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Miller goes injury free

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October 3, 2002

ALBANY- Case after case is packed with Miller beer, while employees like 23-year veteran Donnie Goodman keep a close eye and hand on the high powered machinery.

"Of course it's very dangerous, if you don't watch what you are doing on a machine it can eat you up," Goodman said.

But since January of this year, none of the Albany breweries' 640 employees has been injured. Add that up and it totals more than one million hours.

"We've got all employees involved in safety from time they walk in the door until the time they leave," Plant Manager Chris Thelen said.

That clear by signs that serve as reminders in and around the plant, and a highly automated conveyor belt system that keeps workers from really ever having to lift anything.

"We try to reduce the physical tasking of employees as much as possible," Brian Roberts, Safety and Security Manager said. 

Some of the most important safety measures are helmets, goggles, and ear plugs.

How big of an accomplishment is one million hours? You could try to do it in your own life, you'd just have to go injury free for 114 years."

"It only takes a second to get hurt, got to keep mind on work to keep safe," Goodman said.

Especially with so much beer being bottled everyday here in Albany. Employees hope when they ship out their 100 millionth case of beer for the year in December, they'll also be the only of Miller's seven breweries that can say they went through the year accident free.

Albany holds the Miller record for the longest time without an employee having to be treated for an injury. They went 535 days back in 1986 and 1987.

posted at 6:15 p.m. by dave.d'marko@walb.com

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