If we’re ever accused of being preachy, it’s because we constantly preach that safety is most important. Safety at Suddath is a constant, daily mindset and it comes from the top of the organization. At a recent company meeting, our CEO said that if we are to become a leader in the industry, we need to excel at three things. Safety was first on the list and we demonstrate it by the investment we make in personnel and processes.
At other moving companies, you’ll often find only one person responsible for any area of safety, including DOT qualifications, keeping up with regulations, insurance, accidents, and the like. Many of our van operators have told us that when it came to safety issues at their former company, they were basically on their own.
We’re fortunate at Suddath to be able to divide our safety program into two distinct departments, allowing us to give van operators quicker and better attention. Our Risk Management department stays focused on OSHA compliance, insurance, accident prevention and resolution, and related areas. I’m the manager of Safety and Fleet Services at Suddath. My department oversees safety issues related to van operator qualification processes, equipment quality, and ongoing van operator safety. The Risk Management department and Safety and Fleet Services work closely together to ensure the highest safety standards and training programs possible.
Last year, our two departments contributed to earning UniGroup’s Van Liners Excellence and Loss Prevention Award. We’ve won it five years in a row. We competed against all of the carriers in the UniGroup system and were graded in categories of defensive driving training, number of accidents, claims ratio, van operator safety briefings with crew, and other areas. It’s one more validation of our commitment to safety. We expect to win the award again this year.
Jeff Osburn, Manager of Safety and Fleet Services, Suddath