ATCO (TSX:ACO.X)(TSX:ACO.Y) and its people were recently recognized for their exceptional commitment to safety during and in the months following the 2016 Fort McMurray Wildfires at the 2017 Canadian Gas Association (CGA) Operations, Engineering and Integrity Conference in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The CGA honoured ATCO with the President's Safety Award for Excellence, a unique, never-before presented accolade acknowledging the company's work supporting the community and its customers through the crisis.
"This was truly an unprecedented, cross-company effort that brought people from across our enterprise together as one team, and we are tremendously proud of the work they have done," said George Lidgett, Managing Director, Pipelines & Liquids with ATCO. "Their tireless efforts during and after the crisis are a testament to the ATCO Heart and Mind - going far above and beyond the call of duty for our customers."
Within hours of the community's evacuation, ATCO had opened the doors of its Creeburn Lake Lodge to fleeing residents and hundreds of the company's highly-skilled employees were mobilized to provide critical natural gas and electricity infrastructure support. In the largest coordinated response in ATCO's history, more than 650 of its people came together to assist evacuees, assess damage, make repairs and restore essential services.
From keeping water pumping stations and telecommunications sites energized, to delivering temporary natural gas to the Regional Emergency Operations Centre, ensuring key infrastructure remained operational was crucial in enabling emergency responders to safely fight the blaze and helped pave the way for families to return home. On the ground from the very beginning of the crisis, the people of ATCO completed all this vital work without a single lost-time injury.
As residents began returning, teams of ATCO's people were there welcoming them, answering questions and providing reassurance when they needed it the most. At two ATCO meal camps, established to provide a warm bite to eat for returning members of the community, a small team of company volunteers served up more than 56,000 meals over just eight days.
The President's Safety Award for Excellence is the third such accolade ATCO has received for its response in Fort McMurray. In January 2017, ATCO was honoured with both the Alberta Emergency Management Agency's Emergency Management Achievement Award and the Edison Electric Institute's Emergency Recovery Award.
With approximately 7,000 employees and assets of $20 billion, ATCO is a diversified global corporation delivering service excellence and innovative business solutions in Structures & Logistics (workforce housing, innovative modular facilities, construction, site support services, and logistics and operations management); Electricity (electricity generation, transmission, and distribution); Pipelines & Liquids (natural gas transmission, distribution and infrastructure development, energy storage, and industrial water solutions); and Retail Energy (electricity and natural gas retail sales). More information can be found at www.ATCO.com.
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