DTE Energy Company, Building Trades, Contractors and MIOSHA Sign Partnership to Protect Workers

Contact: Melanie Brown 517-373-9280
Agency: Licensing and Regulatory Affairs

October 9, 2013 – DTE Energy Company, the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA), the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA), the Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council, and the Partnering Contractors, signed a formal partnership on Monday, October 7, 2013 to protect workers during construction activities. The partnership goal is enhanced safety and health protection and zero injuries for workers on this facility project.

“We’re honored today to recognize the exemplary leadership of DTE Energy and their commitment to worker safety and health on this project for DTE and Barton Malow,” said LARA Deputy Director Stephanie Comai.  “Their commitment sends a strong message that providing a safe and healthy work environment is a sound business decision."

The DTE North Area MATS Program includes the addition of Dry Sorbent Injection (DSI) Systems and Activated Carbon Injection (ACI) Systems at Belle River Units 1 and 2; St. Clair Units 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 7.  The program may also include the addition of a central sorbent storage Depot-Terminal that will serve as the central receiving location for both power plants. Modifications to the grounds and infrastructure are anticipated along with heavy construction in connection with additions to the current operating Power Plants in East China Township, Michigan.

Signing partners included: Russel Pogats, Director, DTE Energy North Area Power Plants; Justin Morren, Plant Manager, Belle River Power Plant; Leanne Warner, Plant Manager, St. Clair Power Plant;  Daniel Fahrer, Director of Environmental, Fossil and Facilities, MEP;  Stephen Booker, Manager Capital Projects, MEP; Dennis Decator, Senior Project Manager, MEP; Alan Albert, Construction Manager, Barton Malow; Steven Freed, Project Director Barton Malow; Chuck Binkowski, Industrial Group Vice President, Barton Malow;  Martha Yoder, Director, MIOSHA.  Also signing were all of the subcontractors and building trades unions working on the project.

Partnerships are an important emphasis in MIOSHA’s Strategic Plan to improve the health and safety of workers through cooperative relationships with groups, including trade associations, labor organizations, and employers. Partnerships move away from traditional enforcement methods and embrace collaborative agreements. 

The Partnering Employers include:  DTE Energy Company and Barton Malow Company

The active integration of the DTE Energy Safety and Health Program along with this partnership with the trade unions, subcontractors, and MIOSHA, will endorse the ultimate goal of ZERO INJURIES.

Recognizing that engineering techniques alone are not enough to ensure that exposure to hazards is controlled; the partnering employers will implement common safety goals to assure safety through these elements:

  • Adherence to all safety policies, procedures, and MIOSHA standards.
  • 100% fall protection over 6 feet, including steel erection and roof work. 
  • 100% Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including hard hats, eye protection – prescription eye wear with side shields or ANSI Z-87.1 protective safety glasses with built in side shields, high visibility apparel and appropriate work footwear. 
  • All crane operators will be Certified Crane Operators (CCO) as recognized by National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) and other recognized certification agencies. 
  • Substance Abuse Testing through M.U.S.T. or equivalent program – adherence by All Trade Contractors.
  • Pre-Task Safety Plan (“PTP’s”) are to be completed and submitted to Barton Malow Company prior to beginning the work defined as but not limited to – Excavations, Trenching and Shoring, Sewer and Underground Piping Tasks, Confined Space Entry, Fall Protection, Steel Erection and Decking Work, , Concrete Slab Installation, Siding Installation, Lock Out/Tag Out, High Voltage Electrical Exposure, Critical Lifts, etc.
  • PTP’s must be posted at the work area and reviewed with workers prior to beginning work.
  • Contractors shall provide a Competent and/or Qualified Person for work operations as identified by a MIOSHA standards and/or Barton Malow/Black and Veatch.
  • DTE Electric Company and the partnering employers on this project will uniformly enforce a disciplinary action plan for employees who fail to work in a safe manner.  Automatic dismissal from this project shall result from any willful or deliberate violation of safety rules or safety policies and procedures.

“The MIOSHA program is dedicated to working with employers to find innovative ways to enhance workplace safety and health,” said Martha Yoder, MIOSHA Director.  “Through partnerships, MIOSHA can offer employers a voluntary, cooperative relationship to eliminate serious hazards and achieve a high level of safety and health.”

The partnership does not preclude MIOSHA from enforcing its mission of addressing complaints, fatalities, or serious accidents, nor does it infringe on the rights of employees to report workplace hazards.

DTE Energy Co. is a diversified energy company involved in the development and management of energy-related businesses and services nationwide. (www.DTEEnergy.com)

For more information about MIOSHA, please visit www.michigan.gov/miosha.  “Like” us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

For more information about LARA, please visit www.michigan.gov/lara.  Follow us on Twitter, “Like” us on Facebook or find us on YouTube.