EWEB 2023 year in review
In 2023, EWEB invested in our community with grants, rebates and an array of other programs and measures aimed at fulfilling our core values of safety, reliability, affordability, environmental responsibility and community/culture.Find Out More
EWEB Recognized with Excellence in Communications Awards from American Public Power Association
We are proud to have been recognized with two Excellence in Public Power Communications Awards for 2023 from the American Public Power Association (APPA).Find Out More
Let's talk turkey. If a disaster strikes, is your family ready?
Many of us avoid discussing politics over the dinner table in the spirit of family peace and harmony. But here's a topic that can bring everyone together: emergency preparedness.Find Out More
EWEB To Hold First of Two Public Hearings on Proposed 2024 Budget and Prices
At the Nov. 7 Board of Commissioners meeting, EWEB staff will present a proposed budget that includes rate increases necessary to support utility operations and make needed infrastructure investments.Find Out More
Your EWEB Rates at Work: Investing Today for a Resilient Tomorrow
For more than a century, EWEB has planned, built, and maintained the systems that deliver safe, reliable, and environmentally responsible power and water to Eugene homes and businesses.Find Out More
Public Power Week Poster Contest Winners 2023
The results are in! View the winning posters from EWEB's 2023 Public Power Week Poster Contest.Find Out More
EWEB’s water infrastructure projects designed for reliability during major disasters
As communities nationwide Imagine a Day Without Water, EWEB strives to ensure such a day never happens.Find Out More
EWEB lead annual "Spill Drill"
EWEB coordinates drill as part of protecting Eugene’s drinking waterFind Out More
Public Power Week Poster Contest 2023
It’s that time of year again! October 1-7 is Public Power Week. To celebrate, EWEB is holding our annual poster contest for fifth graders in our service area. Help us pick the winners.Find Out More
Salmon Return to Finn Rock Reach
Finn Rock Reach and other restoration projects throughout the Middle McKenzie provide conditions to help young fish survive to adulthood.Find Out More
EWEB programs reflect community values
EWEB is here to serve our customer-owners and provides programs that reflect the values of our community.Find Out More
EWEB Prepares for the Annual Observance of "Imagine a Day Without Water"
Water infrastructure is essential, invaluable, and in need of continuous investment. Read how EWEB's Staff and Board of Commissioners are working to safeguard Eugene's water future.Find Out More
National Preparedness Month: Older adults take control in 1, 2, 3
We know older adults can face greater risks when it comes to the extreme weather events and emergencies we face, especially if they are living alone, are low-income, have a disability, depend on electricity for medical needs, or live in rural areas.Find Out More
Women in STEM: EWEB Engineer Laura Ohman's second degree brings a lifetime of benefits
EWEB Engineer Laura Ohman shares how getting her second degree was one of the most difficult and rewarding things she's ever accomplished.Find Out More
Bethel neighbors boost emergency preparedness during Emergency Water Station event
Staff gave out about 300 emergency water containers to enthusiastic community members eager to learn more about the water station.Find Out More
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EWEB Earns National Safety Award
June 18, 2018
The premier water utility trade association in the United States has recognized EWEB's impressive safety record and proactive approach to implementing best practices for employee safety and health programs as one of the best in the nation.
The American Water Works Association presented the Wendell R. LaDue Safety Award to Chief Water Engineering & Operations Officer Mel Damewood and EWEB Commissioner John Simpson at its annual convention in mid-June. The scientific and educational trade group includes more than 3,900 utilities that supply roughly 80 percent of the nation's drinking water.
"I really want to stress that this is an award earned by all the employees at EWEB," Damewood said. "Staff has made safety our primary cultural attribute, and I'm proud to be a part of the safety culture here at EWEB."
Evaluation of award nominees includes a review of a utility's safety record over the past five years, safety and health program best practices, the scope of systemic safety training initiatives at all levels, and the breadth of safety culture throughout the organization, said EWEB Safety Manager Mark Maguire.
"They evaluate your entire safety program, not just two or three years' of performance," Maguire said. "They really do a deep dive into the foundational components of your program, including accountability, commitment to best practices and management's support of safety as a strategic priority."
In addition to holding monthly safety meetings throughout the organization to discuss accidents, near-misses, "good catches," unsafe conditions, what's working and what needs improvement, field personnel conduct "tailboards" prior to beginning work activities each morning to keep safety front and center.
Along with in-house safety staff, we utilize outside vendors to provide relevant training to employees that ranges from fall protection and trench safety to CPR/First Aid and confined space instruction.
The nature of the work at EWEB, whether installing new water pipes in deep trenches, working in close proximity to high-voltage power lines or operating hydroelectric projects that include dams and power canals, places field personnel in hazardous conditions on a daily basis, Maguire said.
When accidents or near-misses do occur, we explore and investigate those incidents to improve our practices and processes with the intention to eliminate or at least mitigate hazardous conditions.
EWEB's commitment to safety reaches all levels of the organization -- from upper management to crew personnel. It's understood that shortcuts or unsafe work practices not only affect the person performing that act, but all those working around them as well. The fundamentals of performing work safely and the value of that action are built into our culture.
"The practice of working safely is not performed based on regulatory requirements, but on the premise that employees go home each and every day after work in the same condition that they arrived, and that nobody is injured," Maguire said. "And senior management understands the moral and financial value of providing a safe workplace."
Maguire, who has worked in the industrial safety field for more than 20 years, said he doesn't have to "sell" safety at EWEB because safe work practices at all levels are ingrained in the culture. EWEB won the same safety award from the AWWA in 2015.
"To have the performance we had and have is pretty remarkable given the high-hazard nature of the work we do," Maguire said. "To earn this award two out of the past four years speaks well of our program and our culture."