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Haws® Corporation invents, manufactures, and builds standardized and customized hydration and emergency response products. Customers vary from heavy industrial and refinery sites to schools and local municipalities. Founded in 1906, Haws® Corporation, has its global headquarters in Sparks, Nevada.
The Haws culture has a strong foundation in safety and takes great pride in continuous improvements in safety products and processes. To encourage progressive safety practices, Haws®Safety Supervisor, Melanie Mayer, and other team members often attend trainings offered by the Nevada Safety Consultation and Training Section (SCATS). “The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), On-Site Consultation Program, and Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) were discussed during one of these sessions, and we decided that we would like to pursue the award,” said Haws® Communications Specialist, Samantha Hoch.
The OSHA On-Site Consultation Program offers no-cost and confidential occupational safety and health services to small- and medium-sized businesses in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and several U.S. territories, with priority given to high-hazard worksites. On-Site Consultation services are separate from enforcement and do not result in penalties or citations.
“We regularly use SCATS for occupational assessments when we do not have the technical capabilities in-house, said Mayer. “When a Job Hazard Analysis identifies a potential hearing or industrial hygiene risk, we rely on SCATS to perform the assessment.”
In December 2013, during the initial On-Site Consultation visit, the Nevada SCATS consultant identified two main types of hazards: electrical (misuse of power strips, extension cords, etc.) and using water hose type clamps on air lines. Haws® corrected all of the identified hazards, using cross-functional teams, comprised of operations supervisors and managers. Each team had assigned action items that they tracked and managed to completion in biweekly meetings.
People from all levels of the organization continue to contribute to workplace safety activities. For example, building maintenance personnel were trained on what to look for to prevent the electrical and air line issues. Feedback during the walkthrough also revealed that a need for consistent clarity about reading Safety Data Sheets (SDS), so an in-depth training session on reading and retrieving SDS was conducted. Now, one SDS is reviewed in each bi-weekly Production Meeting. In addition, the Safety Supervisor is available in each Production Meeting to answer questions.
Given the Haws® business history and product offering, achieving SHARP status was an organizational priority, and resources were assigned as needed. The company has benefitted in several ways from working with Nevada (SCATS). Employee engagement in the safety programs has increased. Workers’ compensation insurance premiums have decreased. “We have always had a very strong safety culture, but the involvement of line employees has increased since we decided to go for SHARP,” noted CEO Tom White. “The whole Haws® team is proud to have achieved the award, and everyone continues to work diligently to report hazards and maintain a high level of safety. It’s important that we demonstrate the value of safety culture.”
On June 11, 2018, Haws® vision and hard work were rewarded; the company joined the ranks of OSHA Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program recognized participants. This program recognizes small business employers who have used the OSHA On-Site Consultation Program services and operate an exemplary safety and health programs. Acceptance of a worksite into SHARP from OSHA is an achievement of status that singles the company out among its business peers as a model for worksite safety and health.
To locate the OSHA On-Site Consultation program nearest you, call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) or visit www.osha.gov/consultation.
Sources: Samantha Hoch, Communications Specialist, Haws®
Melanie Mayer, Safety Supervisor, Haws®
John Lindgren, Industrial Hygienist, State of Nevada Safety Consultation and Training Section