TAX TAX MATTERSMATTERSACROSS STATE LINESACROSS STATE LINESDIGGING INDIGGING IN28 YEARS28 YEARS AND COUNTING AND COUNTINGCONCURRENT CONCURRENT DELAYSDELAYSUNDERSTAND UNDERSTAND THE IMPACT THE IMPACTCASING CASING SAVINGSSAVINGSCOMMERCIAL COMMERCIAL TIRE HEROTIRE HEROMARCH 2021WWW.MCSMAG.COMTRENDING TRENDING TECHNOLOGYTECHNOLOGYTELEMATICS AND TELEMATICS AND TRANSPORTATIONTRANSPORTATION
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com41632MARCH 2021VOLUME 15 ISSUE 03Inside This IssueON THE COVERThis iconic photo of the BOMAG BW 211 Single Drum Soil Compaction photo was taken by a local photographer, Ian Slade, in Raleigh, North Carolina. BOMAG single drum rollers set the standards as innovation drivers for an entire industry. BOMAG’s global network of experts & partners in over 120 countries supports your work by providing solutions for the most challenging jobs.www.bomag.com/us-en/28special focusIN EVERY ISSUEIndustry News ............................ 10Modern Construction Products ... 61Coach’s Corner ........................... 64management solution Hidden Costshindering growth in your businessmanagement solution Trending Techfor telematics and transportationequipment solutionKenworth Truckssupplying America’s builders22maintenance solution Casing Savingsthe unsung hero52transportationmanagement solutionTax Matterscrossing state lines34project profile Digging In28 years and countingCreating Digital WorkflowsGuest Post by Stein Revelsby, founder and CEO of HoyluOn any given day, construction management tracks multiple subcontractors over multiple jobsites each with their own set of tasks, timelines, and issues. All these moving parts can make challenging for the team to get together. McKinsey reports seeing companies overcome these challenges by transforming from analog to digital, creating digital workflows.ON THE BLOG
SUBSCRIPTIONS For all changes, go to:MCSMAG.COMClick the SUBSCRIPTIONS button in the main menuwww.mcsmag.com P.O. Box 660197 | Birmingham, AL 35266DONNA CAMPBELL Editor in Chiefdonna@mcsmag.comMIKE BARKER Publishermike@mcsmag.com RANDY MOON Media Consultantrandym@mcsmag.comMICHAEL FISCHBACH Media Consultantmichael@mcsmag.com JOHN FRIEND Media Consultantjohn@mcsmag.comKEVIN MCCLARAN Media Consultantkevin@mcsmag.comLISA AVERY Art Directorlisa@mcsmag.comCAMILLE BLACK Graphic Designercamille@mcsmag.com SETH SAUNDERS Digital Media Specialist email@example.comINGRID BERKY Office Manageringrid@mcsmag.comTIM GARMONCEORUSSELL HADDOCKPresidentCHRIS GARMONCFODONNA CAMPBELLVice President, EditorialTONYA BROWNINGVice PresidentNo part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage-and-retrieval system without permission in writing from the publisher. The views expressed by those not on the staff of Modern Contractor Solutions, or who are not specifically employed by Highlands Publications are purely their own. All Industry News material has either been submitted by the subject company or pulled directly from its corporate website, which is assumed to be cleared for release. Comments and submissions are welcome, and can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org.For reprint information, contact Chris Garmon at email@example.com.Canada Post Publication Agreement #41578525. Undeliverables 355 Admiral Drive, Unit 4, Mississauga, ON L5T 2N1Modern Contractor Solutions Magazine@mcsmagModern Contractor SolutionsPROJECT PROFILEDigging In .................................................................. 16EQUIPMENT SOLUTIONSKenworth Trucks ........................................................ 22Skid Steer Tires ......................................................... 24MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS Trending Tech ............................................................ 28Construction Recovery .............................................. 30Hidden Costs ............................................................. 32Tax Matters ............................................................... 34SOFTWARE SOLUTIONMitigating Risk .......................................................... 38LEGAL SOLUTIONConcurrent Delays ..................................................... 40TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONSGPS Tracking ............................................................. 44Proper Piping ............................................................. 46SAFETY SOLUTIONFire Safety ................................................................. 48FEATURED PRODUCTMilwaukee Tool MX™ Fuel Breaker ............................ 60 COACH’S CORNERCheck out what the coach says to Chuck about boosting morale on page 64.Donna CampbellEditor in ChiefTRANSPORTATION ESSENTIAL“Are we there yet?” We have all experienced the joys of travel either as a child or with your own children. Getting from point A to point B is essential to start your vacation or to start a construction project. And, with trailer in tow carrying camping gear or a skid steer, your family unit or work crew arriving safely makes for a good photo.This month’s issue of MCS focuses on transportation and the elements that makes that possible, such good crews (pg 16), trucks (pg 22), tires (pgs 24, 52, 54), telematics (pg 28), and GPS tracking (pg 44). Take note of Coach’s Corner with a question from Chuck and learn about boosting morale (pg 64).March brings the beginning of spring and the start of construction jobs where the weather is cooperating. Now for a little personal story tied to transportation. When I was 11 years old, my family drove from North Dakota to California for a family vacation. The car didn’t have air conditioning and fitting five people in the four-door Ford sedan was tight. We didn’t stay in hotels … we camped our way west. At one campsite, we settled in, ate our sandwiches, and went to bed in our sleeping bags. In the middle of the night, all hell broke loose. High winds, hail, branches snapping, dogs howling, children crying … and my dad rushing us into the station wagon for safety. The tent had fallen to the ground. Once in the car, I noticed my brother was missing. Dad went to look for him. My brother was still in his sleeping bag; a tent pole fell on him and he thought he was dead. Dad fished him out of the tent and into the car. It was a long night. At the break of dawn, we walked the campground and surveyed the damage. We were one of the lucky families. We packed up the station wagon and continued our quest to Disneyland. We made it; the “getting there” was almost as fun as the amusement park. True story.Enjoy the issue. Stay safe and well.TRAVELING BY SEA 210222-N-OW019-0001 PACIFIC OCEAN (Feb 22, 2020) Fireman Zacherie Smith, from Birmingham, Alabama, monitors a fireplug while acting as the plug-man during a general quarters drill aboard the guided-missile cruiser USS Princeton (CG 59). Princeton, a part of Nimitz Carrier Strike Group, is currently conducting routine operations in U.S. Third Fleet. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Logan C.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com10industry newsGCP APPLIED TECHNOLOGIES INTRODUCES MOBILE ACCESS TO NEW DETAIL DRAWINGS FOR AIR BARRIERS GCP Applied Technologies announces more than 200 new detail drawings have been added to GCP Applied Technologies’ Air Barrier briefcase, a mobile-optimized tool designed for quick, efficient access to construction data. GCP’s experts carefully developed the updated design drawings for architects, engineers, and contractors. Now construction professionals have online access to hundreds of new detail drawings that incorporate the placement of air barriers, providing critical information needed for projects, from the office to the jobsite. To begin using GCP’s Air Barrier briefcase from your mobile device, first visit gcpat.com/briefcase, select the PERM-A-BARRIER® air barrier product line, and browse the detail drawings. Create a personal briefcase in myBriefcase to add files and organize selected construction docs by project, assembly, system, or whatever best fits the project needs. Lastly, add the briefcase to your mobile device home screen for easy access on the go.Follow @briefcase on Twitter for the latest updates, new functionality announcements, and case studies on high-profile projects that leverage GCP’s diverse construction portfolio. For more, visit gcpat.com.AND THE WINNERS ARE …Heavy construction management software leader B2W Software announces its 2021 Innovation Awards at the company’s 20th annual User Conference, held online March 2-4. The four winners from across the United States are: Vallencourt Construction of Florida and Mohawk Valley Materials of New York: Both named Best ROI with the ONE Platform, B2W Software’s unified platform for estimating, scheduling, field tracking, equipment maintenance, and electronic forms and reporting. GeoStabilization International of Colorado: Recognized for Best ROI for use of a Single B2W Element, by adding $5 million to their bottom line in the first year of implementing B2W Maintain to manage more than 1000 pieces of equipment. BARD Materials of Iowa: Named Most Innovative New Use of B2W Software, by customizing daily performance tracking and analysis to meet unique requirements for aggregate production using B2W Track. AMERICAN AUGERS AND TRENCOR PRODUCTS NOW SOLD THROUGH THE DITCH WITCH DIVISION Customers of Ditch Witch and Subsite Electronics products have been receiving world-class service and support from their local Ditch Witch dealership for decades, and now with the addition of OSHA Compliant Guardrail andStair Rail SystemsSafety Boot® Guardrail SystemStringerShield® Stair Rail System1.800.804.4741safetyboot.com• Non-Penetrating Design• Rugged Steel Construction• Exceeds OSHA Regulations• Simple, Aordable & Reusable• Residential, Multi-Family & Commercial Applications• Unique Free Standing Design• Keep Post Attached For Reuse On Next Level Or ProjectFeatured on osha.gov website!
