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forest talk

Pictured, from left, are Fiona Ewing and Steve Yeoman with the Volcanic Plateau Logging crew, the 100th forestry crew to get an industry tick of approval for its safety. Photo: Matt Jordan - Jordan Creatives.

Volcanic is 100th certified contractor TAUPO-BASED VOLCANIC PLATEAU LOGGING HAS BECOME the 100th forestry contractor to be awarded Safetree Contractor Certification. It comes less than a year after the first contractor achieved certification – MCH in Nelson – and the milestone has been hailed as a great achievement by the Forest Industry Safety Council (FISC), which runs the scheme Volcanic Plateau Logging director Steve Yeoman says he and his eight-man crew are pleased with the achievement. “We take a lot of pride in our work,” he says. “So, it’s great to have our good work practices officially recognised by the industry.” The award was presented to the crew by Fiona Ewing, National Safety Director of FISC. The certification scheme was set up to reduce injuries in forestry and Fiona says it is great to be awarding the 100th certificate adding: “This scheme is helping to lift safety standards in forestry and it’s great to see so many forestry contractors joining.” She stresses the importance of health and safety to forestry as an ongoing issue, citing the fact that six forestry workers were killed on the job last year and the first fatality of 2019 occurred in mid-February near Tolaga Bay.

8 NZ LOGGER | April 2019

“People like Steve and the Volcanic Plateau crews are showing that it is possible to work safely in forestry,” says Fiona. Steve has a second crew with his brother Vincent, Volcanic Plateau Harvesting, which was the 101st to become certified. “It’s also great to see forest owners investing in the safety of their contractors,” Fiona says. The Volcanic Plateau crews work for forest owner Timberlands, which contributed to the cost of getting certified. Forestry is in Steve’s blood. His father works in forestry and he studied forestry at Canterbury University, planting trees in the holidays. After his OE, he returned home to a harvesting manager role and then moved into contracting with the Ribbonwood Group. This crew morphed into Volcanic Plateau Logging ten years ago, which Steve runs with his wife and co-director, Julie Yeoman. Steve says the process of getting certified was pretty straightforward, including a site visit by an auditor who watches and talks to crew members to make sure safety plans are actually being put into practice. “It’s quite user-friendly,” adds Steve. “We’re already pretty focused on safety because that’s just part of running a good business. But the audit was an opportunity to have an independent person look at what we are doing and confirm that it is good practice.” NZL

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NZ Logger April 2019  

NZ Logger April 2019  

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