Employee profile: Dave Simmons, Environmental Health & Safety Manager

Worked at Louisville Water since 2002

June is National Safety Month. The National Safety Council established it in 1996 to help employers create a culture of safety, highlight leading causes of injuries, and provide resources that help prevent them in not only the workplace but also every other aspect of our lives.

As the Council says, safety should be a priority “from the workplace to anyplace.”

Dave Simmons helps spread this message at Louisville Water. As the company’s Environmental Health & Safety Manager, he promotes safety anyplace and everyplace – and not just for employees. Simmons said he oversees a range of “programs for the protection of employees, contractors, customers, and the environment.”

He originally studied geology and worked in the Groundwater Section of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources. He moved to Louisville in 1989 to work in the environmental field and then “transitioned to safety in the mid-1990s,” he said.

The programs he oversees at Louisville Water provide a framework for developing a safety culture throughout the company – a framework that includes implementing, monitoring, and enhancing safety policies and protocols to reduce risks for everyone.

Louisville Water’s continuous efforts to build a safety culture include:

  • Safety tailgate meetings for crews
  • Safety field audits
  • A “near miss program” at the Allmond Avenue Distribution Center to analyze incidents that could have caused accidents
  • Annual safety awareness giveaways for employees (including fire extinguishers, safety glasses, and first aid kits)
  • Monthly safety themes
  • Safety games for employees (including March Madness and scavenger hunt games promoting safety)
  • Team incentives
  • Promoting the concept of home safety
  • A company-wide training program (Employees completed more safety training last year than ever before.)

Simmons said one of the challenges he faces on the job is “working with so many different people throughout the company,” but he also said that’s one of the things he likes best about his work. Asked if he’s had an especially memorable day at Louisville Water, he replied: “There have been too many.”

Dave Simmons instructingAn example of Simmons’ work outside Louisville Water facilities includes visiting fire stations with Plumber Leader Chris Meeks and Plumber Leader’s Assistant Scott Corbin to talk about fire hydrants. Simmons shared Louisville Water’s history and an overview of the water main system operations with firefighters from Anchorage & Middletown, St. Matthews, PRP, Louisville Fire, and several other stations.

When he’s not working, Simmons said he enjoys spending time with friends and family, including “chasing grandkids” as well as “working on or around the house.”