In the mad dash of our sealcoating season, sometimes it can be hard to see the forest through the trees. Between managing employees, scheduling, and especially this Spring, the weather, it can be difficult to keep it all together.
It seems as if this Spring that Mother Nature has not been very kind to the Pavement Sector in most areas of the country. Contractors everywhere are at the mercy of this Spring’s unusually wet and cooler conditions and work continues to back up.
The stress that this has placed on our contractors continues to mount, and often times this can contribute to certain items being left off the truck when they leave the yard.
The first item has really peaked as of late. Our local State Trooper’s are cracking down on contractors not carrying MSDS sheets in their vehicles in our area. They are pulling vehicles over and going through ALL the proper procedures and demanding to see the MSDS sheets on the materials that they are hauling. MSDS sheets are available through your supplier and can be easily stored in a binder under the seat for easy reference. Having them on board can eliminate many headaches for all parties involved.
The second item that, if left at the yard, can make a long day would be the portable navigation system. First there was mapbooks, then mapquest, and now it’s amazing to think we used to send out crews without these.
The third item left out are more of the company’s business cards. As the crew is out in the field, the quickest way to generate more business is to have an abundance of extra business cards readily available. As the crew is approached by “walk-ins”, your cards should be ready to hand out quickly when requested. These should be accessible from either side of the truck and never be left at the home base.
The fourth item is a touchy subject, but also very important and ties into the third item. For contractors who have crew leaders or foreman who they allow to bid additional work out in the field, often times, extra estimate forms are left out of the truck. If your company allows it, extra estimate forms can lead to additional jobs adjacent to where your currently working, and sometimes a written estimate might be necessary to “seal the deal”. These are never a detriment to have around.
The fifth items pertain to the local State Trooper’s desires, and that would be a fire extinguisher and flare kit. Again, these are complaints we have heard directly from our contractors, and if on board, can possibly eliminate additional “attention” from the local authorities.
The sixth item would be a “disaster kit”,or, a sealer splash kit., for when you or your helper accidentally gets a little sealer on an “undesirable area” ie. garage doors, siding, adjacent concrete, or brick. It’s always a good idea to have a bucket made up of a small spray bottle of water, towels or rags, and some form of cleaning solution, and a small brush on the truck readily available. Many headaches can be eliminated by having this ready to go. When sealer goes where it shouldn’t, you have to act FAST.
The seventh item would be jumper cables. Just because, out in the field, anything can happen.
The eighth item would be a first aid kit. Like I said before, in the field, anything can happen and you want to be prepared. OHSA will love you, not to mention your insurance company, in the event of a safety audit.
The ninth item a bucket filled with cold patch including lid. Always have this on the truck, many times a customer will request a small hole to fill or blemish that can be touched up with a little cold patch and a tamper. The bucket will stay good and can be refilled as necessary, one bucket can either be a convienence item or revenue generating for the crew and goes a long way.
The tenth item, which we put a lot of stock into, would be yard signs. Yard signs are important because they allow you to brand your name into passers-by for more time after your string or barricades come down. We always received a TON of feedback from the yard signs we would leave on the job. The best situation would be when we’d leave leave them up and tell the property owner we’d be back by in a few days. After 24 hours, the string would come down and our signs would remain, sometimes, up to a week. Much business came from these for us, and if you don’t have them, get them. There are many places online that print these cheap on corrugated plastic material so when they disappear, you’re not out of too much money. After getting a few jobs from one sign, and the rest of the signs are paid for. We would never leave the yard without them.
We wish all pavement maintenance contractors a warmer and drier forecast as we shift into the summer work season. Please visit our webstore opening in June @ www.signetpavementsupply.com for the best deals on Paving, Sealcoating, and Striping tools and equipment on the web.