OFFICE OF GOVERNOR MATT MEAD
Cheyenne, WY 82002
Ph. (307) 777-7437
January 23, 2013
******FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE******
Governor Thanks Transportation Industry for Taking on Safety
CHEYENNE, Wyo. – According to Governor Matt Mead workplace safety must continue to be a priority for all of Wyoming. Governor Mead brought together representatives from the transportation industry to discuss forming a safety coalition and work on ways to make the industry safer. The concept would be similar to the Wyoming Oil and Gas Industry Safety Alliance (WOGISA) and the Wyoming Refinery Safety Alliance.
2012 provisional figures show there were 23 workplace fatalities in Wyoming, a decrease from 48 in 2007. In 2012 more than 50% of the fatalities were in the transportation industry and over the last decade 60% of workplace deaths occurred in the transportation industry.
Governor Mead appreciates this coalition coming together. “The transportation industry presents workplace safety challenges for employers and employees alike. I believe the transportation industry can do better.” Governor Mead also said his office and the Department of Workforce Services stand ready to assist the coalition. “This coalition can focus initially on the root causes of transportation fatalities and begin to develop practices to reduce deaths.”
“It is important to identify and address the safety challenges of driving in Wyoming and communicate those challenges to the public, especially drivers who are not familiar with Wyoming’s roads, Wyoming’s weather and long distances travelled,” Sheila Foertsch the Managing Director of the Wyoming Trucking Association said.
Over the last few years Wyoming and industries here have implemented initiatives to try to reduce workplace fatalities and injuries. Wyoming hired a state occupational epidemiologist to analyze workplace fatalities and injuries. Seven new safety consultants were hired and trained by the Department of Workforce Services. The Legislature also appropriated funds for small companies to purchase safety equipment such as flame retardant clothing. The oil and gas industry formed WOGISA and the refineries in the state formed a similar coalition, the Refinery Safety Alliance.