Milton R. Young Station receives safety honor

Minnkota’s power generation facility has earned the Lignite Energy Council’s Distinguished Safety Award.


Kaylee Cusack


October 4, 2019

The Milton R. Young Station is celebrating yet another safety distinction. The coal-fired power generation facility was presented with the Lignite Energy Council’s (LEC) 2018 Distinguished Safety Award on Oct. 3. To be eligible for the award, a plant or mine must maintain an accident incident rate lower than the national average.

“We are really happy to qualify for this award from LEC,” said Craig Bleth, Minnkota senior manager of power production. “Safety is a team effort. Each employee at the plant played a role in this achievement. Thanks for working safely, and thanks for continuing to pay attention to safety each and every day.”

Safety and Physical Security supervisor Troy Karlberg and plant managers Andrew Freidt (Operations and Maintenance) and Tim Hagerott (Engineering/Environmental) accepted the honor at the LEC Fall Conference in Bismarck. Minnkota joined three others in winning the award – Montana-Dakota Utilities’ Lewis & Clark Station, Couteau Properties Company’s Freedom Mine and Falkirk Mining Company’s Falkirk Mine. The LEC also presented the prestigious Safety Excellence Award to Coyote Creek Mining Company’s Coyote Creek Mine and Basin Electric Cooperative’s Leland Olds Station.

“Without a doubt, attention to workplace safety in the lignite industry is one of our proudest hallmarks,” said Jason Bohrer, president and CEO of the Lignite Energy Council. “The couple hundred companies that comprise the Lignite Energy Council believe that the efficient production of a low-cost reliable energy source – while maintaining or even enhancing our environment – cannot be achieved without serious attention to the health and safety of the men and women who work to produce that product.”

Karlberg said that the Distinguished Safety Award is an achievement that the Young Station has been trying to regain since 2016. This April, the Young Station hit an important safety milestone, passing one million work hours without a lost-time injury – never before accomplished at the plant. Safety has been and will continue to be a top priority for not only the Young Station, but also all of Minnkota.

“It is truly an honor to receive the 2018 Distinguished Safety Award on behalf of all the men and women at the MRY station,” Karlberg said. “It is not just about safety training and safety meetings. It is about our employees’ commitment to safety every day they come to work and going home to our families every night.”


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