With a little over a year before the 2016 vote for America’s next President, I’m sure many of you are already sick of the ads and the constant politicking as we are. Nevertheless, there are very important issues that need to be addressed that can and will affect the construction industry and a recent study has ranked the current presidential candidates past performance with regards to those issues that affect our industry.
CG/LA is an organization whose main goal is to increase the support for global infrastructure by providing leadership forums, acting as advisors and using market intelligence. The group recently released their rankings of current US presidential candidates based upon their past dealings in infrastructure in the United States. The study was part of CG/LA’s Blueprint 2025 campaign, which aims to greatly increase funding for infrastructure upgrades through the year 2025.
In order to rank the candidates, the group used several key measures, including their history of building infrastructure in the past, their current plan for handling infrastructure improvements in the future, and their ability to be a catalyst for infrastructure funding.
"Every successful presidential candidate for the last two generations has promised to build our infrastructure, helping us to regain our global competitiveness - none has been able to do it," said Norman F. Anderson, President and CEO of CG/LA Infrastructure in a press release. "Our monthly rating system provides a structure for the evaluation of candidates, Republicans and Democrats, rating their ability to get this done."
After analyzing those key measures, CG/LA determined that there were 3 clear frontrunners in making infrastructure a priority and one of them may strike you as a surprise. Tied with 18 points in first place were Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders and Republican John Kasich. Donald Trump was not far behind, tallying 17 points. Hilary Clinton was ranked fourth, with 11 points.
Bernie Sanders was ranked highly due to being very vocal about infrastructure improvement and proposing a major infrastructure investment initiative to the Senate. John Kasich was ranked highly due to leading major infrastructure repairs in the past in Ohio. Donald Trump was close behind because of his extensive experience in real estate and construction as a business owner. You have to wonder if CG/LA considers that wall Trump keeps talking about as infrastructure.
What do you think? Does this change your mind regarding who to vote for next November?
There’s no doubt that drones are the hot technology item for the construction industry. They allow you inspect your overall site more quickly, take aerial photos for marketing and documentation, measure tonnage and volume of on-site stockpiles, and even monitor employee productivity. Now, one company has designed a drone that can safely inspect structures for damage and detect cracks as small as .0039 inches wide (.1mm), when fitted with an HD camera.
Not all demolition videos can be implosions and that’s OK, because each type of demolition is its own art form. Sometimes contractors are bound by the constraints of the job, especially when located in an area with a large concentration of pedestrians and other public areas. That was the case for the construction site of the future One Vanderbilt Tower in New York City, which just completed the demolition of five different buildings covering an entire city block.
The number one goal on every construction site should be that all workers make it home safe at the end of the day. The sad reality is that hundreds of construction workers are killed on the job site every year. Last year, contractors were working on an indoor activity center for a high school in Argyle, Texas, when the 30 foot tall structure quickly collapsed, killing one man in the process.
Construction work can be a workout in and of itself many times. The hours are long, the tools and materials are heavy, but that’s not stopping a young worker in central China from adding some additional exercises to his daily routine.
2016 has been a big year for OSHA, as the organization has raised the cost of fines for safety violations for the first time since 1990. Made, effective in August, fines were raised 78%, making the cost of a serious violation $12,471. The construction industry is by far the most affected by OSHA regulations, as it accounted for 43.3% of all citations, 52.92% of all inspections, and 44.16% of all penalties assessed from October 2015 to September 2016. Of all specific types of contractors, roofing contractors account for the largest quantity of citations (6,924), following by framing contractors (3,810), and masonry contractors (2,501).
“They don’t build ‘em like they used to,” as people love to say. That phrase could definitely be applicable to the 93 year old Broadway Bridge in Little Rock, Arkansas, that refused to fall even after it was lined with explosives. This certainly isn’t the first time a demolition has failed and it’s probably not the last.
Dubai has held the record for world’s tallest building since the opening of the Burj Khalifa in 2010. The gigantic tower, which houses office, residential, retail, and hotel space spread over 163 floors stands 2,717 feet (828m) in the air. It was an impressive feat, once in which Dubai and the United Arab Emirates pride themselves on, but in a few short years, its crown will be passed to a new record holder.
One thing’s for sure about Milwaukee Tool, they aren’t satisfied with putting the same tools out year after year. They’re constantly improving age old classics and leading in the innovation of new tool solutions. Their latest announcement is a variation on their extremely popular line of M18 tools.
The weight of dirt is serious business and the force it provides should not be underestimated. Depending on the moisture content, soil can weigh around 2,000 pounds per cubic yard. Many construction workers die each year from trench collapses due to improper shoring and benching techniques, but weight and force calculations are also extremely important in the design and construction of retaining walls.
Habitat for Humanity is one of the construction industry’s favorite volunteer organization and for good reason. Over the past 40 years, the non-profit builder has helped construct, rehabilitate, or preserve over 800,000 affordable houses for families in need. It’s truly an area that construction workers throughout the world can showcase their skills and donate their time, in order to give back to their community.