Massachusetts plant earns OSHA Star for safety excellence

RP news wires, Noria Corporation
Tags: workplace safety

BBA Fiberweb's Griswoldville Plant in Colrain, Mass., has been recertified for an additional five-year membership in the prestigious "Star" Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) of the U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

"This award highlights BBA Fiberweb's ongoing commitment to effective safety and health management at this site," said Marthe Kent, OSHA's New England regional administrator. "Our review of the plant's safety and health management programs found they continue to be consistent with the high quality of VPP participants, while its injury and illness rates remain well below the industry average."

Fifty-one employees work at the Griswoldville Plant, which manufactures various medical, hygiene and personal care textile products. It now continues as part of an elite corps of approximately 1,600 workplaces nationwide that have earned VPP recognition.

Its "Star" recertification came after an OSHA team's on-site review of its safety and health programs, interviews with employees and a complete tour of the worksite. The plant was first accepted into VPP in September 1999 and was certified as a "Star" site in December 2002.

OSHA's Voluntary Protection Programs offer 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 worksite 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.

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