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Safe Start-Up Breakfasts

The national programme of breakfasts in 2017 was PF Olsen's biggest ever, and a great success with speakers such as Graham Henry (Northland), Scott (Razor) Robertson (Canterbury), and Lance Burdett (Rotorua and Opotiki). We also utilised a new venue in Rotorua – the Distinction Hotel – and all 320 in attendance appreciated this change.

Guest speakers in the Central North Island were Lance Burdett, OTPP Director Traci Houpapa, Mike Spiers & Peter Clark of PF Olsen Ltd, and for Worksafe New Zealand, Graham Bates in Rotorua and Phillip Jennings in Opotiki.

Lance Burdett has held a variety of jobs in the New Zealand Police Force, and is probably best known for his crisis negotiation skills. His stories from “behind the tape”1 were not only very interesting, they also embodied practical advice for the audience. Some of those practical tools offered by Lance included how to recognise stress, manage emotions, and strengthen personal resilience. Many present commented on how they had personally benefited from Lance’s speech.

The breakfasts are always a great opportunity to celebrate success. With seven years of random drug testing completed, PF Olsen contractors have worked hard to reduce positive testing rates from the high of 17% in 2010 to just under 2.5% at the end of 2016. Many contractors have achieved numerous rounds of clear tests for their entire staff.

Lance Burdett speaks at the Rotorua Safe Start Up Breakfast

To celebrate this improvement, Mike Spiers presented 13 Drug & Alcohol Operational Achievement Awards to Contractors who had two consecutive clear drug and alcohol random tests. Each received a certificate, and we will follow up with a smoko shout to recognise the guys out in the bush who are working hard on this serious health and safety issue.

Eight Safety Awards were then presented by Peter Clark, the CEO for PF Olsen and OTPP Director, Don Huse. A number of the award sponsors, namely McFall Fuels, AMS Group, TDDA, NZ Safety Blackwoods, Skellerup, and Zenitec (Logger) were on hand to congratulate the winners.

Congratulations for a job well done to the following award winners in the Central North Island.

  • Top Crew Award for Safety – Blackhawk Logging Ltd.
  • 2016 Most Improved Safety Award – Hohneck Tractor Logging Ltd.
  • 2016 Industry Support of Safety Award – Skyline Harvesting Ltd.
  • 2016 Safety Innovation Award – Mark Williams, Lakeview Helicopters Ltd.
  • 2016 Safety Champion’s Award – Wayne Ingram, H&R 75.
  • 2016 Safety Champion’s Award – Johnny Albert, Inta-Wood Forestry.
  • 2016 Safety Champion’s Award – Te Poroa (Choppy) Heurea, Wilson Bros.
  • 2016 Safety Champion's Award – Nathan Fogden, Inta-Wood Forestry.

New Health and Safety Initiatives

We are one month into 2017 and have several new health and safety initiatives underway;

Managing Risk at Forestry Worksites is a training programme that will see around 300 individuals trained across our managed operations. The training is based on a new ‘Safe Op’, which has been 12 months in the making. Most of the training courses will be held nationally between March and June. We kick off the first course in Rotorua in mid-February.

A Forest Operations Leadership course for foreman has been developed in collaboration with the AMS Group. This is a six day course (3 x 2-days sessions) designed to upskill operational foreman and help them be more effective at their jobs. A pilot will run in February and then be rolled out nationally.

PF Olsen will introduce a new software operating system called Noggin that our managers will use in-field. It follows considerable development and testing including the use of ruggedized tablets. Introduction and roll-out is set for the first quarter of 2017. The system will eventually allow contractors to directly submit their information.

The first Rotorua Contractor and Safety Champions meeting for 2017 will be held on February 28th. This meeting will focus on emergency management.

All in all, a big programme of training is planned and we look forward to updating readers with our progress in future editions.

1 Behind the Tape is the title of Lance Burdett’s book.