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com12industry newstwo new product lines, underground construction professionals around the globe can reap the same benefits. The Ditch Witch Division will offer the full product lines, parts and service for both the American Augers and Trencor brands. Dealership and factory personnel have been working together to prepare for distribution of these two strong brands through the worldwide Ditch Witch dealer channel. The manufacturing of Ditch Witch products will remain in Perry, Oklahoma, and American Augers and Trencor products will continue to be built in West Salem, Ohio. New and existing customers can contact their local dealer by visiting www.ditchwitch.com/find-a-dealer. JOHN DEERE EXTENDS INDUSTRY-LEADING SMARTGRADE DOZER WARRANTYStanding behind the reliability and durability of its machines and integrated technology, John Deere now offers an industry-leading extended coverage package for its SmartGrade™ Dozers. Available on select models including the new 700L, 750L and 850L machines, the industry-exclusive package features an extended 3-year/5,000-hour powertrain and hydraulic warranty on all factory-built SmartGrade Dozers, as well as the SmartGrade technology components. The warranties deliver enhanced coverage on the machine powertrain and hydraulics, as well as the SmartGrade components, for 3 years or 5,000 hours, whichever occurs first. The offer is extended through June 30, 2021, and available on eligible machines including the 650K, 700K, 700L, 750K, 750L, 850K, 850L, and 950K models. For additional information about the John Deere SmartGrade Dozer lineup, as well as the extended warranty offer, visit www.deere.com or contact your local dealer.INEIGHT ENHANCES PLANNING SOLUTION FOR CAPITAL PROJECTSInEight Inc. announces enhancements to its planning, scheduling, and risk offering to deliver the most intelligent and multi-dimensional planning solution for capital projects. With increased infrastructure spending widely seen as a path to global economic recovery, the need among capital project owners and contractors for data-backed confidence around project cost and schedule is more important than ever before. Now, InEight helps project managers, schedulers, workface planners, and estimators remove risk from the bottom line and increase confidence with the most complete risk analytics toolbox on the market today. InEight Planning, Scheduling & Risk uses artificial intelligence (AI) and data from previous projects to identify threats in current projects and recommend risk mitigation strategies. The solution’s intuitive interface enables a seamless user experience that delivers clear and actionable insights on risk management. For more, visit ineight.com.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com14industry newsWOOSTER PRODUCTS CELEBRATES 100TH ANNIVERSARYWooster Products, manufacturer of anti-slip safety stair treads and walkway products, celebrates its 100th anniversary with a year-long celebration of activities and promotions. Long respected for its quality and innovation, anti-slip products for new construction, renovation, and OEM applications are found in commercial and industrial settings worldwide. From an early installation at the University of Notre Dame in 1922, to the Statue of Liberty, to major league sports venues, to the One World Trade Center building, and the many transit systems that carry passengers to destinations like these and others. A century after their founding, Wooster Products continues to “Make Every Step a Safe One” as their slogan suggests. For more, visit www.woosterproducts.com.CASE DELIVERS INDUSTRY’S FIRST ELECTRIC BACKHOE LOADERS TO UTILITIES IN NEW YORKThe construction industry’s first designed and commercially developed electric backhoe loaders—two CASE 580 EV backhoes from CASE Construction Equipment—have been delivered and are currently working with utilities in New York. New York State Gas & Electric and Rochester Gas & Electric, AVANGRID, Inc. subsidiaries, will debut its first electric backhoe this week at a special event in New York, and National Grid took delivery of its first electric backhoe earlier this year. The backhoes require no diesel and produce zero emissions—all while providing the power and performance associated with diesel-powered equipment. CASE announced the development of the electric backhoe in March 2020, and has been working with each utility on refining the machines ahead of final delivery and field deployment. Electrification of the CASE 580 EV was performed in conjunction with New York companies Green Machine Equipment, Inc. and Moog Inc. Monroe Tractor in New York will work with each utility and the integration partners to support the equipment in the field. The 580 EV is powered by Green Machine’s proprietary 480-volt, 90-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion WhisperDrive battery pack that can be charged by any 220-volt connection. While applications vary, each charge can support common 8-hour workdays. The battery separately powers the drivetrain and hydraulic motors, resulting in hydraulic breakout forces equal to diesel-powered machines and improved performance during simultaneous loader and drivetrain operation. It is estimated that the 580 EV could save fleets as much as 90% in annual vehicle service and maintenance costs when taking into account the reduction/elimination of diesel, engine oil, diesel exhaust fluid, regular preventive maintenance, and long-term engine upkeep/maintenance (and the associated labor rates and time savings). For more, visit www.casece.com.
MARCH 202116project profileDigging InDigging In28 years and countingBUSINESS LONGEVITYGrowing up as a child in Blairgowrie, Scotland, David Stalker was introduced to excavators at a young age. With an uncle who worked as a machine operator and a father who started his own excavator hire company, it was only a matter of time before Stalker experienced what it took, firsthand, to excel in the construction industry. Stalker’s excitement for the industry followed him more than 4,000 miles from Scotland to Vancouver Island where he immigrated with his parents and siblings in 1988. And after a few years of working for a few different contractors, he and his wife decided it was time to start their own business, renting their first machine and officially starting David Stalker Excavating Ltd. in Ladysmith, British Columbia.Initially, Stalker, who celebrated the 25-year-anniversary of David Stalker Excavating in 2018, didn’t think much about the longevity of his business.“I never knew how many years we’d be in business,” he says. “I didn’t look at that at the time. I just looked at buying a machine and trying to get myself a job. That was 1993, and thankfully, we’re still at it 28 years later.”PROVEN QUALITY, RESULTSStalker purchased his first Hitachi, a ZX200LC-3, in 2009. The machine had more than 9,000 hours on it when he sold it in 2017. It’s been more than 10 years since this first purchase, but Stalker continues turning to Hitachi to get the job done right.“Hitachi is a great machine,” Stalker says. “Their reliability, fuel economy, and resale value—we love them. I think with the Hitachi name, you get proven quality.”The newest addition to Stalker’s fleet is a ZX345USLC-6—the first of its kind to arrive on Vancouver Island. The machine is currently working on a road construction project to provide public access to a marina and mill site in Ladysmith.“Ever since I knew the 345 was coming out, I wanted one,” Stalker says. “I realized that the 345 would actually work in the same place that a conventional 250-size machine would work. After discussing it with Wajax, we decided to take the plunge.”As a company that specializes in residential and municipal excavation work, David Stalker Excavating often works on road projects where traffic flow must be maintained. With its reduced-tail-swing design, the 345 brings efficiency to those projects by allowing for a single lane of traffic.“With a conventional excavator, it’s quite hard to maintain single lane traffic,” Stalker says. “With the reduced-tail-swing of the 345, you’ve got no worries. It works very well for that application. Our operators love them.”In addition to the ZX345USLC-6, Stalker’s fleet consists of five more reduced-tail-swing models and a ZX50U-5 compact excavator—all of which he purchased through Wajax, Canada’s exclusive Hitachi construction dealer. And, while his fondness for Hitachi continues to grow, so does his relationship with Wajax.“We started with Wajax in 2009 and we’ve had a very good relationship with them ever since,” Stalker notes. “I don’t think we’ve ever had to question a bill or had any type of heated discussion with By Amanda BertolozziDavid Stalker, owner of David Stalker Excavating Ltd.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com18project profilethem. Wajax has always been straight upfront with us. We’ve never had an issue.”STILL GOING STRONGIt’s this partnership that allows Stalker to travel back to Scotland at least once a year, as he knows that if something happens with a machine, Wajax has him—and his company—covered. Most recently, Stalker traveled home to celebrate the 97th birthday of his grandmother, fondly known as Granny.“My granny … she’s a tough one,” he says. “She’s big, strong, and just doesn’t know when to quit. She’s got her own place, fixes her own meals, does her own laundry. She just keeps going. I admire her a lot.” And although Stalker moved away from Granny more than 30 years ago, he’s still got her to thank when it comes to his daily mentality at work.“Granny makes you look at things a lot differently—with having a business, employees, issues, and everything else,” he says. “Here she is, 97, and still going. She just makes you look at things in a whole different perspective.” CLOSING THOUGHTWhile Stalker’s perspective may have been unsure about the longevity of David Stalker Excavating at the start, it’s clear that he has paved the way for even more success. As someone who would rather be on a jobsite than in the office, Stalker knows there’s nothing else he’d rather do. And with 28 years under his belt at the company, he’s excited for what’s to come.“I’ve always enjoyed this type of work,” Stalker says. “I can’t imagine myself doing anything else. I can’t wait to get up in the morning and go to work. It’s in my blood and it’s what I want to keep doing.” for more informationDavid Stalker Excavating Ltd. is serviced by Wajax, Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada. For more about Hitachi Construction Equipment, visit hitachiconstruction.com.Above: David Stalker, owner of David Stalker Excavating Ltd. with Bill Spetch, Wajax Technical Sales RepresentativePLAY VIDEO
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com22equipment solutionKenworth TrucksKenworth Truckssupplying America’s buildersROAD-WORTHY HEROESSince BMC’s humble beginning in 1987, supplying general contractors and “do-it-yourselfers” in Idaho to operating locations in 18 states, BMC—now headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina—has grown to become one of the largest building suppliers in the United States. Chances are, you’ve set foot in a building that was built with products sold through a BMC location. THE FLEET GROWSAs BMC continues to grow, so does its fleet of medium and heavy-duty trucks—many of which are Kenworth T880 and T270s—used to deliver lumber material and other building products to customer jobsites. BMC took delivery of 100 Kenworth T880s and 50 T270s in the past 2 years, and plans to add more Kenworths this year. BMC purchased its first Kenworth trucks in 1987 through Kenworth Sales Company–Boise, and has continued to buy new Kenworths from the dealer ever since. Brian Deeds, Kenworth Sales Company–Boise new truck salesman, is instrumental in BMC’s continued relationship with the dealer group.“Brian is hands down the best truck salesman I’ve ever worked with in my career,” says Alex Eadie, BMC director of supply chain, fleet, logistics, and indirect spend. “A lot has changed over the years at BMC, but one thing remains the same—buying Kenworth trucks through Brian and Kenworth Sales Company. He knows our operation better than anyone else, and he actively looks for new ways to spec our trucks to maximize our efficiency. If we ever need anything or run into a problem, he is quick to find a solution. We’ve been running Kenworth trucks since we opened, and while we will continue to add Kenworths to our fleet. We make the conscious decision to buy through Brian since he knows us so well.” IMPROVING THE USAGEAccording to Deeds, he will visit BMC locations in various markets to get a better understanding on how the trucks are used, so that he can generate ideas on new ways to spec trucks to address the operational challenges the company faces.“By having ‘boots on the ground,’ it gives me a better perspective on how exactly BMC trucks operate in specific markets,” says Deeds. “If we discover a challenge BMC drivers are faced with, then we’ll create a spec to address the issue.” To further enhance maneuverability in tight urban areas, Deeds recently proposed taking off the step from the Kenworth T880s frame, replacing it with steps for drivers to use on the DEF tank so that they could shorten the wheelbase by 15 inches. Since spec’ing a few trucks with the adjustment, BMC decided to make it a standard spec for all future truck orders. The constant search to improve fleet operations trickles down to the BMC customer experience. The company prides itself on making on-time deliveries, so much so, the company tracks its on-time deliveries and other time-based measurables through a company-wide database. “We want our customers to know we’re serious about making timely deliveries,” says Eadie. “And, we’re very upfront with our customers with that information. We show them the numbers
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202123so they feel reassured that we’ll be at their jobsite when they need us to be. The building timeline shouldn’t rest on the shoulders of those making deliveries, and if it does, we aren’t doing our jobs.”BUILT TO HAULBMC’s Kenworth T880s are nearly an equal split between straight trucks and those that tow aluminum flatbed trailers. The Kenworth T880s are all spec’d with the PACCAR MX-13 engine, rated at 455 hp and equipped with the PACCAR 12-speed automated transmission. BMC uses its T880 straight trucks to deliver large building materials, such as trusses, lumber, and beams from BMC warehouse locations or manufacturing partner locations to jobsites. The T880s hauling flatbed trailers deliver the same products to jobsites that require more material, such as duplex or multi-story high rises. BMC equips the ends of its T880 straight trucks and its T880 flatbed trailers with mounted forklifts to help drivers unload and place cargo where the customer needs it.“All of the bases are covered with our T880s,” says Eadie. “Our straight trucks are especially useful when delivering to smaller projects or in the city where tights roads make deliveries difficult. We looked extensively at the T880s turning radius when making the decision to make the T880 our truck of choice for these types of deliveries, and its proven to be the right recipe for us.” According to Eadie, BMC equips its Kenworth T880s with the PACCAR MX-13 engine because they’ve proven to be reliable—staying out of the shop and on the road. “Over the years, Kenworth trucks equipped with PACCAR engines seem to be the right combinations for our operations,” says Eadie. “We get plenty of power from the PACCAR MX-13 engine, backed by the reliability we need to assist our efforts in maintaining a good track record with our customers for on-time deliveries.”The fleet’s Kenworth T270 box trucks all are equipped with 300 hp PACCAR PX-7 engines and Allison 6-speed automatic transmissions. With a gross vehicle weight rating up to 26,000 pounds, BMC uses its T270s to deliver products such as doors, windows, trim packages—and other items that take up “space” but are light in weight—from BMC store locations to jobsites. CLOSING THOUGHTEadie claims driver acceptance is especially high among drivers operating Kenworth trucks, particularly those operating new models that feature the latest technology, such as Kenworth driver assistance technologies, which aid overall driving performance. for more informationFor more about Kenworth trucks, visit www.kenworth.com.
