presentations will NOT be offered on a routine basis for areas outside
the northeast US
Mark Bell is now doing them on a desktop basis through the conferencing
capabilities of Skype.
This saves considerable funds and time for all.
Please contact us to discuss your presentation needs.
Teleconferenced presentation duration is variable.
or via [email]
Thank you for your understanding.
For those who
may desire an ENG Safety Presentation
at their station:
Mark Bell has amassed what might be the largest
collection of ENG safety material in his years of research of ENG
accidents. He is available to present his ENG Safety Awareness
seminar at your station for the price of travel, lodging, and
incidental expenses, added to the reasonable seminar rates. Total cost
usually works out to under $4000.00, and is figured on a seminar time
basis, not a per-person rate. The cost is frequently split by a few
stations in the market who group together on the occasion for the sake
of safety awareness. For scheduling convenience, more than one seminar
can be conducted in a day. All levels of news and engineering employees
should be invited, as the presentation has something of interest for
For convenience, or if necessary, a video/data
projector and sound system can be brought to the presentation facility,
with only the addition of chairs, a table, and a white (or light
colored) wall needed. (Availability of refreshments is strongly
seminars are 4-8 interactive hours. They
are aimed at all levels of station personnel, and deal with concerns
for all to understand.
those who have already participated in the longer presentations, a
2-hour "refresher" is a new part of the seminar schedule.
(A onr-hour schedule
was recently implemented as a refresher for a major market station
and was conveniently placed into the work schedule with little OT
about the length of presentations from Mark Bell:
Yes, I know 8
hours is a lot. Sometimes 2 hours seems as if it is a lot for news
managers to schedule into saturated days and nights. I also know how
valuable the time is and the cost for having people in on overtime can
The presentation is a message, and an investment in
your employees. Right now there are many video segments in the
presentation, and they alone are over 45 minutes if all are played out.
Explaining what is going on in the videos is sometimes almost as time
consuming as the clips themselves. That's over an hour spent on
documented accidents and video profiles relevant to the industry and
Some feel I can show an accident video that
sends out the message "This is what happened, don't do that." For
them, that seems to suffice for a safety message. But when the actions
of the people are analyzed, and the circumstances are related, many
times the lesson is huge, and needs to be explained as such. Employees
are involved in many close calls and near-accidents, as well as times
when they have needed to intervene to prevent accidents, sometimes for
reasons they do not understand, until these discussions take place.
Employers seldom hear of these incidents, but they are meaningful to
relate in order to understand the risks/contingencies within a
station's culture. Sometimes risks are actually produced by the
culture. I refer to one industry standard known as the Heinrich
the world of safety fundamentals forever with his pioneering work in
the 1930s. One of his concepts is his accident triangle (pyramid) - For
every 300 unsafe acts there are 29 minor injuries and one major injury.
So many near misses
lead to an analogous number of first aid injuries and onward through
the logic to recordables and ending in the inevitability of a fatality.
Many times discussions that the presentation
provokes allows employees and managers to see how a cultural
characteristic actually feeds into creating hazardous situations. This
all takes time. Sometimes there are emotional responses to
accidents, people who knew victims, and feelings about personal
tragedies triggered. News people are thick-skinned by the nature of
their work, but the seminar is not the place for that shield to be up.
It's the place for them to be open, frank, and unguarded in their input
and response. Their lives are at stake as drivers, first
responders, agents for the news directive, and workers who routinely
approach areas the general public is warned to avoid.
I am delighted when a news veteran tells me that he
hated the thought of sitting through a safety presentation, and 3, 4,
or 5 hours later, he was delighted to have done it. "I never knew so
much has happened in the industry...." is commonly related to me.
"I'm so glad my managers took the time and spent the money for this,"
is also related.
At some stations I actually (sometimes unknowingly)
show evidence that a cultural change needs to be made at the station.
At others I only need to enrich the already received message. The
decision is yours.
I believe it was the President of Harvard once said:
"If you think education is expensive, try ignorance."
I can only hope my presentations could have some
sort of comparison to a Harvard education, but one aspect of our
educational result that can be compared is that is that we transform
lives, and actually save lives through the education provided.
