RICHMOND, Va., Oct. 21, 2020 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — Commissioner C. Ray Davenport announced today that NAES Southampton Power Station in Franklin, Virginia, has been recertified as a Virginia STAR Worksite under the Virginia’s Occupational Safety and Health (VOSH) Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP), the agency’s highest level of recognition for excellence in safety and health management systems. The facility was honored with its fourth recertification since being originally certified on December 13, 2004. NAES operates the biomass fueled Southampton Power Station which is owned by Dominion Energy, Inc.
“This outstanding achievement in occupational safety and health has come through the dedication and hard work of NAES Southampton Power Station employees and management. I commend NAES Southampton Power Station for embracing the cooperative spirit of VPP, and congratulate them on their hard earned recertification as a Virginia STAR Worksite,” said Commissioner Davenport.
NAES Southampton Power Station’s commitment to providing a safe and healthy workplace for its employees is demonstrated by its low injury and illness rates. The Franklin facility has a total three-year average for the TCIR (Total Case Incident Rate for injuries and illnesses) of 0.0 compared with a Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) national rate of 6.4, representing a TCIR rate 100% lower than the national average for the industry. The site’s three-year average DART rate (Days Away, Restricted, or Transferred injury and illness cases) is 0.0, compared with the national rate of 2.1, which is 100% below the national average for the industry.
As part of the recognition for achieving Virginia STAR status under VPP, the worksite is entitled to fly the Virginia “STAR Worksite” flag. The NAES Southampton Power Station facility is the only STAR Worksite in Virginia for NAES and is one of two NAES VPP STAR sites currently in the United States.
Virginia businesses that participate in VPP substantially improve safety and health protections for thousands of Virginia employees through cooperative efforts to reduce injuries, illnesses, and fatal accidents. VPP STAR sites regularly report decreased bottom line costs associated with dramatically reduced injury and illness rates (an average of approximately 50% below the respective industry average), and improved productivity and employee morale. Reducing private sector employer costs associated with injuries, illnesses, and fatal accidents enhances a company’s economic viability, competitiveness, and increases available capital for reinvestment, expansion, and new hiring.
VOSH operates six recognition programs. These include:
1 – Virginia STAR is a cooperative relationship between the VOSH program, the employer, and the employees that include the agreement of company leaders to operate exceptional safety and health management systems that meet a rigorous set of occupational safety and health criteria. Participating employers agree to voluntarily participate in the program and to directly involve employees in all aspects of the company’s safety and health management systems. Requirements include an extensive application process, submission of written safety and health policies and procedures, demonstration of successful implementation of those programs through injury and illness rates that are below the national average for the employer’s industry, and an intensive weeklong inspection by a team of VPP experts.
2 – Virginia BEST (Building Excellence in Safety, Health and Training) is a strategic partnership between the DOLI and the Associated General Contractors of Virginia that recognizes AGCVA members who voluntarily implement highly effective safety and health management systems to benefit construction workers and reduce or eliminate injuries, illnesses, and fatalities on construction sites in Virginia.
3 – Virginia BUILT is a new strategic partnership between the DOLI and the Associated Builders and Contractors of Virginia and is designed to encourage and recognize ABC-VA members who voluntarily implement highly effective safety and health management systems to benefit construction workers and reduce or eliminate injuries, illnesses, and fatalities on construction sites in Virginia. The Virginia BUILT program incorporates the ABC STEP program (Safety Training Evaluation Process) as the gateway to participation in Virginia BUILT.
4 – Virginia CHALLENGE is a formal three-stage recognition program that dramatically improves safety and health at the worksite and prepares the company to apply for Virginia STAR recognition.
5 – VOSH–VADOC CHALLENGE is a strategic partnership between the DOLI and the Virginia Department of Corrections (VADOC) to recognize safety and health excellence at correctional facilities around the Commonwealth. Three stages of participation in VADOC Challenge prepare a site to apply for Virginia STAR recognition. Virginia has the only two correctional facilities in the nation to have received VPP STAR status, Augusta and Lunenburg Correctional Centers. For additional VPP information, contact Milford Stern, VPP Manager, at (540) 562-3580, ext. 123, or Milford.Stern@doli.virginia.gov.
6 – Virginia SHARP recognizes businesses of 250 employees or fewer and is administered by the DOLI VOSH Consultative Services Division. Contact Tracy Michaud, Consultation Program Manager, at (804) 786-8707 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
DOLI also offers free On-Site Consultation Services to help employers better understand and voluntarily comply with VOSH standards. Priority is given to high hazard workplaces with 250 or fewer employees and all services are offered to employers at no cost. On-Site Consultation Services helps employers identify and correct potential safety and health hazards by conducting walk-through surveys (without citations or penalties), abatement advice, on-site training, and program assistance to develop safety and health programs.
For additional information about On-Site Consultation Services visit https://www.doli.virginia.gov/vosh-programs/consultation/.
News Source: Virginia Department of Labor and Industry