Alcan Packaging continues Environment, Health & Safety excellence, and presents highest safety honor to Tubes France unit

    PARIS, Jan. 23 /CNW Telbec/ -Alcan Packaging, a division of Rio Tinto
Alcan, has recognized its Tubes France unit with its highest safety honor: the
Gold Bonsai Award for exceptional safety achievement and turnaround. Ilene
Gordon, President & CEO, Alcan Packaging, presented the award at a ceremony at
the Sainte-Menehould, France, tube plant, on January 16.
    Each year, Alcan Packaging's 130 plants around the world compete for the
Bonsai Awards, which recognize and promote success in Environment, Health &
Safety (EHS) excellence. The Bonsai tree concept was chosen as a symbol of
continuous, nurturing care.
    Tubes France, a unit of Alcan Packaging's Global Beauty business, won for
its "Hands Off" project. The unit employs more than 800 people at four plants
in France: Sainte-Menehould, Vienne-le-Château, Vandières and Albertville. The
project focused on eliminating accidents between people and equipment. Called
man-machine interface incidents, they are one of the most recurring concerns
in manufacturing operations.
    The aptly named "Hands Off" project mixed two powerful communications
tools-video and personal testimonials-to raise awareness of risks linked to
running machines. Education also was critical to ensure employees understood
the rules and actions to prevent these accidents.

    75% Reduction in Accidents Since 2005

    Results are impressive and continue to improve: total number of
recordable accidents at the four plants is down 75% between 2005 and 2007: to
five in 2007 from 10 in 2006 and 21 in 2005. The trend is similar for
lost-time accidents: two in 2007 from four in 2006 and seven in 2005.
    When presenting the Gold Bonsai Award, Ilene Gordon warmly thanked and
acknowledged the employees who gave testimonials and appeared in the safety
    "It took courage to talk about their accidents and share these unhappy
experiences," Gordon said. "The roll-out of the program has been
extraordinarily efficient and the plant employees are sustaining their success
thanks to the educational component. That is our goal in Alcan Packaging: zero
accidents and the safest manufacturing operations possible."
    The "Hands Off" program is serving as a best practice for sharing the
safety culture in the Global Beauty business. The video was so effective that
it was translated into seven languages and used to train more than 1,500
people as of today.
    François Luscan, President and General Manager, Alcan Packaging Beauty,
added: "We have always given attention to EHS. The fact that it has always
been a priority proved better than any words that we do care about financial
results, but also about the men and women who make them possible."
    The Packaging group as a whole has shown remarkable and steady progress
over the last few years. It marked its best safety results to date in 2007.

    Alcan Packaging is a world leader in value-added specialty packaging,
ranking No. 1 in flexible food, pharmaceutical, beauty and tobacco packaging,
and delivering innovative solutions using plastics, engineered film, aluminum,
paper, paperboard and glass to customers around the world. Alcan Packaging is
headquartered in Paris, France and operates130 facilities with 31,000
employees in 31 countries. It generates US$6 billion in revenues annually.

    About Rio Tinto.

    Rio Tinto is a leading international mining group headquartered in the
UK, combining Rio Tinto plc, a London listed company, and Rio Tinto Limited,
which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange.
    Rio Tinto's business is finding, mining, and processing mineral
resources. Major products are aluminum, copper, diamonds, energy (coal and
uranium), gold, industrial minerals (borax, titanium dioxide, salt, talc) and
iron ore. Activities span the world but are strongly represented in Australia
and North America with significant businesses in South America, Asia, Europe
and southern Africa.

For further information:

For further information: Rio Tinto Alcan Media Relations, Paris,
Chrystele Ivins, +33-1-57-00-24-18,; RioTinto Alcan
Media Relations, Montreal, Stefano Bertolli, (514) 848-8151,; Alcan Packaging, Paris, Colette Chauvière,
+33-1-57-00-28-26,; Alcan Packaging Global Beauty,
Cécile Tuil, +33-1-49-68-61-85, Cecile.tuil@alcan;com

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Rio Tinto Alcan

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