Saturday, June 05, 2021

Sample of Fiction Book I Ghostwrote - AFFIRCAN AMERICAN WOMEN’S LIT

Chapter 7

The next day, sitting in the courtroom, acute cramps gripped Melanie’s stomach, but she fought to block out the pain as she scanned the jurors, searching for signs of how each was leaning regarding the verdict. Don Foster nervously held his fingers to his mouth while the assistant district attorney continued his closing statement.
Not one, but several separate fires were set at Foster Fire Arms. Now, in some cases, one fire can be an accident, but not several.” The prosecutor in his black suit and red tie fixed his blue-eyed gaze steadily on the jurors. “Somebody set these fires. Now, Don Foster told us that he locked up the shop before he left work that Saturday night at 9pm.” Mr. Ogg paced back and forth in front of the jury. “But there were no signs of forced entry. So, we know the arsonist had a key. However, only one person,” Richard Ogg held up a finger, “on the face of the earth had a key to Foster Firearms.” He pivoted toward where Don sat beside Melanie and pointed to him. “The accused, Don Foster.” 
Melanie touched her stomach as she watched the prosecutor. The pain was almost unbearable, but she had to deal with it. She came here to deliver her closing statement and do her best to win the case for Don and Jessica and that was what she was going to do.
Pacing again, Mr. Ogg said, “Now, the prosecution has submitted some theory to you that cans started the fires. Cans of cleaner… gun cleaner? They also mentioned one of those little portable heaters that lots of people have. And the defense showed you a video of cans exploding.”  He stopped and looked a few of the jurors directly in the eyes, one by one. “If you don’t know how many videos there are of events that might happen or have never happened, just spend thirty minutes on YouTube.” He rolled his eyes and went back to pacing. “The defense presents you with theories. I present you with facts. This fire wasn’t caused by cans. No.” He shook his head at the jury.
“A person intentionally lit the fires that burned down Foster Firearms. And, we only have one suspect.” Mr. Ogg‘s tone was edged with authority and confidence. “No one else could have set those fires.” He held up a finger again. “Only one person had a key to the shop.” He then turned to Don and pointed to him once more. “And that person is the defendant.” The prosecutor stepped closer to the juror box. “There is no doubt that Don Foster is guilty of arson in the first degree.” Richard Ogg paused, then nodded to the jury. “Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for your time.”
Melanie steadied herself as she rose to her feet. The cramping was relentless, but this wasn’t the time to get sick. It was her last opportunity to prove Don’s innocence. She rose above her agony, held her head high, and calmly stepped up to the jury box.
“Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, the district attorney hasn’t presented one piece of evidence that shows Don Foster was even present when the fire started. Because there is no such evidence. It doesn’t exist. Don Foster was at home with his wife, in bed, sound asleep when the fire ignited. He didn’t even know there was a fire at that time. He wasn’t aware his gun shop was burning down until he was awakened by a phone call from the Shelby Fire Department telling him that. The men and women of the fire department and a few people driving by the shop late at night knew the shop was on fire before he did.” Melanie maintained a clear, pleasant, and persuasive tone. “Did Don Foster, a man who didn’t even know about the fire, set the fire?” She slowly shook her head. “That’s highly doubtful.” She paused to convey total disbelief of Don’s guilt in the expression on her face, meeting the gaze of each juror, eye to eye. 
Though the cramps grew more severe, Melanie fought to push the pain out of her mind. Her body was inclined to bend over and crumple to the floor, but she forced herself to stand tall as she paced in front of the jury box. “Furthermore, the assistant district attorney didn’t present any motive explaining why Don Foster would destroy his only means of livelihood.  I have shown that Don Foster didn’t have any pending financial problems. Nor did he increase the insurance coverage on the shop. He has no history of arson. He has no criminal record of any kind. Why would he burn anything down? Much less his only means of supporting his family. Moreover, Foster Firearms was his father’s legacy. The shop Don Foster’s father built. The shop Don Foster worked in as a child. A place he grew up in that held fond memories of his father, who passed on just a year ago. Of all the buildings in the world, the gun shop has to be the most important one to Don Foster. Would he burn it down without any reason? It’s extremely doubtful.” She paused as she flashed a this-makes-no-sense expression at the jurors.
The next pain was so sharp she almost cried out. Instead, she briskly turned her back to the jury, so they could not see her expression and mistake the agony for anxiety about the case. She pushed herself to walk to the defense table. There she picked up a photograph, and once the acute pang passed, she turned back to the jury.  “Ladies and gentlemen, you’ve heard and seen the video I showed you and the testimony of the Shelby Fire Chief,” she said as she stepped to the jury box, holding up the photo of the charred and burned coil space heater admitted as evidence. Then she set it back on the table and walked toward the jurors holding a picture of the aerosol gun cleaner cans scattered over the burned shop. She showed it to the jury as she paced back and forth, making sure they all saw it.  “A plug-in space heater and cans of gun cleaner are the real culprits. A fire started by a space heater that in turn ignited cans of gun cleaner to start several smaller fires is not arson. It’s an accident. Is Don Foster guilty of arson? It’s altogether doubtful. In every way.
“In fact, common sense tells anyone looking at this case that the charges are ridiculous. Has the district attorney presented any evidence showing Don Foster definitely, beyond any reasonable doubt, started the fire?” Melanie paused, giving each juror a chance to silently answer no.
“The only explanation the prosecution’s given for the fire is Don Foster was the only person with a key to the shop and there was no forced entry. When did having a key to a business you owned make you guilty of arson?” The jurors’ gazes were riveted on her as she continued. “The burden of proof lies with the prosecution, who presented zero evidence supporting Don Foster’s guilt. And if you have any doubt at all that he is guilty of arson in the first degree, you must acquit Don Foster.” She smiled sweetly at the jurors as she added, “Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for your time and your service.”
Melanie stepped back to the table and whispered in Don’s ear, “I think it went well. Now, all we can do is wait.” Her cramping stomach was killing her.
She did her best to appear like she felt fine as the judge gave instructions to the jury. “You will now come to a decision based only on the facts presented, not your feelings. In addition, you must all agree on a verdict of guilty or not guilty.
The twelve citizens stood and filed into the jury room to deliberate.
