When Tammy DalBello joined Nitrex as the Manager of Quality and Regulatory Operations, she soon learned that plant safety was also part of her responsibilities. The 30-employee Aurora-based company heat treats metal parts that belong to their aerospace, automotive, and machining customers. By its nature, heat treat can be a dangerous industry, and DalBello knew that worker safety would be one of her highest priorities.
She connected with IMEC after hearing about programs to help manufacturers recognize and avoid health hazards associated with industrial chemicals. IMEC specialist Ed Huey conducted a detailed assessment, pinpointing opportunities for safety improvement. He then worked with the Nitrex team members to address the problem areas.
“Sometimes it’s the little things, like electrical panels not being labeled or doors opening the wrong way,” said DalBello. “Even more than that, our associates are dealing with hot flames, so proper techniques are crucial. Once you see these challenges outlined in a report, it’s obvious that they need to be corrected.”
DalBello is proud to report that Nitrex’s work paid off. The company was recognized by the Tooling and Manufacturing Association for having one year with no illness or lost times due to accidents. In addition, Nitrex estimates achieving $142,500 in savings (cost avoidance) as a result of the projects.
“You can definitely attribute the cost savings to the discipline we have developed with IMEC’s help. We’re paying less in worker’s compensation premiums and nothing in emergency room bills. That’s a huge return from a half-day audit and training.”
DalBello appreciated Huey’s approach. “He was very collaborative in showing us the right reasons to do things without being overly critical of our approaches,” she said, adding that Huey is also working with the team on developing standardized work instructions on a variety of key operational functions.
- $142,500 in cost avoidance savings
- Achieved one year w/out illness or lost time from accidents
- Reduced workers comp. premiums
“We really love the fact that IMEC is here for us. They have so many resources for a smaller company, it’s incredible.”
– Tammy DalBello, Manager of Quality and Regulatory Operations