BRI Receives North Carolina Gold Award for Second Consecutive Year

Being safe at work isn’t a given for every organization, especially for those who work with machinery or in production. But BRI strives to make it a given for its employees. That’s why receiving the North Carolina Department of Labor’s Gold Safety Award for the second consecutive year is more than a pat on the back; it’s part of the BRI culture.

The award program recognizes companies that “achieve and maintain good safety records.” To achieve this milestone, BRI had no fatalities during the calendar year and was at least 50 percent below the average incidence rate for the agriculture industry group. The Gold Award is based on the days away, restricted, transferred (DART) rate. That rate is an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) calculation that includes cases of days away from work, restricted activity or job transfer because of injury.

“At BRI, we strive to make safety the standard through visual metrics boards that are updated daily and accountability for everyone to focus on safety,” said Brad Heidinger, BRI Vice President of Business Operations and Strategy. “We’ve driven the culture to look for trip hazards, pallets overhanging and overall being more proactive about our safety. We report and correct near misses every day, and safety is evaluated like any other part of job performance.”

Since 2014, BRI has implemented several process changes to improve the safety culture. From 2016 to 2019, BRI received four consecutive Gold Awards and has received a Gold Award in six out of the past seven years.

Established in 1946, the safety award program includes more than 5,000 companies. Approximately 3,000 awards are presented every year, and in 2021, the Department of Labor presented 2,046 Gold Awards.

“The safety awards program exemplifies that what these hard-working North Carolinians do every day at work matters,” said Josh Dobson, North Carolina Commissioner of Labor. “It shows that they are totally committed to keeping their workplace safe, so everyone makes it back home safely day after day. It creates a drive within a company to continue that goal of award-winning workplace safety and to maintain that standard year after year. There is proof that this program works to reduce injury and illness in the workplace, and I am so proud of those who work tirelessly to make that a reality.”

BRI employees will accept the award at the Raleigh Safety Awards Banquet on Friday, June 3.

“We celebrate our safety success and own it at every level of our organization,” Heidinger said.