2016 Safe Start

18 January 2016
The year was started off with the Safe Start breakfast held at the Turangi Chartered Club followed by an interesting and humourous presentation from Matt Te Pou.

2016 Safe Start

After introductions by Chas Hutton, NZFM General Manager, and a brief presentation by Roger Merriman from Work Safe NZ, the key note speaker was Matt Te Pou, who has had a long history in NZ Army and has coached the Maori All Blacks.  He has also coached in NPC and was assistant coach for the Chiefs in the Super 12.  Matt was a Negotiator on behalf of 8 iwi in the CNI Forestry deal and has a sound commercial background having worked with Fletcher Challenge, Carter Holt Harvey and Winstone.  He is currently  the Chairman of the Tūhoe Fisheries Charitable Trust. 

Roger Merriman

Matt began his presentation with identifying the similarities between successful sports teams and businesses i.e. planning, team work, training and development; frequently using amusing examples to illustrate.

Matt Te Pou

He continued to elaborate on what is necessary to create the environment for success and that safety is a key ingredient of any environment.  His example of Yoda's comments (Star Wars movies) worked around the fact that adapting to the work environment will move a business forward opposed to not changing and being 'stuck'.

Typical norms of behaviour were explained and included being on time, do not undermine others' credibility and be honest and open.  Matt summed the presentation up with 'happy people treat others with respect'.

A very inspirational and informative speech that held the audience's attention throughout.  

Following the speakers, National Certificates were presented.

National Certificate being presented by Matt Te Pou.


The STIHL Keep It Safe overall winners for 2015 were then presented with their awards. The winner in each category received a STIHL chainsaw.  The winners were:

Skidwork - The following all had the same score: Lance Paterson, Ronald Clark, Logan Tukerangi and Kalib Te Ngahue (who won the chainsaw by random selection). 

Logmaking - Jeremy Dunster

Machine Operation on the Landing - Darren Blackburn (won the chainsaw by random selection) and Aarin Dunster

Manual Tree Falling - Tuha Albert

Mechanised Tree Felling  - Oscar Wilson

Ground Based Extraction - Mate Te Ngahue