Mowing Down Danger? Boonville Cuts Out Injuries with Safety Grants

April 10, 2024 • Missouri Employers Mutual

Imagine a city where public works heroes can tackle any trench with confidence, and parks are maintained without risking a slip on a steep slope. The City of Boonville, Missouri, is making that vision a reality thanks to a powerful partnership with the MEM Safety Grant program.  

Forget paperwork and red tape – this program empowers communities to prioritize safety for their essential workers. Boonville is a shining example, having received not one but two safety grants that directly translate to a safer, more efficient workforce. 

The first grant tackled a common challenge – mowing steep inclines. By acquiring a remote-controlled lawnmower, Boonville’s Parks and Recreation department eliminated the risk of employees working on dangerous slopes, potentially preventing serious injuries. 

“The mower changed our way of doing things,” says Paul Linhart, Director of Parks and Recreation. “It saved us from the possibilities of injury for sure.” 

But Boonville’s safety journey didn’t stop there. Recognizing the inherent dangers of trench work, the city secured a second MEM Safety Grant to purchase crucial trench safety equipment. This investment not only safeguards public works employees but also streamlines operations. 

“We previously had to rent equipment, which can delay the project,” explains Jeff Ditto, Director of Public Works. “The trench equipment purchased with funds from the MEM safety grant allows employees to reduce risk when working below the surface and saves time.” 

MEM Senior Safety and Risk Consultant Brad Minor worked with the city to help them identify and apply for grant funds.  

“The most unique thing about working with municipalities is the vast array of departments and the various exposures that correspond with each,” said Minor. 

Minor said depending on their size, a municipality may have police, fire, water, sewer, parks and recreation, etc., each presenting its unique challenges and risks.   

“Anytime we can improve safety for our employees, that’s what we want to do,” Ditto  said. “This has enabled us to do that.”  

The MEM Safety Grants program isn’t just about funding. With more than $2.8 million awarded since 2016, the MEM Safety Grant program fosters a safety culture within communities like Boonville, leading to a more productive city for everyone. 

Let Safety Grants Change How You Work

All MEM policyholders are eligible for a safety grant, regardless of premium size or claims history. Successful applicants earn one-to-one matching grants of up to $10,000 toward approved safety initiatives. Policyholders monitor claims data and report on the safety grant’s success so MEM can share best practices like this one. 

Questions about MEM’s Safety Grant Program?   

Visit our frequently asked questions page here.   

April 10, 2024
Missouri Employers Mutual
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