Safety Champion: Alex Wakefield

BATAVIA, OH — Alex Wakefield can find herself in potentially hazardous situations as she goes about her work. Wakefield is a building inspection supervisor in Permit Central.

“A lot of people think we just do new homes, but there is a lot more to it,” said Wakefield, who started her job in February 2020.

In addition to inspecting new homes, her team gets called by dispatchers and firefighters to life safety situations such as trees on homes, fire damage sites and flood destruction areas. They determine if structures are habitable, see if permits are needed, and look into code complaints.

They even worked with a fire department to test every single fire extinguisher and smoke detector at Mercy Health – Clermont Hospital. They made sure they were working correctly and easily assessable.

Safety remains a top priority at all times. Inspectors wear safety shoes, hard hats and goggles. Most are OSHA certified.

“As soon as I step on a job site, the first thing I think of is safety,” Wakefield said.

She focuses on her own safety as well as the other workers on a site and the future home or business occupants.

“If it’s a business, we make sure the exit lights are working, junction boxes are OK… We want to make sure things are safe before somebody moves in,” Wakefield said.

Clermont County Safety Coordinator Gary Caudill appreciates the attention that Wakefield puts on safety. He praised her dedication to accurate and thorough documentation.

“I’m in awe of all that she and the team in Permit Central do,” Caudill said. “They handle a lot more than new construction: floods, car fires, burnt homes, rehab center complaints. Throughout it all, Alex is safety oriented.”

Wakefield humbly appreciates being acknowledged as a Safety Champion.

“All of us at Permit Central think we are just doing our job,” she said. “It’s awesome to be recognized. I’m glad safety is being stressed, and it’s great to help build knowledge and respect of what we do.”