Engineering & Delivering Safety + Heart-Warming Snow Rescue

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Wenger driver-installers (l to r) Don Pittman and Craig Berndt

As companies, Wenger and J.R. Clancy both take pride in the safety of their products in the field and employee safety within their manufacturing facilities – in Owatonna, Minnesota, and Syracuse, New York, respectively. Safety is our top priority.

Safety from the Start. When new products are under development for durability, usefulness and safe performance, Wenger or J.R. Clancy engineers begin by first determining the product’s purpose and functional requirements.

With a Wenger staging product, for example, one of the first information sources consulted for safety requirements is building codes, to set a standard basis for comparison. Because such codes were developed for permanent construction, not all are applicable for portable staging. Wenger engineers decide which codes might logically apply for the specific staging product under development. The International Building Code (IBC) applies across the U.S. and specifically addresses portable staging. Canada has its own code – the CBC – and European countries also have their own.

Safety on the Road. For Wenger, that emphasis on safety also extends to our five teams of driver-installers who travel around the U.S., and even into Canada. Last year, these teams combined to travel nearly 600,000 miles, visiting a wide range of customers, including performing arts facilities, educational facilities and military bases.

Driver-installers assemble and install products like sound-isolating music practice rooms and instrument storage cabinets on-site, following architectural specifications and customer requirements. Years of experience enable them to creatively think on their feet, sometimes expertly modifying installation plans at the last minute to best fit unusual circumstances or space constraints.

Snow Rescue. Quick thinking and a concern for safety were displayed on Sunday, January 5, 2014, when Wenger employees Don Pittman and Craig Berndt (pictured above, left to right) were driving a Wenger semi through a winter blizzard in Illinois. They were on their way to an installation project at the U.S. Navy School of Music in Virginia.

An accident on the interstate diverted traffic to a two-lane road, which became blocked by snow. Under life-threatening cold weather conditions, Craig and Don demonstrated deeply rooted Wenger values of compassion and responsiveness by helping rescue a stranded family of four, including two young girls. Craig and Don welcomed the family into their warm semi after the family’s own vehicles stopped working.

Wenger’s driver-installers are outstanding ambassadors for our company, and these two men proved that once again. To read the Owatonna newspaper article about this incident, including comments from the rescued family, please click here.

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