Safety Program Reduces Serious Injuries by 44%

Aug. 31, 2007
Worthington Industries' program results in $1.2 million in savings.

Safety improved dramatically at Worthington Industries, Inc. this year compared to last year due to its safety management program, Safe Works. Results included a 44% reduction in serious injuries (OSHA DART -- Days Away, Restricted or Transferred), a 22% reduction in total injuries and a 31% reduction in number of workers' compensation claims, which resulted in $1.2 million in workers' compensation cost savings.

"We believe that our company-wide goal of zero injuries is not just a goal to work toward, but is attainable," said John P. McConnell, Worthington Industries Chairman and CEO. "A safe workplace and workforce speaks to the heart of our philosophy -- that employees are our most important asset. Fewer injuries also positively contribute to the company's bottom line through lower workers' compensation costs and increased productivity and quality as a result of fewer disruptions to production."

The Safe Works initiative provides standardization and sharing of company-wide best practices, while allowing facilities to address localized needs and concerns. Voluntary employee safety councils lead their own facility's safety process, including managing the company's voluntary behavior-based reinforcement program, Business Risk Improvement Techniques for Everyone (BRITE), which focuses on developing safe behaviors and preventing injuries through positive reinforcement. Employees are also directly involved in the safety improvement process through personal protective equipment (PPE) trial programs, creating their own safety training videos and continuous improvement efforts.

Zero DART injuries were achieved at 21% of the company's manufacturing facilities. Eight facilities exceeded the milestone of one year with zero DART and zero recordable injuries. On average, Worthington Industries' DART rates are more than 64% lower than industry average and recordable injury rates are more than 52% below the industry average.

During the past six years, Worthington's safety efforts have led to significant results, including a 54% reduction in OSHA recordable injuries and a 57% decrease in OSHA DART (Days Away, Restricted, Transferred) injuries. A 63% reduction in the number of workers' compensation claims during this time period also resulted in several million dollars in workers' compensation cost savings.

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