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Assist your DMOs
District Mechanical Officers (DMOs) support at staging areas often requires them to be in unusual working conditions - lying on the hard ground, having mud or spiders dropping off the appliances, working broken hours - sometimes in the dark - going to repairs close to a fire front, and the list goes on. They are committed to keeping your appliances working for you.
Tilting cabins to access the engines is another area that has its own hazards. If the appliance is not fitted with power assist, considerable effort is required, even with a two-person lift.
The situation is compounded when additional items are left in the cabins. The further back the items are, the greater the impact on the effort required to tilt. Water left behind seats can be one of the biggest factors but every additional item adds to the weight.
To assist a tilt, DMOs will often move the cabin doors to a fully-opened position, as this transfers cabin weight towards the front. However, leaving the doors open brings its own risk in the form of personal items falling out. Many DMOs have been struck with ‘stuff’ tipping out. However, there is a greater risk of contracting a strained back or shoulder, as this has a serious impact to somebody that relies on good body movement to perform their work. Remember, it is not just one cabin being tilted by them, but many.
Time is of a premium at the changeover of strike teams, as the DMOs attempt to check through all appliances at the shift changeover to guard against field breakdowns. They have been instructed not to tilt a cabin by themselves. So if you see them, please offer to help in the lift or ask if they want you to tilt the cabin forward before they get to it.
Please ensure all additional items are removed from the cabins, even if they were left by a previous shift. Otherwise they may have to reprioritise the order of work.
Leaving a clear work area on the deck is also a priority. Please ensure all items are correctly stowed and ensure you are not leaving trip hazards or making the task more difficult by adding extra articles.
Your consideration is likewise required at other work environments, such as when a DMO is called out for a breakdown at a station, particularly if he arrives alone. Likewise, unsecured objects moving around during a tilt can present a hazard at any location.
The Executive Manager of Fleet Services, Peter Wright and the Deputy Chief Officer of Infrastructure and Capability, Alen Slijepcevic, feel that in general, assistance is on the most part very good however recent injuries have indicated the need to raise the awareness.
Your assistance with the above will be appreciated.