Employees of Grand Canyon National Park have been recognized for outstanding achievement and leadership in the promotion of public and employee safety in 2012. The Preventative Search and Rescue (PSAR) team was recognized with the highest award bestowed by the National Park Service for outstanding public safety achievement, the Andrew Clark Hecht Memorial Public Safety Achievement Award. Grand Canyon National Park was also awarded two Intermountain Region Director’s awards for public and employee safety.
2012 Andrew Clark Hecht Memorial Public Safety Achievement Award (Group) The PSAR team was selected to receive the Andrew Clark Hecht Public Safety Achievement Award for their efforts to prevent visitor injury in 2012 through safety messaging, visitor education, and promotion of safe hiking techniques. The team made approximately 80,000 trail contacts with visitors during the 2012 summer season to emphasize Grand Canyon-specific hiking safety measures and guide visitors toward realistic, safe, and enjoyable itineraries. The prevention efforts of the PSAR team are estimated to have saved the federal government nearly $500,000 in reduced search and rescue costs.
2012 Intermountain Regional Director’s Safety and Health Achievement Award (Individual) Park Ranger Arthur J. Lapre was selected to receive the Intermountain Regional Director’s Safety and Health Achievement Award for his outstanding commitment to the promotion of employee safety. Under his leadership, Grand Canyon National Park created several employee-driven initiatives including a near-miss reporting and tracking system to help employees identify and correct hazardous conditions. He also contributed hundreds of hours to the National Park Service as a certified instructor for a variety of health, safety, and risk management courses.
2012 Intermountain Regional Director’s Safety and Health Achievement Award (Group) Grand Canyon’s South Rim District Rangers were recognized for outstanding achievements in the promotion of public safety. They promoted public safety by making hundreds of contacts on wildlife/human interactions, bicycle safety, and substance abuse, and devoted almost 4000 hours of volunteer time toward visitor assists, campground contacts, and horse or bicycle patrols.
“The safety of our employees and visitors is a top priority for Grand Canyon National Park,” said Superintendent Dave Uberuaga. “I am proud to recognize employees who exhibit great leadership and a superior work ethic to make national parks a safer place to work and visit.”