Early this summer, Lesley Ledwell was visiting the electronics shop when she saw Electronics Specialist Phillip Anderson installing a bracket at the bottom of the shop door.
“Because of the pandemic, the electronics crew didn’t want to touch the doorknob,” Phillip said. “They were spraying Lysol everywhere. So I took a piece of metal and had another shop bend it to create a bracket that lets you open the door with your shoe.”
That bracket was the first Tread + Pull, a hands-free door opener that fits the bottom of most doors and allows the user to open the door with their shoe, minimizing contact with the hands.
“With everybody touching the door handles, we figured this bracket would be a better way to help keep people from getting sick,” Phillip said. “Plus, it’s handy if your hands are full.”
After Lesley saw the Tread + Pull in action, she knew it would benefit employees, visitors, and customers. Once they perfected the design, many of Ledwell’s departments jumped into action to create the end product. One shop cut the material while another shaped it. Then, the Machine Shop refined the edges to be smooth, and the Graphics department printed decals and installation instructions.
“We installed Tread + Pulls all over the property, and our Shipping and Receiving department packaged and shipped over 1,000 to our customers free of charge,” Lesley said.
“Everyone is looking for ways to stay safe during the pandemic, so we were happy to use our skilled machinists and equipment to provide our customers with this tool.”