We always do it that way…
I came home from work the other day, and saw contractors working on my new garage. They were just about finished putting up cinder block walls. It was about 95F, and I was thinking that I’m glad they were doing this, and not me!
They came to a corner, and needed to put in a partial block. The lead mason had his worker cut him a block of just the right size. The worker was wearing sneakers, shorts, and a ball cap (nothing else). He perched a fresh block on a pile of rubble and held it steady with his foot. He then picked up the electric-powered rotary masonry saw, squinted his eyes, and turned his head slightly to the side (I guess to protect his eyes). Starting the saw, he started cutting the cinder block.
I couldn’t stand it. “Hey!! Hold on a minute!” I asked the mason (the guy in charge) if that was the best method to cut a cinder block. “Don’t you guys have eye and hearing protection? What about long pants and boots? Can’t we set up a clear area for cutting?
He shrugged and said, “That’s how I’ve always done it. I haven’t cut myself in a long time. He’ll learn pretty quick the right way and the wrong way to cut block. It’s too hot to wear that stuff, anyway.”
I told them that they would have to stop until they got adequate safety gear. It so happens they had everything they needed in their truck (except for long pants). I cleared out an area for cutting off to the side. They finished the job, and that’s the last I saw of them.
– I wonder how much extra time it really took to do the job right. Just clearing the cutting area actually speeded the process up.
– I wonder how much time, wages, and production was lost by injuries to this guy’s crew.
– I noticed that the mason walked with a limp. I wonder how many toes he has…