The producer said the workforce of 70 at the open-pit operation near Gillette hit the mark August 26.

Mark Lux, vice president and general manager of power delivery for Black Hills, credited the mine’s safety record to a grassroots effort among employees who look out for one another, hold each other accountable for working safely, and exemplify safety-based attitudes and behaviors.

He also said that the complex has a vigorous focus on safety that includes heightened accountability, constant reminders, extensive training and a team approach that has yielded positive results throughout the corporation of 2,000-plus employees.

“We take great pride in our safety record and consider zero incidents the only acceptable result of our efforts to create an atmosphere where safety isn’t a statistic, but a way of life,” Lux said. “We listen to our employees and take the appropriate actions when they voice safety concerns and share ideas for ways to work more safely [and] we emphasize the importance of leading by example.”

Wyodak mine employees have earned a number of other distinguished safety awards, including no lost-time accidents between 2010 and 2013 (from the Wyoming State Mine Inspector); an MSHA Certificate of Achievement in Safety for no lost work days in 2013; Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead’s Small Mine Safety Award at this summer’s Wyoming Workforce Safety Summit; and three Sentinels of Safety awards by the National Mining Association and the Mine Safety and Health Administration.