BC Forest Safety Council

BC Forest Safety Council

April 25, 2007 13:37 ET

Forestry Truck Safety Leader Wins Award for Efforts in Harvesting Sector

PRINCE GEORGE, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(CCNMatthews - April 25, 2007) - A BC Forest Safety Council director known affectionately throughout the industry as "bulldozer," has been honoured with the Interior Logging Association's Member of the Year Award. MaryAnne Arcand, director of the Council's Forestry TruckSafe and Northern Initiatives program earned the nickname and award because of her relentless pursuit for safety in the industry as well as her outstanding contribution to the harvesting sector. She received the award during the ILA's 49th Annual Trades Convention.

Arcand has spent the past one and a half years advocating safer practices in the forest industry, particularly in the log hauling sector. In the last year alone, she has met with over 6,000 workers and their families teaching them about safe practices and responding to issues and their concerns. She has travelled to every logging community in the province, held over 60 meetings and spoke at over a dozen conferences.

Wayne Lintott, general manager of the ILA, says Arcand deserves the award because she puts her heart into her work. "She's made a tremendous difference in our industry," says Lintott. "MaryAnne's brought log haulers closer to contractors and licensees, and opened up the lines of communication."

Arcand says she was shocked when she received the award. "I'm not the only one doing things," says Arcand. "The entire Council is just as determined as I am to make a difference and everyone is working their tails off."

In 2006, the Council and Arcand helped to implement the first radio campaign targeted at drivers to encourage them to share the road and drive safely. They also began working on a joint-industry strategy for resource road management, adopting vehicle identification plates for trucks and managing technical development work on steep-slope hauling standards.

Arcand plans on continuing these initiatives through 2007 while also focusing on a few other major projects. Two of these projects include initiating the development of a log truck driver certification program and working actively with the Council to launch the SAFE Companies program for independent operators.

Arcand says the key to her job is meeting people in their communities and helping them to believe in safe practices. "This is how it has to be done," says Arcand. "Bureaucratic solutions don't work on the ground."

The Interior Logging Association's Member of the Year Award was established in 1974. The recipient is chosen by the ILA's Board of Directors who vote approximately six weeks before the annual convention. Each recipient receives a plaque and a note of recognition for their contribution to the harvesting sector. Previous winners include Sharon Wilkinson previously of Revelstoke and Marcel Payeur of Vernon.

The BC Forest Safety Council is a not-for-profit society dedicated to promoting forest health and safety. The Council was founded and is supported by all major forestry organizations in B.C. and works with forestry employers, workers, contractors and the provincial government and agencies to implement changes necessary to eliminate fatalities and serious injuries in the forest sector.
For more information about the Council or to view a copy of the Council's 2006-07 Progress Report visit www.bcforestsafe.org

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