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NEWS | Aug. 20, 2020

Tobyhanna passes Safety, Environmental audits with flying colors

By Ms. Danielle E. Weinschenk

Tobyhanna Army Depot’s continued focus on workplace safety and environmental stewardship allowed the organization to easily pass recent external audits.

Third party auditors reviewed depot compliance with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 45001 safety standard and ISO 14001 environmental standard. The criteria are recognized universally, providing the depot yet another advantage over competitors in both the private and public sectors. Tobyhanna was the first organization within the Department of Defense to obtain the ISO 45001 accreditation in 2019.

Auditors performed a recertification audit for the depot’s safety management system (SMS) and found it to be fully effective with zero nonconformances identified. In addition, auditors highlighted two aspects of the SMS that were especially impressive – management commitment and operational control. Mature ratings are rarely issued by auditors, according to Noah Stagliano, a Health Physicist in the depot Safety and Occupational Health Office.

The external auditors also praised the depot’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“From the time they came through the front gate, they said the intensity of our safety and risk mitigation measures was very clear,” said Stagliano.

Results were similarly impressive for the ISO 45001 environmental surveillance audit. The audit team found the depot’s environmental management system to be fully effective with zero nonconformances identified.

“The auditors applauded our all-inclusive efforts, and were impressed that we make environmental compliance an everyday function” said Paula Mesaris, chief of the Environmental Branch in the Installation Services Directorate.

Both organizations agree that the depot workforce played a key role in ensuring audit success.

“For such big missions, our Safety and Environmental offices are relatively small. We depend on Team Tobyhanna to be our eyes and ears and they do a great job making the depot a safe and environmentally-conscious workplace. We can’t thank them enough for being engaged, vigilant and showing such attention to detail,” said Stagliano.