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Crane Interiors: Bastions Of Common Sense

By Wyatt Earp | February 22, 2011

Crane Interiors is located in Woodbury, Tennessee. They have a policy outlawing cell phone usage in work, except for breaks and lunches. Employee Theresa Danford dared to violate that policy when she took a call from her son, who is currently serving in Afghanistan. The nerve!

Danford was suspended for three days without pay for answering her son’s phone call. Danford told CBS-affiliate WTVF that her managers informed her that she would be fired if it happened again. Danford’s son, Lance Cpl. Mark Rhyne, was deployed to Afghanistan seven months ago.

“You don’t want to miss a word, because truthfully that might be the last time you hear from them,” Danford told WTVF. “There is nothing in this world that would stop a mother from answering a phone call from her son, and what if it was not my son? What if he’d been hurt and someone was trying to contact me?”

I gotta be honest; she has a valid point.

Unfortunately for Danford, her bosses are rather unreasonable:

When a manager informed Danford that she would be penalized for breaking the cell phone rule, Danford said she explained the situation.

“I said ‘you are aware that my son is serving in Afghanistan and he can only call me when that satellite phone gets to his unit,’ and he looked me straight in the eyes and said ‘yes.’” (H/TKim)

Look, I understand the policy and the reasons behind its implementation. But for cripes’ sake, don’t you think the geniuses at Crane Interiors could fabricate some common sense in that factory?

Personally, I wouldn’t give this company my business, but that’s just me.

UPDATE: Crane Interiors’ website took down its e-mail addresses, but if you want to contact them, try giving a shout out to Customer Service maven Tammy Keel. ()

Topics: The Troops, WTF? | 23 Comments »

23 Responses to “Crane Interiors: Bastions Of Common Sense”

  1. Dannytheman Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 7:54 am

    And now thanks to you listing their location they have a e mail from me stating the obvious stupidity of their policy!!

    I also took this thread and sent it to my Veterans distribution list of over 300 and asked them to serve notice to this company to rethink their policy in these cases.

    God, I truly hate stupidity!!!

  2. piperfromtn Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 8:38 am

    Must be west or middle Tennessee…most of east TN is still patriotic.

  3. Picky Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 8:44 am

    That angers me. I understand that they have a business to run, but sometimes people just don’t think.

  4. Jon Brooks Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 8:48 am

    I was going to type/say..another obambi voter… but I remembered the no more politics rule just in time.

  5. proof Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 9:31 am

    If ever there were a policy that cries out for an exception to the rule, it’s this one!

  6. Mrs. Crankipants Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 10:16 am

    I think zero tolerance, inflexible work policies are magnificent! It takes all the guesswork out of exercising common sense. Gee, they’ve removed the email links from their contact page. I wonder why?

  7. Lou Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 10:27 am

    We have the same rule where I work. It gets broken all the time for special cases like accidents, pregnancies, and your kid being overseas.

    “Why are you on your phone during working hours?”

    “It’s my kid in Afghanistan!”


    This is just a case of a dim-witted supervisor being a douche because he can.

  8. Sally Anne Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 10:34 am

    I don’t shut off my phone ever. I tell people at places where they have a “please don’t answer your cell phone” sign up for whatever reason that I will put it on silent, but that if my husband calls from Afghanistan, I’m answering. No one faults you in this part of middle TN. Most people in this town have family, a friend or at least a neighbor downrange. Unfortunately, the farther you are from a military installation, there are few folks who have ever even met someone in the armed forces.

    This is completely asinine- I hope that place gets tons of negative press. I’m going to scour the local channels’ websites and see if they even picked up on it.

  9. Wyatt Earp Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 10:56 am

    Danny – Good. They have the right to make whatever policy they like, just as we have the right to call them on it.

    Piper – Smack dab in the middle of the state.

    Picky – They just don’t care. And that’s sad.

    Jon – You can write what you want in the comments. I’m just trying to avoid politics as a topic for a while.

    Proof – Glad I’m not the only one who thinks so.

    Mrs. Crankipants – Just eliminates the need for employees to think. It’s brilliant!

    Lou – Over-officious jerk.

    Sally Anne – I’d like to hope that the company rethinks its policy – not because of the negative press – but because they realized its stupidity. Probably shouldn’t hold me breath on that.

  10. Loaded Dice in Vegas Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Here’s a contact site for Crane Interiors.

    Be civil …………even though they were not…………

  11. richard mcenroe Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 11:22 am

    In any workplace, the need for rules is to eliminate the need for common sense on the part of management. “It’s not my decision, it’s the rules” is the management equivalent of “You want happy finish?” for a Wisconsin Democrat…

  12. RT Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 11:34 am

    People have no sense.

