Two Government Group Employees Awarded for Safety Innovation

Savannah River Scientist Mary Baird and LOGCAP HSE Supervisor Kevin McCann named to National Safety Council's Rising Stars of Safety, Class of 2018
Thursday, September 27, 2018 2:10 pm EDT



Amber Wilson, HSE Communications, Greenville, South Carolina, United States

Both Mary Baird and Kevin McCann are dedicated to caring for their coworkers on their Government Group projects.  Their efforts not only help improve their sites’ safety performances but have earned them much deserved national recognition. Baird and McCann, along with 37 other young safety professionals, were recently named to the National Safety Council's (NSC) Rising Stars of Safety, Class of 2018 for bringing creativity, enthusiasm and excellence to their workplaces.

“These young safety leaders aren’t afraid to take risks or try a new approach to help keep their colleagues and communities safe,” Deborah A.P. Hersman, NSC president and CEO, said in an article in the organization’s Safety + Health Magazine.

“Kevin and Mary are shining examples that if you’re committed to changing  the status quo and have the tenacity to see your ideas through, then it doesn't matter what level or role you have in the organization, positive influences will follow ” said Mike Aliers, Fluor Government Group Health, Safety and Environmental (HSE) director. “These two professionals are raising the bar for safety innovation at Fluor and inspiring their peers to take the lead in cultivating caring, preventive safety cultures at their sites.”

Baird Dons T-rex Suit to Raise Safety Awareness at Savannah River Site

When Baird started working for Fluor-led Savannah River Nuclear Solutions at the Savannah River Site (SRS) in 2014, she joined the local safety improvement team (LSIT).  Through LSIT, she was able to find out about what other employees did on site and learn about the site safety culture. She later became the group’s co-chair, then ultimately chair.  In that role, she networked with other teams across the site and learned there was an opening to teach a monthly behavior-based safety class.

SRNS Scientist Mary Baird, center, has taught more than 100 employees about the benefits of behavior-based safety at SRS in Aiken, South Carolina.

She has now taught more than 100 site employees about the benefits of behavior-based safety and introduced them to the importance of a Safer Together culture.  

Baird also isn’t afraid to think outside the box when it comes to safety message retention. In 2016, SRS experienced an up-tick in slips, trips and falls. The safety team quickly realized they needed to disseminate information to help draw employee attention to these hazards.  That’s where “Trip” was born. 

Baird played the role of Trip, a Tyrannosaurus Rex who helped raise awareness of potential slips, trips and falls to employees. Trip videos were played at monthly safety meetings, and Trip showed up to safety expos and other safety-related events all over the site. By the beginning of 2017, the site experienced a 40 percent drop in slips, trips and falls cases, according to Baird.

“Safety isn’t just equipment and procedure,” Baird said. “By simply getting involved, you have the opportunity to remind at least one person that they matter. Just imagine how far-reaching that little reminder can go.  Gandhi said, ‘The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in service of others.’ Show up, get involved, and use your talents – it truly makes a difference.”

McCann Encourages Hazard Reporting at Fenty Airbase

During his six years with the Government Group HSE team, McCann has witnessed the negative effects injuries can have on a workplace, such as decreased employee productivity and morale. He also recognizes that since a company’s incident rate may be an evaluation factor for potential future contracts, an injury to one employee may affect the livelihood of all employees.

HSE Coordinator Kevin McCann, at left, conducts training at LOGCAP IV Project Fenty Airbase.

McCann’s optimistic attitude and personable nature put his co-workers at the Logistics Civil Augmentation Program (LOGCAP) IV Project Fenty Airbase in Afghanistan at ease and make them more likely to discuss potential hazards or near miss situations freely.

He recently created the “You Did It!!!” safety program to highlight employees who notice and report a near miss or unsafe condition. Photos of the hazard before and after its mitigation are posted alongside positive recognition of the employees for their attention to safety.  Besides encouraging employees to report hazards, the program has improved employee confidence that these issues will be resolved.


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