May 2008 – AggBeat
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by Tina Grady Barbaccia, Senior Editor
Are You Ready for a Crisis?
How one company gets prepared.
The Shelly Co., an Oldcastle Materials Group company, took crisis management training to the next level by producing a mock fly-rock incident video shot on site at its East Fultonham, Ohio, aggregates operation. Operations Manager Jerry Mock decided to create the video as part of the site’s crisis management training program and to present at his annual plant manager’s meeting in February.
The video portrays actual employees preparing for a scheduled production blast when the blast goes awry and an employee is seriously injured. The local emergency rescue squads and police were involved in the staged rescue as well as Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) inspectors who were asked and agreed to participate. A simulated press conference scene was included to use as a media relations teaching tool for viewers. The 20-minute video was professionally shot and edited and includes a list of questions at the end, which are used for discussion purposes.
The final product emphasizes how quickly a crisis situation can arise when least expected and reveals the immediate actions that should be taken, demonstrates good management leadership and communication with employees, shows proper notification of authorities, depicts good press interaction, and emotes concern for the community.
“Every producer and construction company should be prepared for a crisis situation,” Joyce Watson, vice president of public relations for Oldcastle Materials Group, tells Aggregates Manager. “Our industry is vulnerable to any number of situations that could potentially happen — it could be an environmental spill, a fatality, a construction accident, an explosion, or a natural disaster.”
Watson notes that being prepared with a crisis plan, which includes a first response checklist, an emergency notification contact list, a designated crisis management team, and communications instructions, will make a significant difference in an operation’s ability to successfully manage and react to a crisis. “You won’t have time to deliberate on what to do when a crisis strikes so you must be prepared to implement your plan so that the situation does not go from bad to worse,” Watson points out. “The Oldcastle Materials Group is working proactively to ensure that it is prepared and this video will help us to meet that goal.”
Tilcon Open House Builds Community Relations
Tilcon New York Inc.’s Mt. Hope facility, located in Rockaway, N.J., plans to host its fourth annual open house on June 7 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. This is the fifth year for the event and has become an important part of the operation’s community relations effort. Tilcon is an Oldcastle Materials company. “Activities related to a community relations program contribute to building relationships, gaining an upholding public approval, and overcoming concerns and opposition,” according to Tilcon.
Last year, nearly 1,600 people attended the event and the facility won a National Asphalt Pavement Association (NAPA) Community Involvement Award in 2007, with the open house included as part of this effort. The Mt. Hope operation expects a similar number of attendees this year.
Invitations have previously been sent to all local K-6 grade district school children as well as to a retirement community. Flyers have been posted at community spots such as a local deli. Additionally, large signs have been posted outside of the facility to attract new visitors who drive by the operation but may not have been aware of the event. Tilcon plans to have a similar guest list this year. The mayor and town council were personally invited to the open house. “This is a great way to establish a relationship between the township and Tilcon to communicate the importance of the industry and how we play part in the community,” Tilcon notes in application for the NAPA award.
Bus tours of the facility as well as hands-on activities with township organizations including the police, fire department, historical society, and mineralogical society will be offered.
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