The moment Jessica stepped up to Don, he stood and embraced her as he said, “I think we might win.”
“I hope so,” Jessica said, before turning to Melanie and adding, “You were so good.”
“Thank you. But there is no telling how long the jury might take. For now, you can hang around the lobby area or in here.” Melanie felt like she’d wet herself when she stood. She stiffened for a moment, embarrassed, but mostly baffled about what was happening to her. “I feel sick. I’ll be right back,” she said.
She dashed out of the courtroom, down the hall, and into the ladies’ room. In the stall, she felt even sicker when she saw the wetness was blood. Lots of blood.
Her thoughts spun. Something’s wrong. Some women bleed while pregnant. I’ve heard that before, I’m sure of it. The baby is fine. My baby has to be fine.
Melanie felt weak, had acute stomach pains, and couldn’t stop bleeding. So, she wasn’t ready to leave the commode, but it seemed like she’d sat there for hours.
“Mrs. Fitzgerald? Melanie, are you in here?”
She recognized Jessica Foster’s voice. “I’m okay but I’m bleeding, badly.”
“What? You’ve been in here for thirty minutes. Let me call the ambulance. You need to go to the hospital,” Jessica said.
“Only if the verdict won’t be soon. What did the judge say?”
“That’s what I came to tell you. The jury is coming in now,” Jessica replied.
“No, I have to be there for the verdict. I am going in there no matter what,” Melanie said with firm finality.
“How long does it take to read a verdict?” Jessica asked.
“Not long.”
“Okay then, I’ll help you get back to the courtroom. I have two maxi pads in my purse and there’s a machine here. I can get you two more from it.”
“Yes, I think that will work,” Melanie said.
Jessica handed her four sanitary pads under the bathroom stall door. “I have to make a quick phone call. I’ll be right back.” 
Melanie stood. The coppery stench of the blood made her stomach turn.  At least for the moment, the pads were working. She opened the door just as Jessica came back. Feeling lightheaded, Melanie staggered.
 Jessica dashed to Melanie’s side and threw her arm around her shoulders. “You can’t walk like that. Lean on me.”
“I don’t want to look weak,” she said.
“Nonsense. We’ll just look like we’re walking in together. Like you are supporting me, helping me through the reading of the verdict.” Jessica walked her back to the courtroom and to the table, where she sat beside Don just as the jury filed into their seats.
“Members of the jury, have you reached a verdict?” the judge asked.
The jury spokesman, a gray-haired white man, stood and looked at the judge.  “We have, Your Honor.”
Defendant and defense counsel stand,” the judge said.
Melanie stood beside Don Foster, breathlessly waiting, hoping it was good news.
 “Members of the jury, what is the verdict in the case of Alabama vs Foster?” the judge asked.
The man cleared his throat, then said, “Your Honor, we find the defendant not guilty.”
 “Members of the jury,” the judge craned his neck toward the twelve citizens, “this Court dismisses you and thanks you for a job well done.”
Melanie exhaled, and Don let out a cry of relief.  Jessica rushed up to him. Their eyes shined, smiles spread across their faces, and they embraced. Then, the couple opened their arms and pulled Melanie into a group hug.
They both told her thank you, over and over again.
“It’s what I do.” She flashed a huge smile at Don and said, “You’re free.”
The door to the courtroom was thrown open, and paramedics rushed in carrying a stretcher.
Jessica gestured to them. ”Over here.” She grabbed Melanie’s hand. “I called an ambulance.”
The judge banged his gavel several times “Order, order in my courtroom,” he said in a stern voice.
Everyone quieted except the EMTs, who were busy getting Melanie secured on the stretcher and asking basic assessment questions.
“This court is adjourned,” the judge announced as Melanie was carried out of the courtroom.
Lying flat on her back, she rode the elevator to the ground floor and into the ambulance, with the siren squealing all the way, to USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital.
* * *
Melanie took her feet out of the stirrups, scooted back on the examination table, and sat up.
The doctor slipped the stethoscope back around his neck. “I’m so sorry,” he said in a soothing, empathetic tone. “There is no infant heartbeat.”
Melanie was hit by a sensation of ice spreading through her stomach. The doctor was talking to her, but she couldn’t focus. She heard, “admitting you, heavy bleeding, watch for infection, possible D & C.” None of it meant anything to her.
“There’s a phone in your room if there’s someone you need to call.”
The doctor’s last words seemed to reactivate Melanie’s brain.
“Jeremiah, my husband.” She grabbed the doctor’s hand to get his full attention. “Please, don’t tell him. He doesn’t know. He can’t know I’m pregnant.”
“Mrs. Fitzgerald, you’re not pregnant anymore. It’s important you understand that you just had a miscarriage.”
“That’s what you said. But, how? There was a lot of blood, but I didn’t see anything else. No embryo or fetus…nothing like that.”
“Blood is what most people see. You might see some tissue, but it’s a slow process. It takes hours for everything to try to pass through and even then, we might have to do a D & C.  But I’m more concerned with your mental state right now. “
“Really I’m fine. I’m just bleeding.”
“Mrs. Fitzgerald, after a miscarriage, women go through several stages of grief. Denial is just one. I’ll maintain your right to privacy, but I strongly advise you speak to your husband about what has happened.  At a time like this, you need your family’s support, especially your spouse’s.  The emotional impact of a loss like this takes much longer to recover from than the physical condition.”
“Thank you, doctor, for your advice. But I can’t. I really can’t.”
“It’s up to you.” He stepped back. “The nurses will come in and wheel you to your room. And you have some visitors who can help you settle in.”
The doctor left, and Don walked in, grinning and holding a bouquet of get-well balloons with Jessica at his side, also smiling and carrying a huge floral arrangement.
The sweet, fresh scents of roses, lavender, asters, and mini sunflowers chased away the acidic stench of all that blood as well as the ammonia odor of the hospital. 
“The doc said you’re going to be all right,” Don said.
“We hope you’re back on your feet and right as rain in no time,” Jessica added.
The smiles on their faces, brighter than the flowers, were contagious. Melanie felt a surge of energy. “I’m so glad you came. We won the case. That means we have some celebrating to do. I guess a hospital room is as good a place as any.”
Jessica turned to her husband. “You know what we need for a top-notch celebration party? Lots of chocolate from the gift shop.”
“I’m on my way.” He handed Melanie the bouquet of balloons and took off on his mission.
Jessica’s eyes gleamed with amusement as she set the flowers down on a cabinet. “Did you see how red that judge’s face got, when the paramedics burst into his courtroom and ignored all his gavel banging?”
Melanie threw back her head as laughter rippled through her. She deserved it after a hell of a day. Winning a case and losing a baby at the same moment. She had to laugh while she could. Who knew what tomorrow had in store?

