The Entergy Operations Lockport Service Center in Lockport, La., has earned membership in the prestigious Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP) of the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) at the "Star," or highest, level. Bruce Stark, VPP coordinator in OSHA's Baton Rouge, La., area office, participated in a recognition ceremony.

"Entergy Operations has demonstrated excellence in effective safety and health management," said OSHA regional administrator Dean W. McDaniel in Dallas. "Its outstanding record includes zero lost workday incidents in more than 20 years. The company is a real role model for the industry."

The Entergy Operations Lockport Service Center operates and maintains power lines that provide electricity to both residential and commercial customers in Lafourche Parish, including the cities of Lockport and Golden Meadow, La., and the town of Grand Isle, La., in Jefferson Parish. The company's 17 employees in Lockport construct and repair power lines, provide meter service and install street lights in the surrounding area.

More than 1,860 worksites nationwide have earned entry into OSHA's VPP. Requirements include a high degree of management support and employee involvement; a high-quality worksite hazard analysis; prevention and control programs; and comprehensive safety and health training for all employees. Each of these elements must be effective, in place and in operation for at least one year before a company can apply to join the VPP. Companies in the VPP achieve average injury rates 50 percent lower than other companies in their respective industries.