By Mr Thomas Peske (AMC)July 21, 2011
CRANE, Ind. " Crane Army Ammunition Activity employees reached a safety milestone of more than four million hours worked without a lost workday incident and continue to go strong.
The milestone, marked from June 11, 2009, until July 18, 2011, means any injuries encountered by CAAA employees on the job were minor enough that no employee missed a full day of work after their injury.
“We could not have achieved this without your safe work efforts,” CAAA Supervisory Safety Engineer Walt Shearin wrote in a message to employees. “This is amazing given the type of work we do on a day-to-day basis. It not only means that the severity of our incidents has been minor and we have reduced pain and suffering but it also results in savings and reduced man-hour cost.”
The employees of CAAA know and understand the dangers involved in their job. The Activity receives, stores, ships, produces, renovates and demilitarizes conventional ammunition, missiles and related components. Because of those dangers, the entire workforce has cultivated its culture of safety in order to avoid accidents and injuries. Evidence of this culture is seen in the command earning a Star Status designation in the Voluntary Protection Program last year. VPP promotes effective worksite-based safety and health.
According to the CAAA Commander Col. Linwood Clark, the milestone reflects directly on the culture of safety Crane employees have developed in their workspaces.
During a recent all-hands Safety Stand Down, Clark emphasized the importance and rarity of the milestone. He said, “You should be proud of this accomplishment… No other (Joint Munitions Command) Depot operation can state this claim.”
Part of what makes the current safety streak impressive is the hazardous conditions under which the work is performed. “We have weathered ice, snow, extreme heat, increased workload, and extended work weeks without anyone losing a day from work due to a work related injury,” Shearin wrote. “It is not a time to become complacent. The type of work we do requires us to never let our guard down and conduct composite risk management on a continuous basis.”
A culture of safety developed over the years is credited for keeping the workforce from having a work-related injury that would cause a lost work day. It is part of the Activity’s core beliefs that they cannot provide ammunition for the Warfighter on time, every time if the employees are not safe in the first place. In addition to being a VPP Star Status site, CAAA also utilizes the SafeStart program to keep employees educated and aware of potential hazards.
While it is unknown how long CAAA will continue past this safety milestone, it is clear that it is part of a total effort to ensure the activity can always supply the Warfighter with its best.
CAAA was established in Oct. 1977 and is a tenant of the Navy Region Midwest, Naval Support Activity Crane. The Army activity maintains ordnance professionals and infrastructure to receive, store, ship, produce, renovate and demilitarize conventional ammunition, missiles and related components.