Skid steers are versatile machines that are used in a wide assortment of jobs and applications. They are used in construction, mines and quarries, landscaping, and agriculture. They can be used on hard packed dirt, sand, mud, concrete, and asphalt, and they are made to carry heavy loads. Tires are an important part of any job and can have the greatest impact on performance and time. Therefore, the tires skid steers require need to be designed to handle some of the toughest environments and carry heavy weights. ALL IN THE DESIGNSkid steer tires are made in both pneumatic and solid designs. Solid tires are used mainly in applications where flat tires and cut tires are a problem. An example is in scrap yards where tires are continuously running over metal. Pneumatic tires are used in a wide variety of other applications and are more versatile. Pneumatic tires can be foam filled to reduce flats and used in the place of solids. Because of the cost of foam filling, deep tread skid steer tires should be used to ensure that the user will get the maximum use from the tire. VARIOUS APPLICATIONSBKT offers a wide selection of skid steer tires to cover most categories of applications from light to heavy duty operations. Wear resistant compounds, like cut and heat resistant, are used in some tires for severe services and for longer tire life. Deeper treads are available for enhanced traction and longer service time. Whatever the design, quality products and compounds are an important part of BKT’s line.MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com24equipment solutionSkid Steer TiresSkid Steer Tiresimpact performance and timeDESIGNED FOR VERSATILITY
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202125Standard pneumatic tires are used for light to medium duty applications. BKT offers the Skid Power, Skid Power Plus, Skid Power SK, and Skid Power (Chevron). These tires have sidewall protection and are made with chip and chunk resistant compound. These tires provide long life, puncture protection, and chip and chunk resistance. Premium pneumatic tires are used for the same duties as the standard tires, but some have added protection for the sidewalls and rim guards to protect the wheel. BKT offers the Skid Power HD in this category which also has an extra deep tread. Severe duty tires are designed for heavy duty applications. They generally work well in mud and hard surfaces. They are made with a wear resistant compound that work well on abrasive surfaces. These tires generally have an extra deep tread depth and have a larger lug to void ratio. They are resistant to punctures. BKT offers the Giant Trax, Power Trax HD, Jumbo Trax HD, Sure Trax HD, the Mud Power HD, and the Snow Ride (A). The Mud Power HD is designed for use in muddy and mucky conditions such as dairies and feed lots. The lug pattern is extra deep and cleans out well for this application. The Snow Ride (A) is made for skid steers used in snow and ice operations. It features excellent traction and longer tire life in these conditions to prevent slippage risks.CLOSING THOUGHTAn important part of any job is to reduce downtime and increase the return on your investment. Therefore, a little bit of tire maintenance can go a long way in reducing tire problems. Check for cuts, punctures, and wheel damage that can cause most downtime and tire failures. Repairing tires when needed and running the recommended air pressures will save time and money. BKT has many quality products in every range for almost every skid steer application. Designed to handle tough work environments, BKT delivers skid steer tires that add to the bottom line of construction projects. for more informationFor more about BKT’s lineup of skid steer tires, visit www.bkt-tires.com. Wear resistant compounds, like cut and heat resistant, are used in some tires for severe services and for longer tire life.
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MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com28management solutionThe world learned a lot about the importance of telematics and transportation technology in 2020. Even those outside of the industry saw how important accurately tracking assets through the transportation process is to ensure smooth and timely delivery. They also realized the benefits that precise data through technology solutions provides. The world saw up-close and personal the vital work that fleet managers and drivers do to keep things moving and that we, as a society and an economy, can’t function properly without these important people. Because of this, telematics and transportation technology will see a boost in adoption across the board in 2021 including in the construction sector. Some new and exciting technology solutions will be implemented including artificial intelligence (AI) integration with the use of predictive analytics, and advancements in asset tracking and employee safety. Here are our top three predictions for telematics and transportation technology in the construction sector in 2021: BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE THROUGH AIFleet managers want to make the best decisions possible. Part of making these informed decisions is having the right data and the ability to process it for business intelligence insights. In 2021 we’ll see fleet managers taking advantage of new AI features to not only help them collect and process data, but to predict the future and drive business decisions. Managing a fleet is incredibly detailed work, and AI can help by guiding fleet managers to smart choices about which equipment to send where, what route to take and how to assess costs ahead of real-time needs. AI-based platforms such as the TN360 will be offered as software-as-a-service (SaaS) through telematics companies, and it will improve business intelligence with one centralized solution. AI-based SaaS solutions will enable business operations to recognize patterns of efficiency in order to highlight opportunities in areas such as route planning, logistic workflows, maintenance schedules and needs, driver behavior, compliance, and fuel management. Business intelligence through AI is quickly scalable as fleets grow. A huge bonus is that AI can often be integrated with already installed third-party monitoring systems to provide fleet managers with the best insights without having to change out processes or hardware which are already in place. Easy-to-use and intuitive software features make this an easy add that delivers results regarding increased safety and efficiency. SMART ASSET TRACKINGIn addition to keeping track of vehicles, fleet managers are also tasked with keeping track of and managing other mobile assets. While these may have been manually tracked before, small asset and equipment trackers can provide real-time location for non-powered assets such as trailers, containers, and other construction equipment like jackhammers, cement mixers, and more. These systems, including some that are solar-powered, are GPS devices that provide around-the-clock coverage of a fleet’s valuable non-mobile assets. These devices are incredibly resilient, even rated for inclement weather, which is important as these types of assets are often left overnight outside on construction sites. This type of small asset tracker will be a key operations tool in 2021 that will enable fleet and asset managers to use data collected for more accurate invoicing, to know what assets are available, and to know which assets are closest to the jobsite so that drivers can move the best options from location to location. Once the asset is tracked, that information can integrate with other telematic systems to provide a complete picture to the back office. Details, such as the mechanical status of the mobile 2021 PREDICTIONSTrending TechTrending Techfor telematics and transportation By Kurt Wyman
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202129assets, can help companies monitor the bottom line by saving dollars in transportation costs, ensuring accurate billing to maximize revenue, and scheduling regular maintenance to keep mobile assets in good working order. SAFETY AND COMPLIANCEA fleet manager’s most important responsibility is to his or her drivers and equipment operators. AI systems will be able to help fleet managers keep employees safe through a variety of data sets and predictive insights. Not only has the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration linked vehicles equipped with telematics software to safer driving patterns, but an AI system can help drivers avoid threats on the road and identify driver fatigue behaviors, directing the driver to take a break before an accident may occur. Additionally, the GPS system will be able to analyze traffic patterns, re-routing drivers to avoid potential hazards such as road construction or clearing accidents. Finally, AI systems can be used to monitor the trucks themselves, safeguarding that regularly scheduled maintenance takes place, as well as predicting other service needs before mechanical failure. By keeping trucks in good working order, fleet managers will reduce potential mechanical issues which could lead to a dangerous situation on the road. By ensuring that these potential issues can be inspected and addressed ahead of time, it will not only save the shipment from being damaged in an accident, but it most importantly saves the lives of drivers. CLOSING THOUGHTAs we move through 2021, telematics and transportation technology will see an increase in adoption, particularly in those solutions that integrate AI data collection and predictive analytics. Being able to “see the future” and make informed decisions based on accurate data will drive business intelligence for fleet managers in the construction space. Tracking non-mobile assets will also help fleet managers make the best decisions possible in invoicing, and asset movement especially as construction starts to pick up throughout the year. Most importantly, we’ll be able to tap AI solutions to keep drivers safe in numerous ways including recommending safe routes, alerting drivers to fatigue, and ensuring that the fleet is well-maintained and monitoring potential mechanical issues. about the authorKurt Wyman is the GM/VP of sales for Teletrac Navman in North America. With more than 30 years’ experience in Supply Chain and Enterprise solutions, most recently focused on fleet and asset management, Kurt has had the honor to work with hundreds of Construction, Commercial Agriculture and other companies that utilize heavy Iron and small assets.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com30management solutionWhat may end up being the best thing about 2021 is that it’s no longer 2020. For many industries, though, that may be cold comfort given the remaining business and financial uncertainties and the challenges of rebuilding from 2020’s damage. And, so it goes for construction.Early in the year, the economic shutdown caused many projects in the bidding or final stages to be delayed, even though “essential” construction and its workers carried on throughout most of the country. Projects struggled through supply chain disruptions and work interruptions when subcontractors couldn’t report to work due to quarantine requirements or inability to meet health mandates.It’s leading some experts to predict a 6.5 percent contraction in the U.S. construction industry in 2020 and 2.0 percent in 2021. The upheaval has left balance sheets battered, forcing many contractors to stretch to regain their financial health. They also will be challenged on a different front—insurance renewals. Underwriters are likely to eye their financials closely along with other short- and long-term risks, plus the industry faces the added pressure of a hardening insurance market, where rates trend higher as availability tightens. As we head into 2021, contractors should be aware of three areas of greatest risk and ways to offset the worst effects. MOUNTING FINANCIAL PRESSURES POSE AN UNPRECEDENTED, SYSTEMIC RISKPandemic-driven forces have weakened balance sheets and compressed profit margins. Such costly repercussions hurt even those starting 2020 off on a fairly strong financial footing. Trying to catch up on delayed jobs and other unbudgeted costs stemming from COVID closures and schedule delays have taken a toll. Another issue continuing to hang over their heads (and balance sheets) is the level of forgiveness they can expect from Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans granted under the federal CARES Act. The construction industry received $64.6 billion in loan approvals across 466,221 applications for an average of $138,560 per loan. Through it all, another concern has risen to the top—the mounting financial and operational risk of contract performance default. Subcontractor defaults, in particular, were a common and costly problem before the pandemic; some, typically larger general contractors, have opted for Subcontractor Default Insurance (SDI) instead of the more traditional surety bonds to cover losses on subcontractor performance. However, those who have assumed sole responsibility for prequalifying their subcontractors may be in a more precarious financial position, typically assuming a significant “first loss” deductible under their SDI program. Contractors opting for subcontract surety bonds, on the other hand, will be better off on this front at least, as the bonds involve third-party prequalification and transfer all the financial risk to the Surety.The pressures give rise to several precautionary notes on the insurance front, not the least of which is to engage a broker with sufficient expertise in construction and its risks and protections. In this environment, it’s important to keep an eye on the SDI and surety markets. Carriers in both lines may be less rate-driven than other coverages when claims are mounting, but they do restrict capacity, tighten their policy terms, and hike their deductibles. Construction RecoveryConstruction Recoverybalancing benefits and risksPOLICIES AND PROCEDURESBy Craig Tappel and Kirk Chamberlain
