JLG's Shippensburg and Bedford, PA, facilities have received OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) STAR Site certification. JLG is the first company in the access industry to achieve this recognition from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and both facilities are the first in Cumberland and Bedford Counties to be named Safety Through Accountability and Reliability (STAR) sites.
“JLG joins a short list of just 2,217 facilities or one half of one percent of the approximate six million U.S. companies that have received this certification,” said Jeffrey Rush, vice president of manufacturing – Americas at JLG Industries. “That puts us in some pretty elite company and reflects the value JLG, parent company Oshkosh Corporation, and production teams in Shippensburg and Bedford place on safety.
STAR Site certification is the highest VPP certification level awarded by OSHA and follows a rigorous audit and onsite interviews that ensure a site is adhering to the strict guidelines set forth by VPP. Companies who achieve the VPP Star award record injury and illness rates at or below the national average for their industry. JLG reports a rate that is less than half the industry average.
To recognize their achievements, the Shippensburg and Bedford facilities hosted employee appreciation meals and public celebrations attended by employees, Oshkosh and JLG executives, OSHA representatives and local dignitaries.
“The significance of this recognition cannot be overstated and is definitely worthy of celebration,” said Josh Horton, JLG Industries director of manufacturing at the Shippensburg facility. “It is a testament to the members of our team, who work tirelessly every day to ensure the safety and well-being of those around them.”
“When it comes to safety, each member of the Bedford team takes seriously their responsibility for creating and maintaining a safe work environment,” added Gary Morgart, JLG Industries director of manufacturing at the Bedford facility. “We are exceedingly proud of this accomplishment, and we look forward to continuing our proactive approach to safety, an approach that prevents accidents and allows our team to go home the same way they came to work every day.”
Created in 1982, OSHA’s VPP recognizes and partners with businesses and worksites that show excellence in occupational safety and health. VPP sites are committed to effective employee protection that reaches beyond the requirements of OSHA standards. In its report, OSHA cited a number of areas of excellence at the JLG facilities, including: employee participation in safety, specifically as it relates to safety committee projects and the writing of job safety analyses; new employee training programs that teach job skills and ergonomic practices prior to introduction to the production environment; and response time to fix action items.
According to Rush, JLG began its journey toward VPP certification five years ago. “At that time Oshkosh Corporation introduced a three-level safety management system (SMS) that looked at basic safety practices as well as processes and employee engagement in safety. Working through this program positioned us to invite OSHA into our facilities to audit our processes and measure our team engagement in safety and safe-working practices. Safety is who we are at JLG. It’s part of a culture that makes the health and safety of our employees paramount and allows us to produce the outstanding results that earned this prestigious recognition.”
Employees at the JLG Shippensburg plant manufacture boom and scissor lifts, as well as telehandlers, while those at the Bedford facility reconditions boom lifts and telehandlers to their like-new condition.