Are You Decking the Halls Safely?

It's that time of year again! The weather conditions are getting colder, the holiday shopping is in full swing, and people are busy creating their home or offices into a winter wonderland. Fun decorations make for a festive holiday atmosphere, but they can also be a hazard to the workplace. Below are a few things to keep in mind as you prepare for the holiday season.

Electrical Hazards

  • Limit Your Use: Be sure to not overdo your use of holiday lights and what your work area's electrical outlets can handle. "Daisy chaining" power strips and the use of extension cords to plug in several strands of lights could potentially overload your circuits and increase the risk of a fire.
  • Hang It Up: When decorating your space be sure and secure your lights to walls, ceilings, or cubicle with tape or temporary hooks. Avoid using staples or nailing anything into the surfaces, this could cause damage to insulation of wiring, which then could cause sparking.
  • Shut It Down: Be sure at the end of the day someone is responsible for turning off all additional office lighting. Leaving lights on will cause an increase in the company's electricity bill and could cause a fire while the building is unattended. A recommendation to be better safe than sorry is to use timer devices to shut the lights off automatically.

Fall Hazards

LOOK OUT! WATCH IT! These are some of the most common remarks heard in the office when trying to avoid the slips, trips, and falls that are all to common this time of year. Decorating is a non-task that can make these types of injuries even more likely. To avoid these slips, trips, and falls this year below are a few tips to help you out.

  • Watch Your Step:  If you have high ceilings in your office and will need something to hang your decorations with, be sure you have a proper ladder or stepping stool. Avoid from standing on common office objects like desks, chairs, or boxes of supplies.
  • Co-Worker Care: Be sure to not leave decorations out as a trip hazard. Certain items like cords are a major trip hazard to pedestrians. Avoid running cords across walkways, and tape down any cords that are at or near floor level.

Fire Hazards

When installing lights you should always follow standard electrical safety practices to control the facility's fire hazards, but additional fire safety issues need to be considered wen making holiday preparations. Below we have listed a few Do's and Don'ts that everyone should know when it comes to fire hazards and holiday decor.

  • Do have decorative material that is non-combustible.
  • Don't burn candles under any circumstances.
  • Do make sure all decorations are clear of all sprinklers or alarm systems.
  • Don't hang any holiday decorations from sprinkler heads, exit signs or fire extinguishers.
  • Do make sure none of holiday decoration displays are blocking any doors, walkways or evacuation routes.



GPS Sponsors Oak Hill All- Star Mustangs

Oak Hill

GATE Premier Solutions (GPS) had the honor of being a sponsor for the 9 and 10 year old All-Star Oak Hill Mustang (Team Blue) out of Austin, Texas. The Mustangs traveled to numerous baseball tournaments in the Central Texas area. When a child has been chosen for All-Stars, part of the reward is receiving gear that will enhance their game! Items received by the kids were new bat bags with their name and team logo embroidered on it, matching helmets with the team logo, among other equipment. GPS being a sponsor helped the Mustangs ensure that each child got an equal opportunity in receiving items not only for safety, but for fun, making memories as each child should when they are this age. We were happy and proud to help contribute to the Oak Hill Mustangs Team Blue 2015 All-Star baseball season!

"Playing baseball for pay - home run. Teaching kids to play the game - priceless." - Jack Peronte

Making A Difference

A huge part of a child's success in the classroom is to make sure that they have proper classroom supplies. GATE Premier Solutions wanted to make sure that happened and donated money to the St. Rita School Art Class in New Orleans, LA. In the pictures below you can see the kids enjoying show and tell and loving the new art supplies! "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." - Nelson Mandela

The Work Place is Changing (But Some Things Never Do!)

Smiling Business Man

Most of us work somewhere that does not resemble “our father’s” workplace of the past. The hallmark of the employee 20-50 years ago was to remain at a company for life. Now employers and employees may expect to change jobs 3 – 4 times over their career.  This can give the perception that certain virtues and values have disappeared. There are certain characteristics that are still sought by an employer. Loyalty. People change careers or may be hired as a consultant for a limited period of time. Loyalty still matters. People will always prefer to work with someone they trust and they know is with loyalty to the job. Loyalty is not measured by time alone.

Responsibility. Employers are still seeking people who are willing to take responsibility. It’s a sign of maturity and a leader, plus effective, hard workers typically shoulder responsibility.

Honesty. Telling the truth and living an honest life will never go out of style.

Courage. It takes courage to fight for what is right in a project or to speak up if an unsafe work condition is identified.

It's All About Safety!

Safety...Speak up!  

Safety is a huge issue in our business. Accidents are not good for our reputations and are costly. More than any other business, the oil and gas industry takes it seriously and provides education, plus takes action.

From "safety training" to "safety moments," we keep the issue of safety at the forefront of every day. But one area that may need to be reinforced is teaching people to speak up. All employees should feel empowered enough to say something if they see a threat to safety.

If you see someone performing a task in an unsafe manner, speak up or stop the action/work! It's not enough to maintain our own safety. The actions of others impact everyone.