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202131Construction RecoveryConstruction Recoverybalancing benefits and risksPOLICIES AND PROCEDURESOverall, as the market hardens, carriers will also become choosier over their insureds. Self-marketing, risk management, record tracking, and safety success become a must for subcontractors with SDI, surety, and other insurance types. At the same time, general contractors must demonstrate how they uphold quality and safety on the jobsite. Quality is an increasingly important risk selection factor for insurers, making quality tracking and measurement systems necessary for continuous improvement. RESPECT THE PANDEMIC—IT WILL EXACT ITS TOLL WELL INTO 2021Even with vaccines, too many uncertainties remain for people to forego masks and observe social distancing. To that end, contractors should be diligent in enforcing their on-the-job mask and social distancing requirements and other jobsite safety measures—vaccine or no. Exposures on the job are bound to result in “standard” workers’ compensation claims, and come with a twist: Class action lawsuits for “willful employer misconduct” under Part B of these policies are unusual, but on the rise, with claims alleging that employers allowed unsafe conditions resulting in workers getting sick or dying from COVID. In addition to workplace safety, the pandemic will continue to inflict pain on the industry’s supply chains into 2021, with “knock-on” effects on budgets and schedules. The challenge will be to balance resilience and efficiency as contractors work to secure their supply chains in this environment.To keep construction sites safe during the pandemic, contractors can get comprehensive measures from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) site. Their brokers can also help them integrate COVID safety with other site safety measures. TECH ADVANCES A BOON FOR LAGGING PRODUCTIVITY, BUT OH, THOSE CYBER RISKSEven before the pandemic, the construction industry has had performance issues. Globally, the industry has experienced a 40-year decline in productivity, and a shocking 30 percent of every construction dollar is lost to waste and rework. While it has been slow to embrace technology’s potential, the pace has stepped up in the last few years and the industry has seen payoff ranging from streamlined processes to improvements in worker productivity, safety, and quality. That’s only going to accelerate in the next 3 to 5 years. Skyrocketing by 239 percent, drone use is doing some work more safely than humans can, and 24/7 onsite security is offsetting the industry’s losses of $300 million to $1billion in annual construction equipment theft. Of course, the downside of technology is the connectivity issue and the increasingly big cyber risk issue. Over 75 percent of industry respondents told one survey they’d been victimized—no surprise given the notable uptick in cyber claims. Of particular danger to construction is social engineering. A cyber-criminal impersonates senior management or vendors using business email compromise tactics, resulting in the release of money or valuable information. CLOSING THOUGHTBalancing the benefits and risks of technology is critical, and it starts with putting security policies and procedures in place—and making sure they are followed. Periodic audits of cybersecurity environments can be helpful on that front. It’s also essential to ensure adequate insurance coverage. While it may be easy to buy a policy that blends cyber with professional liability insurance, the protection against cybercrime is more limited than through a stand-alone cyber policy. (And, terms and conditions would be better, too.) However, be aware that in the hardening insurance market, rates for cyber insurance are expected to rise by 30 percent or more. about the authorsCraig Tappell is the chief sales officer for global insurance brokerage HUB International’s construction specialty practice. Kirk Chamberlain is EVP, national construction practice leader and chief marketing officer. For more, visit www.hubinternational.com/industries/construction-insurance.• Well Rehab Products• Manholes• Bentonite• Filter Sock• Inline Chemical Mixers• Sampling Bailers• Clear PVC Pipe• Locking CapsAtlantic Screen& Manufacturing, Inc.Manufacturers of slotted & perforated pipe ranging from ½” to 24” in diameter302-684-3197Fax 302-684-0643142 Broadkill Road ■ Milton, DE 19968www.atlantic-screen.com ■ email@example.com
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com32management solutionConstruction leaders think they know their business like the back of their hand. But research shows that millions of dollars slip through the company’s fingers undetected every year. These seemingly invisible losses don’t stem from the obvious culprits; construction companies tend to be masters of avoiding direct losses, such as budgetary errors, broken equipment, and on-site injuries. It’s the hidden losses that hurt a business and can hold it back from achieving its greater long-term goals. These include missing out on new project bids, inefficient expenses, and client turnover, which compound to hurt future outlooks and the company’s bottom line. In a recent conversation, Jeffrey Nesbitt, the national director of consulting services at Clifton Larson Allen (CLA), shared how contractors need to be on top of their hidden costs. Otherwise, it could mean millions of dollars in losses. “There is the cost of doing nothing,” says Nesbitt. “That’s both fiscal money lost, but more importantly, I think it’s opportunity and visibility.” So how can your business get a handle on these hidden costs? It begins with proactively identifying the opportunities that could get you ahead. Oftentimes, this requires taking a hard look at your business processes. The most effective way to do that is with accurate and timely data that reveals where those more obscure gaps are. Here are three areas of your business where hidden losses can reside, and how live field data can help: IMPROVE THE ACCURACY OF YOUR LABOR AND QUANTITIES COMPLETED TRACKINGIf a company wants to ensure their budget stays on track, they need to accurately track their labor hours and quantities. Problems arise when the tracking isn’t thorough or timely, causing businesses to lose the ability to react to underperforming crews, labor shortages, or decreases in productivity. Companies that track non-productive labor hours like waiting around for another subcontractor to complete their work before starting, or waiting for equipment to arrive to complete the task, are better positioned to control their labor costs because they are collecting data in real time. By accurately tracking labor and quantities, construction companies can drastically reduce non-productive labor hours that reduce productivity and bloat the labor budget. Another thing to keep in mind is the benefit of real-time tracking. For instance, it’s exceedingly common for contractors to be in the dark on whether their project was profitable or not until weeks or months later when it’s too late to make changes. But accurate tracking shines a light on their project’s health in real time, so they have time to make adjustments and turn things around. This benefit extends to optimizing employees’ productivity and taking swift action for underperforming crews or employees. SAFETY AND EQUIPMENT TRACKING PROTECTS FROM PRODUCTIVITY LOSSESWhen contractors focus on improving productivity they often focus on their people. But they need to also focus on safety and equipment. That’s because things like equipment availability and quality, site conditions, and employee health directly impact how effective jobsite production will be on any given day. In the past, construction leaders have sometimes made ill-informed decisions based on inaccurate information using their best judgement, instead of data. Although sometimes quick judgement calls need to be made, this has been a difficult hurdle that required contractors to make decisions or predictions half-blind because they didn’t have all of the proper data. Today, Hidden Costshindering growth in your businessLIVE FIELD DATABy Mike Merrill
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202133contractors can enjoy access to live field data to give them the insights they need for safety tracking and equipment management to increase productivity instead of just maintaining a status quo. Any time a jobsite is shut down or workers are removed from the site due to exposure or injury it causes a ripple effect of hidden costs across the project. For example, delays, infractions, and investigations can wreak havoc on a project time table. Safety failures also hurt morale, decreasing worker productivity. Modern technology software tools allow safety to be proactively managed. Live field data visibility allows contractors to evaluate information as it comes in so they can quickly respond to any safety issues or violations, decreasing the chances of accidents and fines. Tracking employee locations as they move from task to task also assists in identifying where a possible safety issue or breach of protocol is so that the possible liability can be rectified and similar situations can be avoided in the future. PREDICT THE FUTURE AND INCREASE PROFITS THROUGHOUT THE LIFE OF PROJECTSWith budgets tight and competition fierce, construction companies can’t operate in the dark. In order to survive, they need to have a strong sense of their historical performance, a solid understanding of the current state of their projects, and the confidence to make reasonable projections about future projects and business endeavors. When companies don’t have a grasp on these areas, hidden costs begin to add up, stemming from poor planning, uninformed decision making, and missed opportunities. The good news is live field data unlocks the flow of projects, shining a light on every facet of the jobsite –– it’s just a matter of leveraging these technologies to their fullest potential. Knowing that live field data has the power to connect the past and present to the future, these solutions should be used to help managers convert intangible losses into new opportunities.CLOSING THOUGHTHidden costs hold businesses back from the success that their hard work deserves. Contractors must be able to predict rather than react to increased costs. Live field data lets contractors take this unpredictability and turn it into opportunities and greater profits. about the authorMike Merrill is co-founder of WorkMax by AboutTime Technologies and host of The Mobile Workforce Podcast. Mike has been an entrepreneur and business owner in the construction and technology industry for nearly three decades.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com34management solutionAs the nation has become more mobile, many construction companies now do business across the country. Even smaller companies have projects in multiple states. Working across state lines generate new compliance issues and can be very complicated. State rules and regulations vary amongst states and can be detrimental to your bottom line if not considered in the bid process. Although most companies comply with state and local registrations, are you complying with the tax side of things?SALES TAX: PROJECT MATERIALSConstruction projects require materials and states can treat a contractor as either the consumer of materials or a retailer of materials. In the states that view them as retailers, contractors will purchase materials tax free for resale and will charge sales tax to the consumer. Other states treat construction contractors as the consumers of the materials and the contractor will pay sales tax at the time of purchase. For purposes of this discussion, we will look at the states that treat a contractor as the consumer of the materials. When a contractor purchases material and consumes them in the same state, sales tax is paid at the time of purchase and the company is generally compliant. Complexity begins when sales tax on materials is paid in the purchase state, and the materials are consumed in a different state. Some states provide an exemption for purchases of materials that are to be used for out of state consumption. If so, it is very important to understand the process for obtaining and using those exemptions. Note that use tax will still generally be due to the state where the materials are being consumed. Where an exemption for sales tax is not allowed on materials for out of state jobs, the contractor will pay sales tax on the materials where purchased and potentially use tax where the materials are consumed. This may result in the contractor having to pay sales tax in one state and use tax in another state on the same materials. Fortunately, some states will not assess any use tax if the sales tax paid to the purchase state is equal to or exceeds the use tax to be paid in the consumption state. However, if the sales tax paid in the purchase state is less than the use tax to be paid in the consumption state, then use tax is due only to the extent of the difference between the sales tax paid and the use tax due. Other states will allow a reciprocal use tax credit. This is a credit allowed up to the amount of any sales tax paid to another state. Maintain documents on sales tax paid in the purchase state as THE BUILDING BUSINESSTax Matterstaking equipment and materials across state linesBy Karen J. Poist, CPA, and Kimberley D. Tarnakow, CPA
