TRSA Safety Summit Calls for Better Industrywide Practices

Staff Writer |

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — An upcoming Textile Rental Services Association (TRSA) event seeks to pinpoint the issues that prevent laundry managers from achieving the best possible safety performance levels.

TRSA will host its third annual Safety Summit on June 18-19 at the Omni Nashville (Tenn.) Hotel. The association’s Safety Committee has planned discussions that focus on creating a “safety culture” in the industry, aiming for reduced incidents and injuries through “novel approaches.” The event is presented in cooperation with the CSCNetwork (The National Alliance of Independent Launderers).

According to TRSA, too often managers work primarily toward compliance and requirements, rather than employing new strategies and techniques for ensuring safe workplaces. The Summit will help identify obstacles and develop consensus proposals for dealing with them, the association says.

Safety and health professionals from inside and outside the industry will present practical information designed to reduce workplace illnesses and injuries. Members will share concepts that can improve safety by 20-40% compared with the industry as a whole, says TRSA, and attendees will work together to develop practices to “increase protection, productivity and profitability.”

The Summit is designed for owner-operators; corporate executives; general, plant, production, engineering and safety managers; and others responsible for safety, health and human resources, according to the association.

TRSA is also offering nine credit hours toward recertification to individuals who have achieved TRSA’s Certified Professional Laundry Manager credential.

The Summit opens with a welcome reception beginning at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 18 (registration will open at 3).

Activities on Thursday, June 19, will begin at 7 a.m. with a breakfast and welcome by Joseph Ricci, TRSA, and Jamey Cashman, CSCNetwork, along with an update by Rick Gerlach, chairman, TRSA Safety Committee.

Sessions will run from 7:45 a.m. to 5 p.m. and include several “best practices” breakout sessions:

  • 7:45-8:30 a.m. — Fostering Communication, Ensuring Engagement is the focus of a talk by John Eapen, VP, Environmental, Health and Safety, American & Efird (A&E), in the day’s first general session.
  • 8:30-9:45 a.m. — Speaker Don Bock, owner/operator, Seabright Safety Solutions, will discuss Behavioral Safety.
  • 10-11:15 a.m. — The morning’s concurrent breakout sessions begin with a panel on Using Telematics to Monitor Driver Safety. Scheduled panelists are Eric Davis, AmeriPride; Dan French, G&K Services; and Rob Potack, Unitex. Rich Gerlach, Cintas, will be moderator. Dealing with the Aging and Obese Workforce will be presented by Lance Fredericks, Zurich Services Corp., and moderated by Terry Drake, G&K Services.
  • 11:30-12:45 p.m. — In the second set of breakout sessions, Jim Flanagan, assistant administrator, Tennessee OSHA, will present Securing the Coveted VPP, while a representative from Travelers Insurance will present How Situational Awareness Improves Safety, moderated by Charlie Edelman, Unitex.
  • 1:30-2:30 p.m. — Following lunch, afternoon general sessions will begin with Safety in the Commercial Laundry Industry by Edwin Foulke, partner, Fisher & Phillips.
  • 2:45-3:45 p.m. — Bruce Thomas, manager, Health and Safety, UPS East Region, will present Fleet Safety Training: How UPS Trains its Drivers.
  • 3:45-5 p.m. — Activities close with a panel discussion on Textile Services Executive Management Perspectives. Panelists are to include Jim Buik, Roscoe Co.; Jim Butz, Clothes Clinic; Ed Heilman, Ace Imagewear; and David Struminger, Mohenis Services. Foulke will moderate.

To learn more about the event, or to register, visit


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