Chapter 8

After three days in the hospital, Melanie was achy and hurting. She also felt numb due to the D & C she’d just had. But she no longer felt lonely or abandoned.  Her husband was there.
“How do you feel?” Jeremiah helped her out of the wheelchair and into the hospital bed.
She sighed. “The procedure was a lot more painful and …violent than I expected.” He never asked what happened and she knew the staff hadn’t said a word. Then again, he was a doctor. Surely, he’d guessed what had happened.
“I can prescribe you something for the pain if they haven’t.” From her first day in the hospital, he’d spent every day with her. But at night the nurses made him leave after visiting hours.
“The combination of pain pills and hospital food isn’t good for my stomach.” Though she didn’t have much of an appetite. Angry one minute, guilt-ridden the next, blaming herself for the miscarriage, she’d spent the last two nights crying.
Jeremiah scooted the armchair closer to the bed, sat, then reached out and took her hand in his. “If you’re in pain, I’m in pain. I can’t let anything happen to you.”
“What I really need is Ava.” A little voice in her head kept saying she’d worked too hard on the trial. And had never even taken the trouble to go to an obstetrician while she was pregnant. Of course, she was planning to, at least she was before the miscarriage. Still, she felt she’d let the baby down. She was going to make sure she didn’t let Ava down. “I really miss Ava.” Melanie had to see her, let her know she was here for her, even if she was in the hospital.
 “I’ll bring her tomorrow. Your parents and Kelsey said they’re coming back tomorrow also.”
“And you?” she asked. Jeremiah’s main interest nowadays seemed to be spending time with her. He’d changed back to the man she’d first fallen in love with, though with a receding hairline, some extra pounds, and a few more lines showing in his face.
“Of course, I’ll be here.”
“How can you stay with me all day? Don’t you have hospital emergencies back in Shelby?” Would he be here if he knew about the baby?
 “There are other doctors on call. You’re my emergency now.”
She felt tears form in her eyes, and her throat choked up a bit as she said, “It means so much to have you with me through all of this.”
“I’m not going anywhere, Melanie. I love you. I’m so sorry I haven’t always shown it. I know I took you for granted. Can you forgive me?”
Tears streamed down her cheeks as his words melted her heart. “Oh, Jeremiah.” She reached out to him.
He stood, bent over and wrapped his arms around her as he planted a warm, tender kiss on her open lips.
A sensation of blissful warmth and love rippled through her.
*  *  *
Melanie merged from the highway onto the three-mile-long bridge to Dauphin Island. Seagulls soared overhead in a sky painted with lavender, orange, and yellow streamers of light. Turning onto Bienville Boulevard, she drove to the west end. She pulled up in front of a duck egg-green cottage on stilts that overlooked a jewel-tone ocean and bisque-white sand dunes.
Caleb had reached out to her once in the hospital. He didn’t know about the miscarriage. He thought she was there for an abortion. After she went home and back to work, she replied to some of his texts and mentioned breaking it off, but having a final goodbye. She needed closure. He probably did too.
A couple of days ago, he texted her a picture of the beach house he was renting for his family Memorial weekend, the perfect place to say farewell. He asked her to come Thursday when he had it all to himself.
Caleb stood outside on the sand, waiting for her, dressed in an unbuttoned polo shirt exposing his chiseled chest and cutoff jeans showing off his long, muscular legs. 
Melanie stepped out of the car, and he drew her into his warm, bracing arms. He pressed his lips to hers. She quivered at the tenderness of his kiss.
“Let’s go to the pier in the back.” His deep velvet-edged voice sent a hot shiver through her.
Caleb draped his arm around her. Melanie’s shoulders tingled. She slipped off her shoes to feel the soft sand between her toes as she walked with him toward the sea.
 They dropped down to sit on the end of a rustic pier, dangling their bare feet just inches above white foamed waves that lapped against the legs of the pier in a soothing rhythm. That, and the hypnotic roar of the surf lulled her into a relaxing mood.
She snuggled against his sultry body, inhaling the salty, seaweed scent carried on the light breeze as it and the briny spray of the sea cooled their skin.
“I’m so glad you came,” Caleb said.
“Couldn’t miss it. Our goodbye date.” Her lips curled into an easy smile. “A close to our days of smoldering flames and drifting on clouds together.”
“You were the ultimate woman, friend, and lover. But me…I am so sorry.” The underlying compassion of his words and his strained tone, which broke in places, showed her how much he genuinely regretted his actions.
“I can’t believe I asked you to have an abortion.” Smothering a sob, he continued, as seagulls screeched overhead. “I don’t know why I did that. That was my child.”
“When I went to the hospital, it was for a miscarriage. I didn’t have an abortion.”
“You mean you had decided to keep our baby?” He swallowed hard.
 She nodded. “I lost a lot of blood, was sad, numb, and felt guilty. But I’ve dealt with that now as best I can.”
“I didn’t even know,” he said in an apologetic tone. “I ignored you when you needed me the most. I just wanted the problem …the baby… to go away.”
“I saw the whole thing a little differently,” she said.
“I can understand that. It’s why I wanted to see you again. I know it’s hard to believe after the way I acted, but I love you. Our timing was just off. I wish we met before our marriages. I tried to keep time and space between us to ensure that I stayed with my facts and didn’t follow my heart,” Caleb said.
“I don’t want to say goodbye, but I know we have to,” Melanie said.
“It’s time. Maybe in the future, our day will come. But it isn’t today.” He cupped her chin, and the heat from his touch coursed through her core.
“No, today is our day to say goodbye.” Melanie inhaled the warm, woodsy scent of him as the sultry heat he exuded wrapped her deeper in this last moment with Caleb. 
He brushed back strands of hair off her cheek. Her breath stopped. He looked golden in the mystical glow of the setting sun. Her mouth watered for the taste of his thick, lush lips.
She reached up to his shoulders and rolled her smooth arms against his neck, enveloping him in a scorching embrace. Her pulse raced.
Caleb peered deeply into her eyes and crushed his lips against hers. She savored the slightly salty taste of his lips. He encircled her with his arms, pressing his palm against the small of her back. All her muscles thrust forward, pushing against him—closer, tighter. The soft vibrations of his pounding heart aroused her senses.
He caressed her lips, twisting, suckling, exploring her mouth fully. She moaned. As he swept his hands down the smooth plane of her back, she quivered in his arms.
Her body fell limp as if it melted into his. His arms closed even tighter around her. He glided his mouth against hers, his lips tugging on hers. She stroked the slick hair of his fade, then parted her lips. He sunk his velvety tongue into her mouth.  Caleb flicked his tongue to and fro as she moaned with need for more. The flicks of his tongue shot a fiery blast of heat and pleasure through her, and all her thoughts vanished from her mind. She tangled her tongue with his. Melanie didn’t want to ever let this kiss end but needing a gulp of air, she reluctantly eased her mouth off his.
She smiled at him. “I will think of you probably for the rest of my life even if we can never be together again.” The break in her voice made her sound like she felt…like she was about to cry.
Tears welled in his eyes. “You will always be on my mind. Let me walk you to your car.”
He rose and offered her his hand to help her up. With their arms wrapped around each other, they strolled across the sand to where she’d slipped off her shoes. She slipped them on and walked with him to the blue Mini Cooper. 
She leaned against her car as he embraced her. “For something that was so wrong, once again it felt so right,” she said in a whispery, breathy tone.
“Equally yoked didn’t work out like I thought,” Caleb said.
“If in the future, if we are equally free, the wrong part will be gone and just the right part will be left,” Melanie said.
“If that day comes, then maybe we can be together. It’ll be our time. But until then, we’re destined to be friends, not lovers.”
“It’s how it has to be …unless we are both free one day.” She leaned toward him and brushed her lips across his in a tender farewell. 
“Goodbye, my love.” His large, liquid eyes impaled her as he whispered, “I loved you more than her.”
“I know. But it’s not enough.” She schooled her composure, climbed into the car and drove away from Caleb and home to her husband. 
She crossed the Dauphin Island bridge as the sun sunk in the horizon and all the colors of sunset faded into a dark blue sky just a tad lighter than the water. Though it was now the dark of night, Melanie knew the sun only sets to rise again. That gave her hope that with Jeremiah and her equally committed to their marriage, the vibrant, loving relationship they once had could rise again.
Knowing that only true love stayed by your side through it all, Melanie now realized truth was deeper than physical or emotional chemistry. Knowing without a doubt Jeremiah was willing to risk it all for her…that was true love. And, truth always won.


Monday, May 01, 2017

Video Script Samples I've written for clients

1. Client wanted 2-minute video script – some humour – somewhat like the Dollar Shave Club video based on this article

A year after College, Tao Kong had no real career direction—he was blowing in the wind. That’s when it hit him —Wind.
A friend in China with wind farms told Tao, here’s the plan, man—from green field to commercial operation in the US in 6 months.
Tao began a 275MW wind project in California. The times they were a changing. Renewables turned from a job—to his company—Alcen Renewable.
To Tao renewable energy versus fossil fuel is like this—Great Granddaddy liked horse-drawn carriages, it beat walking. But fancy motorcars came along and Great Granddad had to get one. But for us, it’s not just the times—the climate is a changing too.
Renewable energy has to flip the script on fossil fuels. I know you’re thinking—Fine, flip it. Still, the sun don’t shine and the wind don’t blow all the time. Yep, intermittency. But electrical storage —batteries that hold lots of electricity —solve that issue.
As far as costs—Wind is 1/3 less than coal. Levelized—both wind and solar are cheaper than natural gas. The price comparison between renewables and fossil fuels is distorted from not counting externalities and from fossil fuel subsidies —$5 billion a year in the US.  Without subsidies it’d cost $500 a barrel to extract US oil. Uh, that’s too rich for me. I’ll take fresh wind and sunshine, please.
The fundamental pulse of Alcen Renewable is developing utility-scale projects, but we also want to devise an ecosystem where startups and people in early renewable energy development can get venture funds for utility-scale wind and solar projects. A win win.
Then the conversation will flip from— renewable energy is too expensive —to —I own part of a project so I know it costs less and is more profitable than fossil fuels.
3. Short Explainer Video
Logo and Tag Line
    Employee benefits help retain, motivate and incentivize workers.
       Meals are a popular employee benefit, from on premise cantinas to out of office restaurants.
       About 50 countries offer tax incentives for meal benefits. Also, global and local service providers manage access to meal benefits—but only for large to medium companies, who subsidize all or part of the cost. Small businesses, and employers in countries with no tax breaks for meal benefits are left out.
       But not anymore. Join Incentives Inc. and give your employees meal benefits.
       At Incentives, Inc. — a B2B marketplace platform of select merchants, employers leverage collective buying power, so offering employee benefits is as easy as pie.
       Employers, employees, and merchants join Incentives Inc. through a mobile app or web portal
       Employers, once you join, your workers will get benefits from all the merchants who accept Coinsentive tokens
       Employees save money on food and get rewards from restaurants. Restaurants gain loyal customers and a big boost in business.
       Employees—there is such a thing as free lunch, every workday. Ask your company to join today.
Food Service owners—boost traffic to your restaurant night and day, join now.
Employers—take this opportunity to stimulate and retain happy employees.