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202135this information is needed and used to substantiate and determine any use tax due and credits to be taken.SALES TAX: EQUIPMENT Generally, construction equipment is subject to sales or use tax at the time of purchase. When construction equipment is being moved across state lines or local jurisdictions, it may be subject to use tax in those states and cities. This happens when a state’s sales tax rate or city sales tax rate exceeds the sales tax paid at the time of purchase. Use tax would be due based on the cost of the equipment and the sales tax rate differentials. Usually, if the sales tax rate is lower than the sales tax rate paid, no use tax is due. Some states will also offer a credit for tax paid to another state. Additionally, if the equipment has been used in a state and then subsequently brought into another state, some states will assess use tax on the fair market value or net book value of the equipment at the time it enters the state. AD VALOREM (PERSONAL PROPERTY TAX) Many states or local jurisdictions have ad valorem or personal property taxes, which are assessed for the privilege of having and using property in the state. When using equipment in another state, be aware of that state’s rules. The “assessment date” is the date in which property in the state is subject to personal property tax. If there is equipment in the state at the assessment date, personal property tax will be due on the equipment. States will have different assessment and filing dates, exemptions, and methods of calculation. When using equipment in another state for a construction job, check if there is a personal property tax requirement in that state. Be aware of the assessment and filing dates. CLOSING THOUGHTExpanding your business into new states can be challenging. Before entering another state, take the necessary precautions and be proactive in multi-state tax issues. Taxes are a cost of doing business and need to be taken into consideration. Failure to comply with state and local tax laws can be costly and could result in the revocation of a contractor’s license. There are many resources available to contractors. The Construction Financial Management Association (CFMA), the state’s construction association, or each state’s Department of Revenue website can provide valuable information. Consult with a CPA to be sure you are compliant. about the authorsKaren J. Poist, CPA, is SALT director with Stambaugh Ness. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Kimberley D. Tarnakow, CPA, is senior manager with Stambaugh Ness. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com38software solutionConstruction projects are inherently complex, and this complexity inevitably leads to risk including risk to the health and well-being of workers, risk of property damage and risk of financial exposure for project participants. Mitigating risk is a daily part of the job for general contractors (GCs). Reducing risk is therefore a key to success and one of the core functions of modern construction platforms such as RedTeam.In all respects, risk is a function of human behavior. A careless step in a wrong direction can result in a life-changing injury, use of the wrong material can cause catastrophic damage to property, and failure to timely procure a key component of your building project can result in cascading financial damage. Early in my career as a general contractor, I was struck by the variety and breadth of human activities I had personally guaranteed would go just right. WRITTEN CONTRACTS MITIGATE RISKRule No. 1, never assume people know what you know. Memorializing your agreements in written contract documents is one of the most important things a GC can do to mitigate risk. To fully protect your business and projects, every agreement should be written—not just the important agreements. Good contracts can help resolve problems before they get out of hand, most of the time. With alarming frequency, problems can get out of hand and result in controversy, disputes or even litigation. Once this happens, you’ve begun to lose control of the solution. One of the biggest tasks for contractors in litigation is a process called discovery, which is literally who said or did what and when, plus all the supporting documentation to prove it. The proliferation of smartphones and iPads means that information could be buried in a lot of places and sifting through the many layers of information to determine accountability makes the discovery process like a never-ending, expensive archaeological dig. RISK IS EVERYWHEREPerformance documentation. In the construction industry, daily performance documentation is often an inconsistently managed, manual process that can expose contractors to performance documentation risk. There are thousands of activities and essential details associated with every construction project, and the method GCs use to document all of these moving parts can make or break the successful delivery of projects. From daily logs to field reports to meeting minutes and change orders, everything needs to be documented. Communication breakdowns. Without centralizing communication workflows, GCs can miss critical communications, resulting in costly delays and lost productivity at best, and rework or conflicts among your project team members at worst.A report released by FMI and Plangrid revealed that construction professionals spend 35 percent of their time on non-optimal activities like looking for project information and data, conflict resolution, and dealing with mistakes and rework. This non-optimal activity accounts for $177.5 billion in labor costs per year in the U.S. alone. Rework, in particular, impacts project profitability. The same report estimated that $31.3 billion of rework in the U.S. in 2018 was caused by poor data and miscommunication.Inadequate document control. Poor document control can result in excessive time searching through filing cabinets or a myriad of standalone apps for information, misplaced, and lost. Without clear or fully-automated procedures for controlling and archiving documentation, efficiency is lost and risk rises. Each construction project could have hundreds of change orders and each change could add hundreds of pages to a contract. Immediate access to critical documents helps minimize the miscommunication and arguments that halt work and cause project delays.Information silos. Lack of integration creates data silos that block the flow of critical information resulting in a productivity-killing lack of visibility for the project team. The distributed nature of construction projects often creates a fragmentation of information, leading to errors and inefficiencies that cause major headaches for contractors. SUBCONTRACTOR RELATIONSHIPContractors recognize they can only be as good as their subcontractors. Maintaining good relationships with subcontractors reduces risk and is essential for success. RedTeam recently released its TeamPlayer App built specifically to Mitigating RiskMitigating Riskwith construction management softwareBEST PRACTICESBy Michael Wright
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202139manage subcontractor relationships, including collaborative access to documents and transactions such as requests for quotes, subcontract agreements, and change orders. TeamPlayer also supports preparation, digital execution, submission and negotiation of applications for payment. The overall result is more efficiency, reduced risk, greater accountability, better compliance, and vastly improved subcontractor relationships.JOBSITE COLLABORATIONRedTeam also recently acquired the Fieldlens App. Fieldlens accelerates RedTeam’s ability to fully leverage the power of smart personal devices on jobsites to better facilitate instant access to project information, support more robust real-time communication, and fully transform how construction project teams work together on jobsites.Fieldlens boosts productivity by helping contractors manage and markup design drawings and by helping coordinate jobsite collaboration with intuitive messaging, keeping teams focused on emerging critical issues. Users create “posts” directed to one or more colleagues on their project teams, which may include annotated drawings, pictures, observations, such as weather, and references to contract documents. Posts can alert team members of further contractual direction or responses.ONE PLATFORM BUILT TO MANAGE RISKDeveloped by contractors for contractors, RedTeam’s construction platform contains built-in functionality that streamlines field and project workflows and facilitates online collaboration.While there are many point solutions that can provide pieces and parts of a comprehensive platform, fragmented information archives and gaps in workflows create new risks for contractors. RedTeam’s deep domain expertise enables us to deliver construction technology solutions that conform to standard protocols of commercial construction contracts. CLOSING THOUGHTRedTeam’s comprehensive construction platform ensures that your information is organized in a unified environment and real-time project information accessible anytime, anywhere, allowing all team members to seamlessly review and respond to issues as they arise. about the authorMichael Wright is CEO of RedTeam Software. With a background as a commercial general contractor with hands-on experience in all aspects of commercial construction, Wright developed RedTeam as a comprehensive cloud-based solution for construction project and accounting management built by contractors for contractors. For more, visit www.redteam.com.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com40legal solutionA delay is “concurrent” is a delay to the critical path of the project caused by multiple events not exclusively controlled by one party. If you are impacted by a delay to the critical path that was not within your control but are responsible for another overlapping delay to the critical path, the delays are concurrent, and you may not be able to recover damages for the former delay. You may, however, still be entitled to an extension of the contract time, which is usually classified as an “excusable delay” (contrast, with “compensable delay” where time and money are recoverable).THE CRITICAL PATHWhether a delay is concurrent generally depends on who the responsible party was and whether the delay is on the critical path. A contemporaneous delay that does not affect the critical path may not be “concurrent” for purposes of schedule review and analysis. Similarly, if the critical path is delayed simultaneously by two separate events, both outside your control, neither delay will be considered concurrent with respect to your delay claim or defense of the same. However, if the delay impacts from those two events run simultaneously, you may not be entitled to double or duplicative recovery. You will only be able to recover for the actual delay to the critical path. SCHEDULE UPDATESOn complex construction projects, with multiple overlapping activities and, sometimes, multiple critical paths, determination of concurrent delays can be difficult. In such circumstances, it may make sense to staff a scheduler to a project full time or even hire an outside scheduling consultant to review and update your schedule regularly as the project progresses and impacts accrue. If you end up in a dispute or claim with a subcontractor, owner, or other party, having consistent and quality schedule updates will help you analyze the different delays to the project and determine responsibility and concurrency.Concurrent DelaysConcurrent Delaysunderstanding the impact on delay claimsTHE CLAIM PROCESSBy Aman KahlonOn complex construction projects, with multiple overlapping activities and, sometimes, multiple critical paths, determination of concurrent delays can be difficult.
