Tag Archive | "groves"

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Incidents at Two Fabrication Facilities Lead to Fatalities

Posted on 29 August 2017 by cradmin

This year has proven to be difficult and heartbreaking for the stone and countertop fabrication industries after two separate safety incidents caused the deaths of two employees and the injury of another. CountertopResource.com would like to express our sincere condolences to the family, friends and co-workers of those who are no longer with us, and we hope these incidents can act as a reminder about the hazards associated with working with large, heavy slabs of natural and engineered stone.

The latest incident occurred on August 11 at NCO Custom Marble & Granite in Raleigh, N.C. Officers were called to the scene to find that one employee, 21 years of age, was killed when struck by a falling slab of granite and a second was hospitalized with moderate injuries. Although the employee who lost is life has not been officially named, company spokesperson Traci Hobcroft, noted that he was the nephew of the owner.

Hobcroft also released the following statement:

“We have suffered an accident at our facility today at approximately 12:30 p.m. There has been one fatality and another individual injured. The accident has been reported to OSHA. We are a small, family-owned business and trying to deal with this tragedy. We ask for your patience, prayers and that you give us the space and time to further investigate. We will release more information as it becomes available. Thank you very much for your patience and understanding.”

OSHA officials reported to the site where they remained for the duration of the workday, and an investigation continues. However, according to state and federal records, the company has been operating since 2007 with no health and safety violations or complaints.

Investigation of January Incident Now Complete

On January 30, Johnnie Tharp, age 60, died of injuries after multiple slabs of marble fell on him at a warehouse operated by Dente trading Marble & Granite in Gloucester County, N.J. Emergency personnel arrived at the scene where Tharp was unconscious and unresponsive. He was quickly brought to a local hospital but died shortly thereafter.

After a six-month investigation, OSHA found that no citations were necessary, but the agency did issue three violations for other issues carrying fines that totaled $5,070:

  • Lack of fall protection on walking surfaces more than 4 ft. above the floor
  • Equipment storage in front of the electrical circuit breakers
  • No certification for overhead crane ropes

Even though none of the above violations pertained to the storage and handling of slabs, OSHA asked the business to take voluntary measures to limit employees’ exposure to hazards.

“Employees who move stone slabs throughout the warehouse are exposed to struck-by, caught-in-between and crushed-by hazards,” the inspection report stated.

Safe Handling and Storage Practices

While it is possible for injuries and even deaths to occur even when you do everything right in the safe handling and storage of heavy slabs, using true and tested procedures can minimize the risk. And a big part of these procedures is having the proper equipment available for the job.

For further information, you can check out some of the previous articles in our Health & Safety Watch series or seek additional information from trade associations, such as MIA+BSI – The Natural Stone Institute. You can also get relevant information about equipment from some of the industry’s top suppliers of handling and storage equipment, including Better Vacuum Cups, WEHA, Braxton-Bragg, Lackmond Stone, Regent Stone and one of our sponsors for August’s upcoming newsletter, Groves Inc.

Also, remember, OSHA has a consultation branch completely separate from its compliance/enforcement department. When you ask for a health and safety consultation, the consultant cannot report any offenses found, and your business can only be inspected if there is an accident or complaint. If you are not 100 percent sure that you are in full compliance, this free program is highly recommended.

Also, experts like Groves may be able to assist you in finding the safest equipment and processes for your operations to avoid future tragedies such as these.

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Groves Releases 2017 Stone Handling Catalog

Posted on 06 January 2017 by cradmin

groves catalogGroves Incorporated has released the new 2017 edition of its “Stone Storage, Fabrication and Transportation Systems” catalog. The catalog features several new products, such as its Heavy-Duty Bundle Rack-Long; Heavy-Duty Backsplash Cart; and Heavy-Duty Drywall Cart, as well as a variety of fabrication tables and storage/material handling products for granite, quartz and numerous other slab and countertop related materials. It can be downloaded at Groves website or the company will send a printed copy to those requesting one.

You may also be interested in this article on Wood Powr Grip Vacuum LIfters.

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Groves Offers New Heavy-Duty Bundle Rack with 9,000-lb. Capacity

Posted on 26 January 2015 by cradmin

Groves heavy duty bundle rackGroves Incorporated is now offering a new Heavy Duty Bundle Rack that was designed to safely store jumbo sized stone bundles weighing up to 9,000 lbs. between two posts, with a maximum weight of 4,500 lbs. per post. It is the largest and strongest bundle rack the company has ever sold. The outside rails are designed with slots to hold 2 x 4s, which protect the slab edges and the finish on the rails. Heavy-duty powder-coated rails 11-in. wide by 5-1/2-in. high by 90-in. long butt together for desired length. Outside rails have 2.5-in. square holes spaced 5 in. apart on the top. A steel plate with identical holes is welded and boxed inside the rails, 1 in. up from the bottom. 2-1/2-in. square tube posts are coated with a heavy-duty powder-coat finish. Rails shipped with 11-in. connector tube for butting rails together in a straight line. For safety, the bottom rails must be bolted to the floor and the 9,000-lb. capacity (4,500 lbs. per post) should not be exceeded.

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Groves Offers New Secure A-Frame

Posted on 21 June 2013 by cradmin

groveswbThe new Secure A-frame is available from Groves Incorporated. Designed to reduce personal injuries from falling slabs, this safetydevice features a lockable post-and-arm system made of heavy duty tubular steel. It replaces nylon straps, wood clamps and other methods of securing slabs to A-Frame units. Users load the A-frame as normal, place an upright post into the steel foot, and slide the arm and pad down until it touches the slab and lock it in place. The upright arms are held in place with hardened steel pins, while the feet are inserted into the base of the existing A-Frame and are secured with safety chains. A tamper resistant key prevents unauthorized removal of the safety arms. It is sold in packages of two uprights with locking arms with two bases and safety chains, it secures one side of an existing A-Frame.

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Groves Introduces Miter Up 200 Countertop Lamination Clamp

Posted on 20 March 2013 by cradmin

Groves Inc. now offers the Miter Up 200 lamination clamp, designed to help in the fabrication of laminations for miter and rabbet joints on natural and engineered stone. The clamp’s ergonomic design allows fabricators to work with the countertop surface facing up, which eliminates kneeling or bending to observe the alignment of the joint. Because fabricators can clearly see and precisely adjust the fit and finish quickly and easily, laminations can be completed in a fraction of the time, cutting labor costs while improving productivity. For long jobs, it also eliminates the need for a second person to help hold the lamination strip while clamping it in place, or to help flip the top back over to finish the raw newly-mitered edge.

The Miter Up 200 supports the fragile lamination strips at multiple points across the length of the joint, saving time and money by reducing breakage and eliminating rework.  It is available in lengths of 6 ft. with three L clamps, 7 ft. and 8 ft. with four L clamps, and 10 ft. with five L clamps.

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