WWJ Closeup, June 2022

MARIE MAHER, PG
Regional Exploration Manager/Senior Associate
Terracon
Chattanooga, Tennessee

IF YOU COULD CHANGE ONE THING ABOUT YOUR PROFESSIONAL SELF?
I would make more time for networking. There is so much value in building relationships with others in our industry. It can be hard to find the time to be involved; however, it is critical to tackle big issues—like safety—as an industry.

MOST SATISFYING PART OF YOUR JOB?
Working with incredible drillers. I get to help scope and execute work alongside some of the best drillers in the country. They are experts at problem solving, perseverance, and innovation. I have learned so much from them and am grateful for their patience.

SMART SAFETY MEANS?
Everyone takes ownership of their personal safety. We have long discussed the notion that “rules” don’t keep employees safe. What keeps employees safe is their personal relationship with safety. There has to be a mindset change to truly implement safe working standards.

THE MOST COMMON SAFETY MISTAKE YOU SEE?
Distracted driving. Driving is the most dangerous thing most employees will do on a regular basis. When an employee gets into a vehicle, the mindset has to change from whatever they were doing before getting into that vehicle to the understanding of now they are a driver.

FAVORITE SAFETY RESOURCE?
Terracon’s Director of Safety and Health Jim Wright. Jim has extensive experience not just with construction safety, but specifically with drillers. He has mentored my team and me around the safety mindset, not just rules and policies, and I appreciate his authentic conversations.

WHAT ARE YOU LEARNING SERVING ON NGWA’S SAFETY TASK FORCE?
What great resources NGWA has to offer. For example, the Safety Fact Sheets that are available for NGWA members (www.ngwa.org/members/member-benefits/Safety-relatedorganizations-and-societies) are thorough but concise documents that provide need-to-know information.