2.   An Ode To List —30 Second Video Script For Funny Occupation Phone Cases

Here’s to the Doctors…who spend years of their life to add more years to ours.
To the Engineers…who try anything they can think of until it works.
Here’s to the Lawyers…who tirelessly litigate, advocate, and arbitrate.
To the Programmers…who write code all day then debug it all night.
Here’s to the Graphic Designers…who never see shades of gray, just hex codes.
To the BodyBuilders…who build up six-packs they can’t drink.
Here’s to the Dancers…who stay on their toes
And the Sportsmen… who admit they missed third base, but insist they touched second.
With all they go through…they deserve to tell the world what they do.

3. Two Explainer Video Scripts For Incentives Inc.  – Two Videos – 30 – 45 Seconds Each
With Budget:
An employer creates a weekly budget for meals for their employees.
An employee suggests buying meals with tokens. The employer agrees and Incentives Inc. buys coincentive tokens.
The employee buys his meal with tokens from his pocket, minus a discount.
The employee’s balance is smoothly adjusted by the cost of the meal in tokens.
The employee gets a nice discount as a token.
The restaurant wants the tokens converted to local currency. So, on coincentive, Incentives Inc. quickly switches the tokens to money.
The employee wants to convert his discount token to local currency. So, Incentives Inc. sells it on coincentive. Now, the employee has money.
Without Budget:
It’s simple; the employer activates the token service for their employees. The employee buys a meal at a restaurant offering discounts with tokens.
With ease, Incentives Inc. gets tokens at coincentive for the restaurant.
With tokens, the employee gets the restaurant’s discount from the service provider just like that.
The employee asks Incentives Inc. to convert the discount tokens to local currency. In a flash, Incentives Inc. sells them to coincentive, and the employee has money.

One Of The Safety Series I Wrote On OSHA Standards With Humor And Character Creation
A six script series for safety training videos –
Series Trailer
Landscaping Safety
William Holmes here, you may have heard of me. What’s that? You haven’t. Oh, you’ve heard of my brother, oh yes, Sherlock.
Well, his popularity or fame, if you can call it that, is all due to that Dr. Watson. No one would know of Sherlock if it weren’t for his sidekick.
But I don’t need a sidekick. You see, I’m my own sidekick. Yes, that’s right.
As I said, I’m the smart one. Mum always said so.
You see, I take on cases Sherlock won’t. I look into mysteries that are more challenging and dangerous than those murders my brother solves.
I, William Holmes, am a safety detective.
Today we’re here to save the innocent landscaping crew that is working at the old estate of Ravenmore manor. We’re hot on the trail of despicable Landscaping Hazards.
Here’s our first dastardly culprit.
Cuts and Amputation
This hazard is ready to strike at a foot near the rapidly moving blades of a lawnmower or at a hand under the deck of a lawnmower or to yank someone into a wood chipper or worse. It’s up to us to put a stop to Cuts and Amputation. The loss of a finger, toe, hand, or foot is extremely painful. And, it can result in permanent disability…or death.
Here’s how we’ll put am end to this fiendish hazard:
·      Get proper training from your employer on all the equipment you’re using.
·      Stay a safe distance from saws, tiller blades, trencher blades, rotating brush-cutting blades, and sharp or moving parts in any other equipment.
·      Wear appropriate clothing, including personal protective equipment, like sturdy boots or shoes (steel-toed when required), long-sleeved shirts, long pants, gloves, and wear leg chaps when using chain saws.
·      Inspect all your tools and equipment before use. Make sure the safety guards and other safety devices are in place and undamaged.
·      Secure mowers and other equipment, so no one else can start them.
·      Don’t try to unclog a mower or other equipment unless the engine has been turned off and all moving parts have come to a complete stop.
·      Don’t leave power equipment unattended
·      Do not wear loose-fitting clothing. If you have long hair, tie it back and take off your jewelry, dangling jacket strings, and anything else that could get caught in a machine.
·      Never remove, disable, or bypass a safety device.
·      Immediately report any missing or broken safety devices to your supervisor.
·      Don’t rush or take shortcuts

The next landscaping hazards lying in wait for the crew at the old Ravenmore estate, are the shocking Electrical Hazards.
These hazards are the anti-social type. They want to be left alone. If you stay out of their way, you know, away from electrical currents, don’t come in contact with power lines, and ensure that any branches you cut off trees don’t fall on power lines. You know, just get out of the way of these electrical hazards…and you’ll have nothing to worry about.
But if you don’t, this deadly hazard will shock you, which can cause muscular spasms, and that might cause you to fall, and even break your bones. If any part of your body touches a live current, a jolt of electricity will course through you, which can cause imbalances or shaking of the heart, leading to respiratory failure or a heart attack. And the most common injuries it causes are severe burns. 
Here’s how you stop to this deadly hazard:
·      Keep your equipment, materials and yourself at least 10 feet away from overhead power lines.
·      Call utility locates before you dig, to see if there are any underground public utility mains in that area.
·      Never assume a wire is safe to touch even if it’s down or looks like it’s insulated
·      Never operate electrical equipment while you are standing in water.
·      If you’re working in a damp area, be sue to inspect the electric cords and equipment to make sure they’re in good condition with no defects. Also use a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).
An old-fashioned type phone rings. William picks up.
Hello, yes, who is this?
Oh, professor Moriarty, how are you?
No, you have the wrong number. You don’t want me, you want my brother.
I assure you, I have nothing to do with the mystery of the Valley of Fear. I’m working on the case of landscaping hazards at Ravenmore manor.
The dangers of getting scratched by bushes you duck into to avoid the police when they’re in pursuit? Well, no, that’s not the type of landscaping hazard I meant.
I’m afraid I can’t help you with that.
Well, see here, there’s no need for threats.
Quite. Yes, that’s right. Call him. Very well then, good day.
He hangs up the phone.
So sorry for the interruption, I’m getting Sherlock’s calls for some reason. Now, where were we? Ah, yes, I was just about to uncover the next hazard. It’s a real rough one.
Lifting, including moving anything heavy or using a shovel can place you in peril. This hazard is responsible for a lot of pain. Fooling with this hazard can also be costly. Before you see it coming, this menace goes for your back, shoulders, knees, or other body parts. These injuries can hang around for a long time, even for the rest of your life.
Here’s how we can “Take Care” of this hazard before it gets us.
·      Get trained by your employer in proper lifting techniques and always use those safe methods.
·      Use mechanical lifting devices, such as forklifts, skid-steer loaders, and overhead cranes, when available.
·      Use manual lifting aids, like dollies or hand trucks.

And that brings us to our next hazard, oh, it’s a real slippery one alright.

Slips and Trips
This notorious duo is lurking in your midst. Lying in wait…right beneath your feet. If you’re working in wet, muddy, uneven terrain or around hidden rocks, this hazard is just waiting for you to slip up. If you let Slips and Trips sneak up on you and catch you unaware they’ll leave you with sprains and pain. They might even break your bones. 
Here’s how to put an end to Slips and Trips before they stop you in your tracks
·      Remember that wet grass can be very slick, and that you need to slow down on muddy or uneven terrain.
·      Wear waterproof boots or shoes with good traction.
·      If you spill something, clean it up. If you spot a potential tripping hazard, eliminate it, if possible, or bring it to your crew leader’s attention.

We did it. Elementary! With brilliant skills of deduction, keen observation, and my special technique—the logic of cause and effect, you and I, William Holmes, the greatest detective, have kept the landscape crew at old Ravenmore manor safe from harm and probably saved their lives from fatal landscaping hazards …for now.
So, keep a watchful eye…stay on the case…and stay safe.

