Motorcycle Season Is Here

As the weather starts to get warmer and warmer, we are Image result for bike lanegoing to see a lot more motorcycles and peddle bikes on the road. In Vancouver, there are much more bike lanes now then there were even just last year. We are forced to share the road with each other so we need to be aware of our surroundings at all times no matter what you are driving. Drivers in vehicles have many more blind spots and need to be more aware of their surroundings as bikers are much smaller and are often not seen. Cyclists must remember to follow the rules of the road when riding on the roads and be extra cautious of the vehicles around to avoid an accident. Remember cyclists, drivers in vehicles may not see you so it’s up to you to keep yourself safe! Stop at stop signs and red lights. We all want to get home safe.

The highways will start to see thousands of riders this time of year as well. Sadly, too many of them will not see the end of riding season. Most will lose in a collision with another vehicle, and we all know the motorcycle will always lose. Some will crash due to over confidence or reckless riding.

Riders say that motorcycles are the safest vehicles on the road because they accelerate out of danger, stop quicker and are more maneuverable than pretty much any other vehicle. They like to think that they can ride out of most dangerous situations.

The problem is that, too often, they are just simply not seen and the other driver does something to cause a collision that they can’t avoid. A motorcycle is the safest vehicle on the road, right up until the point of impact.

Drivers typically misjudge the approach speed of a motorcycle when they are making a left hand turn thinking they have enough time to turn. It takes much longer to make a left hand turn than most people think it does. In a collision with a vehicle and a motorcycle, most often it will be the drivers fault. Poor judgement can cause for an unfortunate accident that could have been avoided. Play it safe and give yourself extra space, sit there and wait longer if need be. Also, keeping a larger distance from the motorcycle in front of you than a vehicle. Motorcycles can stop much faster and if you are too close, it could be an  unnecessary accident waiting to happen.

Motorcycles are tough to see and, if you are not looking for them, very easy to miss. They handle much differently than other vehicles and have some special characteristics. If you don’t really understand them, they can be difficult to share the road with.

Some easy guidelines for you to apply as you see motorcycle riders this spring and summer will help keep everyone safer.

•    When you are waiting at intersections to turn left, remember that you may have more than just cars and trucks approaching and look for motorcycles. If you see a rider approaching, make sure that they are coming at a speed that allows you to turn safely in front of them before starting your turn.

•    Remember that a motorcycle can stop in a fraction of the distance than your car, SUV or truck can so leave a good following distance. If the rider brakes suddenly for some reason and you are too close, you will not be able to slow quickly enough to avoid him or her. Normally, under ideal conditions we suggest a following distance of at least three seconds behind a motorcycle. Add more distance if conditions deteriorate.

•    When you change lanes, check your mirror and shoulder check to make sure there is no motorcycle in your blind spot. Most riders work hard to stay out of blind spots, but if you don’t shoulder check before changing lanes, you will never be sure the lane change is safe.

•    When you are stopped behind a motorcycle, leave a good space. It feels very intimidating to have a large vehicle stopped really close behind you. This should actually be a rule for any vehicle, maintain your distance!

Whether you are an experience driver or a new driver (or rider), take a moment to refresh your memory or learn the different safety concerns associated with motorcycles and cyclists. We all want to get home at the end of the day so safety always comes first. Please be aware of your surroundings and be extra cautious around other road users.

Riders – it may also be wise to wear a hi-vis jacket or have something on your helmet. Make yourselves as visible as possible for your own safety.

Posted in Motorcycle | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tool Talk Safety – Ladder Safety

Safety Tip!

Did you know??

1 in 42 workplace deaths are caused by a fall from a ladder.ladder

Fall protection equipment is the only thing between you and the ground if you take a tumble. As required by Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) of the Canadian Standards Association (CSA), keep your PPE in good condition by regularly checking:

  • Connectors/snap hooks. These are the first parts of fall personal protection equipment that will be stressed if there is a fall. Make sure they are in good condition.
  • Dirt can build up on fall PPE and weaken harnesses and lanyard webbing.
  • Just like dirt, exposure to too much sun can weaken harness and webbing.
  • Cuts and Tears. Small cuts or splits in webbing cords weaken PPE.
  • Fall PPE used in hazardous environments (like chemical settings) can get damaged fast.

