Caution or faith: Is the construction at Leigh safe?

By: Adrian Spiga, Staff Writer

Recently I was walking around the school with one of my friends and as we were

walking throughout the school, we were confronted by a giant truck directly in our path. Now I

don’t know about you but when I was in front of this hulking mechanical beast of a car, I

tried to walk around it. Fortunately for me, instead of being greeted by a slow and painful

death, the construction worker driving the behemoth told me to walk the other way away from

him. While I was walking away from the truck, I started to wonder about how safe other students feel with all the construction going on. Just the other day, we were issued a

warning about the construction potentially blinding us from looking at it while they were

working on welding. I also had many questions regarding  things like background checks and what they’re doing to make sure trucks don’t run us over. So I decided to investigate to see how safe our fellow students feel as well as what safety precautions are being taken to keep everyone safe.

I was able to talk with Mr. James Shaughnessy (The Athletic Director here at Leigh who is involved with construction) about safety protocol and questions that I had about the

topic.

-With so many trucks and cars driving through the school, what safety precautions are being taken to make sure no students are harmed?

CALOSHA  (California Division Of Occupational Safety and Health Administration) takes care of most of the safety protocols for construction. They already have established regulations they need to follow. Also, the office staff works hand in hand with CALOSHA to make sure everything is safe.

-There are a lot of construction items being brought through the school, how are they being kept track of to make sure nothing falls into the wrong hands?

There are two sites where the workers are working on construction currently. Each site has a third party supervisor to make sure no one violates any rules such as stealing equipment.

-Are the workers background checked?

Yes. In order to work with the school in the first place, the workers must be background checked. They fingerprint the workers and check their backgrounds before they are allowed to work on a school campus.

-What is the plan to deal with potentially hazardous things? IE the welding damaging student’s eyes

We send out notifications to make sure people know about these things. Kara Butler has been doing a great job of this. When they put up the walls they let the neighbors know ahead of time because they were working at night.

It seems like the school has safety concerns mostly planned out with students’ safety in mind. They background check the workers, have supervisors to make sure nothing is stolen, and workers follow CALOSHA rules. While there could be better ways to deal with the potentially hazardous items such as putting blinders up during welding, everything has been taken into consideration and has our safety as the priority.

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