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202141Sometimes concurrent delays will not show up on schedule updates, but may be revealed when project documentation is reviewed. Certain delays may be reconstructed from project documents like daily reports or material procurement trackers. For example, daily reports may capture impacts from weather or site issues that do not always make it up the food chain to a scheduler or consultant who is updating the schedule. This may be especially true on already heavily impacted projects, where parties are scrambling to keep the project progressing and the schedule is not regularly updated or well-maintained.CLOSING THOUGHTConcurrent delays can have a substantial impact on delay disputes on construction projects. If you have, or are facing, a big delay claim, being able to map out possible concurrency will help you value your claim or your exposure better and help you make better commercial and litigation decisions. Additionally, note that concurrency is a difficult concept for many trained professionals in the construction industry. If you are heading down the path towards litigation, you might also consider concurrency in the context of how a lay judge or jury may view the concept.If your claim involves a complex delay analysis with concurrent delays over a portion of the delay period, are you going to be able to convince a fact finder that he or she should award you damages? If not, you might reconsider a more aggressive position on your claim. about the authorAman Kahlon is a partner in the Construction Practice Group at Bradley Arant Boult Cummings (www.bradley.com) in Birmingham, Alabama. He represents owners, general contractors, and subcontractors in construction and government contracts matters. His litigation experience covers a wide variety of disputes, including substantial experience in power and energy matters. He also advises clients on delay, interference, defective design, and negligence claims. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you end up in a dispute or claim with a subcontractor, owner, orother party, having consistent and quality schedule updates will help you analyze the different delays to the project and determine responsibility and concurrency.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com44technology solutionIn the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, construction contractors, business owners, and fleet managers still need to manage their fleets, but may not want to go to the office daily and risk possible exposure to themselves or others. Fortunately, by using new technology offerings like a real-time GPS vehicle tracking system via a smartphone, tablet, or PC remotely, in addition to email, Zoom meetings, etc., contractors can socially distance as well as dynamically manage their fleets and work crews throughout the day without missing a beat. In fact, compared to traditional techniques like meeting face-to-face and shuffling paperwork, the advanced technology now available actually improves control and allows immediate response and adjustment to the inevitable emergencies and changing demands that occur throughout the day.“With an advanced, real-time GPS vehicle tracking system, essentially all employees can socially distance. To avoid potential viral transmission from other employees and vehicles, they can leave from their homes in their typical company vehicle and go directly to the jobsite without returning to the office, except to retrieve any needed supplies,” says Ben VanAvery, director of sales and marketing at Advanced Tracking Technologies (ATTI), a Houston, Texas-based designer and manufacturer of GPS tracking products. Such a GPS tracking system can facilitate social distancing and virtually eliminate the need for routine personal interaction, while ensuring that drivers and work crews stay on task. A MATTER OF LOGISTICSWhen logistics during the pandemic require it, emergencies occur, or work must be handled by the nearest qualified, available technician, such a system can be advantageous. With real-time GPS vehicle tracking, construction managers can see which technicians they have across the area, including who is nearest and who is experienced and properly qualified for the job. And, by accessing real-time traffic data in the software, they can identify who is easiest to send to that location as well.As an example, one GPS vehicle tracking device, the Vision™ from ATTI transmits 10-second updates, showing precisely where vehicles are the moment the construction fleet manager or dispatcher needs to know. Compared with typical GPS tracking devices that may only update every few minutes, the system provides real-time location updates, as well as speed and idle time alerts if something is amiss. This data is transmitted via satellite and cellular networks to a smartphone or PC on a 24/7 basis. The system has access to nationwide speed limits in its database. Dispatches can be made throughout the day and sent directly to the driver’s phone to tell the work crew the next jobsite address. Once they complete the job, it is recorded in the system, so the dispatcher, owner or fleet manager can stay apprised. In that way, it can serve as a remote time sheet.Robert Hanneman, business development/fleet manager at Chelsea, Oklahoma-based K&D Construction Services, a specialty foundation contractor serving the utilities market in a six-state area with a full suite of construction foundation services, has already put such a capability to good use. “We use GPS tracking to know where our equipment is so we can quickly get it to the next jobsite,” says Hanneman. “We use it when we schedule which GPS Trackingallows real-time responses to changing demandsFLEET PRODUCTIVITYBy Del Williams
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202145jobs need which pieces of equipment to ensure that everybody gets what they need and nothing extra.”He appreciates that he can use the one system to track all of his construction fleet vehicles. “I did not want to look at multiple systems to see different things, with one set of trackers for the trucks and another for the skid steers and mini excavators.”According to Hanneman, via a PC or smartphone app approved by ATTI he can display the real-time location of his entire fleet on a map, and zoom in on any specific vehicle. At a glance, he can see if a vehicle is moving (displays green) or stopped (displays red). If he touches a vehicle icon, the app will display where the vehicle has been, where it stopped, and how long it has idled. All this helps with on-the-fly coordination.EFFICIENCY AND SAFETYTo instill greater self-monitoring and efficiency during the pandemic, construction managers can also configure the system to automatically send real-time text or email alerts to individual drivers, groups, or the entire fleet if factors such as traffic congestion, travel route, vehicle speed, starts, stops, or idling pose a concern or deviate from policy.When construction business owners and fleet managers are busy dealing with the logistical impacts of the COVID-19 crisis, such a system can also help individual drivers to drive more safely and take greater responsibility for their own conduct without the need to micromanage. A maximum vehicle speed, of say no more than 8 mph over the posted limit, can be set and drivers informed of this. The system will then track their vehicle speed and compare this with the speed limit in its national data base, with exceptions automatically emailed to the driver and fleet manager in a report, if desired.In addition, implementing real-time GPS tracking can increase driver accountability by making them less inclined to take unauthorized excursions, such as for personal errands, when not on a job. This can help to minimize unnecessary vehicle mileage, fuel use, and wear and tear. On the plus side, GPS tracking can also be used to recognize and reward consistent on-time arrival, rapid response to any emergencies, etc.CLOSING THOUGHTFor construction professionals, the bottom line is that today’s advanced GPS tracking systems can help to keep everyone as socially distanced from each other as possible, while still enabling optimal vehicle and crew management for work productivity. about the authorDel Williams is a technical writer based in Torrance, California. For more about Advanced Tracking Technologies, visit www.advantrack.com. For a free demo, visit www.advantrack.com/free-demo/.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com46technology solutionMany applications, including drainage and irrigation, require piping to be installed underground. Both PVC and CPVC can be laid underground, combined with fittings attached using solvent cement. However, it’s important to follow best practices in storing and handling piping prior to installation. In addition, contractors should adhere to state and local building codes and ASTM guidelines to ensure the integrity of the installation. Use this guide to learn more about the proper underground installation of PVC and CPVC pipe.MAINTAIN INTEGRITYBoth PVC and CPVC pipes are quite durable. However, in order to maintain the integrity of your pipes underground, you must first take proper care in storing and handling them. Avoid storing PVC and CPVC piping in direct sunlight, which could cause discoloration and weakened tensile strength over time. Instead, keep it in a shaded area, where it can’t become damaged from high temperatures or crushed with weight of other items. Take care in transporting piping to jobsites as well. Dragging or dumping the pipes could increase the chances of cracking, breaking, or split ends once they have been buried.Prior to installing the piping underground, be sure to inspect it. Look for any signs of damage, including gouges, cuts, or split ends that could impact the strength and effectiveness of the pipe once installed. If found, cut damaged sections from the pipe and discard them. PROPER GUIDELINESWhen installing PVC or CPVC piping underground, it’s important to follow American Society for Testing and Materials, or ASTM, Standards. These standards ensure that contractors follow proper guidelines for pipe installation, including trench construction and pipe depth. These standards vary based on the pressure and contents of the piping, as well as areas in which the piping will be installed. Failing to follow ASTM guidelines could cause pipes to fail, leading to the potential for flooding and water damage in the future.Create trenches that are wide enough for installation and allow for expansion and contractions with changes in temperature, but do not dig trenches wider than necessary. Remove large rocks from the trench, as well, or cover them with tamped earth prior to installation, so that pipes won’t be damaged underground. Avoid joining pipes inside the trench. Instead, join them above ground and wait for fittings to cure completely before placing the line in the trench.Pipe depth is also an extremely important consideration for underground installations. All PVC or CPVC piping should be laid at least 12 inches below Proper Pipinghow to properly use PVC and CPVC pipe undergroundBEST PRACTICESBy Mark LigonPipe depth is an extremely important consideration for underground installations; all piping should be laid at least 12 inches below the frost line.
