9/5/2007 12:00 AM
When safety officials Willie Hamm and Elvin Rembert of the Atlanta Airport Mail Center attended their first TEEX-OSHA class in 2000, the plant had 200 recordable injuries. By 2005, injuries were down to 27 for the year, saving the organization an estimated half a million dollars a year in costs associated with injuries, Worker's compensation and lost workdays.
This month, the facility received the coveted Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) Star site recognition from the Occupational Safety & Health Administration. VPP approval is OSHA's official recognition of the outstanding efforts of employers and employees who have achieved exemplary occupational safety and health.
"I would like to thank Mr. David Milligan and all of the TEEX staff for making this happen," Hamm said. "This is for you all. Thanks!"
Hamm credits his safety training at TEEX for contributing to an 86 percent decrease in recordable injuries among approximately 1,400 employees at the center. "We attribute all that to the training we received at TEEX," Hamm said. "We started a safety program from scratch and applied what we learned to our employee safety training program to bring employees to the OSHA standards."
Hamm and Rembert earned the TEEX Certified Safety & Health Official (CSHO) designation in 2003 after completing more than 220 hours of safety and health training. Hamm earned a second CSHO in Construction Safety in 2006.
To receive the VPP Star recognition from OSHA, the Atlanta Mail Center had to meet performance-based criteria for safety and health system management and undergo an application review and a rigorous on-site evaluation by a team of OSHA safety and health experts.