Ladders may not always be the best tool for the job, such as pressure washing. Even if conditions had allowed the ladder to be placed safely, it would still not have provided a suitable work platform for pressure washing according to WCB’s standards. Use an appropriate work platform for any work that cannot be done safely from a ladder and always use a fall protection system when required.

Posted in Tool talk safety - ladder safety | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The year that was… 2016

We would like to take a moment to thank all of our customers for choosing A&B Tool Rentals for all your equipment rental and purchase needs. It has been a pleasure serving you and we look forward to continuing to build the relationship with you in 2017!


We were 2016-aas-posterthrilled to be able to 2016-12-20-13-13-03support The Kettle Society by donating to their programs multiple times and sponsoring their event in November 2016. We look forward to working with them again this year!

What does The Kettle Society do?

Supporting people living with mental illness to lead healthier lives by:

– Providing Housing, employment, advocacy and support services
– Raising awareness of mental health issues and breaking down barriers
– Promoting the inclusion of people living with mental illness in all aspects of society

If you visit their website, they have a wonderful story on how it all began. It is truly inspiring that a group of individuals can come together and do great things for our community. But they can’t do it without the help of their volunteers and funding partners. If you can support, please donate through their website!!

We also support various schools, childrens sports teams and other causes throughout the year including, but not limited to, the Whalley Chiefs Baseball Club, SOS Childrens Safety magazine and the Red Cross with either cash donations and/or equipment for events. We think it’s great to give back to the community we live in and encourage you to as well! Thank you again to all of our customers for helping make this happen! When you choose A&B Tool Rentals, you also choose to support these great organizations.


We would also like to thank all of our staff for their hard work last year. There has been a lot of construction with more in the plans for this year and we are working on new strategies to continue to improve our services for this year and beyond.

On behalf of everyone at A&B Tool Rentals, we wish you a very healthy and prosperous new year!




Posted in 2016 | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Ways to Get Your Veggie Garden Set Up

As we become increasingly aware of our collective carbon footprint and its environmental impact, it  makes more sense than ever to consider growing some of our own vegetables. In addition to superior quality and flavour, gardeners have the opportunity to grow heirloom or hard-to-find varieties—without having to pay premium prices for specialty produce. Not to mention, it makes you feel good to be eating the vegetables that you grew yourself!

Here are five factors to keep in mind to get your vegetable patch off to a great start:

1. Exposure
For high-quality crops, all vegetable gardens require at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight daily. Ensure your garden’s southern exposure isn’t blocked by mature trees or structures, such as buildings, that will cast shade on your plot.

2. Size
It’s always tempting to start off big, but vegetable gardens take a good deal of tending, so it’s prudent to begin small and expand gradually as you gain more experience. Bear in mind some vegetables—such as squash, melons, pumpkins and corn—require a great deal of real estate to spread out, so be aware of your plot’s spatial limitations.

3. Site
The ground should be fairly level, although a garden that slopes gently to the south will produce earlier crops (colder air will flow down the slope, pulling warmer air in behind it).

If the area is covered with turfgrass, use a sharp spade to cut the sod into strips, then undercut the strips below the level of the grass roots; peel away the sod (it can be used to repair bare areas in the lawn or stacked upside down and composted).

Remove any tree roots or rocks, then aerate and amend the soil with plenty of organic matter (e.g., compost, shred­­ded leaves or composted manure) to a depth of 30 to 45 centimetres. This can be done with a rototiller, or manually by double-digging (i.e., twice the depth of the spade or fork) to turn over the existing soil, break up clods and add organic matter. Don’t forget to elevate the area for better drainage.