HVACR Safety
Safety Detective, William Holmes, here, at your service.  I know, I know, you’ve heard of my brother. But we aren’t here to discuss Sherlock. We’re on a case. A highly important case. You see the Earl of old Ravenmore manor is upgrading to an all new Air Conditioning and Heating system and we are on the case to elude any hazards that are creeping about.
It’s a dangerous undertaking we have before us, because the Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Industry has one of the highest rates of injuries of all occupations.
First, we have to shoot down a squadron of hostile hazards to safely install equipment.
·      Assume all electrical wires are live wires.
·      Turn the main switch to off before removing or replacing power fuses.
·      Don’t wear jewelry or coats with metal zippers when working on or near energized lines, panels, parts or equipment.
·      Don’t work near any circuit in service without installing barricades first.
·      When working outside, keep your shirt on to avoid dehydration and sunburn.
·      Drink plenty of water or clear liquids during your breaks
·      If you discover a wasp nest or beehive while you’re working, spray the nest with the long distance aerosol insecticide labeled—Wasp and Bee Insecticide. After that, test the nest with a stick to make sure all the bees or wasps are gone before continue working.
·      Don’t use a metal ladder within 50 feet of electrical power lines.
·      Don’t block the walking surfaces of working platforms, like scaffolds, with tools or materials that aren’t being used.
·      Use a stepladder instead of standing on sinks, toilets, or cabinets.
·      Don’t work on open sided floors or elevated walkways or platforms if they don’t have guardrails.
·      Prior to servicing piping equipment, open the gate valve to release pressure from the steam lines and turn off the boiler.
The next culprit, Hazardous Materials, can be deceitful. You can’t really trust them. You have to really keep your eye on them, but you need them, that’s all there is to it. So just watch out when you’re around Hazardous Materials.
·      Every time you use a chemical product for work, follow the instructions on the label and the Material Safety Data Sheet.
·      If you use chemicals labeled: flammable, corrosive, caustic or poisonous, wear personal protective clothing or equipment like neoprene gloves, rubber boots, shoe covers, rubber aprons, and protective eyewear.
·      If your protective clothing or equipment has split seams, pinholes, cuts, tears, or other signs of damage, don’t use it.
·      When you wear gloves, wash them in cold tap water before taking them off.
·      Only dispense Flammable liquids form bulk containers located in areas posted "Flammable Liquid Storage."
·      Don’t use any chemicals from unlabeled containers or unmarked cylinders.
·      Don’t drag any containers that are labeled "Flammable."
·      Don’t store chemical containers labeled Oxidizer with containers labeled Corrosive or Caustic.
Contaminated air is a suffocating hazard. To deal with that you need a true blue, dependable respirator to help you out. I know this one gets close, real close. It’s always in your face. I understand, but it can save your life. Here’s how you handle that:
·      Only use the respirator your employer issued to you
·      Shave regularly, so your facial hair won’t interfere with the respirator’s face seal.
·      Clean and disinfect your respirator after each use.
·      Use optical inserts provided by your employer, don’t wear contact lenses with your respirator.
·      Put your respirator away in its carrying case or carton when the work is done.
·      Inspect your respirators before each use. Don’t use it there’re any missing or distorted inhalation and exhalation valves, cracked face pieces, a lot of dirt on the face piece, a loss of elasticity in the straps, or any missing gaskets, and kinks in air supply hoses.
·      Do a fit test before you use it to make sure you can talk with it on, that it fits snug over your nose bridge, and there aren’t any air leeks
Old fashioned telephone rings and William picks it up.
Hello. Oh, Moriarty. Look here, if you want to speak to Sherlock you need to call him.
Yes, that’s right, I’m his brother, William.
I am too his brother.
Oh, I see. Mycroft. Why yes, that’s right Sherlock does have a brother named Mycroft and so do I.
 I’m surprised at you Professor Moriarty. According to Sherlock you are a criminal mastermind, but it seems your skills of deduction or sorely lacking. You couldn’t even figure out that Sherlock has more than one brother.
Actually, Professor Moriarty, I have more to say. I understand you told Sherlock that I was working with you.
You had no right to say such a thing. Furthermore, I can assure you that I would never work with you or help you in any way.
Well, I may be just a Safety Detective to you. But you, Professor Moriarty, are a despicable villain. In fact, you are as bad as a Confined Space hazard.
I don’t care if you don’t know what that is. It’s very bad. And I don’t want you calling me again. Furthermore, don’t bother Sherlock, Mycroft, or Dr. Watson for that matter.
Good day and good riddance to you too.
William hangs up the phone.
Some people. I tell you. Now, where was I before that rude interruption?
Oh, yes. You must stay on guard. Never let down your guard when you’re dealing with the big, gritty hazards of Machinery:
·      Make sure machinery has guards. Replace the guards before starting machines, or after making adjustments or repairs to the machine.
·      Do not change, take off, or bypass machine safety guards
And here’s how you can take charge of Lockout/Tag out hazards:
·      Don't take a lock off any equipment unless you put it there yourself.
·      Before you begin any servicing or repair confirm that the tag/lockout switch or control can’t be over-ridden.
·      Test the equipment to make sure the lockout switch is de-energized and not just malfunctioning.
Another danger you have to really watch out for is Heavy lifting hazards. They can be brutish. Don’t let these hazards get the best of you. Here’s how to take care of them:
·      Push the load for a second to test the weight of it before you lift it. If it’s too heavy use a hand truck, dolly, pallet jack, etc. or get a co-worker to help you.
·      Wear protective gloves if you lift anything that has sharp corners or jagged edges.
Swing Safely Into High Gear with:
  • Face shields and goggles (including chemical goggles as needed) to protect your eyes and face from flying particles and liquids.
  • A hardhat incase of falling debris.
  • Earplugs for noisy environments.
  • Gloves and arm protectors for handling sheet metal, glass or anything that could cut you.
·       Cloth gloves for handling hot water heaters or steam lines.
  • Slip resistant shoes to prevent you from slipping.
  • Suitable clothing for extreme temperatures.
·       Wear 100% cotton, flame resistant shirts or jumpers with long sleeves and protective hats when you’re working on or near live parts, lines, or panels.
We did it. Elementary! With brilliant skills of deduction, keen observation, and my special technique—the logic of cause and effect, you and I, William Holmes, the greatest detective, have kept the Air Conditioning and Heating Technicians at old Ravenmore manor safe from harm and possibly saved their lives from fatal hazards.
So, keep a watchful eye…stay on the case…and stay safe

Kitchen Safety - Restaurant Hazards
William Holmes here, Safety Detective extraordinaire. And yes, I know, you’ve heard of my brother. But we don’t have time to discuss Sherlock. We’re on a case. An important case, indeed, as it has to do with a friend of mine.
My chum, Basil Dill, longtime chef at old Ravenmore manor, just retired from service and used his savings to start a bakery and café on Baker Street. He’s terribly excited about his dream business, but lately dangerous hazards have made their way into his restaurant, ready to cause trouble for him and his employees.
Basil’s hired me to investigate and see if I can detect these threats and rid his restaurant of them for good.
So, let’s get started on the case. Cuts and amputations are such a menacing culprit, lets start with them.
Big, shiny machines have a lot to do with these hazards. I know, these mixers and grinders and such seem friendly enough, and they make kitchen tasks easier, but you’ve got to keep your guard up.
Basil’s meat slicer and Bakery Mixer both need machine guards. That’ll stop any cuts from them as long as the guards are working properly.

Then there’re the mincers, choppers, dicers, slicers.
Don’t Fool Around With This Mix Of Kitchen Tools.
·  Keep your hands off. Use push sticks or tamps remove food from these sharp tools.
·  Don’t use your hands to stir the contents, guide food, or remove fallen spoons and such while these machines are on.
·      Never stick your fingers into a coffee grinder to get the beans to drop, just tap on outside and the beans will drop.
·  Don’t wear loose clothing or jewelry, around these machines; they’ll really try to grab you then.
·  Before you run your hands all over these machines, to dissemble or clean them, turn them off. Totally unplug them.

