BPU To Achieve Year Without Lost-Time Accident

A dedication to safety has paid off for the Jamestown Board of Public Utilities.

On Monday, during a BPU board meeting, safety committee members were congratulated for a record accomplishment of not having a lost-time accident during the past year. David Leathers, BPU general manager, said Wednesday will be one year without a lost-time accident occurring for any employee at the utility. He said the previous record was 146 days.

”We really feel good about the direction we are heading in,” Leathers said. ”All employees are thinking safety first before starting a job.”

Leathers said in recent years, BPU employees have improved safety through the use of two committees dedicated to making the utility a safer place to work. There is a Safety Steering Committee and a Utility-Wide Safety Committee that receive information from employees about potential safety hazards, and then the groups respond to each inquiry.

In other business, Leathers said the new BPU residential recycling credit program seems to be working. He said it seems there are significantly more recycling bins being taken to the curb side in the city. Orange bins were delivered to BPU residential solid waste customers in February. The new recycling program involves radio-frequency identification technology – also known as RFID. An RFID tag is attached to all the new orange recycling bins with each customer’s address and account information. The bin is similar to a water or gas meter that belongs to each customer. With technology on the trucks, each bin will be scanned to determine which customers recycled and which ones did not.

Starting this month, the BPU will track who recycles. Those who recycle will be given a credit or discount on their solid waste bill. Starting in May, the new monthly charge for solid waste will be $20. However, your bill will only be $10 if you recycle. The previous BPU rate for garbage and recycling collection was $12.10.

”There is a lot more participation,” Leathers said.

Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi, BPU board member, thanked the staff at the BPU for their work in educating city residents about the new recycling program. From advertisements to informative flyers attached to each bin, BPU officials have used several sources to educate customers about the new recycling program.

”Communication is a key to the program,” Teresi said.