Superintendent of Safety Terry Hartwig is excited about the development of a Safety Department that’s separate from service.
“All of the team’s time is out in the field with employees; we have no other obligations but their safety,” he said.
The team is 100% focused on safety activities, rules compliance and training for all departments. To help with the task, John Christensen, Jeff Mateyack, Bill Peck and Jeff Zoeterman were appointed managers of safety on Sept. 1; each of them held a previous leadership role at the Belt.
“As we’re involved with every department, our challenge is to spend as much time as possible learning what each craft does so we can get them the tools they need to do their jobs safely,” Hartwig said. “It’s been eye opening.”
Hartwig added that Christensen, Mateyack, Peck and Zoeterman were selected, in part, because of their individual experience in the Engineering, Mechanical and Transportation departments, helping the Safety team reduce its learning curve.
“I’m extremely excited to lead the team, come up with enhancements and make this a safer railroad,” Hartwig said.
He believes the new department will add value.
“We’re prioritizing safety, allowing our leadership team to truly make a difference,” said Hartwig, who noted having individuals with boots on the ground provides a special opportunity to gather vital feedback. “We’ll be working closely with employees in the field. They’re the reason this place runs.”