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🦺 Debunking the myth of the zero-incident jobsite
Newsletter cover photo
Sneaking away early from a barbecue counts as social distancing
Happy Almost-4th-of-July,
Expanding on the contest introduced last week, the reader(s) responsible for the most new subscribers by July 31, 2020 gets a
box of brand new Buildr coffee mugs
! For free!
Pairs particularly well with newsletter links in the morning
On top of the newfound ability to drink coffee, you'll receive a specialized personal or company shout-out in this very newsletter if you so desire.
Send your friends, family, neighbors, and/or colleagues
this link
to sign up for the Buildr Newsletter. If you're competing, make sure to email us to claim which new subscribers you're responsible for before 11:59pm PST, July 31. Cheating may or may not result in a 50-newsletter suspension.
Now onto the latest news and notes—


McCarthy Building Companies
just won a
$233 million contract
in which they'll serve as CMc to build a new high-containment lab facility in Atlanta, GA for the CDC. Some notes on the record undertaking—
The CDC requested
$400 million from the government
in 2018 for this project.
The project will take 36 months to complete and will replace a CDC facility built by McCarthy in 2005.
The new lab is classified BSL-4 (biosafety level 4), meaning it's designed to foster research on the highest-threat germs—ones which would very likely be illustrated as barrel-chested bullies in
Osmosis Jones
A few weeks ago, we singled out McCarthy as "the Captain America of contractors" (we hear they've since added shields to their required PPE). McCarthy's
dual role as CMc
(construction manager and contractor) gives them the ability to wield Thor's hammer, so to speak, further bolstering the original analogy.
This exact type of high-stakes health project is McCarthy's bread and butter, as they are singlehandedly responsible for more than half of the gross square feet of BSL-4 labs in the US.
Construction Executive
laid out some ways in which costs incurred for contractors due to COVID-19
can be recovered
, citing sections of either the CARES Act or FAR. A few of the methods—
Section 3610 of the CARES Act
- This allows agencies to reimburse contractors for employment costs when crew on a jobsite is directly affected by COVID-19. Note: reimbursement isn't a sure thing; the contractor can merely appeal to the agency and it's up to the agency's discretion to reimburse.
Changes Clauses (FAR)
- Social distancing guideline-provoked costs (ranging from reduced staff to altered work arrangements to meet social distancing standards, i.e., temperature scans) can be reimbursed through appealing to the government to order financial tweaking to the initial contract.
Suspension of Work Clause (FAR)
- If the government shuts down a job entirely for "an unreasonable period of time," which we can all objectively agree is
inaudible murmur
days long, a contractor can file to recover lost costs.
blogged this week about predictive analytics and how they're the means to a
zero-incident jobsite end
. Science-fiction is dropping the "-fiction" as researchers from Carnegie Mellon University analyzed workplace safety data and could predict the sum of injuries on jobsites within 80-97% accuracy. Modern predictive innovations include—
Cat Smartband
by Caterpillar sends alerts when operators are fatigued.
Specialized dash-mounted devices detect when vehicles are making too-sudden of maneuvers.
the bald women
Minority Report
to lay in a shallow pool and tell you all of this week's upcoming jobsite accidents.
In spite of
most construction conferences opting to go virtual
, the fifth annual
Service World Expo
remains assuredly non-virtual in Tampa, FL.
The conference will take place on September 22-24, 2020 at the Tampa Bay Convention Center.
We're waiting to confirm whether the conference will be providing conference-goers with Tampa Bay quarterback Tom Brady's
immunity vitamins

Non Construction

Slack Attack
: Slack's ominous threat of the death of internal email has escalated to external email now finding itself in Slack's crosshairs. Outbound communications
via Slack Connect
is officially a go.
Thank you but our princess is in another castle until 2021
: Super Nintendo World, an extension of Universal Studios Japan, has
sadly been delayed
due to COVID-19.
: Cam Newton signs a 1-year minimum salary deal with the Patriots, causing
orange juice sales
to soar even higher.
The Scenic Route
: If an Independence Day road trip is in order, here are the
10 most scenic drives
through national parks.
: Waze's
new update
comes with an enhanced visual flair and a focus on driver emotions. When someone cuts you off, you can now update your avatar's emotion from "stoic news podcast listening" to "heart's still racing a little, but I'm trying my best to get back into this news podcast."
Quibi Gibbler
: What happened to Quibi's
$1.75 billion content experiment
Taylor Zwift
: The Tour de France
went virtual
. What's next, televising NBA players playing each other in 2K?
Simpsons Did It
: Go ahead and add "
dolphins taking over the world
" to things
The Simpsons
accurately predicted.
They're using tools now
, and if
2001: A Space Odyssey
taught us anything, it's that
tools are just the beginning
Jello Submarine
: Some
festive jello shot recipes
to spruce up your 4th of July party, because nothing screams independence like being unsure how much alcohol you've consumed while there's still daylight.
Stay tuned next week where we unpack the holiday and our inability to set cheeseburger limits for ourselves.
Stay safe this weekend!