CHARLOTTE, N.C., Nov. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Piedmont Natural Gas (NYSE: PNY) today announced that Piedmont's utility operations center in Hickory, N.C., has received the STAR safety award recognizing its commitment to on-the-job safety from the federal Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) and the N.C. Department of Labor.
This is the second OSHA-sponsored safety award for Piedmont Natural Gas, whose utility operations center in Anderson, S.C., was awarded the Safety and Health Recognition Program (SHARP) designation in early 2010 by the South Carolina division of OSHA. The 2010 award was the first-ever designation for any natural gas local distribution company.
N.C. Commissioner of Labor Cherie K. Berry presented the STAR award today at a news conference at Piedmont's Hickory operations center. In addition to remarks from Commissioner Berry, Piedmont employees heard from company leaders as well as Danny Hearn of the Catawba County Chamber of Commerce and Scott Millar of the Catawba County Economic Development Commission.
"Piedmont Natural Gas is serious about providing safe and reliable natural gas to the homes and businesses of Hickory," said Barry Stevenson, operations supervisor for regional utility operations for Piedmont Natural Gas. "We are honored to have earned this award in recognition of our efforts, and we're grateful for the message it sends to our customers, our communities and our employees."The STAR award and its S.C. counterpart SHARP award are part of a Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) from OSHA. Awards are administered by the state where operations are based. Employers who qualify must complete a rigorous application and evaluation process to prove their commitment to on-the-job safety. Learn more about North Carolina's program at http://www.nclabor.com/osha/star/star.htm. About Piedmont Natural Gas Piedmont Natural Gas is an energy services company primarily engaged in the distribution of natural gas to more than one million residential, commercial and industrial utility customers in North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee, including 52,000 customers served by municipalities who are wholesale customers. Our subsidiaries are invested in joint venture, energy-related businesses, including unregulated retail natural gas marketing, interstate natural gas storage and intrastate natural gas transportation. More information about Piedmont Natural Gas is available at http://www.piedmontng.com. SOURCE Piedmont Natural Gas