Six, out of 30,000, American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) members from Arkansas, New Jersey, Texas and Washington, D.C., won the North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week Champion award for individual achievements in going above and beyond in educating communities on how workplace safety affects everyone.
From company-sponsored safety breakfasts with Bell Helicopter CEO Mike “Red” Redenbaugh to hosting the “Soul Train for Safety” to working with Safe Schools in New Jersey, and providing safety oversight for the “Extreme Makeover” TV show, the award winners, all volunteers, reached out to their communities, businesses, families and friends in support of North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week 2006.
The NAOSH Champion Awards were given at the annual ASSE Professional Development Conference in Seattle, WA, June 10 to:
• ASSE Arkansas Chapter Vice President Heather J. Earl, of Rogers, AR, health and safety operations manager of Tyson Foods Inc.;
• New Jersey Chapter President Gina Mayer-Costa, of Oakland, NJ, director of environmental health and safety of Ramapo College of New Jersey;
• New Jersey Chapter Public Affairs Chair Jack Fearing, of Flemington, NJ, AON Risk Services of Greater New York;
• National Capital Chapter President Michael McCullion, of Ashburn, VA, director of safety and health of the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors National Association (SMACNA);
• former ASSE President and ASSE Fort Worth, TX, chapter member James “Skipper” Kendrick, of Hurst, TX, manager of Industrial Safety and Hygiene of Bell Helicopter, a Textron Company; and
• Southwest Chapter member and Area Regional Vice President of the ASSE Council on Practices and Standards Committee Patricia A. Kagerer, of Plano, TX, director of Risk Management of CF Jordan.
To promote workplace safety during NAOSH Week 2006 (April 30 to May 6, 2006), Mayer-Costa worked with the governor’s office in securing statewide support, worked with 20 chapter members on providing volunteer construction safety oversight services on two “Extreme Makeover” projects in New Jersey, set up a 10-hour construction safety program with the New Jersey Department of Labor with ASSE members volunteering their expertise, and worked with Safe Schools providing new worker safety tools along with general health information and resources on asbestos and lead.
Fearing led the chapter’s participation in the 20th Annual Lincoln Tunnel Challenge with the ASSE Metro NYC Chapter. All proceeds benefited the Special Olympics of New Jersey. He developed and distributed key information throughout the state on how safety positively affects the bottom line, secured the governor’s proclamation in support of NAOSH Week and was the keynote speaker on international safety at the Joint ASSE Chapter meeting, which took place at the Mid-Atlantic Safety Expo in Atlantic City, NJ.
At Arkansas-based Tyson Foods Inc., Earl led a NAOSH Week effort that included:
• company-wide and community-wide activities such as printing workplace safety and NAOSH messages on Tyson paystubs reaching 110,000 people;
• a corporate message and thank you in support of NAOSH and the May 3 Occupational Safety and Health Professional Day was sent to all Tyson’s professional health, safety and environmental (EHS) staff from the Tyson senior vice president of EHS;
• ASSE NAOSH week posters were distributed to more than 300 locations; and
• ASSE/NAOSH week planning information was posted on the company’s intranet.
Nationwide, each tyson facility coordinated its own NAOSH Week activities including:
• vehicle safety inspection programs;
• safety and ergonomic quizzes;
• health and wellness fairs;
• garnered city and state NAOSH support; and
• plants conducted safety and health training on topics such as hot works, compressed gases, machine safety and hazardous materials safety.
Several Tyson locations held team member appreciation luncheons and dinners in support of NAOSH Week.
The ASSE Arkansas Chapter also sponsored the Governor’s Safety and Health Management Conference featuring more than 30 sessions on workplace safety and health including sessions on disaster preparedness, safety program development, teen workplace safety, fire prevention, security, trenching and excavation safety, and roadway hazards.
Former Congressman and Under Secretary of Border & Transportation Security Asa Hutchinson was the keynote speaker. Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee presented a proclamation in support of NAOSH Week to the Arkansas ASSE Chapter and local American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) officers as well as officials of OSHA, the Arkansas Department of Labor and the Arkansas Workers’ Compensation Commission (AWCC).
ASSE Southwest Chapter member Patricia Kagerer set up, with the local Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) and the regional U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), an event in Dallas, TX, titled “Construction Electrical Safety and How to Conduct a Successful Safety Stand Down.”
Recent U.S. statistics show the number of electrocutions in the United States rose in 2004; the number of fatal work injuries in the construction sector rose 8 percent; fatal work injuries involving falls were up 17 percent in 2004; and the number of workers who were fatally injured after being struck by objects rose 12 percent in 2004.
OSHA provided an update on electrical issues in the construction industry aimed at helping prevent accidents. The mayor of Dallas also issued a proclamation in support of NAOSH Week.
Kendrick led Bell Helicopter’s third annual NAOSH week-long celebrations at plants and offices throughout the Fort Worth area featuring CEO Mike “Red” Redenbaugh. Redenbaugh met and talked with more than 2500 employees in eight facilities on the importance of workplace safety.
Activities ending the week included a forklift rodeo, a personal protective equipment (PPE) fashion show and the workplace safety trivia game. Fellow employees Jansing Hurst, Faye Connely and Stephanie Stovall assisted Kendrick in planning the events.
McCullion garnered NAOSH Week recognition from the mayor of Washington, D.C., Montgomery County, MD, and the Virginia counties of Fairfax, Arlington and Prince William through proclamations. He also was instrumental in increasing awareness of the NAOSH children’s poster contest and the planning and implementation of the NAOSH Week kick-off events held at the U.S. Department of Labor and the U.S. Capitol.
McCullion also set up a meeting held with ASSE members and key OSHA managers to discuss key safety issues affecting the workforce.
“These NAOSH Champion Award winners went above and beyond and on their own time to help people stay safe,” ASSE 2005-06 President Jack H. Dobson Jr., said. “They are just the tip of the iceberg and we are very proud of their efforts. We salute everyone — members and non-members alike who help show the importance of safety to businesses, families, friends and our communities not only during NAOSH Week, but every day.”
NAOSH 2007 will be held from Sunday, May 6 to Saturday, May 12.
For more information, visit www.asse.org/naosh.