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202147the frost line to limit the possibility of ruptures in freezing temperatures. In areas of heavy traffic, pipe depth should be between 24 to 36 inches, and where constant heavy traffic is expected, piping run with metal or concrete casting may be required. Refer to ASTM Standards and stage and local codes to determine the correct pipe depth for your installation.Backfill only when the solvent cement on all joints has fully cured, and the outside temperature is within 15 degrees of the average working temperature. Ensure that the entire line of piping is properly supported and stable prior to filling the trench as well. The initial backfill material should not include rocks or gravel larger than .5 inch. Tamp with either vibration or water flooding before adding final backfill layers, which can include particles up to 3 inches.UNDERGROUND APPLICATIONSMany contractors prefer to use CPVC piping in underground applications, such as water supply lines and drainage lines, because it offers several benefits:• Cost effective. CPVC is low cost and does not require thrust blocks, additions to the line that prevent pipes from moving or shifting and causing damage, as metal and PVC pipes do.• Resistant to corrosion. CPVC is made to resist damage from corrosive substances, such as soil pH and underground salts. This ensures a longer service life with fewer repair costs.• Abrasion resistant. CPVC is preferred for underground installation because there’s a lower chance of debris damaging the material and causing leaks and failure.CLOSING THOUGHTBecause of their strength and durability, both PVC and CPVC piping are excellent options for underground applications. Prior to installation, inspect piping to ensure that it is free from damage. Then, dig trenches in accordance with state and local codes, as well as ASTM guidelines. Join piping above ground, and let joints fully cure before placing them in the trenches, providing supports and metal or concrete castings as needed. Then backfill using material free from large rocks and gravel. These steps will ensure the integrity of the underground piping for the future. about the authorMark Ligon is the marketing manager of Commercial Industrial Supply, a leading supplier of commercial PVC and CPVC pipe, fittings, and valves. Mark enjoys educating businesses on the parts of piping systems so managers can make informed decisions. He can be reached at email@example.com. For more, visit www.commercial-industrial-supply.com.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com48safety solutionFire SafetyFire Safetyadvanced smoke detection technology minimizes costs PERFORMANCE-BASED DESIGNToday, the owners of a growing number of non-standard building designs like museums, arenas, stadiums, and structures with atria or large open spaces are turning to performance-based design for substantial cost savings and enhanced safety while maintaining architectural concerns. As an International Code Council (ICC) accepted alternative, performance-based design allows “alternate materials and methods” that offer equivalent or superior fire safety performance. In terms of enhancing fire safety, this often involves using scientific calculations and engineering approaches as well as computer fire modeling to determine how a building would respond to fire. With this approach, a design is considered acceptable if the fire engineering analysis demonstrates that it meets the measurable performance criteria set at the start of the process.“Performance-based design is really gaining traction for architects with new design and architectural goals, which the prescriptive code cannot handle,” says David Stacy, P.E., principal and founder of Performance Based Fire Protection Engineering, (PBFPE), a firm providing fire protection, life safety, and cost saving design consultation for U.S. and international structures.MEETING BUILDING NEEDSChief among the challenges of protecting theaters, sports arenas, shopping malls and airport terminals, as well as many structures with entrance lobbies or atria, are massive open spaces where rapid smoke detection has proven to be difficult but is of critical importance. Detection is further complicated when air can become stratified, caught in voids, or is moved or removed by HVAC systems. Such structures are good candidates for performance-based design, specifically using early smoke detection due to the risk of a delayed response that can allow a fire to grow and spread.For high-risk building conditions, such as large-volume spaces where many occupants may be exposed to the effects of fire, the International Building Code (IBC) calls for smoke control. In case of a fire, such a system will control smoke flow within a building, keep it from spreading to unwanted areas, and provide occupants a clear evacuation route.Typically, for these large-volume spaces, mechanical smoke control or natural venting is used to maintain a smoke-free area as they exit from the building. Building owners and architects often want to limit the complexity and cost of these fans and systems, which can become quite demanding when based on prescriptive approaches.Consequently, for a growing range
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202149of challenging projects, industry professionals are turning to performance-based smoke detection to not only reduce cost but also increase safety. For open spaces and special architectural features such as atria (large open air or skylight covered space surrounded by a building that are often several stories high), advanced aspirating smoke detector technology that draws in air and tests it at a central unit can cut cost and detect smoke at the earliest possible stage from flexibly placed, concealable sampling points.BUILDING DESIGN SOLUTIONSIn terms of popular architectural features, Stacy notes that atria have become a key aspect of many buildings because they provide a feeling of space and light. He points out, though, that achieving sufficient smoke and fire control is vital to modern design approaches because poorly designed atria, smoke control and methods of detection could allow fire to quickly spread to a building’s upper stories.From small two-story atria to million square foot entertainment and commercial structures, PBFPE provides design solutions needed to overcome fire protection challenges, increase life safety and obtain cost saving measures.According to Stacy, on projects ranging from arenas to atria it is usually necessary to determine the requirements and capacities of a smoke control system. In such cases, he says that he often uses an aspirating smoke detector called VESDA-E VEA, manufactured by Xtralis, a global provider of early detection of fire and gas threats.In smoke detection, advanced technologies such as the VEA provide early warning by aspirating—or drawing in air—from each room or area through small, flexible tubing. The air is then analyzed to identify the presence of minute smoke particles in a continuous process.In addition, Stacy says that the early smoke detection provided by aspirating systems can reduce the cost and complexity of mechanical smoke control systems.CLOSING THOUGHTAccording to Stacy, he deploys aspirating smoke detection technology on a wide range of performance-based design goals. “Whether the goal of the performance-based design is to maintain tenability through a smoke control system, or to look at upper layer gas temperature to see if we could reduce other features of fire protection, in about 50 percent of projects, we at least entertain the option of adding aspirating smoke detection technology like the VEA.” for more information For more about Performance-based FireProtection Engineering (PBFPE), visitwww.pbfpe.com. For more about VESDA-E-VEA, visit bit.ly/VESDA-EVEA.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com52maintenance solutionTread pattern and the cost of a tire gets a lot of attention from fleet managers running construction trucks, but it’s the casing that is often the unsung hero in a commercial tire. It’s the foundation of the tire and what allows you to receive multiple retreads. It’s the true driver in lowering your overall cost of ownership. I always advise fleets to look at the tire, then look even closer at the foundation of the tire—the casing. Retreading tires continues to remain one of the best ways for fleets to reduce tire-related costs. It’s why Cooper spends as much time as it does designing its casings. Cooper’s primary objective is to produce tires that will provide a low cost of ownership, and we believe the quality of our casings plays a large role in helping us achieve that. With advancements in technology, casing designs and compounding formulas over the years, tires have never been more “retreadable” than they are today. Roughly half the commercial tires on the road are retreads according to the United States International Trade Commission. DETERMINE CASING QUALITYOne of the best gauges in determining casing quality is the warranty attached to the tire. Twenty years ago, the typical warranty for a commercial tire was about 4 years, with one retread. Today, it’s up to 7 years and multiple retreads, which is what Cooper offers. The warranties you will find are really based on data analysis and the confidence the tire manufacturer has in the casing and the retreadability of the tire. THE COOPER DIFFERENCEWhen Cooper brings a new tire to market, the structural integrity of its tires’ casing is something the company’s engineers watch closely. Roughly 75 percent of what you pay for in a tire is in the casing. At Cooper, we’ve gone with a little wider tire, and thus casing, in our drive and steer positions. That does a couple things. It gives better traction and more miles to removal since there is a bigger footprint, and it gives a wider width in the casing after it’s buffed for retreading. This provides enhanced retreadability potential while supporting premium retread widths that deliver enhanced on-road performance. The core areas in a casing are the innerliner, sidewall, bead area, and belt package. The best innerliners help lower permeability—or the slow diffusion of air out of the tire. Lightweight steel in the belt package provides further protection to the casing from punctures while allowing for a lighter tire—and weight is always an important consideration for fleets. Most top tier tires you’ll find on the market feature three or four-steel belt designs. Cooper goes with four belts, which we feel helps the integrity of Casing Savingsthe unsung hero in a commercial tireLOWERING COST OF OWNERSHIPBy Phillip Mosier
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202153the tires’ casing. That fourth belt gives an added layer of confidence and protection—especially against stone drilling and punctures—a construction tire’s worst enemy. Avoiding rust inside the tire is the goal and the extra steel belt helps protect the belts below. While most fleets retread, others don’t. They sell their casings. But, the beauty of having tires with quality casings is that even if you decide not to retread a tire, there is a market for your casing. Retreaders will pay you a pretty penny for your casing as long as it is in good condition. Even if you don’t plan on selling your casings, it’s a good idea to see what a retreader is willing to pay for it. That, right there, will tell you what the quality of the casing is. Retreaders won’t accept tires that can’t be safely retreaded. And, oftentimes, retreaders will think twice about accepting specific tire brands based on the reputation of their casings. At the end of the day, a retreader is accountable for the tire that they retread, so they aren’t going to retread a tire if they don’t trust the casing. LONGEST LIFE POSSIBLE In order to reap the cost saving benefits running retreaded tires can provide, or selling the casing, managing a proper tire maintenance program is just as important. If your drivers aren’t going through their pre-trip inspections, evaluating the conditions of their tires and consistently checking tire pressure, or the maintenance shop isn’t up to par with rotations and alignments, then the tires’ casing will be more prone to damage. And, if your drivers are especially tough on tires, and you pull tires at the latest 32nds possible, then early failure may occur. If a retreader sees damage to the casing, they’ll declare that tire “unretreadable” and now you no longer hold value in that tire. Common reasons tires are rejected are due to damage caused by running underinflated tires or by overloading them. Driver-related behavior, such as curbing, can also be a contributing factor. The No. 1 thing you can do to ensure your tires are in good retread condition is to make sure you maintain proper tire inflation levels. It’s by far the most important thing you can do. Under inflation builds heat in the tire and can cause rubber to fatigue and stress quickly. Not only can the tread and belts be negatively impacted by underinflation, but the rest of the casing can show signs of stress when not properly inflated. ASK A RETREADER The best way to identify tires with the best casings is by simply asking your local retread shop. Retreaders are at ground zero. They know casing quality and they see first-hand which tires are often rejected for retreading and which boast a high-retread rate. Getting an unbiased industry expert’s opinion on which tires have the best success retreading is invaluable. They’ll know if the tires you’re currently running have good casings or if there are better options out there. Once you’ve checked in with your retreader, take a look at the length of warranty of the tires you’re interested in and how many retreads the tire manufacturer will cover. It will give you additional perspective on how many retreads you can expect to receive from a tire. CLOSING THOUGHTBuilt-to-last casings, designed and developed with quality, deliver a lower cost of ownership by providing a sound foundation. about the authorPhillip Mosier, Cooper Tire’s manager of commercial tire development, is responsible for the design and development of commercial truck tires for the North and South America regions.
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com54maintenance solutionJust like a building or a road—or any contracting job—the quality of a tire is a factor of good design, good materials, and good construction. And, just like the construction business, the tire industry benefits from constant innovation. Understanding the latest in tire technology can help you choose the best tires for your needs.BREAKING THE PATTERNThe most noticeable thing about a tire is its tread pattern. The latest innovations in construction tire design tend to involve highly engineered block tread patterns. These new designs are a generation or two apart from the clunky blocks and lugs of older tires. The innovation is often in the details—for example, the carefully developed ratio between rubber and the voids between the blocks. Yokohama Off-Highway Tires America, Inc. designed the Galaxy Mighty Trac ND with a rubber-to-void ratio of 52:48, an optimal balance between rubber on the ground and right-sized grooves to break up and evacuate mud.ND, or non-directional, patterns enhance ride, fuel efficiency, and tire life because the tread works equally well in forward and reverse.SMALL SIPES, BIG EFFECTSSipes are another subtle but important design feature. If you live in a cold climate, the snow tires on your truck are probably slit with thousands of tiny sipes for added traction in snow and ice. We have found that a few dozen larger sipes on construction tires add more biting edge area, significantly improving traction not just in snow but also on wet surfaces, mud, and dirt. We have also seen that sipes allow sturdy tread blocks to flex, providing more contact with the surface and improving traction even on dry ground.GET A GRIPYou can’t see them, but the wire bead bundles that hold your tire to the rim are the product of extensive engineering—and they are not all created equal. A low-quality bead will allow your tire to slip on the rim under high torque. That’s a waste of horsepower, a limit on your machine’s productivity, and a lot of friction that can ultimately damage the tire.Over the years, many tire manufacturers have learned to create hexagonal bead bundles for a firmer grip on the rim. Where torque is extreme and the design allows it—like the Galaxy LHD 510 Severe Duty Solid (SDS) loader tire for scrap yards and other punishing conditions—Yokohama Off-Highway Tires America, Inc. installs steel wire creel beads across the entire width of the rim, essentially eliminating slippage. That is a significant improvement over the two to four bead bundles most solid tires rely on. QUALITY MATERIALSMost people call it “rubber,” but a tire is actually made of dozens of ingredients combined in secret formulas called compounds. Synthetic and natural rubber are just two of the components of each BEST PRACTICESTire Savvyknow how to read a tireBy Ryan Lopes
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202155compound, which are carefully balanced to provide the ideal mix of durability and flexibility, wear resistance and cut resistance, grip and hardness. Ask your tire dealer how different tires perform on the surfaces you tend to run your equipment on. For a skid steer on paved surfaces, you’ll want a harder tread compound that resists scrubbing. For a backhoe on rock and broken concrete, a softer, cut-resistant compound would last longer.With all that complexity, it’s no surprise that compound technology is the most closely guarded secret in most tire companies. Yokohama Off-Highway Tires has more than 100 years of innovative history in tire compounding chemistry. GOOD MAINTENANCELike any tool, a tire must be maintained properly to deliver the performance and service life it was designed to provide. At the start of every shift, operators should take a moment to walk around their machines, checking tires for damage or hazards. Debris in the bead area can dislodge the tire from the rim. A rock jammed in the tread can hammer away at the tire until the undertread plies rupture.But the most destructive—and invisible—threat to a tire is improper inflation pressure. The air inside your tire is what carries the weight of the machine and its payload. Too much air and the tire will crown, creating a high spot in the middle of the tread that reduces traction, accelerates wear, and is prone to impact damage. Too little air is even worse: excessive flexing of the sidewall builds up heat that can melt the compounds and cause belts, plies, and other components of the tire to separate. The result can be catastrophic … and completely avoidable. That’s why we say a $5 pressure gauge can protect thousands of dollars’ worth of tires.CLOSING THOUGHTIn all, a construction tire is an investment, a precision tool that can help your equipment perform its best and make your crew more productive. And as with any tool, a little time taken up front to choose the right product and a few minutes a day spent making sure it’s properly maintained will help keep it working for you hour after hour, job after job. about the authorRyan Lopes is national product manager—materials handling and solid tires for Yokohama Off-Highway Tires America, Inc. An engineer and MBA, Ryan has worked in manufacturing and marketing in both industrial machinery and tires.
