National Safety Month – Driving

Driving is a privilege. A driver’s license gives you a certain level of freedom, but it also gives you an enormous amount of responsibility. Driving is the fourth leading cause of nonfatal injury and number one cause of unintentional workplace deaths in the United States.

Roofers spend a lot of time driving to and from jobsites. Often these jobsites are in unfamiliar areas giving the driver distractions. Below is a list of unsafe acts that are often performed behind the wheel. They may seem basic and obvious, but are things you should consider every time you step foot in a vehicle.

Unsafe acts behind the wheel:

  • Failing to stop or yield
  • Tailgating
  • Excessive speed
  • Not paying attention to road conditions
  • Being distracted while driving
  • Driving under the influence
  • Road rage

Unsafe Conditions:

  • Poor visibility
  • Icy and slippery road conditions
  • Improper vehicle maintenance
  • Wildlife, such as deer crossing the road

It may appear that sometimes other drivers are not using their heads or considering the results of their actions. Ensure that your equipment is secured. Whether it is ladders or something else, make sure that you do not pose a hazard to others on the road. Proper vehicle maintenance is essential when providing employees with company trucks – remember that your company vehicle represents your company – safe or otherwise!

What you can do:

  • Obey speed limits.
  • Stop at stoplights and stop signs
  • Yield to right-of-way appropriately
  • Use turn signals
  • Do not drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • When driving on a road that is new to you scan the road from left to right
  • Follow other drivers at a safe distance (2-4 seconds ahead of you)
  • Know your vehicle’s safety features.

For additional information visit

In the next post we will discuss Slips, Trips, and Falls.

2012 National Sales Seminar Scheduled For Clearwater Beach

The 2012 Duro-Last National Sales Seminar will be held January 29-31, 2012 at the Hilton Clearwater Beach (Florida) Resort. Our theme will be “Beyond Boundaries,” and we are excited about hosting the world’s best roofing contractors for three days of learning, sharing, and celebrating.

An information and registration package is being prepared for mailing to all authorized Duro-Last contractors, and we will soon have more details available on the Duro-Last web site. Stay tuned!

National Safety Week – Overexertion

Overexertion is the third leading cause of nonfatal injury in the United States and results in the second highest number of claims in the low slope roofing industry. An estimated 3.5 million overexertion injuries occur each year. Most are the result of lifting, lowering, pushing, pulling, or carrying. Back injuries are the most common form of overexertion in the workplace, but overexertion can also result in physical fatigue, sprains, or strains, reduction in work efficiency, and decrease in the speed and quality of work.

Prevent overexertion by:

  • Stretching and/or warming up before heavy lifting or strenuous activity
  • Lifting with your legs bent and objects held close to your body
  • Avoiding bending, reaching, and twisting when lifting
  • Asking a friend for help when lifting
  • Breaking a load down and using mechanical assistance when available
  • Practicing good housekeeping and maintaining clear pathways

For additional information, visit or

In the next blog post we will discuss driving.

Duro-Last Hires Marketing Director and Product Manager

Duro-Last Roofing®, Inc. is pleased to announce the hiring of Robert C. Carnick as Marketing Director and James R. Townsend as Product Manager for EXCEPTIONAL® Metals, a division of Duro-Last.

In this newly-created position, Robert will be responsible for creating and implementing strategic product marketing plans, product development and rollout, sales forecasting, identifying new revenue streams, and tracking costs, margins, and sales growth.

Most recently, Robert worked as General Manager for Total Garage Solutions in Forked River, New Jersey. Robert has a track record of innovation, project management and successful commercialization of building materials including fire rated and hurricane resistant fenestration products. He has been awarded two patents and has served on numerous industry committees for standards and code development work.

Robert will report to Duro-Last Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Steve Ruth, and will be located at Duro-Last’s Saginaw, Michigan, office.

Robert C. Carnick

Jim will be responsible for representing EXCEPTIONAL Metals’ entire product portfolio, including metal edge and other roof details, and the recently-introduced standing seam metal line, in this newly-created position. He will work with Duro-Last’s independent sales representatives and authorized roofing contractors to position EXCEPTIONAL Metals product with end-user customers, including corporate accounts.

Jim has extensive experience in standing seam metal roofing, marketing, and engineering design. Prior to joining Duro-Last, he spent 20 years on the manufacturing side of engineered standing seam metal roofing. Previously, he was Principal of The Peer Group, Inc. a consulting agency focused on forensic evaluation of roofing system failures. He is a member of the Roof Consultants Institute, The Construction Specifications Institute and the National Roofing Contractors Association. He is a professional speaker for the American Institute of Architects, the Construction Specification Institute, and the Association of Professional Engineers.

Jim will work from his office in Atlanta, Georgia.

James R. Townsend

National Safety Month

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, roofing was the fifth most dangerous occupation in the United States in 2009.

Each June, the National Safety Council encourages organizations to get involved and participate in National Safety Month. Each week of the month carries a theme that brings attention to critical safety issues. The overall theme for the month is “Journey to Safety Excellence.”

The National Safety Council saves lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the roads through leadership, research, education and advocacy. By 2014, the council will save an additional 10,000 lives and prevent 1 million injuries by partnering with businesses, elected officials and the public to make an impact in areas such as distracted driving, teen driving, workplace safety, and safety in the home and community.

Safety is such an important topic that, with the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, Congress created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to ensure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance.

Over the course of the next four weeks we will discuss overexertion, driving, slips/trips/falls, and finally office safety.

We would like to know what you do during National Safety Month so please post your comments here.

Duro-Last Donates Truck for Joplin Relief Efforts

On Thursday, May 26, Duro-Last Director of Accounting Debbie Bierlien saw a story on a local TV station about a church in Clio, Michigan, that was collecting items for the victims of the tornado that devastated Joplin, Missouri. The church had collected so much, that they were in need of a semi-trailer to transport the items to Joplin. Debbie brought the opportunity to Duro-Last management, who immediately authorized the use of the truck, fuel, and driver Jay Verbeke for the trip. In addition, Duro-Last employees donated clothing, water, diapers, and other necessities. After loading to about half full in Clio, the truck stopped at another church in Bryan, Ohio, and was filled to capacity. The truck arrived in Joplin on Saturday, May 28.

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Pam Lotter, who coordinated the effort for the Clio Community Church of God, is planning to make another trip soon. Food items are most in need, as well as gift cards for national grocery and pharmacy chains. Pam can be reached at the church at 810-686-5394 or via cell phone at 810-210-1158.

Pam Lotter and Duro-Last Communications Director Fred Sitter