“Part of our mission at Hypertherm is to provide for the wellbeing of our Associates; this includes creating a culture that is focused on safety. Our ultimate goal is zero incidents.”
- Evan Smith, President and CEO of Hypertherm
Safety excellence starts with a culture that promotes Associate involvement and teamwork. Associates, leaders, Safety Team, ergonomist, health care staff, and engineers work together to develop workplace enhancements that improve the wellbeing of Hypertherm Associates.
We are committed to meeting and exceeding the requirements of OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) for all manufacturing locations. To date, seven Hypertherm facilities have been recognized as VPP “Star” facilities.
To realize our goal of zero accidents, we are committed to:
- Providing mechanical and physical safeguards to the maximum extent practical
- Administering a program to identify and eliminate unsafe working conditions
- Instructing Associates in good safety practices
- Providing personal protective equipment and instructions for its use and care
- Promptly and thoroughly investigating any accident to determine the cause and correct the problem
Engineering controls are Hypertherm’s preferred hazard prevention approach. Examples include:
- Installing overhead hoists to limit hazards associated with moving heavy objects
- Using automated height-adjustable build tables
- Fully enclosed and interlocking CNC machines to reduce machine hazards and exposure to metal working fluids
- Using automated assembly machines to reduce repetitive motion risks
- Automating and enclosing printed circuit board coating operations to reduce solvent exposure and repetitive motion risks
- Installing fully adjustable office workstations, and having a professional ergonomist set them up
All Associates complete annual safety training sessions, and more than 175 have been trained in emergency first aid. We also foster safety awareness through shift meetings, monthly team safety talks, Safety Champ meetings, and monthly Safety Council meetings, in addition to regular bulletin board postings.
Low accident frequency rate
In 2017, Hypertherm’s efforts continued to focus on reducing repetitive motion injuries. We worked to prevent such injuries by shortening the length of time spent on any one task, and also getting Associates aggressive physical therapy at the first sign of symptoms. These efforts reduced our total recordable rate from 1.9 in 2015 to 0.5 last year, placing us well below the 4.0 average for our industry.