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Textile Services’ Workplace Safety Continues To Improve

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Recordable injuries and illnesses in Textile Rental Services Association of America (TRSA) member workplaces were reduced 17 percent from 2008 to 2009 according to the annual TRSA Textile Services Industry Safety Report.

The survey, compiled from forms submitted to OSHA by members of TRSA, was launched in 2005 in conjunction with SafeTRSA, an industry-wide initiative to improve worker safety through awareness, education and training.

“Since its inception in 2005, the SafeTRSA program has helped member companies reduce recordable injuries and illness by more than 50 percent,” said TRSA President Joseph Ricci, “This program demonstrates the importance TRSA members place on the safety and well-being of their employees and their impressive gains reflect the success of SafeTRSA in highlighting areas of emphasis and improvement.”

In addition to identifying problem areas, the survey facilitates the sharing of information and best practices among members and prompts collaboration on new SafeTRSA initiatives, policies and procedures that improve safety.

TRSA members reduced their recordable injuries and illnesses per 100 employees (TRIR Rate) by 5.1, from 10.9 in 2005 to 5.8 in 2009. Also declining was the total number of injuries and illnesses per 100 employees resulting in days away from work, job restrictions and/or job transfers (DART Rate) which fell by a total of 2.2, from 6.2 to 4.0 or more than one-third. The most recent one-year DART Rate improvement was also about 17 percent.

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Textile Services Industry Gets National Spotlight

WILIMGTON, Mass. — Textile service executive Ronald Croatti recently appeared on the CBS-TV show “Undercover Boss.” Croatti is CEO of UniFirst Corp., in Wilmington, Mass. For most Americans watching “Undercover Boss” it was their first view inside a commercial laundry, which typically process between 10 million and 25 million pounds of uniforms, table linens, bed sheets, towels and more every year “The reusable textile services business is the original green industry,” said Ricci. “Commercial laundries reuse linen instead of filing landfills with disposable alternatives and continually discover new, innovative means to reduce energy consumption and recycle water. Our huge economies of scale allow laundries to use about two-thirds less water, energy and detergent than alternatives, such as washing at home, while hygienically cleaning textile products, improving disease control and reducing contamination.”