2014 APA Safety and Health Award Winners Announced

APAAPA – The Engineered Wood Association recently announced the winners of its 2014 Safety and Health Awards, a program that encourages and recognizes safety and operational excellence in the North American structural panel and engineered wood industry.

Anthony EACOM Inc. and LP won Safest Company Awards in their respective categories, while the coveted Innovation in Safety Award went to two winners: Weyerhaeuser of Grayling, Michigan, for the Equipment-Based Innovation Award, and LP of Wilmington, North Carolina, for the Jeff Wagner Process-Based Innovation Award.

LP, a producer of engineered wood products in Canada, the U.S., and South America, earned top honors among companies with four or more mills, with a 2014 average Weighted Incident Rate (WIR) of 3.03. Anthony EACOM Inc., which produces I-joists, won its award in the category for companies with three or fewer mills. The company posted a perfect 0.00 WIR for 2014.

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The Grayling Weyerhaeuser mill’s original “Fire Hose Nozzle” equipment innovation and the Wilmington LP mill’s “Pinch Point Safety” program took top honors out of 20 Innovation in Safety Award entries. The idea for the “Fire Hose Nozzle” came from a site maintenance team member who is also a volunteer firefighter. With this innovation, site fire brigade members or fire department responders can set the desired spray pattern, put the unit in place, attach a hose, and douse the fire without putting responders in a high-risk situation. “Pinch Point Safety,” the Wilmington LP site’s entry, is part of the mill’s mandatory safety training. The maintenance department designed a special teaching tool for machine guarding training: a chain and sprocket covered by a guard and run with a cordless drill. To illustrate the hazard, a hot dog was placed in the pinch point of the running chain and sprocket to show what would happen if a finger was taken in to a pinch point. The demonstration made a strong impression, as employees began recognizing hazards immediately afterwards and continued to talk about the training for months.

Begun in 1982, the awards program honors the managements and employees of companies and mills with the lowest Weighted Incident Rate (WIR) that is calculated using the number and severity of recordable incidents reported on the mill’s annual OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) report. Since 2008 was the first year that WIR was used, awards and reports for 2009 through 2014 continue to also show Total Incident Rate (TIR), the measure used in previous years.

Seventy-six APA-member structural wood panel and engineered wood product facilities in the U.S., Canada, and abroad participated in the 2014 program. A total of 12 facilities representing seven APA member companies—Anthony EACOM, Inc., Boise Cascade Company, Louisiana-Pacific Canada Ltd., LP, Norbord, RoyOMartin, and Weyerhaeuser—earned awards in various competition categories. Some of the mills were multiple award winners; see the complete list starting on page 2 for more details.