Harrisburg – Department of Labor & Industry (L&I) Deputy Secretary for Compensation and Insurance Scott G. Weiant presented Phoenix Sintered Metals LLC in Brockway with the Governor’s Award for Safety Excellence, highlighting the importance of workplace safety committees.
“One of the many ways Phoenix Sintered Metals LLC works to promote best safety practices is by providing employees with daily access to updated safety topics, rules and regulations,” Weiant said. “Some of the company’s proactive safety measures, including adding a safety communications kiosk in the employee breakroom, highlight the company’s ongoing commitment to promoting an injury-free workplace.”
All Pennsylvania employers are eligible for the Governor’s Award for Safety Excellence. Information and criteria used to determine finalists include workplace injuries/illnesses versus industry standards and innovation and strategic development of safety policy and approaches.
“We are truly honored to receive the Governor’s Award for Safety Excellence from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry,” said Phoenix Sintered Metals LLC Chief Operating Officer Steve Leuschel. “Through our commitment to the Operational Excellence program here at Phoenix, we have built a culture of mutual trust and respect with a tremendous focus on continuous improvement, always ranking safety as the top priority. Our employees care about safety.
“We also want to recognize L&I, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Consultation Program at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Penn National Insurance through Swift Kennedy & Co., our safety coordinator Terry Fustine and our safety committee for all of their guidance in achieving this award,” added Leuschel.
Phoenix Sintered Metals LLC produces high-strength powder metal parts for different industries including automotive, outdoor power equipment, industrial, sporting goods, food service, medical and others.
The company developed a problem-solving sheet using the “Five Whys” technique to help employees investigate near misses, accidents and/or injuries. This approach helps employees proactively identify the cause-and-effect relationship in order to find solutions to potential safety hazards.
Phoenix Sintered Metals LLC, the only Pennsylvania powdered metal company accepted into OSHA’s Safety & Health Achievement Recognition Program, also has all employees participate in weekly safety inspections where they take turns performing safety checks.
“Safe, accident-free workplaces not only keep workers safe from death or injury, but companies can also benefit through reduced workers’ compensation costs,” Weiant said. “Workplace safety committees are a valuable tool to reduce workers’ injuries, and companies with a certified committee also receive a five percent discount on their workers’ comp insurance premiums.”
More than 12,800 state-certified workplace safety committees have been established since March 1994, protecting more than 1.6 million workers. Additionally, employers with certified workplace safety committees have saved more than $838 million in workers’ compensation premiums. These savings in insurance costs are due solely to the five percent premium discount provided to businesses that have these committees.
For more information on making Pennsylvania workplaces safer, visit www.dli.pa.gov, and click on “Workers’ Compensation Services.”