What causes us to slip or lose our footing on wet pavement or grass? A loss of friction between your boots and the wet ground surface. Friction is the force exerted by a surface when an object moves (or makes an effort to move) across it, for example, tires on asphalt.

The friction between your feet and a walking or working surface decreases when the surface becomes wet or covered with other material like mud, oil, grease, snow or ice. The coefficient of friction is the force that resists the motion of one body in relation to another body in contact with it.

Using the following coefficients for reference, you can see that friction is reduced by 71% on dry steel vs. wet steel (e.g. equipment steps or trailers).

Dry asphalt = 0.9Ice = 0.1
Clean dry steel = 0.7Wet steel = 0.1 – 0.2
Dry wood = 0.5Ice on wood = .05
Wet wood = 0.2Ice on steel = .03

When a surface becomes wet or covered with mud or other materials, you must adjust your behavior. You need to concentrate and change your frame of mind. You cannot move at the same rate you did when it was dry.

  • Clear obstructions and keep travel paths free of debris and materials.
  • Keep your hands out for balance and concentrate on the surface you are walking on.
  • Clean a wet trailer’s surface before loading and unloading equipment.
  • Be aware of surface conditions when entering or exiting a vehicle or equipment.
  • Concentrate when climbing in or out of a truck bed.

Download a printable PDF and recording form here.

Members can download the audio version of this toolbox talk here.

Public Hearing Scheduled for “Rule 5” General Permit Revisions

On Wednesday, May 13 at 1:30 p.m., at the Indiana Government Center South, 10 North Senate Avenue, Conference Center Room A, Indianapolis, Indiana, the Environmental Rules Board will hold a public hearing on amendments to 327 IAC 5 and 327 IAC 15 concerning National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System general permits (NPDES). The purpose of this hearing is to receive comments from the public prior to consideration of final adoption of these rules by the board. All interested persons are invited and will be given reasonable opportunity to express their views concerning the proposed amendments. Oral statements will be heard, but, for the accuracy of the record, all comments should be submitted in writing. Additional information regarding this action may be obtained from MaryAnn Stevens, Rules Development Branch, Office of Legal Counsel, (317) 232-8635 or (800) 451-6027 (in Indiana).

AGC-Supported WRDA Bill Overwhelmingly Passes House

The House of Representatives passed (399-25) the AGC-supported Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2016 on September 28. Among other water resources projects, the House WRDA bill authorizes roughly $5 billion in funding for U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Civil Works projects, including navigation (dredging, locks), flood control (levees), hydropower (dams), recreation (parks), and water supply. The House Bill also includes $300 million for the Great Lakes protection measures and $170 million to clean up Flint, Michigan’s contaminated drinking water. The Senate passed its WRDA bill on Sept. 15. The House and Senate will likely hold a conference on the two WRDA 2016 bills after the elections in November. AGC will continue to pursue passage of WRDA and fight for all AGC priorities in the bill through conference and presidential signature.

For more information, contact Jordan Howard at (703) 837-5368

AGC Wins Big in Unanimous Supreme Court Decision

The U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling on May 31 that will allow the construction and development industries with a way to respond immediately to overly aggressive assertions by the federal government that the property they want to build contains jurisdic-tional “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS). A “jurisdictional determination” (JD) significantly impacts how land may be used and dramatically raises the cost, and often reduces the feasibility, of constructing critical infrastructure. AGC submitted a joint “friend of the court” brief in the case, US Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes Co., making a strong case for why it is vital for contractors to know with certainty whether their projects contain WOTUS.

AGC was the only trade association to advance the commercial construction industry’s interest in the outcome of this case and, once again, AGC has succeeded in changing facts on the ground. This decision will have a material impact on the way that the Section 404 permit program actually functions.

Read more here.