As part of our ongoing mission to foster inclusivity in our industry while supporting our community, HBC recently participated in a 2-day event put together by Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s Construction Management Department. The goal was to develop a safety vest to accommodate a variety of body types. HBC employee-owners Wendy Castillo, Sharon Christensen, Roman Esquivel, and Mike Thompson joined students, faculty, and industry members to “hack” their way to possible solutions.
The hackathon was developed as part of a Cal Poly student’s senior project that examined the negative effects of having a “one-size-fits-all” approach to PPE. Ill-fitting PPE is not only a safety hazard, but also indicates a lack of inclusion and potentially impacts the confidence and leadership of individuals on the jobsite.
Each team’s design focused on size, fit, and utility while also considering pocket placement, adjustable components, weight distribution, and cost; feedback from students, faculty, and industry partners helped identify areas for further refinement. It was also a great opportunity for industry members to work alongside students to collectively consider the needs of everyone onsite.
In addition to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and their Construction Management department, a special thank-you goes out to The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company, PCL Construction, Western Allied Mechanical, SC Builders, Cahill Contractors, Webcor, Del Amo Construction, C.W. Driver Companies, Precision Construction Services, Build Group, Inc, Milender White, Pacific Structures, Inc., Skanska, Baker Electric, Inc., Procore Technologies, DEWALT & Radians, Inc. These companies are all collectively working towards greater safety and inclusion on project sites by continuing to support important work such as this event.