4. Pathways
Throughout the grow­­ing season, you will need access to each plant (for seeding, thinning, weeding, watering, managing pests and harvesting), and paths help keep everything within easy reach.

Traditionally, a path leads up the centre of the plot, with the vegetable rows arranged at right angles to it. Conventional wisdom has it that rows should run on a north-south axis so plants receive equal amounts of sunlight from both sides, but if this is impractical, don’t hesitate to run them in a more suitable direction. Remember to place tall crops (e.g., corn, peas, pole beans and tomatoes) at the north end of the patch so they don’t shade low-growing plants.

5. Unwelcome visitors
Regardless of where you live, there’s likely to be some local wildlife that’s every bit as enthusiastic about your plot’s bounty as you are. Depending on the kinds of marauders in your neighbourhood, you may need to install a physical barrier, such as fencing or netting.

Cool-season crops
These vegetables tolerate low temperatures and can be sown outdoors in early spring. (Those marked with an asterisk can also be planted in summer for fall harvest.)

  • Beets
  • Broccoli*
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage*
  • Kale*
  • Kohlrabi*
  • Leeks
  • Lettuce
  • Onions
  • Peas*
  • Radishes*
  • Rutabaga
  • Spinach*
  • Turnips*


We have made some edits to this post, but you can find the original one here!

Posted in veggie garden | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Growing Herbs

You don’t need a garden plot to keep yourself supplied with fresh herbs all summer long. A sunny location, some soil, pots and a bit of care can turn a balcony, staircase, deck, patio or window into a private produce department. While mint and rosemary are best grown in individual containers, you can pack a smorgasbord of various herbs into a window box.

Whether you’re new to gardening or a seasoned pro, these tasty, but easy-to-grow, flavour-filled herbs will have you hooked on fresh.

This tender annual can’t tolerate cold, so plant only after the threat of frost is over. Place in full sun in rich, moist soil. Encourage new, bushy growth by pinching back the plant to a pair of branching stems. Because basil is most flavorful before the flowers bloom, pinch them out before they bloom and plant a succession to ensure an ongoing harvest. Pick the leaves immediately before using.

Basil has a hint of licorice and is a classic choice with tomatoes and in Mediterranean dishes. Sweet basil is the most common, while the less sweet, purple-leaved variety adds colour to your favourite dishes. If you have room, try planting lemon, cinnamon or clove basil, which smell like their names.

Dried basil has very little flavour, so use fresh or make pesto, then freeze.

This feathery, fern-like herb is actually a hardy annual and acts as a biannual in some climates.

Dill is tall, so plant it behind shorter herbs. It thrives in sun, in rich, loose soil and can be picked at any time — just pinch out the leaves. While the leaves are most flavourful before the flowerheads go to seed, the seeds themselves are coveted for pickling. If you want to use the leaves, deadhead throughout the summer. If you want the seeds, allow the plant to flower and set seeds; leave these until they’ve dried out and turned brown.

Vegetable soups, green salads, chicken and fish pair perfectly with dill’s bright, lemony undertones.



This tender perennial thrives in the heat of a Canadian summer, but should head indoors to a sunny window come autumn. Because rosemary needs good drainage, a terra cotta pot is ideal. Unlike most herbs, rosemary likes to dry out between waterings. To encourage growth, snip the ends often.

This astringent herb is perfect for roasted potatoes, lamb or in a mix of herbs with grilled chicken.

Versatile but invasive, give mint its own pot. Mint will have you tearing your hair out along with its roots if you decide to plant it directly into your garden.

Whether you opt for mild spearmint or stronger peppermint, full sun and moist soil are all that’s required. This low-maintenance plant grows quickly and can be picked at any time. Just pinch off as many leaves as you need.

Fresh leaves make a refreshing tea and jazz up all kinds of warm weather drinks — from mint juleps to lemonade. Mint also lends authenticity to Middle Eastern dishes like tabouli.

