12| ColoradoPublic Works Journal by Sean O’Keefe Safe Space more than a moment, site safety is an obligation to oneself and to each other Images © Kiewit, Fiore, OE Construction Earth Work and Underground Utilities: Nate Montes, General Superintendent OE Construction Founded in 2006, OE Construction has established itself as a reliable resource in site development services spanning excavation and earthwork to underground utilities. Serving clients across Colorado and occasionally beyond from their Golden, CO headquarters, OE Construction lives a culture of safety on every project they touch through a task-by-task focus on the fundamentals. OE’s General Superintendent, Nate Montes, is an industry veteran of more than 25-years of experience who shares that there are no second chances at doing a job right the first time. “Safety is essential every step of the way in our work,” says Montes, who has been with OE for 11 years. “There is no reset button. Once it’s too late, it’s too late. So safety first, second, third, and always is the only way we work at OE Construction.” With an employee headcount that fluctuates between 40 and 50, OE Construction specializes in heavy civil construction services, including overlot and site grading, structural excavation, underground utilities, stormwater management, and demolition, all of which are replete with danger if people aren’t paying attention. Construction is populated by critical constants, must-haves, and will-dos of many sorts. From deadlines and dollar signs to logistics, communication, and resource coordination, there is a never-ending stream of ways for things to get sideways quickly if people aren’t paying attention to the details. However, you can ask any builder worth his salt what the most important thing is, and every one of them will say nothing matters more than safety. In heavy civil construction, the challenges are many, the machinery is massive, and the potential for danger is everywhere. In this issue of Colorado Public Works Journal, we share a few thoughts from those in the know on the ins and out of ensuring healthy tomorrows for all involved.