Using the Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (TIG) process, Eddie Stewart repairs a crack in the M113 fluid section tank. (U.S. Army Photo by Mark Cleghorn)
Using the Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (TIG) process, Eddie Stewart repairs a crack in the M113 fluid section tank. (U.S. Army Photo by Mark Cleghorn) (Photo Credit: Mark Cleghorn) VIEW ORIGINAL

REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. – From depots, plants and arsenals to office spaces, safety and risk management is integrated into every mission the Army Materiel Command enterprise supports.

AMC leaders held a Command Safety and Occupational Health Advisory Council meeting July 15, synchronizing on safety plans and risk mitigation efforts. Gen. Ed Daly, AMC commanding general, praised major subordinate command leaders for their progress.

“You are comprehensively moving the ball forward on safety,” Daly said. “We must continue to hold ourselves accountable, assessing and mitigating risk at all echelons.”

The headquarters AMC Safety and Occupational Health team provides direct support to major subordinate commands. The team conducts safety audits, reviewing major subordinate command programs every four years, ensuring they are conducting proper oversight and identifying gaps. The team provides an honest assessment while advising and mentoring leaders on how to improve.

“We want to make sure we’re not just looking at the headquarters and that the programs are effective at lower levels,” said William Zaharis, AMC safety director.

Zaharis said the mishap rates are steadily declining and commands are doing well on inspections, which in turn keeps the workforce safe and maintains readiness.

Twenty employees from Red River Army Depot, most of whom are members of the RRAD travel team, are at Anniston Army Depot to assist in small arms production, primarily in disassembly of the various weapons systems which are overhauled in Anniston.
Twenty employees from Red River Army Depot, most of whom are members of the RRAD travel team, are at Anniston Army Depot to assist in small arms production, primarily in disassembly of the various weapons systems which are overhauled in Anniston. (Photo Credit: Jennifer Bacchus) VIEW ORIGINAL

The team is also working on the AMC Safety and Occupational Health Management System. In this system, it’s not just the safety team leading the effort. Every employee and leader has an active role in safety, taking existing programs to the next level. George LeFevre, an operations safety manager at AMC, said the effort is taking all the existing safety programs and packaging them together in a systematic way.

“Leaders are committed and employees are engaged, so we get everyone involved in safety where they are,” LeFevre said.

The system involves identifying safety issues, mitigating them and developing a process to further fix the issues and train the force. LeFevre said this process is present in depots, plants and arsenals, and AMC is expanding on its success.

“It is going to take a paradigm shift in the way we think about safety,” he said. “It does changes the culture of an organization.”

Major subordinate commands are in the process of developing their plans to support this effort. The goal is to have the AMC Safety and Occupational Health Management System fully implemented by fiscal year 2025.

Sgt. Raul Vega, safety non-commissioned officer, 1184th Deployment and Distribution Support Battalion, observes Marines with the Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force - Crisis Response – Central Command 20.2, as they guide a MV-22B Osprey down the ramp of the MSC Green Ridge at the Port of Shuaiba, Kuwait, Aug. 7, 2020. (U.S. Army photo by Claudia LaMantia)
Sgt. Raul Vega, safety non-commissioned officer, 1184th Deployment and Distribution Support Battalion, observes Marines with the Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force - Crisis Response – Central Command 20.2, as they guide a MV-22B Osprey down the ramp of the MSC Green Ridge at the Port of Shuaiba, Kuwait, Aug. 7, 2020. (U.S. Army photo by Claudia LaMantia) (Photo Credit: Claudia LaMantia) VIEW ORIGINAL

As a testament to the emphasis AMC is placing on safety, the command earned five 2020 Army Safety Awards. The award winners include the following:

  • Exceptional Organization Safety Award – Army Service Component Commands/Direct Reporting Units 2-Star Commands: Tank-automotive and Armaments Command (Detroit Arsenal, Michigan)
  • Exceptional Organization Safety Award – Brigade Level: Watervliet Arsenal (Watervliet, New York)
  • Exceptional Organization Safety Award – Garrison: U.S. Army Garrison - Fort Drum (Fort Drum, New York)
  • Industrial Operations Safety Award – Red River Army Depot (Texarkana, Texas)
  • Individual Award for Excellence in Safety – Noncommissioned Officer: Sgt. Raul Vega, 1184th Deployment and Distribution Support Battalion, Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (Camp Arifjan, Kuwait)