Federal Tool & Engineering, LLC Takes Safety to a New Level with SHARP

Company: Federal Tool and Engineering, LLC

Location: West Bend, Wisconsin

NAICS Code: 332999-All Other Miscellaneous Fabricated Metal Product Manufacturing

Number of employees: 56

Federal Tool & Engineering LLC (FTE) prominently flies the SHARP flag outside its facility in West Bend, WI.
Federal Tool & Engineering LLC (FTE) prominently flies the SHARP flag outside its facility in West Bend, WI.

Federal Tool & Engineering LLC (FTE), established in 1925 and located in West Bend, Wisconsin, produces engineered components and assemblies for leading original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in North America. Having already established a safe manufacturing environment and a strong safety record with few lost time accidents or injuries, FTE ownership felt that the company and its employees were becoming complacent and beginning to take safety for granted. The decision was made to seek the help of OSHA’s On-Site Consultation Program in assessing the current state of its manufacturing operations.

FTE contacted the Wisconsin Safety and Health Consultation Program (WisCon) based on a recommendation of FTE’s workers’ compensation insurance provider. WisCon performed an assessment of the facility and identified several safety issues. These issues ranged from missing and unused machine guarding, unmarked clearance spaces in front of an electrical panel, chain slings without load bearing specifications, and a grinder needing the tongue guard adjusted.

Although there were many workplace safety and health practices that were in place and being followed, formal documentation of those practices needed improvement. There were no clear reporting or resolution policies in place when safety and health issues were discovered. After the consultant’s initial visit, the company corrected all the issues that were found and appointed an internal Safety Coordinator. This Safety Coordinator was tasked with leading the initiative for improving workplace safety and the quest for recognition under the Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP).

The company achieved SHARP status in December of 2021. SHARP acknowledges small and medium-sized businesses that have used OSHA On-Site Consultation Services and operate exemplary workplace safety and health programs. Small businesses that achieve SHARP status receive a deferral from OSHA or State Plan programmed inspections for the period that the SHARP designation is valid. Acceptance of a worksite into SHARP is an achievement that identifies the employer as a model for occupational safety and health among its business peers.

SHARP has helped give FTE a clearer focus and understanding of how to manage a safety system that combines the input of both management and shop employees. The relationship that has been built with WisCon representatives has proven to be invaluable and has improved FTE’s ability to comply with OSHA requirements and implement its safety and health management system.

Companies interested in SHARP can contact their local OSHA On-Site Consultation program to discuss details and schedule an on-site safety and health evaluation. To locate the On-Site Consultation program nearest you, call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) or visit www.osha.gov/consultation