Research & Innovation
Safest Mill in Canada 2004
By Pulp & Paper Canada
There's nothing wrong with a little healthy competition. There's something great about a contest that sees Canadian mills constantly striving to make their workplaces safer environments for employees....
By Pulp & Paper Canada
There’s nothing wrong with a little healthy competition. There’s something great about a contest that sees Canadian mills constantly striving to make their workplaces safer environments for employees. 2004 marked an impressive year for the industry, and a host of new winners. Hats off to Neenah Paper Company of Canada in Terrace Bay, Ontario, who earned first place in category A, and whose name will adorn the Category A shield. Weyerhaeuser Company’s Grand Prairie mill in Alberta also deserves a hearty congratulations for earning its mark as this year’s Category B winner. Acclaim is also in order for Smurfit-Stone Containers Canada’s mill in New Richmond, Quebec, 2004’s Category C winner.
“We’ve really worked hard on our leadership roles and responsibilities, and we’ve seen the benefits,” said mill manager Bob Baxter. “We’ve reviewed many of our policies and regulations and standardized them. We’ve also reviewed and improved our investigation and reporting methods.”
Baxter credits the high levels of involvement amongst employees with the mill’s impressive safety status. “There is active involvement at all levels,” he said. “Safety is a commonality, everyone shares an interest in creating a safer workplace.” A safety approach that focuses on preempting accidents has also paid off for the mill. “We’re taking a much more proactive approach, as opposed to a reactive one,” Baxter explained. “The key is in leadership.”
“At the New Richmond mill, three levels of safety committees have been put into place,” explained general manager Carol Tremblay. “This structure was established to develop, implement, promote and continuously improve an effective safety and health mill-specific program. Our safety program covers the many aspects of the safety and health landscape, namely risk assessment, near-missed and root cause analysis, prevention procedures, follow-up measures, meetings, performance indicators, audits and training,” Tremblay said.
“We want our employees to view safety as their most important task, because safety is everyone’s responsibility and it adds value to our business, our workplace and employees’ lives.”