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A Universe of Crash & Liability Risk Factors Face Work Fleets

TASA ID: 9075

If you are the owner or operator of a motor transport or other work vehicle fleet, you have probably gotten that phone call from one of your drivers.  The driver calls in to report their involvement in an on-job traffic crash.  The ensuring Q&A sequence is predictable.  You’ll first ask about location and severity.  Are you okay?  What about the other vehicle and its occupants?  Is the crash scene now secure?  Should the company send someone to the scene?

For severe crashes, that may be the gist of the initial conversation.  First things first.  But the topic of causation will always follow.  How did the crash happen?  Who was at-fault?  Any laws broken?  Are we potentially liable?  As a manager, you will ask yourself whether the crash was preventable (i.e., your driver could be blamed), what were their critical errors, and whether you should impose consequences.  For many work vehicle crashes, this sequence constitutes most of the depth and breadth of managers’ investigations of their fleet crashes.

Worker Fatigue and Vehicle Crashes in the Oil/Gas Industry

TASA ID: 9075

An oilfield services company in South Texas employed just one mechanic to maintain its entire vehicle fleet, which included tractor-semitrailers, pickup trucks, and other work vehicles.  We will call him Mr. Alvarez, not his real name.  Mr. Alvarez worked 78-hour weeks, on average.  A typical workweek might include six 11-hour days plus being called in about twice a week for nighttime repairs, often at remote locations.  One evening he got home to his family at 8:00 pm following a two-day period in which he worked 19 hours straight followed by six overnight hours off, and then followed by another 12+-hour day.  That is 30+ hours of work in just over 36 hours.  Mr. Alvarez was a family man who liked to barbecue for his wife, autistic son, and other close family in his back yard.  He was finishing a barbecue dinner when he received a call from his supervisor to report to work.  Upon arriving there, he loaded a truck tire onto his company pickup and began a nearly two-hour drive to a remote site for a tire change.  He left the company’s gate at 12:10 am and drove at 75 mph on a state highway for about 30 minutes before striking the rear of another oil company’s tractor-semitrailer at full speed.  There was no evidence of braking or significant corrective steering prior to impact.  Mr. Alvarez was dead at the scene.

Omicron Reveals the Fundamental Lack of Nonprofit Leadership Vision About the Future of Work

TASA ID: 22108

Leaders are sticking their heads into the sand of reality on Omicron. Unless they take needed steps, the results may be catastrophic for their nonprofits.

Omicron took over from Delta in the US in late December. The CDC warns that Omicron’s higher infectivity and ability to escape vaccines will overwhelm many hospitals in January.

Unfortunately, most organizations are not pivoting effectively to meet Omicron. From the start of the pandemic, many leaders insisted on a return to a “normal” office-centric culture. That’s despite the fact that a large majority of employees express a strong desire for a flexible hybrid or fully remote schedule.

Part 2: Keeping Clients Safe

How to Avoid Violating Client Boundaries

TASA ID: 4192

In Part One of “Keeping Clients Safe,” we discussed how to avoid injuring clients. In Part Two, we will look at another way we can protect clients by attending to their personal and emotional safety. A successful practice is one where all participants—clients and therapists—respect and value each other’s personal boundaries.

Part 1: Keeping Clients Safe

How to Avoid Client Injuries

TASA ID: 4192

Few things are worse than asking a returning client how they feel after a session and having them reply: “I don’t know what you did, but my pain is much, much worse.” Every therapist I know sincerely wants to help their clients feel better, whether the treatment is geared toward relaxation or a specific injury or pain. Unfortunately, in my work as an expert witness, I have seen many cases of well-meaning therapists who have seriously injured their clients.

In one case, a therapist intended to stretch a client’s shoulder, yet pulled on the client’s arm with such force that the client needed two surgeries over the course of one year to fix the damage. In another case, a therapist’s aggressive approach to working an aching forearm left that client needing six months to recover from complete loss of strength due to nerve damage. I also know of several cases where clients presented with broken ribs as a result of overly vigorous massages.

In addition to the horrific experience, pain, disability, and expenses incurred by the clients, these cases also resulted in lawsuits, damage to the therapists’ reputations, and loss of a professional licensure to practice. In some cases, careers were prematurely ended. What might be to blame? A lack of knowledge? An inflated ego? Poor judgment? Low-quality education? Inadequate skill? It’s hard to know, but here are some guidelines to help prevent this from happening to you.

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