Billy Porche: What I learned at the Forestry Association's Conference
9/9/2016 2:33:40 PM

From Tuesday through Thursday of last week (August 30 – September 1), I attended the Louisiana Forestry Association’s 69th Annual Meeting at the Golden Nugget Resort in Lake Charles. 

As LCI’s Loss Control Specialist, I work closely with LCI policyholders in Central Louisiana. Since many LCI policyholders in my region are in the forestry and logging industry, I attend industry events to keep up with the industry. It also allows me to meet industry leaders and discuss industry changes and trends. The following are a few things that I learned at the conference

Relating to the Industry
My first takeaway from the conference pertains to the problems and concerns that loggers are having at this time. This information helps me identify with and relate to the LCI’s logging policyholders on a personal level. These industry issues affect loggers’ businesses, but also their personal lives. Obtaining this information allows me to conduct myself in a way that better relates to our logging policyholders.

Making Connections
The LFA conference also allowed me to meet several loggers and vendors that are associated with the logging industry. I stopped at the OSHA booth, which gave me a lot of information that will allow me to inform and help LCI policyholders. I also spoke with logging machine vendors who showed me the different safety features of the new logging machines including skidders, loaders, cutters. The new technology is slowly being implemented, but has great potential to help loggers with safety and the bottom line.

The seminars at the LFA conference were helpful in identifying the rules, laws, costs, and concerns that the loggers face on a daily basis. The topics were wide-ranging and included:

  • Insurance
  • Safety
  • Timber cost
  • Demand
  • Mill production
  • The economy

It’s not hard to guess that the seminar I found most interesting focused on safety and insurance. The presenters gave statistics that show why the cost of insurance is so high, and why the number of workers in the industry is falling.

During this safety seminar, there was a focus on the trucking industry that showed an increase in insurance rates, along with a decrease in safe driving.

For example:

  1. Due to the potential for traffic accidents, tractor-trailer truck drivers have one of the highest rates of injury of all occupations.
  2. Drivers employed less than six months with a company have more accidents than those who are employed for longer than six months.
  3. Among commercial vehicle fatal crashes, speed—driving too fast for conditions—is the largest contributing factor, followed by distraction or inattention and then impairment.

I enjoyed last week’s conference, and I am eager to share what I learned with LCI policyholders. As I attend other conferences and events, I will share information from those as well. Feel free to contact me at in the meantime.

"What I Learned at” is a series in LCIA’s Orange Blog. We use this series to provide recaps of LCI and LCIA events. Additionally, our staff will occasionally attend professional development and educational classes. We utilize the "What I Learned at” blog series to report what we learned to you.

Posted by: Billy Porche | Submit comment | Tell a friend

Categories: Safety  |  What I Learned at...

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