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Precision Econowind Earns Another Renewal Of Its SHARP Certification!

Long-time USF SafetyFlorida client, Precision Econowind, Inc. of Ft. Myers has earned another SHARP award. Precision manufactures custom-wound electric coils, primarily voice coils for loudspeakers. Serving the coil industry worldwide for over 40 years, the company also winds coils for medical, scientific, aerospace, industrial and consumer applications.

precision econowind sized

Precision Econowind president, Terry Tingley, with USF SafetyFlorida consultant, Jim Ulseth

According to president Terry Tingley, the company first learned of the OSHA On-Site Consultation Program in the early 1980s and earned its first SHARP exemption in 1984. Since then the company has qualified for SHARP status over 10 more times. “We have always qualified for SHARP though we let our certification lapse for a number of years during the transition from the Florida Department of Labor to USF SafetyFlorida thinking that the program was discontinued,” says Tingley. He credits the program for creating and maintaining a strong culture of safety throughout his plant in the 3 decades since he joined the program.

“We were looking for a lab or consultant that could test our factory air quality when we first heard of the program,” Tingley remembers. “We use adhesives that have common solvents: alcohol, acetone and MEK. We felt the exposure was very low, but we needed to know for sure from an expert. The On-Site Consultation Program was perfect. We had a full day with the industrial hygienist who gave us numbers – both maximum permissible and our actual levels. His confirmation that our actual levels were far from any maximums was a comfort to us all.”

“We also knew we needed a more formal safety program than our pay-attention-and-try-to-be-careful system,” Tingley continued. Back then, the consultation program gave us a full second day with the safety consultant who helped with a formal safety program and did a walkthrough to look for any physical hazards.”

Tingley noted that SHARP’s biggest benefit to the company over the years has been the big boost to both managers’ and employees’ attitudes toward, and awareness of, safety, including a formal plan for safety meetings and a safety committee, recommended by the program and implemented by the company. Facility walkthroughs over the years, most recently by USF SafetyFlorida consultants James Ulseth and William Tomlin, made Precision employees aware that management was interested in, and would respond to, safety concerns.

“Whenever the consultants identified occupational safety and health issues that needed correcting,” Tingley said, “we used those issues as opportunities to increase awareness and educate employees. “Our safety record has always been good, but I feel certain that the USF SafetyFlorida consultation program has prevented accidents.”

OSHA gives its SHARP award to small and medium-sized employers who operate an exemplary safety and health management system. To qualify, a company must do the following:

• request an on-site consultation from USF SafetyFlorida;

• involve employees in the consultation process;

• correct hazards identified by the consultant;

• implement and maintain a safety and health management system that adheres to OSHA’s 1989 Safety and Health Management System guidelines;

• maintain DART and TRC rates below the national average for the company’s industry;

• agree to notify USF SafetyFlorida prior to making any changes to working conditions or introducing new hazards into the workplace.

To learn more about USF SafetyFlorida and the importance of workplace safety and health, visit http://www.usfsafetyflorida.com/