Key Safety Guidelines to Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Safety First, Always First.”

With winter’s colder temperatures and heating systems running around the clock, it is important to be aware of the heightened risk and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, colorless and toxic gas that is produced when incomplete combustion of carbon-containing materials (i.e., natural gas) occurs. Because it’s odorless and colorless, CO often goes undetected. With many facilities and homes utilizing natural gas furnaces and water heaters, winter weather puts everyone at an increased risk of CO poisoning.

“Risks for CO poisoning are higher than many realize, especially because the causes are often overlooked in our day-to-day lives,” says Jamie Absher, Safety Specialist at TP Mechanical. “It could be something as simple as a faulty gas line or an improperly vented furnace – which are preventable with proper maintenance.”

According to the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO), here are some ways to reduce the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning:

  • Install a carbon monoxide detector. These devices work similarly to a smoke detector, only they measure the amount of carbon monoxide in the air.
  • Have appliances that use natural gas inspected by a qualified repair person once a year.
  • Inspect the vents, flues and chimneys of all gas water heaters, furnaces and fireplaces to ensure proper ventilation of exhaust.
  • Never use an oven to heat rooms. This can damage the oven and cause carbon monoxide to be released into the building.
  • Never heat a room with a gas or kerosene space heater that does not have proper venting.

Why is monitoring CO levels and preventing CO poisoning so critical? Because the effects can be permanent or fatal, as CO exposure hampers our blood’s ability to carry oxygen to body tissues and vital organs. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hypoxia (severe oxygen deficiency) due to acute CO poisoning may result in long-term or irreversible brain or heart damage.

Some common symptoms of CO exposure include:

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Rapid breathing
  • Weakness
  • Exhaustion
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion

“If your CO alarm goes off or you experience any CO exposure symptoms, do not hesitate to act,” says Jamie. “Immediately move to fresh air and contact the local emergency services or call 911.”

To learn more about our commitment to workplace health and safety, visit http://www.tpmechanical.com/about-tp/safety/.

People Behind TP Mechanical Introduces Ali Jansen

Ali started with TP Mechanical over a year ago as our Customer Relationship Manager in the Columbus region. Ali’s primary responsibility is to build stronger relationships with our customers.

Through our Voice of the Customer program, Ali coordinates meetings with customers and our sales representatives and managers to discuss their current relationship with TP Mechanical. These meetings provide us with valuable insight and allow us to be proactive in our partnerships. As the voice of our customers, Ali helps us discover how we can better meet their needs.

“TP Mechanical truly cares about their customers and employees,” says Ali. “Everyone here is like family looking out for each other, and we do the same for our customers.”

One of the ways Ali looks out for our customers is by tracking their future preventative maintenance needs based on ASHRAE equipment life expectancies. This allows us to work proactively with our customers, so they can avoid costly downtime and repairs at their facilities.

In one of her additional roles, Ali works closely with Matt Anderson, our Commercial Business Development Leader, and our commercial operations managers to help manage our relationships with general contractors. This helps us continually improve upon our current business partnerships, as well as our processes for the future.

Ali stands out to customers and coworkers because of her diligence, honesty and caring nature.

3 Steps to an Injury-free Workout

Presented by TP Mechancial | Provided by HORAN

Exercise is a great way to combat stress, lose weight and boost energy. To get the most from your workouts, you should add warming up, cooling down and stretching to your routine. These three simple steps are proven to help prevent painful and costly injuries.

  1. Warming Up

Warming up allows your body time to adjust from rest to activity. Always remember to gradually increase the intensity of your warmup to reduce stress on your bones, muscles and heart.

  1. Cooling Down

As with warming up, cooling down should include movements similar to those in your workout, but at a gradually decreasing level of intensity.

  1. Stretching

After cooling down, stretching helps to build flexibility and range of motion. When stretching, follow the guidelines below:

  • Use gentle and fluid movements and breathe normally.
  • Never force a joint beyond its normal range of motion; you should not feel any pain.

