The sounds of metal clanging against steel rings out of an old cement building. Wright State’s National Center for Medical Readiness was the backdrop for students who donned safety harnesses and tested their courage at Calamityville.
More than a dozen students and area workers took part in a weeklong safety class. A highlight of the week was a lesson on how to safely climb a 40-foot tower.
The tower was donated to Wright State by the IUE-CWA. Jim Clark,IUE-CWA president, envisioned students entering the workforce with basic skills to work safely and workers having an opportunity to enhance their workplace.
“It gives us activities on what the student will run into in the real workplace,” says Jeff Whitaker, a fall prevention consultant.
Katelyn Alcon, a senior majoring in environmental health sciences, is interested in working in emergency medicine. “I think that knowing the risks, I will be able to respond better as a physician,” she said.
The program ensures that a student will receive proper training pursuant to OSHA’s requirements for competent persons. Upon successful course completion, which includes passing a skills test along with a written test, students receive a fall protection certificate that is valid for two years.
The U.S. Department of Labor has declared May 2-6 National Safety Stand-Down Week to raise awareness and prevent fall hazards in the construction industry. In 2014, 337 of 874 construction deaths were from preventable falling fatalities.