OSHA's VPP Reaches Milestone

It is the OSHA equivalent of a hole-in-one. The agency signed up its 1,000th Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) Star Site, the Titleist Ball Plant II in Dartmouth, Mass.

The Titleist plant, a facility of Acushnet Co., was welcomed into the program during a ceremony held at the plant.

"The Voluntary Protection Program is the Labor Department's premier initiative to promote and recognize excellence in occupational safety and health," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao. "The employees and management of the Titleist Ball Plant are to be congratulated for achieving OSHA's official recognition for their outstanding efforts."

Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health John Henshaw presented the award to William J. Frye, senior director of golf ball manufacturing of Ball Plant II, during a flag-raising ceremony held at the manufacturing facility.

"We are proud to welcome Titleist's Dartmouth plant into VPP and to celebrate OSHA's 1,000th VPP site," said Henshaw. "The employees at the plant embody the commitment to excellence in safety and health. We are pleased to reach this milestone and look forward to continued growth in VPP."

Acushnet Co., which manufactures golf equipment under the Titleist, FootJoy, Cobra and Pinnacle brands, employs approximately 4,600 associates worldwide including 2,200 in the greater New Bedford, Mass., area, making it the area's largest employer. Over 400 associates are employed at the Dartmouth plant, the fourth Acushnet Co. facility to earn Star Site status.

In May of 1996, Titleist Ball Plant I was named as the first VPP Star Site recipient in the sporting goods industry. Titleist Custom Golf Ball Operations located in New Bedford, and Acushnet Co. Packaging Center in Fairhaven, also earned VPP Star Site status in 1998 and 2001, respectively.

"We are extremely proud of our Ball Plant II associates for their continuing commitment to safety and health programs and are once again honored that OSHA has recognized them and Titleist for VPP Star status," said Wally Uihlein, chairman and CEO of Acushnet Co. "We would especially like to thank Assistant Secretary Henshaw for attending this celebration and recognizing the performance of our hundreds of associates who take pride in their work and performance each and every day."

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