OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents|
Region 2 News Release: 06-1173-NEW/ BOS 2006-200
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: (617) 565-2074
HUDSON FALLS, N.Y. -- Wheelabrator's Hudson Falls, N.Y., waste-to-energy plant has been recertified for an additional five-year membership in the prestigious "Star" Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) of the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
"This award spotlights Wheelabrator's ongoing commitment to effective safety and health management at this site," said Edward Jerome, OSHA's Albany, N.Y., area director, who presented a VPP flag to the company in a ceremony held today at the plant. "Our review of the plant's safety and health management programs found that they continued to be consistent with the high quality of VPP participants, while the plant's injury and illness rates remain below the industry average."
Thirty-five employees work at the Hudson Falls plant, which continues as part of an elite corps of about 1,400 workplaces nationwide that have earned VPP recognition. The plant's "Star" recertification came after an OSHA team's thorough on-site review of Wheelabrator's safety and health programs, interviews with employees and a complete tour of the work site. The plant was first certified as a "Star" site in 1997.
Among the areas of excellence identified during the review were extensive employee involvement in both the plant's safety committee and employee safety and health training. This includes employees performing routine safety inspections, raising and addressing safety issues and concerns, reviewing site procedures and conducting much of the plant's safety training.
OSHA's VPP offers employers an opportunity to move beyond traditional safety programs by recognizing participants that successfully incorporate comprehensive safety and health programs into their total management systems. VPP companies achieve average injury rates 50 percent lower than other companies in their industry. The VPP programs are open to deserving employers in any industry.
Requirements for application to VPP include a high degree of management support and employee involvement; a high-quality work-site hazard analysis; prevention and control programs; and comprehensive safety and health training for all employees. Each of these elements must be effective, in place and in operation for at least one year before a company can apply to join the program. For more information, contact OSHA's VPP manager in New York at (212) 337-2360.
Employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's workers by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual 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.
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