Winter Sports Safety Tips

Presented by TP Mechanical | Provided by HORAN

The cold, crisp air and breathtaking views are just a few of the simple joys associated with winter sports. To ensure that your skiing or snowboarding excursions remain safe, be sure to keep in mind the following five tips:

  1. Inspect your skiing or snowboarding equipment to ensure that it is in good working condition.
  2. Wear protective headgear, such as a helmet and snow goggles.
  3. Yield to skiers or snowboarders in front of or below you on the slope.
  4. Carry a fully charged cellphone with you at all times.
  5. Never drink alcohol while skiing or snowboarding.

January: Thyroid Awareness Month

Presented by TP Mechanical | Provided by HORAN

The thyroid gland is a small, butterfly-shaped gland located at the base of the neck that helps control the function of many of the body’s organs and helps to set the metabolism. According to the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, approximately 20 million Americans have some form of thyroid disease and an estimated 12 percent of the population will develop a thyroid condition in their lifetime.

Fortunately, the American Journal of Medicine reports that early detection of a thyroid disorder is as cost-effective as early detection of common chronic conditions. In honor of Thyroid Awareness Month, take some time to become familiar with the most common risk factors, which include the following:

  • Being female—Women are five to eight times more likely to suffer from a thyroid disorder than men are.
  • Age—The Thyroid Foundation of America recommends that women get annual thyroid hormone level tests yearly starting at age 50 and that men should get yearly tests beginning at age 60.
  • A family history—If thyroid disease runs in the family, testing every five years after age 35 is recommended.
  • Pregnancy—Thyroid conditions can arise after giving birth.

Those with a high risk of developing a thyroid disorder should speak with their doctor. Together, you can determine the next steps to take.

TP Mechanical Prepared for the Opportunities and Challenges of 2018

In 2018, TP Mechanical is looking forward to many exciting opportunities and challenges. Our continued dedication to being an industry and community leader positions us for success throughout the New Year.

We are fortunate to work in a peak time for our industry’s market, in which many project opportunities for the commercial and service divisions exist. While, these upcoming opportunities could present us with challenges, we will utilize our knowledge, experience and resources to achieve our goals and provide the service our customers deserve and have grown to expect from TP Mechanical.

As a company, we must continue to focus on training, innovation and making use of new technologies and techniques. Keeping our facilities, services and employees up-to-date with industry trends, standards and training allows us to deliver comprehensive mechanical services to our clients while helping our employees achieve their professional and personal goals.

During 2017, we have had great success working in our communities to support their needs. In November, through our gala fundraising efforts, we were able to raise $18,000 for A Kid Again. This organization provides resources for families of children with special needs. We must continue to support and invest in our communities as we can only be as successful as the communities we live and do business in.

I am looking forward to what 2018, and the future, holds for TP Mechanical.

For more information

To learn how TP Mechanical can provide you with innovative, comprehensive mechanical services and solutions, visit our website.

People Behind TP Mechanical Introduces Kelly Simerman

Kelly joined TP Mechanical in July 2007 as the Estimating Coordinator of Columbus, and added the Dayton office to her responsibilities in 2015. Kelly has a B.S. in Organizational Leadership from Purdue University, an A.A.S. in Construction Management from Columbus State, and an OSHA10-Hour Certification.

As a pivotal member of the estimation team, Kelly is the central hub of all things estimation–coordinating the receipt and distribution of bid invitations through when a contract is received and the project is turned over to our Operations team.

Internally, Kelly schedules the resources for and tracks all projects that TP Mechanical is bidding. Her responsibilities include keeping all bidding documentation updated and distributed to the estimators to ensure submission of complete and accurate bids. Kelly also provides key financial and goal reporting to management and ensures that all bid documentation is turned over to our Operations team for launching successful projects.

