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Fonterra Initiative Earns Top Prize in LTSA Awards

24 February 2004

Fonterra Road Safety Initiative Earns Top Prize in LTSA Awards

Fonterra won the Overall Premier Award at the inaugural Land Transport Safety Authority (LTSA) Road Safety Innovation Awards in Wellington last night (Tuesday, 24 February 2004). Fonterra General Manager Milk Supply Steve Gunn said Fonterra placed considerable emphasis on all aspects of the milk tanker driver's work environment in an effort to promote road safety. This award recognised that strong level of commitment.

"Safety and performance on the road are a vital part of our programme, but we also address and measure many other aspects of our drivers' work.

"We have a strong focus on training and development, and staff health and wellbeing," Mr Gunn said. "We make our drivers particularly aware of how their performance on the road has an effect on other road users."

Judges noted Fonterra's innovative programme included the appointment of national training and development co-ordinators to help driver trainers at each depot improve skills and knowledge, and regular reviews and assessments of workplace injuries, vehicle safety, and education about fatigue, seatbelts and heath issues.

Road Safety Awards' Judging Panel Chair Stewart Milne said Fonterra's commitment to the health and safety of its own staff and focus on the safety of other road users earned the co-operative the top prize.

As part of the initiative, Fonterra established an 0800 number that members of the public could ring to relay any concerns, or praise, and each tanker is easily identifiable through carrying unique fleet numbers.

Fonterra's 450-strong fleet covers approximately 70 million kilometres every season, the equivalent of 91 return trips to the moon, to collect up to 14 billion litres of milk and transfer a further 500 million litres of liquids between sites.

The fleet, operated by 1350 employees at the peak of the season, carries 540,000 loads per season.

In spite of these volumes Fonterra had managed to reduce injury accidents among the fleet by 63%.

"The award is a real credit to the Fonterra employees involved and those running the programme," Mr Gunn said.

"It's recognition of the emphasis we put on safety."

The LTSA, which initiated the awards, said the Corporate Road Safety Award goes to an organisation that has demonstrated an outstanding commitment to encourage safe driving practices for its staff and provide safer vehicles within the organisation.

The winning organisation had to clearly demonstrate a commitment to road safety through the development and implementation of a safe driving policy.

Last night's (Tuesday, 24 February 2004) ceremony was the culmination of the first national awards programme for breakthroughs in New Zealand road safety. The Road Safety Innovation awards recognise outstanding achievements in:

* Road Safety Community Promoter
* School Road safety
* Corporate Road Safety
* Vehicle-Based Innovation and Improvement
* Road-Based Innovation

-Ends


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