Now let’s move to the Hot Stuff. Don’t get burned by these two-timing hazards, jumping from one steamy piece of hot equipment to the next. You know first it’s the stovetop, then the oven, and before you know it they’re over at the broiler. They’ll even move on to the grills.
Don’t Cook Up Any Trouble:
·      Keep built-in guard bars on all your hot surfaces, so workers will keep their hands off of them.
·      Turn those pot handles away from the burners. Don’t let them stick out over the edge of the range.
·      Don’t set hot coffee makers close to the edge of counters
·  Adjust burner flames to cover only the bottom of a pan.
·  Don’t fill pots too full or they’ll boil over. You know how they are.
·  Lift pot covers cautiously, don’t get zapped by a rush of steam.
·  Use tongs to lower food into boiling water.
·  Never leave hot oil or grease unattended.
·  Use Protective Clothing and Equipment. Use potholders, gloves, or mitts when checking food on the stove or broiler.
And When You’re Frying:
·  Use fryers that lower food automatically into the hot oil and that automatically dump used grease.
·  Use splash guards on fryers.
·  Dry off wet food and brush off ice crystals before putting food in a fryer basket.
·      Never fill fryer baskets more than half way and lower fryer baskets gently.
When You’re Sticking Stuff In The Microwave:
·      Don’t use metal containers, foil, or utensils in the microwave
·      When you take containers out of the microwave open them away from your face, to let that steam escape
·      If you notice sparks inside the microwave, immediately turn it off and unplug it.

Don’t Let The Pressure Get To You.
Show those Pressure cooker and steamers that you mean business:
·      Before you open pressure cookers or steamers, shut the steam off and wait a few minutes.
·      Stand to the side to open the steamer or pressure cooker door.
·      Wear oven mitts when you take hot trays out of the steamer.
·      When steamers are stacked, take the tray from the top one first, then the lower one, to prevent burns from rising steam.
An old-fashioned phone rings. William picks up.
Hello, Basil’s Bakery and Café, how can I help you?
Why yes, this is William. What can I do for you, Doctor Watson? Is Sherlock okay?
Oh, yes, of course, I’ll get some sandwiches to go before I leave and run them down the street to you.
Uhm, a peanut butter and bologna sandwich, you mean both together on one sandwich? Okay, and that’s on white bread. All right, and then one grilled cheese with a fried egg and pickles on rye bread?
I’ve got it. Yes, I’ll bring them to you as soon as I’m finished here. I’m a bit busy right now.
Yes, I am on a case at the restaurant.
Kitchen hazards.
Well, in fact, they can be quite dangerous.
All right then, see you in a bit. Good-bye.
He hangs up the phone.
Those sandwiches might be a bellyache hazard just waiting to happen. So sorry for the interruption, my brother lives just down the street and he and Watson are hungry.
Now, where were we? Ah, yes, we’ve put all those kitchen hazards in their place and saved the day but we’re not done yet. There’s more.
Restaurants are dangerous places you have to always beware. Don’t let hazards sneak up on you:
Dress For Success:
·      Use oven mitts or potholders
·      Use Kevlar gloves when cutting.
·      Wear sturdy, slip resistant shoes, in case hot liquids spill on them.
·      Wear gloves and goggles when cleaning up broken glass.

Don’t Slip Up
·      Use non-slip stable floor mats in good condition in areas that get wet. But remember, moving heavy mats can cause back injuries.
·      Clean up spills right away.
·      Clean floors regularly so grease doesn’t build up. Use a clean mop with approved floor cleaners.
·      Use warning signs to keep people off wet floors.
·      Use smaller bus pans and trays.
·      Lay out the dining room and kitchen without tight or blind corners and with plenty of room to avoid collisions.
·      Don’t carry items too tall for you to see over.
·      Warn other workers when you’re walking behind them.

Don’t Put A Strain On Yourself
·      Don’t overload trays or pans. And don’t carry more than you can handle.
·      Standing for long periods of time on a hard surface can cause muscle fatigue, back pain, and soreness in legs and feet.
·      Provide storage for heavy items on lower shelves to avoid reaching. 
·      Provide ladders and footstools of the right size, and keep them in good condition.
·      Design drive-through windows so workers don’t need to stretch to serve customers.
·      When walking or standing for long periods, use floor mats, take breaks, and rotate tasks if you can.

Don’t Forget Security
·      Keep parking lots well lit
·      Have more than one exit in case of an emergency.
·      Schedule at least two people per shift, especially at night.
·      Teach your workers what to do in case of a robbery or other crime or violent situation.
·      Leave a clear, unobstructed view of the cash register area from the street.  Post signs that the cash register only contains a small amount of cash.
·      Store large amounts of cash in a drop safe.
·      Don’t count cash in front of customers.
·      Use the buddy system for cash drops.
·      Keep working locks and alarms in good condition.
·      Install a silent alarm or panic button.
·      Use surveillance cameras or mirrors.

We did it. Elementary! We foiled the plans of viscous kitchen hazards and kept Basil and his staff safe by using our brilliant skills of deduction, keen observation, and the logic of cause and effect,
Well, I have to deliver some sandwiches to my brother, but until our next case, keep a watchful eye…and stay safe.

Safety My Dear Watson – ROOFING HAZARDS
William Holmes here, you may have heard of me. Yes, well, I’m Sherlock’s younger brother. But, you see, I am different than Sherlock. I take cases he won’t. I look into mysteries that are more challenging and dangerous than those murders my brother solves.
I, William Holmes, am a safety detective.
Today we’re hot on the trail of perilous hazards that roofers face,
including working at heights or falling through holes in the roof.
Our greatest weapon to fight these hazards is Fall Protection. Make sure your Fall Protection plan in top from by maintaining your Personal Fall Arrest System these standards:
·      The straps have to be of synthetic fiber.
·      If used with a body harness, the arresting force can’t be more than 1,800 pounds.
·  It has to be rigged to prevent a worker from free falling more than six feet or touching any lower level.
·  It must bring a worker to a complete stop and the resulting deceleration distance can’t be more than three and a half feet.
·  Its got to stand up against twice the impact force of a worker free falling six feet or the free fall distance that system allows, whichever one is less.
·      It has to be thoroughly inspected for wear and tear and damage before each use.
·      Needs to have locking snap hooks that attach to the D-ring in the center of the back.
·      The anchorage must support 5,000 pounds for each worker attached to it. Anchorages can’t be connected to platforms, guardrails or hoists.

Old fashioned type phone rings William Holmes picks up.
Hello, yes, who is this?
No, Professor Moriarty, I told you this is not Sherlock’s office. I’m William Homes, his brother.
No, you see, you have the wrong number.
Well, I’m afraid I don’t know anything about the case of the Valley of Fear. You’ll have to talk to Sherlock about that. I’m on the case of roofing hazards.
Well, actually it’s an interesting investigation. You see I’m a safety detective.
Well, I may just be a safety detective. But you’re a villain, so I really don’t care what you think.
Yes, well, I see that running on roofs and jumping from one to another when chased by the police would be a safety hazard, but I’m afraid I really can’t help you with that. No, safety hazards for roofers…Not criminals.
Well, that’s you opinion.
If he’s not there or can’t come to the phone, you’ll have to simply leave a message with Dr. Watson.
Yes. I’m sure Watson will get the message to him. The doctor’s quite dependable.
Yes, call him. Indeed. Good day.
He hangs up the phone.
Now, where were we? Ah, yes, roofing hazards. Here’s a new clue to stop these menacing hazards, it’s the letters L G S. (Let’s Get Safe)
L is for ladders:
Don’t use ladders on slippery surfaces unless the ladder is secured or provided with slip-resistant feet. And the top of the ladder should extend at least three feet above the upper landing surface
G is for Guard Rails:
During roofing work, don’t store materials and equipment within six feet of a roof edge, unless there are guardrails at the edge. Also, materials piled, grouped or stacked near a roof edge must be stable and self-supporting.
And S is for Safety Nets:
Safety nets must be installed as close as practicable under the working surface and never more than 30 feet below them. And, the nets must be inspected at least once a week. Each mesh opening can’t be more than 36 inches or longer than 6 inches on any side.
All mesh crossings must be secured to prevent enlargement of the mesh opening. Each safety net or section must have a border rope for webbing with a minimum breaking strength of 5,000 pounds. Connections between safety nets panels must be as strong as integral net components and be spaced no more than 6 inches apart.
Two more ways to stop these deadly hazards lurking about roofs are the combination of a warningline system and a safety-monitoring system. But, if a roof is 50 feet or less in width, a safety-monitoring system alone is permitted without warning lines.

