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SWANA Names 2020 Safety Award Winners

Silver Spring, Md. – The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) is proud to announce the winners of the 2020 SWANA Safety Awards are Leck Waste Services for Biggest Safety Improvement and Estancia Valley Solid Waste Authority and OC Waste & Recycling for Best Safety Innovation. SWANA is also recognizing the City of Charlotte Solid Waste Services Department and Guahan Waste Control, Inc. for their response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“SWANA is very pleased to recognize these outstanding companies and agencies for their safety leadership,” stated David Biderman, SWANA Executive Director & CEO. “Their remarkable safety improvements and innovations reflect a commitment to reducing accidents and injuries in the industry. Nothing we do is more important,” added Biderman.

Biggest Safety Improvement

The 2020 SWANA Safety Award for Biggest Safety Improvement goes to Leck Waste Services, a family-owned solid waste management company serving Greater Philadelphia. Leck Waste Services transformed its safety program by introducing new weekly safety training, an enhanced new hire orientation program, defensive driving training, video recording systems in all vehicles, and many other valuable improvements. The result was a significant drop in its Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) from 10.77 in 2018 to 4.878 in 2019 and reductions in auto liability and workers’ compensation claims.

“I am very proud of our team at Leck Waste Services for receiving this SWANA safety award. Safety is not just something you do; it must be part of you. As President of Leck Waste Services, it is my job to make sure that every employee goes home safe to their family at the end of the day every day. But it is everyone’s job to put safety above productivity and that is what our team does on a daily basis,” said Jason Leck, President of Leck Waste Services.

Best Safety Innovation

The 2020 Safety Award for Best Safety Innovation goes to Estancia Valley Solid Waste Authority and OC Waste & Recycling.

The Estancia Valley Solid Waste Authority in New Mexico incorporated a safety incentive program to reduce its worker compensation claims and its premium. This incentive program was designed to create a stronger safety culture and enable employees to maintain a high level of awareness. The result was Estancia Valley SWA’s safety rating going from one of the worst in the State of New Mexico to one of the best.

“The Estancia Valley Solid Waste Authority is committed to safety,” said Martin Lucero, The Estancia Valley Solid Waste Authority Manager. “We believe that safety is a culture and it begins every day when you start at work. We are continually mitigating risk through our safety program and monitoring how we can effectively get better. ‘Work safely today because someone expects you home tonight.’”

OC Waste & Recycling in California launched OC Safety, the County’s first safety management enterprise software tool. Replacing different reporting methods across departments, OC Safety brought all safety-related administration together in a single, automated system for training, safety inspections, near misses, incidents, and injuries. It enabled easy and instantaneous tracking of near misses, incidents, and injuries, providing valuable trend analysis systemwide.

“The 2020 SWANA recognition for Best Safety Innovation is appreciated by our entire team,” said Tom Koutroulis, OC Waste & Recycling Director. “OC Waste & Recycling is honored to receive this award for what it means to our employees – safety as a core component of our culture protecting public health and the environment. Thank you SWANA for your recognition and thank you to the OC Waste & Recycling team!”

In addition to honoring this year’s SWANA Safety Award winners, SWANA is recognizing two entries for their COVID-19 pandemic response, the City of Charlotte Solid Waste Services Department in Charlotte, North Carolina and Guahan Waste Control, Inc. in Tamuning, Guam.

SWANA would like to thank Autocar, Caterpillar, and Jacobs for their sponsorship of this year’s Safety Awards program.

The 2020 award winners will be recognized at the SWANA Annual Business Meeting held virtually on December 9, 2020 at 4:00 p.m. ET.

To learn more about SWANA’s Safety Awards, visit https://swana.org/community/awards-scholarships/safety-awards.

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