Concurrent Technologies Corp. representatives will visit Wright-Patterson Air Force Base April 5. They will partner with Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command safety officials to brief Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command senior leaders as well as commanders, safety and medical representatives from Air Force Material Command bases via a video teleconference.
The briefing will outline the plan for implementing the Voluntary Protection Program throughout the Air Force as well as the Air Force Materiel Command, the Air Force's lead major command for the Voluntary Protection Program.
Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command will be available to aid bases throughout the Voluntary Protection Program process.
"Our safety office will form a working group to help the Air Force Materiel Command bases implement the Voluntary Protection Program and to help bases close existing gaps following Concurrent Technologies Corp. assessments," explained Charles Pyron, ground safety manager at Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command. "Each base's safety office will facilitate the program while the center commander will assume responsibility for the program."
Ultimately, the Voluntary Protection Program is compliance driven. To achieve a program category of recognition, a decline in illness and injury has to occur.
"We have Air Force Instructions that tell us how to do our job and do it safely," said Lt. Gen. Terry Gabreski, Air Force Materiel Command vice commander. "The Voluntary Protection Program initiative will help Air Force Materiel Command take its health and safety program up a notch."
In turn, that should equate to a decline in lost days and compensation costs. In fiscal 2005, the Air Force Materiel Command had 11,397 lost days which equated to about $59.3 million in total compensation costs.
"We've got to do everything possible to preserve our most important resource - people," Gabreski said. "As we become more familiar with the Voluntary Protection Program, it will help stimulate the work force to institute new programs and perfect existing programs for providing safe and healthy working conditions. Ultimately, we want co-workers telling their colleagues 'hey, put your earplugs in' or 'wear your safety goggles'."
The first Air Force base scheduled for assessment by Concurrent Technologies Corp. is Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., in late April.
" Concurrent Technologies Corp. will then visit and assess Robins Air Force Base, Ga., Hill Air Force Base, Utah, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio and Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass.," said Pyron. "So our five bases will know what their health and safety gaps are by the end of September. Through active involvement from leadership and the work force, we'll start to close the gaps."