Games promote safety

The Ashdown Mill’s safety activity challenge got off to a great start in 2014 with events presented by the mill’s Engineering department. The activities for the month were based on their slogan, “Don’t Play Games with Safety”.

The main event for the month of January was a safety game show designed to find the “Smartest Safety Employee” in the mill. The competition featured representatives from each mill department and the game show winner was crowned champion. The winner received prizes including a trophy, a prime mill parking spot, a gift card and a luncheon for their area. There was a lot on the line for each participant.

The competition started with a true/false elimination round that focused on mill rules and safety performance. Three employees went on to a final round called “Safety Jeopardy”. In the tradition of Alex Trebek of Jeopardy fame,   Philip Thomas, expert engineer, was the host.

The contestants – Steve Hancock, entry level engineer, Toby Gathright, maintenance and Richard Penn, maintenance – had to provide questions to the presented answers about many mill safety rules and regulations. The contest was close and the “Final Jeopardy” round made the difference, with Richard being crowned the Safety Jeopardy Champion. Congratulations to Richard who was representing the pulp maintenance team.

There were many winners for the day with “Let’s Make a Deal” mini games occurring between rounds to involve the audience members. The audience also included 40 students from Ashdown High School who learned a lot about an industrial setting and the importance of safety. The students also assisted by filming the event as a school project.

A highlight of the event was when contestant Karen Lewandowski, Purchasing, explained to the audience why she worked safely every day and the important reminders that she carries with her on her key chain. The Accounting department had the most demonstrative fans, who cheered loudly in support of their representative and even made signs. Audience spirit was tremendous and everyone had a great time.

Other game-themed activities during the month included Safety Aware Bingo, Healthy Living Crossword Puzzle and an Eating Right Word Search.

Anna McFarland, entry level engineer, led the effort for the engineering department and did a great job of kicking off the year on this positive note.

The Safety Activity Challenge is sponsored by the Safety Wellness and Activity Team (SWAT) of the Ashdown Mill and is a yearly competition between 12 areas of the mill to crown an annual safety activity champion. The engineering department started the year on a positive note and set the bar high to try to dethrone the wood procurement group, which won the 2013 Safety Activity Challenge.