·      Warningline systems must be set up 6 feet from the edge of the roof.
·      The lowest point, including sag, must be no less than 34 inches from the working surface, with the highest point no more than 39 inches from the working surface.
·      Stanchions, rigged with warning lines, must be able to resist, without tipping over, a force of at least 16 pounds applied horizontally against the stanchion 30 inches above the working surface perpendicular to the warning line and in the direction of the floor, roof, or platform edge.
·      The rope, wire or chain must have a tensile strength of at least 500 pounds and after being attached to the stanchions must support the load applied to the stanchions.
·      The warning line has to be attached to each stanchion in a way that pulling on a section of the line between stanchions, won’t cause any slack in the adjacent section before the stanchion tips over.
·      The line has to be flagged at not more than 6-foot intervals with high-visibility material. Warning lines must be erected around all sides of a work area. When mechanical equipment is used, the warning line must be erected no less than 6 feet from the roof edge parallel to the direction of mechanical equipment operation and no less than 10 feet from the roof edge perpendicular to the direction of mechanical equipment operation. When mechanical equipment isn’t used, the warning line must be erected no less than 6 feet from the roof edge.
·      Warning lines must be 34 to 39 inches from the roof surface.

Safety Monitor:
·      A safety monitor must be on the same working level as the workers being monitored.
·      No worker, other than one engaged in roofing work (on low-slope roofs) or one covered by a fallprotection plan shall be allowed in an area where a worker is being protected by a safety-monitoring system.
·      All workers must be instructed to promptly comply with fall-hazard warnings issued by safety monitors. Mechanical equipment may not be used or stored in any area where a safety monitor is being used to monitor workers engaged in roofing work on low-slope roofs.

I’ve used my renowned powers of deduction to determine that these roofing hazards often catch workers unaware. It’s like they’re trying to cover up the dangers they pose. And that is how I found the last clue to catching these roofing hazards before they catch us. It’s covers. When using covers for holes in a roof’s surface, make sure they can support twice the weight of the workers, the equipment and the materials placed on them. 

Our case now comes to a close. It just took basic roofing safety and my brilliant skills of deduction, keen observation, and my special technique—the clear logic of cause and effect.
Unidentified voice off camera:  But that’s Sherlock Holmes’s special technique, not yours.
William:  See here, it is my special technique. Sherlock copied me.
Unidentified voice off camera:  Are you sure?
William:  Yes, I am as sure of that as I am that I am the greatest detective.
Unidentified voice off camera:  Whatever.
William:  No, it’s not whatever, it’s whodunit. The roofing hazards done it. They are the killer. Falls in the roofing industry kill about 50 workers each year. Roofing hazards must be stopped and we can do that now that we know how.
So, keep a watchful eye…stay on the case…and stay safe.

Safety My Dear Watson - KNIFE SAFETY,
Hello, it’s William Holmes, the worlds greatest detective at you’re your service.
Unidentified Voice off camera:  You mean Sherlock Holmes?
William:  Actually I do not. Sherlock is my younger brother. I am in fact, the world’s greatest detective.
Unidentified Voice off camera: Are you sure?
William:  Quite. And, I was saying, before I was so rudely interrupted, I take on cases other detectives don’t. I take the hard cases that are much more challenging and dangerous. You see I am a safety detective.
And today I’m on the case of knife safety. Knife hazards can occur any place at work. For instance, let’s say we’re at old Ravenmore manor and Mr. Cutt Thee Mustard is in the kitchen with the knife.
Mr. Cutt Thee Mustard is face to face with sharp, crafty hazards, just waiting for his knife to slip during cutting or trimming the roast beef. And then there is Ms. Plum Pudding, who works with him, she’s clutching a loaf of bread near her chest, and is about to slice off two pieces for a roast beef sandwich. Little does she know, she’s cutting the bread toward her body and is about to feel the cold steel of the knife blade. And, what of Mr. Green Thumb in the conservatory, or as I say, greenhouse, he’s got a pruning knife in hand, innocent enough, but instead of using it to prune a plant, he’s using it for grafting stalks, a job to big for it’s blade. Little does he know that knife is about to turn on him for that, it’s going to slip at any moment. And, then there is Mrs. Peacock Blue. She’s in the library with a knife, opening a new box of books that just came in. She unsuspectingly reaches across the box to cut it open, but all the while she is unknowingly sliding the point of the blade toward herself.
Unless, they catch these dastardly hazards and change the way they’re handling those knives, they will get cut. Sure it might just be a small nick, but just as likely, they could end up with a serious disabling cut.
Don’t make the mistakes Mrs. Peacock Blue, Mr. Pass the Mustard, Mr. Green Thumb and Ms. Plum Pudding are making. Keep your guard up against cutting hazards. 
Pick up knives by their blades.
Try catching a falling knife.
Use knives with loose or broken handles.
Use knives as an ice pick or can opener.
Leave knives to soak in the sink.
Put your finger on the back of the blade of the knife.
Try to cut more than the knife can handle.
Just use a knife at hand like a pocket knife or some other tool with a sharp edge if you can’t find the knife you need. These could easily slip or you could use them incorrectly.
Use the wrong knife for the task you’re doing. For example, it’s dangerous to use a long, wide knife when cutting a small object like a lemon or lime. For those examples you’d use a paring knife instead.
Store knives in metal or plastic containers.
Use dull knives. A dull knife will cause you to use greater force, which increases your chance of several kinds of injury, such as cuts, amputations, stabbing wounds into your leg, arm or body, and increasing joint and nerve pain from repetitive motions that can be a warning sign of a permanent crippling injury. Using dull knives also makes work more difficult, slower and less inefficient.
The sound of an old fashioned phone ringing –
Just one moment
William picks up the phone
Hello, Oh, hello. How are you?
Well, of course I’m not working with Professor Moriarty on anything.
Why would you say such a thing? 
Are you going to believe him over your own brother?
Oh, uhm, yes, well that’s true. I told a few clients I was the smart brother.
Because it’s true.
It is so. Mum always said so.
Did too!
Look, I can’t talk about this now, I’m with clients.
Yes, we’ll talk later.
Are we still on for dinner this evening?
At Baker street?
What are we having?
Did you say oysters and a brace of grouse, with a choice white wine?
Who’s cooking?
Oh, Mrs. Hudson, the housekeeper?
Make sure she uses proper knife safety in preparing the meal.
Well, you need to make sure because as her employer it is your responsibility to train her on knife safety and provide her with a safe environment to work in.
Well, that’s good then. Okay, I’ll see you at eight.
Yes. Good Bye.
He hangs up the phone.
I’m sorry, my brother called. We have dinner plans. So, right, where were we then?
Ah, yes. We can put an end to these fiendish knife hazards in old Ravenmore manor, and in all work places if we keep our guard up and:
·      Hold knives with the sharp points and edges facing away from you.
·      When carrying knives, make sure the tips are facing toward the floor 
·      Keep knives in sheaths or knife blocks when not in use. Never store the blades with the cutting edge exposed.
·      Install knife holders on worktables to prevent injuries to employees.
·      Put blade guards or knuckle guards on new knives to protect the employees’ hands from slipping on the table.
·      To pass a knife to someone, place it down on a clean surface and let them pick it up.
·      Clean knives immediately after use or place them in a dishwasher or a container labeled “For Knives Only”
·      Do not talk with co-workers while using a knife. When interrupted, stop cutting and place the knife down on a secure surface.
·      Don’t cut while distracted.
·      Avoid placing knives near the edge of a counter top
·      Always keep cutting tools sharp, never use dull blades.
·      If your job requires frequent knife use, or you’re doing heavy work, like cutting bones, consistently wear protective, cut-resistant clothing, such as gloves, sleeves, or aprons of steel mesh or Kevlar, furnished by the employer, to protect yourself from cuts and punctures.
·      Make sure you and all your coworkers are trained to safely use the various types of knives.
·      Try using ergonomic knives to prevent injuries caused by stress and strain on your wrists.
·      Hold the knife handle with flexibility and firmness following the movements and the pressure of your hand to work safer and more accurately.
·      For utility knives, use the ones with self-retracting blades if they’re available.
·      Try different knives to see what is most convenient to use. Certain tasks require different types of knives.
·      Wear safety glasses to protect your eyes incase a blade breaks.
·      If applicable use a knife with a shielded knife surface or a rounded tip blade.
·      Only sharpen knives if you are an experienced, trained worker. And when sharpening knives, keep your thumb beneath the knuckle guard rim protection on the handle of the sharpener, rather than on top of the rim where it may get cut.
·      Use a damp cloth under a cutting board to prevent movement of the board.