"We" refers to the managers that set up the
presentations and do the incredible coordination work, and funding to
make them happen. It's a great investment.
The "ENG Safety Awareness" presentation is adaptable
room or large auditorium audiences. Equipment needed is limited to an
space, chairs for the audience, a table for equipment, and a white
Video and chart data originates from a laptop, and a video/data
and sound system can be brought in as part of the package. It has
been customary, and far more comfortable to have refreshments, lunch,
dinner, on hand. A white board with markers for diagram/discussion
is always welcomed.
The objective is to transform attendees towards
will allow for greater understanding of consequences of ENG truck
The presentation does not work towards committing a company or
to any particular policies or procedures. Certainly, as in any safety
there will be certain conclusions drawn from information given, and
afterwards, station policies may be created or modified.
Attendees are shown what has happened in the past
inexperienced ENG operators. It soon becomes apparent what situations
perceptions lead and have led to accidents through police reports, EMT
reports, medical examiner information, and operators accounts of
Feedback received from exposure of the presentation
to thousands of
people at NPPA Workshops, TV Stations, SBE Conventions, and other
has been very positive. Many reveal that they are impressed almost to
point of being stunned, then go on to operate in their station
with a better sense of professionalism with regard to compliance with
and safety regulations.
In summary, perception and behavior can be greatly
affected by how
basic information people know. A person who behaves in one manner in an
environment will change their behavior once aware of hazards. Those who
have not been aware of the dangers of ENG before the "ENG Safety
presentation historically have been affected by the content, and have
better equipped to protect themselves. This means they are also
their co-workers, and the liability of the station or broadcast group.
Here is one of the more touching replies
"Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I am a
and had the pleasure of attending one of your safety seminars in Omaha,
Nebraska, recently. I now have a whole new respect for these high
trucks, overhead wires and lightning. Tonight I sit here thanking
god nothing happened to me during the last 6-years. That's how long I
been operating our live truck without knowing that state law required I
be at least 10-feet away from any overhead wire"........"Thanks again
With the invention of the ENG Safety Newsletter,
it is now possible
for stations to carry on a repetitive informational program which will
reinforce the need for safety for all newsroom personnel through
reminders. There is also a "no-stress," multiple choice test on the
page of all newsletters. Planning a presentation? Ask about continuing
your safety awareness process with the cost-effective, repetitive,
newsletter. Documented education also helps satisfy OSHA requirements,
and the ENG Safety Newsletter helps pave the way.
Benefits for all:
- Station Management/Owners: Liability concerns regarding
and public safety. State and Federal Regulations. Is that YOUR
logo on the van with the broken mast, involved in the on-the-job
or under investigation? Big bucks and a lot of time spent which might
been avoided with some sensible procedures. Hazard awareness and
allows for safer, and more efficient setups.
- News Directors: Added preparedness allows for better
unpredictable situations, as well as deeper knowledge of the
which may help in coverage of other events.
- Producers: Understand the field challenges better, and
for field efficiency which can get you better coverage.
- Assignment Editors: What's REALLY going on out there
to rush crews from one spot to another, and how to help them stay safe.
- Reporters: Reporters aren't immune from injury in
must also learn what to watch out for. They can easily assist the
effort with a few seconds of perception and realization.
- Photographers: How to deal with the pressure and stay
to watch out for. What some haven't seen. Efficient perception is the
- Technicians: Rules of the craft which can save your
for safer set-ups. Where others have gone wrong.
- Operators: Ability to support ENG operations at any
work with a higher level of professionalism. Safety strategies aren't
same on all trucks.
"So far the vast majority of ENG Truck accidents
affected only TV station personnel; Tremendous, unnecessary tragedies.
At the rate, and in the way the industry is expanding, it is only a
of time before an ENG accident will effect the general
At that time the station or broadcast group whose crew is at the scene
will either have trained their employees properly, showed intent to
such training, or will be left to sort out the issue at the mercy of
or principles which apply with no such claim. They will literally be at
the mercy of the court system." -Mark Bell
Stations can get certificates for their attending managers
employees for documentation of the awareness seminar.
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