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Innovative safety training nets ACCIONA AWEA's Operational Excellence Award

  • ACCIONA wins AWEA's 2020 Operational Excellence Award
  • Award recognizes innovative ThinkSafe Training
  • Training uses escape-room-style challenge to advance critical thinking

The American Wind Energy Association recognized ACCIONA with its 2020 Operational Excellence Award at the association’s annual operations meeting last week in San Diego.

AWEA lauded a training program developed by ACCIONA that employs an escape-room-style whodunit to engage trainees and sharpen critical thinking skills. The ThinkSafe program uses a video shot at the company’s San Roman and Palmas Altas wind farms last summer.

“With ThinkSafe we wanted to develop a safety training that wasn’t overly reliant on statistics and PowerPoint slides,” said Karl DeLooff, ACCIONA’s director of quality, safety, environmental and sustainability. “We wanted to create a real-life scenario that our wind technicians and our office support staff could engage with, we wanted something real that showed our trainees that safety isn’t just about work and colleagues it’s also about family.”

The video details the investigation of an on-site incident and calls on the trainees to uncover every step of the path leading to the event.

 “Our hope is that after completing this training, our employees will think critically about safety, we also call on our teams to develop safety plans with their families, to improve safety at home and at work,” DeLooff said.

AWEA commended the program. “ACCIONA’s original and engaging approach to safety training exemplifies the sort of innovation that drives the wind industry forward,” said Amy Farrell, Senior Vice President, Government & Public Affairs at AWEA. “We applaud the company for promoting critical thinking and improving workplace safety.”

Rafael Esteban, the CEO of ACCIONA’s energy division in the United States, said the video represents the company’s commitment to safety. “Every day at ACCIONA begins with a safety discussion. It is always our top priority; it is always a target for improvement.”

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