Kelly recently managed the testing, implementation and training for our updated estimation software. This enables TP Mechanical to provide timely estimates and budgets with the highest level of accuracy. Kelly also maintains the database with the latest material and labor pricing available, and troubleshoots any technical issues.

Kelly’s external customers consist of construction managers, general contractors, subcontractors and vendors. She keeps this group informed about the projects TP Mechanical is bidding, ensures they receive proper documentation during the bidding process, and keeps the communication flowing back to our estimating team.

When asked why she believes TP Mechanical stands apart from other mechanical contractors in our area, Kelly replied, “Being a mechanical sub-contractor that offers all three disciplines – plumbing, HVAC and fire protection – sets us apart.”

Kelly feels this gives us an advantage in meeting our clients’ objectives by delivering comprehensive mechanical solutions. Additionally, she believes TP Mechanical’s commitment to fabrication, safety and employee mentoring shows our dedication to innovating while adhering to the highest standards within the industry.

Protect Your Facility’s Water Systems with Backflow Testing

Backflow contamination is a critical public health issue that occurs when toxins from one part of a water system flow into a fresh or potable water supply line. Thankfully, water systems are designed and built to prevent this.

However – as with any system – testing, maintenance and repair are key to ensuring a water system is properly functioning and preventing backflow contamination. Every state, and even individual municipalities, has plumbing codes and standards to uphold in order to keep people and local fresh water supplies safe.

OSHA’s sanitation standard (1910.141) states: “Construction of nonpotable water systems or systems carrying any other nonpotable substance shall be such as to prevent backflow or backsiphonage into a potable water system.”

“Meeting codes and standards is important because public health is vital,” said Mike Kelley, TP Mechanical’s Quality Control Associate. “Our licensed backflow testing ensures your water systems are code compliant and keeping the supply safe.”

One of the most common culprits is the simple water hose connection. If a water hose is not protected with a backflow prevention device, such as a vacuum breaker, the water hose creates a path for cross-contamination to the potable water system. Without a backflow preventer in place, everyday tasks like filling a swimming pool or using a power washer with a chemical cleaner tank can become dangerous by allowing whatever is in that system to flow back into drinking water.

Backflow prevention devices are also key components in avoiding contamination events from irrigation systems, fire suppression systems and large boilers. Without a properly functioning preventer, these types of systems are susceptible to biological, chemical and mineral contamination because water often sits stagnant in them, allowing bacterial and inorganic material build-up.

“Checking all preventers for leaks and the whole system for pressure issues is critical,” said Mike. “These are both common culprits when backflow occurs, and they put your facility and the entire local water supply at risk.”

Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana plumbing code require all backflow prevention devices be tested annually by a licensed plumber, and TP Mechanical will ensure code compliance and system effectiveness for companies.

For more information

To learn how TP Mechanical provides comprehensive, innovative solutions to ensure your plumbing meets code, visit our website, and contact us to schedule a backflow test.

People Behind TP Mechanical Introduces Stanley Garber

Stanley started with TP Mechanical in November 2016 as the Project Manager of Government Projects in our Dayton region. Stanley brings 44 years of governmental and industrial experience to TP Mechanical.

Stanley’s primary goal when working with general contractors and owners is to save them money. Starting as a bookkeeper at a plumbing company in 1973, Stanley possesses a wealth of accounting experience he combines with industry knowledge to evaluate equipment, applications, system efficiencies, and installation time when putting together project quotes and compiling alternative ideas for saving clients’ money. This concept has been key to establishing long-term working relationships over the years.

“It is important to look at all angles to not compromise the integrity of our work or the systems being installed in a building,” says Stanley.

Stanley believes TP Mechanical’s fabrication capabilities really set us apart from other mechanical contractors, especially because our facility is ISO certified and our program offers in-depth CAD capabilities.

Stanley believes TP Mechanical can offer huge advantages to government and industrial projects by providing cost savings through pre-fabrication, value engineering and shorter install times.

Contact Stanley either by email stanley.garber@tpmechanical.com or phone 937-985-9133.