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Culture of Awareness Sets the Tone for Safety

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Crown Equipment

In the category of safety, actions carry more weight than words. Actions are what build a culture, and at PEER Bearing, a manufacturer of bearings for many industries, including agriculture, industrial transmission, material handling, and more, safety is a cornerstone of company culture.

The company's North American headquarters facility in Waukegan, Ill., contains a 200,000-square-foot distribution center for bearings manufactured at its other facilities throughout the world. In Waukegan, PEER Bearing receives approximately 100 pallets of material each day while also processing a variety of outbound orders ranging from single packages to full pallets.

Because of its safety culture, warehouse personnel regularly consider new tools that can help reinforce positive behavior. Management knew there was a lot of operational data that could be gathered and used to enhance safety but had no way to effectively capture the information and package it to help them make informed decisions. Deployment of a forklift fleet and operator management system was a natural addition to the Waukegan facility.

PEER Bearing selected Crown Equipment's InfoLink® fleet and operator management system to help remove the guesswork from its fleet management process and to enhance its safety culture. Today, pre-shift inspections are electronically captured, helping to ensure each forklift is safe to operate and the company's inspection system is compliant with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations.

According to Leo Linval, assembly and repack supervisor for PEER Bearing, "Our operators have become more aware as to safety and the operation of the trucks—making sure they stay on top of what it is they are supposed to be doing."

Linval's colleague, Steven Smith, who is a shipping and receiving backup lead, echoed the notion of responsibility as well as the environmental benefit of eliminating a paper checklist.

"I think InfoLink is a great addition because each user is accountable when operating each piece of equipment here. Learning it was smooth—a piece of cake. Just input your ID number and you basically save time, and the trees, by going through your checklist."

Also, impact detection has helped change operator mindsets, making safety a priority in PEER Bearing's day-to-day operations.

Added Linval: "The impact-detection feature is certainly a great deterrent to preventing those behaviors that would cause operators to get into accidents. Our operators have definitely taken notice. It causes them to slow down, be more cautious in certain areas, and not drop boxes on pallets [in a manner] that would set off the impact-detection system," he said. "InfoLink has definitely contributed to the safety of our operation by kind of being another set of eyes out on the floor when supervisors obviously can't be everywhere at once."

Linval also attended a two-day Crown Equipment Demonstrated Performance TrainSafe® Train-the-Trainer course where he developed the skills and tools necessary to efficiently train his PEER Bearing colleagues regarding truck features and safe operation.

"The training was certainly beneficial," Linval said. "It's given me a lot of training tips that I can use but also gave me a lot of insight into the safety and OSHA standards that go into the overall safety of our operations."

Visit our Customer Results website to learn more about the benefits PEER Bearing achieved with Crown Equipment, and click here to learn more about Crown Equipment's full suite of forklift training programs.

Contributed by Crown Equipment Corporation, www.crown.com