Region 9 News Release: 07-918-SAN (SF-68)
June 22, 2007
Contact: Roger Gayman
Phone: (415) 625-2631
PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) today recognized Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard for excellence in safety and health in the workplace. A special flag-raising ceremony took place to commemorate the shipyard's attainment of "star," or highest level, status within OSHA's Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP).
OSHA's VPP recognizes and promotes effective workplace safety and health management. Employers in the VPP typically achieve average injury rates at least 50 percent lower than others in their respective industries. More than 1,700 worksites representing more than 270 industries nationwide participate in the program.
"Through hard work, compassion for your fellow employees, team spirit and commitment to excellence, Pearl Harbor has achieved 'star' status in OSHA's Voluntary Protection Programs," the agency's Deputy Assistant Secretary C. Bryan Little said at the ceremony. "The VPP star is OSHA's highest level of recognition for safety and health excellence. You have reached this elite level ¿ the best of the best ¿ by realizing that the best way to protect each other on the job is by preventing injuries and illnesses."
OSHA approved Pearl Harbor as a VPP star site after a weeklong review of the shipyard's safety and health practices. The evaluation team commended several best practices, including the VPP Passport (an incentive program for individual employees) and an Ergonomics "Flex and Stretch" Program.
Pearl Harbor is the fourth naval shipyard and the sixth U.S. Department of Defense organization to rate VPP star distinction. The other three shipyards ¿ at Puget Sound, Wash; in Portsmouth, N.H; and in Norfolk, Va. ¿ report total case rates 46 percent below the industry average, 280 lost workday cases avoided and a savings in workers' compensation costs of more than $2 million in one year.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
U.S. Labor Department releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format upon request (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office. Please specify which news release when placing your request. Call (202) 693-7765 or TTY (202) 693-7755. The U.S. Department of Labor is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit www.dol.gov/compliance.