Beyond the jobsite: safety in action

Safety is a way of life at Skanska. Every office and jobsite strives to achieve an Injury-Free Environment , holding the belief that safety is the most important part of every project. 

The three stories below share how individuals used the safety training they received through Skanska – as well as quick thinking, diligence and bravery – to save the lives of others, both on and off the job.

Bringing safety home

Karen Boettger, USA Building field administrator, recently learned firsthand the value of her commitment to safety when she saved her mother’s life using the skills she gained in a CPR/first aid training class she took with Skanska.

Boettger was out to dinner with her 83-year-old mother when she realized that something was wrong. Her mother, who had been talking and chewing steak, suddenly went silent and began making a choking noise. Boettger asked her mother if she was okay, and after she shook her head no, she knew it was time for action.

“I was actually very calm,” Boettger said. “I got up and knew exactly what I had to do.” She repeated the Heimlich maneuver six times before the piece of steak was successfully dislodged from her mother’s throat. Her mother was then able to finish eating her meal.

Valuable internship experience

During the summer of 2010, Eric Audette interned with Skanska. During this time, he received aerial work platform (AWP) training, which, nearly three years later, made all the difference in the life of a co-worker. 

Recently while on the job with another firm, Audette became alarmed by another worker’s screams. He rushed over and found his colleague caught between an AWP and a beam. At first, he panicked and began calling for his co-workers, but then he remembered the training he had received. He located the AWP’s pressure release knob and pulled it – the machine lowered, saving the man from being crushed.

After the rescue, his colleague wrote a letter to Audette’s union, recognizing him for his heroism and thanking him for saving his life. “I was just happy to help this man out in a life-threatening situation,” Audette said.

Calm in rough waters

On June 26, employees working at one of Skanska’s New York City jobsites noticed something unusual in the East River. Although they thought it was just a stray surfboard, they took a closer look and quickly realized that it was a distressed kayaker who had flipped out of his kayak.

The team saw that the kayaker was struggling against the tide and proceeded to rescue him from the river. Thanks to the quick action, the kayaker was unharmed and able to be dropped off at a nearby dock.

 

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