  13. Bob G. Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 11:54 am

    I’ve always labored under the concept that COMMON SENSE should be MANDATORY…and that everything else is usually DISCRETIONARY.
    Seems like a plan, anyway.

    Good post & some great comments, too.

    Stay safe out there.

  14. Kim Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    I’d say I wouldn’t give them any of my money, but I don’t anyway.

    Primary SIC: Housefurnishings Except Curtains, Primary NAICS: Other Household Textile Product Mills
    Description: Manufacturing: Manufactures cushions and pillows; manufactures boat cushions; manufactures canvas bags; carpet and upholstery cleaning services; wholesales service establishment equipment and supplies

    So I will just have to settle for moral outrage and letter writing.

  15. Wyatt Earp Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    LDIV – Agreed. Civility, because we’re better than that.

    Richard – The WI protests cost those schools millions already for shutting down during the sick out.

    RT – Nope.

    Bob G. – It’s a unique situation that doesn’t lend itself to strict policies. When the man calls, someone needs to be there to answer.

    Kim – That’ll work, too.

  16. Robert B. Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 5:39 pm

    Wyatt, any way we could take up a collection for the lady to offset her lost wages?

  17. Wyatt Earp Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    Robert B. – Not sure if anyone is collecting, but I certainly don’t want to be responsible for that. My wife doesn’t even let me see our checkbook!

  18. JCM Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    Zero Tolerance.

    For people too stupid to think for themselves.

  19. Ingineer66 Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 6:53 pm

    What a bunch of jerks. My son hasn’t even deployed, but if he calls me from his base during the work day it is probably pretty damn important and I take the call. If he was in Afghanistan you can be sure I am not going to miss an opportunity to speak with him.

  20. realwest Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    Howdy Wyatt – um, I saw this woman on Fox and Friends, iirc, and she said that she didn’t know it was her son calling her – she, like me, has such a cheapie cell phone that it doesn’t diplay name or number of who it is that’s calling you. So I’d hold off a little bit about this company’s policys. Just a little.
    When I used to teach law, I didn’t want folks to have their cell phones on either, especially because the ones who’s phone would ring (and ring and ring) would also be the ones having the most difficulty in FINDING their phones. But I made exceptions and stated them upfront – if you’re wife was expecting a baby any minute now (in which case I’d ask ‘em wth they were doing in class and to leave to be with their wives and get their notes from another student) or some other emergency situation, but ask them to please keep the cellphones handy. But I also know folks who’s work is semi-dangersous if they make a mistake -like on an assembly line or somesuch.
    But I also think that she should have told her supervisors that she had a son in Afghanistan and if she got a phone call she’d answer it and if it wasn’t her son, or about her son, she just tell ‘em call me after work and hang up. Since it WAS from her son, then her supervisor or whomever screwed up royally.

  21. Wyatt Earp Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 7:22 pm

    JCM – Why think for yourself when The Company can think for you?

    Ingineer66 – Especially since they can only call when the satcom is aligned. Is he gonna decline, saying, “Mom’s at work?”

    Real – Probably what she was doing. If it was someone other than her son, she probably said she’d call them later. Just my guess.

  22. Kim Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 9:25 pm

    Real – Her boss knew her son’s location and didn’t care.

    When a manager informed Danford that she would be penalized for breaking the cell phone rule, Danford said she explained the situation.

    “I said ‘you are aware that my son is serving in Afghanistan and he can only call me when that satellite phone gets to his unit,’ and he looked me straight in the eyes and said ‘yes.’”

    If he replied with “I forgot” or “No, I didn’t, let’s work this out so we don’t have this kind of misunderstanding again” then this would not have been an issue and never made the news. In which case Wyatt would be forced to share a story about how his sweet, innocent children conned im out of money by being fantastic at what they do. :) (I’m waiting on baby girl pictures and stories here.) However, since the manager decided to be a jerkwad, I am stuck waiting on reason and sanity to enter the world before I am allowed to read about cuteness and adorableness.

  23. Sally Anne Says:
    February 22nd, 2011 at 10:45 pm

    So I asked the local Fox affiliate via facebook if there had been any local coverage and/or updates- another viewer responded with they reinstated, apologized, paid her and are revising policy. Just what someone’s saying, not official but hopefully accurate.

    As for whether she knew it was her son… When it’s possible it could be the one voice you want to hear more than any other, you try not to risk missing the call. (I may be biased, but no one should ask you to unless you’re in an aircraft, surgery or a blasting zone.) Caller ID is sketchy when routing through heaven knows where, so even though I usually know it’s Sgt. Bones, I still answer all unknowns just in case.