Oakland’s Valley Distributors Recognized for Workplace Safety Bookmark and Share

June 7, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 7, 2012
Contact: Julie Rabinowitz, 207-621-5009

AUGUSTA—Commissioner of Labor Jeanne Paquette announced that Valley Distributors facility in Oakland has earned the Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program Award (SHARP). This certification recognizes businesses that voluntary undertake a rigorous safety achievement program.

“Employers earn SHARP recognition by operating their facility under exemplary safety and health management standards,” said Governor Paul R. LePage. “I congratulate Valley Distributors. Protecting workers is the right thing to do for both Maine’s people and businesses.”

Acceptance into SHARP by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recognizes each business as a model for worksite safety and health standards.

“We congratulate Valley Distributers and our other 58 SHARP locations for becoming certified,” Commissioner of Labor Jeanne Paquette said.

“Companies that achieve SHARP status demonstrate that focusing on worker safety is of utmost importance,” she explained. “These companies know that better safety also means less lost time due to injury and illness as well as lower workers’ comp costs.”

To qualify for SHARP, companies must undergo a comprehensive audit, correct all hazards identified during an onsite health and safety consultation, demonstrate that effective safety and health programs are in place and maintain injury rates below the industry average for the last year of completed data. After awarding the SHARP designation, OSHA removes the worksite from its general scheduled inspection list for two years. If the company continues to meet all conditions of the program, the SHARP designation may be renewed for another two years.

Fewer than 2,000 worksites in the United States have earned SHARP certification.

Employers interested in learning more about the SHARP designation should contact SafetyWorks! at 1-877-SAFE 345 (1-877-723-3345) or http://www.safetyworksmaine.com . SafetyWorks! provides a trained consultant with industry-specific expertise who will review the facility by appointment. The consultation may include elements such as recognizing safety hazards, sampling for air and noise exposures, recommending ways to reduce or to eliminate hazards, developing or improving a safety program, complying with federal OSHA regulations and identifying training needs.

SafetyWorks! is not OSHA and cannot issue fines or citations to private businesses. While SafetyWorks! assists businesses of any size, priority is given to small businesses. The program trains about 8,000 people and consults at nearly 1,000 worksites in Maine each year.

-end-

SHARP worksites serve as industry models