The case now comes to a close. We’ve kept the staff at old Ravenmore manor safe from the blade. It just took basic knife safety and my brilliant skills of deduction, keen observation, and my special technique—the clear logic of cause and effect.
So, keep a watchful eye…stay on the case…and stay safe.

Working at night / Extended Unusual Work Shifts.
Hello, William Homes here, at your service.
No. Not Sherlock. Well, yes. I mean, he is my brother. Sherlock is not relevant. Why yes I am a detective but I take special cases.
You see, I, William Holmes, am a Safety detective.
And our case today involves putting to bed some stealthy hazards that are lucking in the dark when we work at night. Well, since you are helping me on the case, I’ll leave the deduction to you. Here is your clue:
Humans are diurnal, not nocturnal.
Biologically we functions best during the day.
And, we sleep best at night. 
So, when would we usually do your best work, day or night?
Right you are. You’re an ace detective all right.
In fact, there is a high rate of on the job accidents that happen on night shifts.
Can you believe these include:
·      The Exxon Valdez oil spill
·      Three Mile Island
·      And Chernobyl

Ugh, I don’t want to be responsible for anything like that! Can you imagine? Sherlock would never let me live that down.
One of the biggest hazards of working at night is that tiresome wrongdoer…Fatigue.
I’ll tell you a secret about Fatigue. It’s a mean one all right but it’ll give you a break, it’ll ease off of you if you just listen to it.
You see when Fatigue catches up to you, all you need to do to outwit it, is to rest. If you rest there and then, Fatigue can’t hurt you. But if you don’t rest at that moment, it gets stronger, even more dangerous and it’ll not only diminish your work performance, it can hurt you.
Here are some of the tricky ways Fatigue gets you:
·       Weariness
·       Sleepiness
·       Irritability
·       A Lack Of Alertness, Concentration And Memory
·       Lack Of Motivation
·       A Stronger Susceptibility To Illness
·       Depression
·       Headache
·       Giddiness
·       A Loss Of Appetite
Fatigue attacks workers as indomitably as any workplace hazard. 
·   Chronic sleep problems, like difficulty sleeping and excessive sleepiness, in 60 to 80% of all shift workers
·   Stomach disorders are four to five times more likely to occur in these employees, who also have increased incidence of peptic ulcers
·  As well as a higher rate of cardiovascular mortality
·  And 80% of shift workers have chronic fatigue

There are also reports of increased divorce rates, and higher uses of drugs and alcohol.
Getting a good day’s sleep when you work the midnight shift or extended shifts is the easiest way to put these issues to bed. But how much sleep so we need?
Well, that’s been thoroughly investigated, and medical researchers deduced that the average person needs eight hours of sleep. However, sleeping needs differ slightly per person. And, there are other factors that affect our sleep:
·  Age
·  Gender
·  Medication
·  Stress
·  Level Of Physically Fitness

Here are some ways workers on unusual shifts can get a good day’s sleep:
·  Tell your family and friends you sleep in the daytime so they won’t disturb you in then.  If they’re suspicious that you may be a vampire, don’t worry about it. Vampires are very popular. A rumor like that could be a great boost to your social standing. I spread that same rumor about Sherlock, and you see how popular he is. Though, it may not be a rumor. My brother could actually be a vampire. I’m serious. He’s pretty weird.
·  Another thing you might try is turning your phone off so it won’t ring and wake you up.
·  Also, create a dark, dark, cool, quiet sleeping area—try using blackout curtains or a sleeping mask.
·  For some people split sleeping works well — sleep in three to four hour shifts immediately before and immediately after a night shift.
·  On at least one of your off days, try staying up to 3 or 4 AM and sleeping until 10 or 11 AM
·  Don’t drink anything with Caffeine 4 hours before bedtime
·  Get enough exercise, that’s a big help in adjusting to shift work and extended hours

The sound of an old fashioned phone ringing –
Just one moment
William picks up the phone
Hello, Oh, Sherlock, how are you?
Oh, you just want to talk?
Well, I’m really quite busy right now.
Actually, brother, Safety Detectives are often quite busy.
Well, if you must know, I’m working on stopping the next Chernobyl.
Well, if you knew anything about safety, you would know that comment makes perfect sense.
What do you mean you’re bored? Don’t you have a case to work on?
You don’t want to work, you just want to talk? That’s awfully peculiar of you.
What do you mean Watson won’t talk to you?  Pause
Oh, he’s not there. Well, where is he?
Sleeping. This time of day?
Oh he was up all night on a stake out. Oh, at old Ravenmore manor.
A cat bugler? After the Earl’s famous purple Diamond? You don’t say?
Did he catch him?
What do you mean, you caught him?
You were up all night on the stake out also?
No wonder you’re so cranky. You need to get to bed immediately.
I do not sound just like mum.
Of course you need sleep. That is the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever said.
Brother, you are another Chernobyl just waiting to happen.
I do know what I’m speaking about.
Yes, get in bed and when you wake up, I want you to get some exercise.
A jog would be perfect. Call me and I’ll join you, but only after you’ve gotten a good days’ rest.
Glad to hear it. I’ll talk to you later. Good-bye and sleep tight.
He hangs up the phone.
I’m sorry about that, but my brother needs to get some sleep. So, then, where were we?
Ah, yes, another danger in working at night or extended shifts are late shift work concerns such as a higher motor vehicle crash risk and prolonged exposure to hazards. Some others are:
•Loss of visibility
•Work quality
Staffing issues
•Cost – labor, materials, traffic control
•Logistics, supervision
•Worker & driver alertness
•Impaired drivers
•Higher speeds
•Driver confusion
•Work space intrusions
•Irresponsible worker behavior
There are added dangers for those working on roads or in construction at night. But we can combat them with:
       Effective signs
       Visible workers
       Visible work vehicles and equipment
       Effective temporary lighting

In addition Class 3 workers, like flaggers, roadway construction workers, utility survey crews, and emergency responders, etc., need to wear retroreflective high visibility apparel that meets the American National Standers Institute/International Safety Equipment Association. In addition you can protect these night workers by:
       Using a lighting plan that provide temporary lighting with adequate illumination, and glare control. This will boost your employees’ moral, safety, quality, and productivity.

And protect Flaggers from nighttime working hazards by:
·  Providing temporary illumination for flagging stations.
·  Supplementing permanent roadway lighting.
·  Avoiding glare, shadows, backlighting
·      And using floodlight towers or other overhead luminaries.

So the case now comes to a close on the shadowy hazards of working at night and extended or unusual shifts. It just took my brilliant skills of deduction, keen observation, and my special technique—the clear logic of cause and effect.
So, keep a watchful eye…stay on the case…and stay safe.