Safety is still number one
Sep 1, 2016
On August 4 just past, the Blue Ridge Electric Cooperative employee team reached another milestone—a full year of work without either a lost-time or a worker’s compensation accident. I take my hat off to this hard-working group of individuals for this achievement.
To say these folks view safety as a serious matter would be an understatement. It would require fewer than the five fingers on one hand to enumerate the recordable accidents the Blue Ridge workforce has experienced within the last 10 years.
Safe work practices
I could point to three key elements that, with the blessing of our board of directors, are largely responsible for the cooperative’s successful safety program. For one, we conduct weekly employee safety meetings at each of our division offices. These sessions are designed for the review of any current questions or concerns about safety. Employees are also exposed to regular, formal presentations that place emphases on safe work practices.
Secondly, Blue Ridge offers comprehensive job training for all our workers. Such training exercises are supplied through different resources the cooperative has at its disposal. In-house, on-the-job training would rank as the number-one means of employee development. However, courses provided via our Statewide Association’s training package and classes taught by Tri-County Tech are strong complements to what we’re trying to accomplish in this important area.
Finally, we believe very sincerely in the concept of employee wellness at Blue Ridge. Our wellness coach provides overall guidance to employees on topics such as a personal exercise routine and good nutrition. One-on-one counseling is also part of this effort toward encouraging commitment to quality lifestyle choices. The physical, the mental, and the spiritual aspects of living are all addressed as vital parts of our wellness program.
Employee, member, and public well-being
Obviously, the cooperative is dedicated to the well-being of its employees. Moreover, that focus extends far beyond just the individuals who comprise our workforce. We understand that safe job performance also contributes to the well-being of the many members we serve, as well as to that of the general public.
Here at Blue Ridge, our folks take pride in following proven work rules and practices. That’s one of the welcome demands that goes with operating a member-owned utility.
Charles E. Dalton