During search-and-rescue missions in Utah’s rugged, mountainous backcountry, there’s never a second chance to do things safely. No one knows that better than Kent Harrison, a UHP helicopter pilot who had to make an emergency landing during a 2015 recovery mission. His chopper sustained extensive damage when one of its blades caught onto an orange safety rope, snapping some of the rotor’s main equipment in half. He was able to regain control of the aircraft and land it safely.
It’s likely that Harrison’s calm demeanor, quick thinking and training saved the lives of all five people involved in the mission. His story also demonstrates an important truth: Safety should be a core value that anyone can get behind—regardless of role, responsibility or field.
Our industry is wrapping up Safety Week—but at Jacobsen every week and every day, on every job and at every site, is focused on safe productivity. Here’s why:
It’s an all-encompassing value. Safety isn’t just a goal we hope to achieve or a cursory mission statement posted on our website. Safety is central to who we are. We practice it rigorously through continual training. We track it obsessively through reports and meetings. We recognize it year-round, celebrating our people when they go to great lengths to keep everyone on the job safe. The result: A culture where expectations surrounding safety are clearly communicated, thoroughly maintained and consistently rewarded.
It’s the right thing to do. Make no mistake, Jacobsen employs some of the best builders in the business. Our expert craftworkers go to great lengths to deliver fantastic work. Their commitment to our company should always be reciprocated with our commitment to their well-being. We want everyone in the Jacobsen family to come to work with full confidence that we have taken every precaution to ensure that they will return home safely to their loved ones at the end of the day. This standard also applies to anyone who comes to our job sites—owner, consultant, subcontractor or visitor.
It’s about making life better. For nearly a century we have striven to fulfill the legacy of our founder, Soren Jacobsen, who firmly believed that we should leave things better than we found them. Soren not only wanted to change the American skyline; he also wanted to make life better in the communities where we build. Our teams work to continue that legacy today—and safety is elemental to that effort. When safety is our top priority work runs smoother, deadlines are met and everyone wins.
Kent Harrison probably never expected that he might be in need of help while on a mission to help someone else… but he prepared for it, trained for it and, when it mattered most, he was ready. We strive to ensure that all Jacobsen team members are prepared with the best training and equipment possible to protect themselves and everyone around them. Staying safe is about all of us.