Great year for safety, and a plan to improve

Great River Energy had a historic year for safety in 2020, recording the lowest injury rates in its 21-year history.

As employees take on new projects in 2021, they are encouraged to learn from good catches and near misses to continuously improve the

Employees conducted bucket truck self-rescue training in 2020 while wearing masks to protect themselves and their coworkers.

safety culture.

Great River Energy’s remarkable safety scores are particularly impressive given they coincided with the additional safety hazard of

containing the spread of the coronavirus.

“Everything we do, we do with safety in mind. Our employees know that there is no schedule or budget that is more important than doing their jobs safely,” said Great River Energy President and Chief Executive Officer David Saggau. “In 2020, we showed our commitment to safety as employees and contractors worked in new ways to slow the spread of COVID-19.”

Seeking continuous improvement

“We are realizing the hard work we put into safety with the lowest injury rates we’ve ever had, but we still have work to do,” said Mark Fagan, vice president and chief corporate and member services officer and Enterprise Safety Council (ESC) sponsor.

Great River Energy created a cross-divisional ESC in 2019 with a goal of setting strategy and policy for safety across the cooperative, specifically focusing on safety culture and training, leadership and communication.

“With the success of 2020, the council has a goal of implementing an enterprise-wide human performance program, which will drive learning and continuous improvements in safety and operations,” Fagan said. “Though our human performance program is not a replacement for our safety programs, we’re hopeful it will encourage employees to speak up if they see potential safety hazards and share those experiences so we can ensure all employees work in a safe environment.”

Fagan is an ESC sponsor along with Jon Brekke, vice president and chief power supply officer, and Priti Patel, vice president and chief transmission officer.