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MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com58
Ergonomic injuries, including work-related musculoskeletal disorders are, unfortunately, common in the construction industry. These disorders are often the result of repeated exposure to vibration. Harm from vibration, for which there is no OSHA standard, depends on intensity, frequency, and length of exposure. While excessive sound vibrations can injure the ears through noise, other vibrations affect the entire body. Whole-body vibration can bring symptoms like back pain or shakiness, experienced after a long car or boat trip, driving a semi, or standing near a printing press.Skilled trades workers suffer localized Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS), when vibrations gradually cause permanent changes in tendons, muscles, bones, and joints. A well-known disorder from HAVS is “Vibration-Induced White Finger,” or “Raynaud’s disease,” which causes fingers and toes to feel numb and cold in response to temperatures or stress. In Raynaud’s disease, smaller arteries that supply blood to the skin become narrow, limiting blood flow to affected areas. HAVS can also cause carpal tunnel syndrome, tingling, loss of sensation in the fingers, loss of light touch, bone cysts in fingers and wrists, pain, and cold sensations in-between attacks. Medication and surgery are sometimes required. In the most severe cases, gangrene can occur. AVOIDING INJURIES The good news is that injuries from noise and vibration, while permanent and progressive, are also preventable. To prevent vibration injury, experts recommend workers operate tools with lower handle vibration, ultimately reducing the hours of exposure. Cordless technology eliminates the power cords common to AC-powered light equipment that are frequent culprits of vibration, such as 60-90 lb breakers. The MX FUEL™ Breaker, the world’s first cordless breaker, separates the head of the unit from the striking mechanism, further separating the user from the point of impact. Since workers feel less vibration, they can use the Breaker for longer periods of demolition, adding productivity. With 50 ft/lbs of Impact Energy and 4.9M/s2 measured vibration, the MX FUEL™ Breaker is up to 30% harder hitting and generates 70% lower vibration than corded. At 63.9 lbs, it is also the lightest breaker in its class and features an ergonomic front handle making it easier to maneuver and transport throughout the jobsite.Using one XC battery, the Breaker delivers a 40-foot trench 1 foot wide and 6 inches deep, plus two sidewalk slabs that measure 5 feet by 4 feet by 6 inches deep. MX FUEL™ EQUIPMENT SYSTEMThe MX FUEL™ Equipment System is the output of years of tireless research and investment in new technology, ground-up development of new batteries, motors, and electronics—all simultaneously created under one roof. Designed to take on the very same gas equipment that users have depended on for years, this system eliminates the emissions, and reduces the overall noise, vibration, and frustrations of gas maintenance that have been deemed acceptable on jobsites for decades—and additionally eliminates tripping breakers, voltage drops, and trip hazards.Much like the company’s M18™ System, which will continue to deliver power tool solutions for contractors, each of the solutions on the MX FUEL™ System are all tied together on a single, compatible platform that will grow with additional solutions over the years to come. For more, visit milwaukeetool.com.www.mcsmag.comfeatured productMX FUEL™ BREAKERMost Productive, Lowest VibrationMARCH 202160
www.mcsmag.com MARCH 202161modern construction productsBOMAG created a unique, patented design to not only transfer dust away from the operator(s), but also eliminate fine particles (PM 2.5, PM 10) by up to 80%. The ION Dust Shield positively charges the fine dust particles, creating permanently bonded coarse dust. During milling, water is applied directly to the milling drum where fine dust particles pass by the water at high velocity or are too small to be captured by water droplets. A suction fan pulls these particles into the lower conveyor and further into the electrically charged grid of the ION Dust Shield. For more, visit www.bomag.com. BOMAG AMERICAS Ion Dust Shield Peterbilt Motors Company launches the vocational Model 567 truck. Exterior updates to the Model 567 include a cab-mounted side mirror, bright air intake bezel option, and increased DEF tank volume. On the inside, the Model 567 features the 15-inch Digital Display. A fully customizable user interface (UI), delivers easy-to read information and full PTO integration. Operators can fine-tune the Digital Display information to suit their individual preferences through the easy-to-use controls found on the all-new smart steering wheel. Fully customizable B and C-panels accommodate a wide variety of vocational needs. The Model 567 is available with the latest safety systems fully integrated into the Digital Display. Key technologies include lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise control with auto resume, speed sign recognition, side objection detection, safety direct integration, multi-lane emergency braking, and highway departure detection. The Model 567, combined with the new 2021 PACCAR MX-13 and MX-11 engines and PACCAR transmission, sees a 2% improvement in fuel efficiency and delivers increased reliability and uptime. For more, visit www.peterbilt.com. PETERBILT Vocational Model 567Genie introduces its GTH-1056 telehandler. Extensively field-tested to validate performance, the GTH-1056 has been purposefully designed to lower total cost of ownership by 10% while delivering 20% more lift capacity at max height in a machine with a 30% stronger design. The GTH-1056 builds on popular features, including a side-mounted engine and stronger boom design, to deliver a rugged, reliable telescopic handler with a 10,000 lb capacity. Able to lift 5,000 lbs at max height of 56 ft, 7 in., and 3,000 lbs at max reach of 42 ft, the GTH-1056 boasts a 30% stronger boom and chassis. For more, visit www.genielift.com. GENIETelehandlerSTAY UPDATED:@modern contractor solutions@mcsmag
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com62CUTTING EDGE IMPALEMENT PROTECTIONCARNIE CAP is the most effective way to cap exposed rebar while keeping your workers safe and on the job.✓ WORKS IN HORIZONTAL, VERTICAL & INCLINATIONAPPLICATIONS✓ SAFELY DISTRIBUTES WEIGHT ACROSS ENTIRE SYSTEM✓ ASSEMBLE WITH 2X4 OR 2X6 LUMBER ALREADY ON SITE✓ NO MORE CAPPING EVERYREBAR!National OSHA Compliant • CAL-OSHA ApprovedPatent #5826398, 6073415ORDER TODAY!(888) 743-7725 www.carniecap.com
MARCH 2021 www.mcsmag.com64Dear Chuck,There’s no doubt events like we have experienced in the past year can have a hugely negative influence on your employees’ morale. You are wise to be concerned about it. Low morale leads to lower productivity, reduced quality, or even safety problems. Nothing good comes from an employee—or worse, a group of employees—whose morale is suffering. As leaders, it’s up to us to constantly find ways to create a work environment in which our people feel motivated and inspired. To lift their spirits, here are three actions you can take now. ✖ GIVE AN INSPIRING PEP TALKCreate a well-designed pep talk and deliver it enthusiastically. Consider these key points when designing your talk:• Open by acknowledging the current situation your teams are facing.• Express appreciation for everyone’s effort.• Tell them something positive about the situation.• Be thorough and factually correct. Do your homework!• Ask them to suggest ways that will improve morale.• Describe to them a “light at the end of the tunnel.”• Close with a strong message about working safely.Tips for the pep-talk: • Speak as if you are in charge—because you are in charge. • Make eye contact with everyone.• Project your voice so all can hear.• Practice, practice, practice so you can speak with confidence.• Be passionate, enthusiastic, and positive.✖ TELL RELEVANT STORIES Whenever it’s appropriate, tell stories about your experiences or poignant stories about others to give your employees a shot of inspiration. Your storytelling will inspire your employees when they can relate to the challenges you have faced. In general, stories have the power to shift one’s mindset from “things that are terrible” to “things that aren’t so bad.” To tell a relevant story, convey details about of a time when it seemed the entire world was falling apart on you and those around you. Tell your team how bad things were, what concerns you had at the time, what your emotions were like. Then describe the actions you took, the behaviors you developed, and the lessons learned. Then describe how that team eventually pulled together to see a better day. ✖ DO ONE-ON-ONE SESSIONS If you have a small number of employees or just a few team members needing more attention than the others, conduct one-on-one sessions that are well thought out. They can influence your team’s morale in a big way. In these sessions, show you’re available to listen to their concerns. When your employees feel heard, they know you care about them. And, morale heads in the right direction. CLOSING THOUGHTRegardless of the form of inspiration you choose to implement, you might also provide regular (daily or weekly) dosages of motivation through inspirational quotes. They serve as subtle reminders of good times ahead and all the positive things we enjoy in our world. about the coachAs a leadership development expert, Randy Goruk works with construction industry leaders to improve employee engagement and business growth. Register to receive his Leadership Tip of the Week at www.LeadersEdge360.com, or contact him directly to learn how he can help you and your team: randy@LeadersEdge360.com.HEY COACH, It seems everything the world and Mother Nature has thrown at us lately has had a negative impact on morale of my crews and office staff. What can you suggest I do to inspire our employees and lift their spirits?