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Fayetteville PWC achieves safety milestone

From the September 5, 2013 issue of Public Power Daily

Originally published September 5, 2013

By Fallon Forbush
Communications Assistant
Employees of the Fayetteville Public Works Commission in North Carolina have surpassed 2 million work-hours with no lost-time injuries. This is the second time since 2007 that employees have exceeded the 2 million hour mark.

The utility’s last lost-time injury was Nov. 14, 2011.

The North Carolina Department of Labor recognized the PWC for its safety accomplishment. From left: CEO and General Manager Steven Blanchard, Employee Safety Committee Chairman Angelia Rutherford, Development and Safety Coordinator Andrew Dunlap and Chairman Wilson Lacy. Photo courtesy of Fayetteville Public Works Commission

"Attention to safety is a full-time job, the responsibility of everyone, and does not happen by accident," said Andrew Dunlap, development and safety coordinator for the utility.

The PWC has nearly 600 employees who enter confined spaces, work around electrical voltages of up to 230,000 volts, dig trenches more than 20 feet deep, handle hazardous chemicals and drive an average of more than 7,000 miles every day, the utility said.

"PWC’s successful safety record starts at the top with management support," said Dunlap. "PWC is highly focused on keeping its employees safe by being aware of on-the-job hazards and providing the tools, training and equipment to help protect them from these hazards."

The utility’s attention to safety in 2012 has been recognized with several awards:
  • the North Carolina Department of Labor’s Outstanding Work in Accident Prevention Award for 25 consecutive years of safety achievements;
  • the American Public Power Association’s Electric Utility Safety First Place Award for attaining a low accident frequency (see Public Power Daily, March 27); and
  • the North Carolina Association of Municipal Electric System’s Electric Safety Award for no lost-workday accident cases.
PWC CEO and General Manager Steven Blanchard offers his insight on achieving superior safety records and keeping safety top-of-mind for employees in an article, "Promising Safety," that appears in the September 2013 issue of Public Power magazine.


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Senior Vice President, Publishing 
Jeanne Wickline LaBella

Editorial Director
Robert Varela

Editor, Public Power Daily
Jeannine Anderson

Communications Assistant
Fallon W. Forbush

Manager, Integrated Media 
David L. Blaylock

Integrated Media Editor 
Laura D’Alessandro