Charmian Christie is an avid gardener and home cook. When she’s not digging in the dirt, she’s charting her culinary adventures on her blog, Christie’s Corner.


Original article from

Posted in herb garden | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Aerial Training Program

Equipment safety is a huge deal, especially if WCB pays a visit to your jobsite. Don’t get caught with warnings and fines, have your staff trained to operate all equipment on site. There are many programs that offer certified training to keep everyone on the jobsite safe.


At A&B Tool Rentals, we offer an Aerial Training program for all types of aerial work platforms. With smaller class sizes, it allows for more hands on practice to ensure you and our trainer are comfortable operating the equipment safely. Classes with more than 6 (to a max of 12) students will have 2 instructors to ensure you still get plenty of hands on time.

A&B offers on site training or in house training for your convenience. However, if you are interested in being trained on all aerial equipment, it may be more cost effective to come to our store to save on possible extra freight charges of equipment to your site.


aerial-training-vancouver-2If you are afraid of heights, this may not be for you! Be prepared to go high up in the air to get comfortable with the sway of the machine at it’s highest. Your instructor will go over
safety procedures and how to get down if you happen to get stuck up there. Also, identifying different hazards that surround you.





aerial-training-vancouver-3 aerial-training-vancouver-4







During the duration of the course, your instructor will go over the following topics:


  • Aerial Platform Fundamentals
  • Hazard Identification
  • Aerial Lift Devices and Operating Controls
  • Machine Stability & Characteristics
  • Pre Operational Checks for Aerial Lift Devices
  • Proper Start Up & Shut Down Protocol
  • Platform Positioning and Park Positioning
  • Emergency Controls
  • Safe Mount and Dismounting
  • Troubleshooting


You will start with in class theory complete with video presentations. The classroom will be to go over all the fundamentals, inspections and safety before heading outside for some hands on experience. You will be given a workbook to complete with a written test at each training session. Once you aerial-training-vancouver-6get outside, it will be much easier to familiarize yourself with the machine after going over it in class. Your instructor will begin to walk you through the first steps to take before starting the machine. Don’t forget your safety harness! Each student will be given the opportunity to control the machine and get comfortable with it. If you feel you need more time, do not be afraid to ask!


Upon successful completion of the course, you will be issued a certificate indicating you have successfully complete the Aerial Training Course and are able to operate the types of equipment you were trained on. You will also get a small wallet card to keep on you at all times while operating Aerial Work Platforms. Please keep in mind, if there was a unit you were not trained on, you are still able to operate it after reading the operators manual and familiarizing yourself with the unit. They all have their similarities and differences and it is up to you to read the manuals to know and understand them.

To inquire about your training session at A&B Tool Rentals, please contact our store at 604-255-7368 and speak with Martin. Thank you! We look forward to keeping you and everyone on the job safe.










Posted in aerial training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tool Talk – Fall Protection Safety

Fall Protection Safety

How long does it take to fall?

Don’t forget your Personal Fall Protection Equipment! You may not have time to grab hold of something safe, but you can still prevent a tragedy. Properly maintained and worn, a safety belt or full body harness attached to a secure anchor could save your life. Here is your list of personal protection equipment required:

– Safety Belts
– Full Body Harnesses
– Lanyards and Anchors
– Personal Shock Absorbers
– Carabiners
– Vertical Lifelines
– Rope Grabs
– Retractable Lifelines
– Horizontal Lifelines

Also, make sure not to tie up to an anchor point in such a way that would cause you to swing into an obstruction. This may be as harmful as falling on the ground.

Make sure to inspect these pieces before each use. If it is damaged or worn, do not wear it. It is time for new stuff!

What happens if I do fall? Can I still use my equipment again?

After a fall, immediately remove from service all equipment used to arrest the fall. You cannot use
the equipment again until it’s been inspected and approved by the manufacturer or other approved agent, or by a professional engineer.

Posted in fall protection | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment