks in a cool, shady location.
  • Eat light, cool meals.

Download the recording form here.

Hand Sanitizer Safety

We’ve heard a lot about hand hygiene during the COVID-19 outbreak. Along with other disease prevention strategies, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations you wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, use hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable and avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.

To meet Food and Drug Administration and CDC approval, hand sanitizers must be greater than 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol alcohol. This makes alcohol hand sanitizers highly flammable, and if an ignition source is present, hand sanitizer will ignite at room temperature.

Recently, a UPS distribution center in Plainfield, Indiana experienced extensive damage and loss of product when an employee ignited hand sanitizer in a semi trailer at the facility.

Everyone should exercise caution when using/applying alcohol-based hand sanitizers near potential ignition sources, like cigarette lighters.

For more info on hand sanitizer flammability and the importance of proper storage, check out this five-minute video by the National Fire Protection Association.

Respiratory Protection

Originally published 06/13/2018

Respirators protect workers against hazards such as insufficient oxygen environments, harmful dusts, fogs, smokes, mists, gases, vapors and sprays. These hazards have the potential to cause both immediate and long-term effects if not mitigated. In the workplace where respirators are used there should be a written respirator program that describes the proper procedures for selecting, fit testing, training, using, caring, cleaning, sanitizing, inspecting, record keeping, storing and operating respiratory protective equipment.

Fit Testing & Seal Check

For proper protection, a worker must ensure the respirator they are using fits and functions properly. This means the equipment must be the proper size and seals to the face.

A fit test is to be conducted by a properly trained person in fit testing to ensure the equipment is the correct size. A fit test is required before a worker uses a respirator for the first time. Fit tests may need to be performed more frequently if there has been changes to a worker’s body such as weight gain or loss, or facial changes such as dentures or broken jaw bone.

A seal check is to be performed by the worker prior to use of the respirator every time it is used. Regular seal checks are necessary to ensure that contaminated air or particles will not leak into the respirator. If it doesn’t seal properly, don’t use it.

Facial Hair & Respirators

It is critical to your personal health to ensure you have a proper seal when wearing a respirator for protection. This means that workers need to be clean shaven before their shift begins as beards, sideburns, mustaches and stubble prevent a good seal and are not permitted with respirator use. Facial hair is much larger in particulate size compared to other fibers and particles you are trying to protect yourself from, meaning you won’t be properly protected as the smaller particles such as fibers and fumes will be able to pass through.

Choosing the Right Respirator

Choosing the right respirator to protect workers from airborne contaminants is essential. They may not protect from all contaminants as different contaminants require different protection. There are limitations for each type of respirator, and you must be familiar with them prior to using them.

Types of Respirators

  • Disposable particulate respirators provide minimum protection and are typically used to protect against nuisance dusts and fumes.
  • Full mask and half mask air purifying respirators are cartridges and particulate filters. Air purifying respirators only work if you use the right cartridge and/or filter for the specific contaminant. Mechanical filters will block solid particles, while chemical filters soak up substances.
  • Supplied air respirators can come in a variety of forms such as self-contained breathing apparatuses, air hoods, full body suits, and airlines or work packs.

The Key to Respiratory Safety

You must recognize that the airborne hazards exist through pre-job planning. It’s vital to recognize all the chemicals, materials and hazards you may be exposed to, as well as conducting frequent hazard assessments and workplace inspections to help identify and control those hazards.

Download a recording form here.

New Construction Worker Safety Tips

Originally published 06/06/2018

New workers think differently than older, more experienced people in the workplace. They are typically inexperienced and may not be familiar with the job tasks or hazards on worksites or in workplaces. New workers are more willing to take unnecessary risks and possibly putting themselves into hazardous situations, without thinking they are, because they are eager to get the job done. They may be new to construction work altogether, and it may be the first job they’ve ever had. They may feel discouraged to ask questions for fear of appearing unknowledgeable to their coworkers and superiors.

It is important for a supervisor to provide new workers with constant interaction along with hands-on training until they are certified or deemed competent for the job at hand. Engaging them to ensure they feel valued and part of the team is also important. It allows them to feel comfortable sharing questions and concerns they may otherwise conceal out of fear of looking incompetent, leading to potential workplace accidents or injuries. Regular safety meetings are a way to keep new workers engaged and feeling like they are able to approach their supervisors with questions, concerns, or ideas they may have for the work they are expected to do.

Training is essential before any work begins. Start with a thorough orientation to the company, the safety rules, emergency procedures, and rights and responsibilities. Document the training, and possibly give a brief quiz at the end of orientation. When supplying workers with personal protective equipment, train them how to use it, educate them on the limitations and show them how to care for and maintain it. Before they can start any work, you must show them how to perform on a job safely. One of the best ways to train workers how to perform jobs safely is to have accurate, well-written safe work practices and safe job procedures. Have an experienced supervisor train them. Engage them by providing specific job-related safety training and specific job procedures for each task they are expected to perform. Train them on hazard recognition and control. One of the keys to safety is to know how to recognize and control hazards.

Download a recording form here.

Lifting Safety

Originally published 05/29/2018

Construction work can be rough on the body. We perform many tasks that involves pushing, pulling and most dangerous lifting. When similar task are performed without consideration of the damage that can be caused to the body injuries such as pulled or strained muscles not to mention the more serious ones involving ligaments, tendons and other soft tissues that surround the spine. It is important to be aware of the common practices in construction where injuries are most prevalent:

Here are a few ways that injuries commonly occur:

  1. Repetitive lifting.
  2. Twisting while lifting instead of turning our feet.
  3. Falling or slipping while carrying a load.
  4. Losing grip causing the load to shift.
  5. Carrying bulky objects with arms outstretched.
  6. Carrying objects that are too heavy.
  7. Uneven walking surfaces.
  8. Climbing stairs while carrying objects.
  9. Using the spine to do the lifting instead of your legs.

Here are a few tips to follow to help prevent the occurrence of an injury:

  1. Break down loads. Don’t carry entire bundles, break them down.
  2. Use a machine – skid steer, loader, pickup truck, dolly, etc.
  3. Place equipment such as generators, compressors and welders to prevent the need for frequent movement.
  4. Use wagons, dollies to move tool boxes, supplies, crates, etc.
  5. Team lift with a coworker to share the load.
  6. When supplies are delivered, ask the delivery person to unload them as close as possible to where they’re needed.
  7. Pick up trip hazards on stairs or walkways.
  8. Use gravel to make ramps over footings or concrete pad edges.
  9. Wear proper footwear for the jobsite.

Planning ahead and having forethought about the lift can go a long way toward avoiding injuries.

Download a recording form here.