Runback Structure Standards

In response to the letter to the editor from David B. Pereza, it is true that design loads on construction and personnel hoists and related runback structures were not included in SEI/ASCE 37-02 as loads specifically by that definition (ENR 11/11 p. 5).

None of the 80-some members of the committee nor the public commenters brought them up by that specific designation. We expect questions and comments on this first issue of the standard and next spring will begin a thorough review and preparation of revisions for the next issue. I expect a task committee will be designated to attend specifically to the design loads on construction and personnel hoists and related runbacks. John Deerkoski is the chairman of the subcommittee on construction loads, chapter four of the standard.

Consulting Engineer
Manhasset, N.Y

Finding Leaders

I read the article "leaders come in All Shapes and Sizes" with great delight and found that key executives had good points (ENR 12/2 p. 34). But I think there is a missing link.

After a company acknowledges what character traits and experience a candidate should possess to be a great manager, they still have to identify, recruit and land the best person for the position that the company is trying to fill. That’s assuming there is no one who fits the critical criteria presently within the company. After 20 years of working for the A/E/C and environmental industries, we have found that one limiting factor in identifying the right person is the limited number of candidates who apply or who are recruited for the position by companies directly. Another is that because of limited recruiting efforts, there is a lack of experience among the people who do the interviewing and interpreting of what it takes to identify the right candidate.

It is not just about enticing someone who can bring in some business. Knowing what it takes to be a great manager of people and a successful entrepreneur is only part of building a financially successful company. The missing link is the ability of some companies to identify, recruit and hire the best candidate.

Deaths Are Not Just Statistics

Safe and healthy work sites are not going to happen because of any law, but rather through the conscious effort of all of us. We all have a responsibility in this regard. I understand that ENR has a responsibility to picture construction activities exactly as they are. At the same time, I believe ENR editors, with their knowledge of construction safety and health, have the responsibility to point out safety and health violations when they occur.

ENR sets the standard in the industry. When ENR publishes pictures that depict safety violations, they need to note them as such. Otherwise, it is endorsing unsafe practices.

For every worker death, thousands of lives are affected in a negative way. It is time not to treat worker deaths as statistics, but rather as something that should not have happened. Each dead construction worker had combinations of parents, children, grandparents, uncles, aunts, wives, husbands, hundreds of friends and thousands of acquaintances. Each of these people will be negatively affected for the rest of their lives.

Now is the time for all of us to join arms with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to prevent the deaths of construction workers.

Gainsville, Fla.