Conyers Plant Receives Safety Award

2/9/2009

CONYERS, GEORGIA—A company can come up with an endless number of rules for employees when it comes to safety regulations, but those safety regulations are much more effective when employees make a concerted effort to commit to creating a safe work environment. Employees at the Great Southern Wood plant in Conyers made just such a commitment and now have an award to prove it.

Great Southern Wood in Conyers is one of only 17 other companies in the state of Georgia to receive a special award for an exemplary safety record. The award was received through the Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP), which is conducted by the Occupational Safety and Health Organization (OSHA) to recognize a company’s safety record. This recognition took place on October 6, 2008 and certifies that the plant operates safely and meets OSHA expectations. In addition to celebrating the SHARP award, the plant was also commended for operating five out of the last six years without any OSHA recordable injuries.

A celebration event in recognition of this great achievement took place at the Conyers plant on Tuesday, January 27, 2009. All employees were invited to a luncheon in their honor and were individually recognized for their exemplary safety record, which included two consecutive years without an OSHA recordable injury.

“The employees in Conyers have a lot to celebrate,” said Jimmy Rane, Chief Executive Officer of Great Southern Wood. “It takes hard work, commitment and dedication to achieve this kind of safety record. I challenge them and all of our other employees to keep each other safe and help prevent on-the-job injuries.”

Dan Ortiz, head of the Georgia Tech Research Institute’s OSHA consultation program, was on hand for the award presentation. According to Ortiz, more than 300 companies have submitted applications for the Georgia SHARP program, with only a few meeting the stringent requirements to become certified.

Ortiz was joined by Paul Schlumper, Head – Safety Engineering Branch, and Hilarie Schubert, MPH Industrial Hygienist, in presenting the team in Conyers a recognition plaque and SHARP flag.

Dave Peters, General Manager, said that both Schlumper and Schubert played important roles in achieving this certification. “Their expertise proved to be an invaluable service to us during the physical plant inspection and review of written policies and procedures,” Peters said.

Peters went on to congratulate the employees for their efforts. “A company can measure a lot of things – productivity, efficiency, costs, quality and sales,” said Peters. “But the one thing that shows the true integrity and commitment of an entire team of employees is its safety record. The Conyers team is one of the best in the company as well as in the state of Georgia.”

Wanda Moody, Human Resources/Safety Director for Great Southern Wood, added, “A company can put every policy in place that meets OSHA regulations completely, but it takes each employee making a daily choice to work safely that makes a safety program successful. Plant Manager Morris Kelly and the Conyers employees consistently choose to be safe. They have set the bar for the rest of our locations.”

Great Southern Wood is the number one producer of pressure treated pine in the nation and operates ten full-service, state-of-the-art treating facilities across the country. Additional plants are located in Abbeville, Ala., Mobile, Ala., Tuscumbia, Ala., Jesup, Ga., Sumter County, Fla., Columbus, Tex., Buckner, Mo., Glenwood, Ark., and Mt. Pleasant, Tex. Perhaps best known for producing YellaWood® brand pressure treated pine, Great Southern Wood provides a wide variety of pressure treated building products to building supply centers across the Southern United States.

For more information on the SHARP program, visit their website at http://www.osha.gov/dcsp/smallbusiness/sharp.html