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Keeping Employees Safe: Lumber Manufacturer Trains Staff on Proper Forklift Usage


Deer Park Lumber, Inc., founded in 1982 by Ron Andrews, has emerged as a pioneer in sustainable practices within the lumber industry. Operating from a small sawmill in Tunkhannock, PA, the company processes hardwoods like Red Oak, White Oak, Cherry and Ash using environmentally conscious forest-management and production processes. The company's commitment to sustainability is guided by Mr. Andrews and his family – sons Ryan and Matt, daughter Vanessa and son-in-law Dan DiMeolo, who plays a crucial role as plant manager and head of operations. Through decades of dedication, Deer Park Lumber has not only sustained continuous growth but has also become a benchmark for responsible business practices in Pennsylvania's lumber sector. As the company looks ahead, its pioneering approach to sustainability solidifies its role as a leader, driving positive change in the lumber industry.

The Challenge

In the current workforce, it is important to train new and existing employees, especially when it comes to duties that are more complex and play a role in keeping a workplace safe. Deer Park Lumber demonstrated its commitment to employee development and workplace safety by seeking certification for five employees to serve as instructors for the safe operation of forklifts. This initiative highlighted the company's dedication to ensuring that a select group of employees had the necessary skills and knowledge to effectively train their colleagues in forklift operation protocols.
Deer Park Lumber needs to utilize NEPIRC’s trainings and services more because they will be able to assist with our organization's growth and overall process efficiency.
— Brad Georgetti, Director of Human Resources

MEP's Role

Deer Park Lumber chose to partner with NEPIRC, part of the Pennsylvania MEP and the MEP National Network™, to provide its Forklift-Train-the-Trainer program to a group of pre-selected Deer Park employees. To kick off the training, NEPIRC's authorized OSHA outreach trainer toured Deer Park Lumber and provided an on-site inspection to better understand the company’s concerns. NEPIRC’s trainer then performed a safety inspection of Deer Park’s powered equipment and provided a detailed report of his findings and recommendations. Lastly, the group of employees participated in the training class, which focused on general forklift safety and instructing the attendees on how to train their colleagues to operate Deer Park’s powered equipment. The group also got to partake in an obstacle course using the forklifts, and NEPIRC’s trainer was able to address any concerns the trainees had.
Created January 23, 2024