Trailerbodybuilders 12093 Ut Glade Spring Va Safety Award Cropped

Utility’s Glade Spring VA plant earns Liberty safety award

May 22, 2019
The Glade Spring VA manufacturing plant of Utility Trailer Manufacturing recently received a Liberty safety award.

The Glade Spring VA manufacturing plant of Utility Trailer Manufacturing, the industry’s largest manufacturer of refrigerated trailers, recently received a plant safety award from Liberty Mutual Insurance.

Richard Williams, a risk control consultant with Liberty Mutual, presented the Silver Safety Award to a group of Glade Spring employees.

“Receiving a safety award is an honor and takes a total team effort to accomplish,” said Keith Walsh, Utility’s Glade Spring environmental health and safety (EHS) manager. “Keeping safety at the forefront everyday with employee participation is key to earning such an award. Employees identifying hazards, removing them, or managing them in the work place, keeps us all safe.”

Liberty’s safety awards are based on the days away, restricted and transferred (DART) rate, which is calculated from the number of hours worked relative to the number of accidents at the plant. Lower numbers of accidents result in lower DART rates.

In 2018, Utility’s Glade Spring plant had a DART rate of only 1.36, with more than 1.3 million worked hours. The average DART rate for the trailer manufacturing industry is 3.9. A Silver Safety Award is presented for DART rates that are at least 40% lower than the industry average. The Glade Spring plant’s DART rate was nearly 1/3 of the industry rate.

“This is the fifth Liberty safety award for the Glade Spring plant,” said Bob Griffis, corporate EHS manager for Utility Trailer. “This is a huge honor, particularly considering less than 0.5% of Liberty’s customers receive this award.

“More importantly, our employees are continuously focused on the safety of themselves and each other.”

Added Sam Cassell, Utility’s Glade Spring plant manager: “Walking through the front door of the Glade Spring facility, the commitment this team has toward safety is obvious. It is reflected by the five safety awards hanging on the wall. Each of our over 700 team members were part of achieving each of those awards. An award like this is more than a commitment toward doing the job safely, it is a commitment each team member has toward each other. Many of our employees will stop others, even managers, to point out safety issues. That is a commitment toward safety and to each other.

“I cannot express how proud I am of each person on the shop floor.”