Safety professionals are always looking for new ways to promote safety both on and off the job. While incentives and awards programs are excellent, most focus on accident prevention. The Turtle Club honors men and women who escaped injury because they were wearing hard hats at the time of industrial accidents. It is a participatory program for workers that have proven to be a valuable adjunct to traditional industry head protection safety efforts.
Over 50 Years and Still Going Strong
Before the days of OSHA and ANSI, the Turtle Club was founded to help increase safety on industrial job sites by encouraging the use of hard hats. the Turtle Club was founded in 1946 by C. R. “Rusty” Rustemeyer, Safety Director at Canadian Forest Products, Ltd. In 1950, Mr. Edward W. Bullard, Sr., was then appointed the Turtle Club sponsor. This appointment was particularly appropriate since, in 1919, Mr. Bullard developed the industries' first universally accepted hard hat, the original “Hard Boiled®” hat. Today the club’s international sponsor is Mr. E. D. “Jed” Bullard, grandson of E. W. Bullard. Because of Jed Bullard’s commitment and efforts, interest in the club remains active, and membership continues to grow.
A Tradition Continues
Membership requirements for the Turtle Club are the same today as they were in 1946. Men and women who have escaped serious injury by wearing hard hats can be nominated for membership by their supervisor or company safety director. Each new member receives a new hard hat, a membership certificate, a membership card, a Turtle Club pin, and a Turtle Club decal. There are no dues or membership fees.
A Dedication to Safety
Members of the club pledge to “Practice safety, wear head protection when necessary and to conscientiously encourage others to do so.” This pledge, though over 50 years old, is just as important today as it was five decades ago.