The Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) recently earned high honors from the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) for demonstrating excellence in workplace safety.
The award was presented at the APTA 2013 Bus Safety and Security Bus and Paratransit Conference held in Indianapolis and recognizes exemplary standards in the development of supportive programs that create and sustain a culture of safety within the workplace, the public and communities served. In fiscal year 2013, CDTA reported its lowest number of employee injuries in its Maintenance Department and the lowest number of severe cases overall in Authority history.
“Providing safe transportation services begins with a safe working environment for our employees,” said CDTA Chairman David Stackrow. “Accident prevention measures are the responsibility of management, employees and the public. We’re proud to have taken steps that make working and riding with CDTA safer for everyone and share our strategies as a role model for other transit agencies across the country.”
In a competition open to dozens of agencies across the country, CDTA was honored with the safety award in the category representing an annual ridership between 4 million and 20 million. CDTA’s past year ridership of 15.675 million is the highest ridership level recorded since the early 1980’s. Transit agencies were honored based on their ability to act as a model for other transit agencies by clearly demonstrating safety program benefits, innovation, and effectiveness, supported by hard core metrics.
In 2008, CDTA launched a comprehensive workplace safety program featuring the development of safety enhancements to improve working conditions and set policy and operational standards that reduce injuries. Successful strategies include mandatory use of protective equipment, mandatory safety training and refreshers, and the following provisions of accident prevention program; targeted group and individual training, analysis and procurement policies related to equipment purchases and injury trends. Safety committees were established in every division to identify safety issues and recommend solutions. Safety incentive awards are presented annually to employees who meet safety standards established by the company.
Since program inception, both reported injuries and severe injuries have decreased on average by about 50 percent, providing a safer working environment and significantly reducing worker compensation costs. For example to date Fiscal Year 2009 cumulative worker compensation claim costs have decreased 45 percent as compared to Fiscal Year 2008.
CDTA is working to improve safety and security measures at all of its facilities and on buses. The strategy includes the active promotion of the “If You See Something, Say Something” Campaign, the execution of community based emergency response drill exercises and the creation of a public safety and security video to be unveiled later this spring.