Monthly Archives: December 2021

Hello 2022: Interesting New Year’s Eve Traditions


2021 was a rough year for most of us, and no one is sad to see it end. We’ve compiled a list of interesting New Year’s Eve traditions about one of the most celebrated holidays of the year!

6 New Year’s Eve Traditions

The first New Year’s celebration dates back 4,000 years. Julius Caesar, the emperor of Rome, was the first to declare January 1st as a national holiday. He named the month after Janus, the Roman god of doors and gates. Janus had two faces looking opposite ways, one looking towards the past and one looking towards the future.

Forty-five percent of Americans make New Year’s resolutions. The top resolutions are: to lose weight, get organized, to spend less and save more, to stay fit and healthy, and to quit smoking. While nearly half of all Americans make resolutions, 25 percent of them will give up by the second week of January.

Eat leafy greens on New Year’s. According to tradition, the more leafy greens a person eats, the more prosperity they will experience. Tradition also says that legumes bring prosperity due to beans and peas resembling coins.

Fun fact: In Spain, people eat 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight. The grapes represent the 12 months of the year.

Many people ring in the New Year’s by popping a bottle of champagne. Americans drink close to 360 million glasses of sparkling wine during the holiday. 

If you have a little too much champagne, AAA offers a Holiday Safe Ride Program.

About 1 million people gather in New York City’s Times Square to watch the ball drop. The Times Square New Year’s Eve ball drop came about because of a ban on fireworks. The first ball in 1907 was 700 pounds and was lit with 100 25-watt lights. Today it is covered in 2,688 crystals, is lit by 32,000 LED lights, weighs 11,875 pounds and is 12 feet in diameter.

In a pre-covid world, nearly 1 million spectators would fill Times Square to watch the ball drop. This year, a masked and vaccinated crowd of roughly 15,000 will be in attendance for the annual event.

According to the National Crime Bureau, more vehicles are stolen or broken into than any other holiday. The most popular day for car theft is January 1st. In 2018, 2,571 cars were getting broken in to on the first day of year.

The Hugg & Hall family wishes you a safe and happy New Year!


Securing Your Jobsite During the Holidays

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year!”  For your unattended jobsite, however, that may not be the case. The holidays are here and that means many construction sites will shut down for a day or two, possibly even longer. While jobsites are always a potential danger zone for workers and visitors, the risk from theft, vandalism, fire or frozen equipment can also occur on unattended sites.  Do you have the right measures in place to secure your project and help prevent costly damage? If not, check out a few of our suggestions.

Remove or Hide Equipment and Tools

To help keep unwanted visitors from taking or tampering with equipment or tools, remove them from the construction site or at least from view. One of the easiest measures is fencing or privacy screens. If this is not an option for you, locking equipment and securing tools off site would be best.  You never know when people passing by may want to take a test drive!

Prepare for Bad Weather

Snow, rain, ice and high winds can cause havoc on a jobsite. Before leaving your project unattended, check the weather forecast and asses your site with changing conditions. Take into consideration the ability of strong winds to affect uncompleted structures, mobile elevated work platforms and any other loose materials. Lowering your equipment to ground level could help during strong winds.

Cold temperatures may also begin to affect your equipment over a period of time. While your machinery is going unused, think about parking your equipment on wooden planks, platforms or other raised surfaces. This will keep the tires from freezing to the dirt or in its own tracks. You may also want to consider parking your equipment’s bucket or blade slightly lifted.  If you are unable to store your equipment indoors, you will also need to drain the machine’s fluids, if left for a long period of time. For additional tips on how to winterize equipment, click here.

Place Signage at Site

Make sure that all signage is securely in place. Known hazards should be clearly marked, and emergency contact information should be visibly posted. Obvious safety measures are no trespassing signs so don’t discount the importance of them! These signs should be mounted at regular intervals around the site’s boundary, in addition to any gates or entrances to the site.

Is Security Necessary?

Depending on the location of the site, or the length of time the site is left unattended, security or surveillance may be necessary. You could also ask the local police department to include your site on their local rounds. Police won’t likely enter your work zone, so hiring security personnel that can enter the site may be a better option.

Have an Emergency Plan

Make sure you have a plan in place to handle issues that may arise while the job site is empty. Knowing who to call at a moment’s notice will make things go more smoothly. Decide who should be contacted within your company depending on the situation, and again, make sure your emergency contact information is clearly posted at the site. This will enable any emergency responders at the site to alert you quickly and get to the right person.

There’s a good chance that at some point your construction site will be left unmonitored for a length of time. Being prepared for that eventuality and knowing what to do should a situation arise will alleviate your worry and allow you to enjoy your time away for the holidays with family and friends.

If you or your company need any additional resources, Hugg & Hall is here to help!  If you think your rental equipment needs to be removed, please contact one of our salesmen, and we can get that pickup scheduled!

Employee Spotlight: Luke Benson

Meet Luke Benson!

Luke was born and raised in Perth, located in the western territory of Australia. After coming to the United States for vacation and spending several months traveling, they decided to make the move to Fort Smith, Arkansas, where his wife once visited to meet a pen pal she was paired up with while in school. 

Luke has been a part of Hugg & Hall since July of this year- entering the role of Inside Rental Sales. He can be seen as somewhat of an expert in the rental industry, as he worked for a rental company in Australia for 15 years. In a typical day, Luke can be seen taking orders from customers and our Outside Rental Sales team while interacting with any walk-in customers that may come in. Luke considers himself a people person, getting to interact with new people and customers daily while building relationships is the highlight of his workday! 

In his free time, Luke enjoys playing golf, listening to live music, and spending time with his family! Something many people may not know is that he can surf and play guitar. You could classify Luke as some what of a world traveler as well, he has visited beautiful places such as Thailand, Singapore, and Indonesia.

“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough”

The next time you visit our Fort Smith branch say ‘hello’ to Luke! To get to know some of our other Hugg & Hall teammates, check out our other employee spotlights.

Weather and Wildlife Hazards

As the seasons begin to change, it’s a great time for a refresher on a few important safety tips. With cooler/damper weather arriving during the daylight hours, many types of wildlife will start to travel across roadways. While animal strikes are more likely to happen this time of year, there are some preventative measures we can take to reduce these incidents.

Joshua Brannon, Regional EHS Manager for Hugg & Hall Equipment Co., has provided a list of tips/tricks on how to lower the chances of accidents and encounters with wildlife.

Saftety Tips & Tricks

  • During early to mid morning hours deer and other animals will be active and crossing roadways.
  • Late afternoon can also be a high-risk time of day in which animals cross roadways.
  • As hunting season begins, deer and other animals are forced out of their natural habitat and towards roadways and heavily populated areas.
  • If you are traveling a known route where deer are often present or deer crossing signage is posted- slow down, be observant, and DO NOT SWERVE if an animal runs in front of the vehicle. Attempting to swerve to miss the animal is more dangerous and could cause collisions with other drivers.
  • In any time of adverse weather conditions (wet, rain, snow, sleet, ice, etc.) you should increase your following distance twice the normal distance. This would be approximately four car links from the car in front of you.
  • The time change during Daylight Savings can result in driver fatigue, plan accordingly and get plenty of rest.

Even if you do not drive a company vehicle, travel to and from work can still be affected by weather conditions and striking wildlife. Incorporating the above information into your daily drives can make for safer roadways!