June 14, 2000

For many of you, the very fact that I am addressing this issue at all will strike you as silly and unnecessary. I felt that way myself about the idle talk over the last few years regarding a "curse" on our employees who receive the Employee of the Month award. However, it is becoming increasingly evident that valuable Aquirus employees are concerned over such talk, whether it is true or not, so I've chosen to to address you directly about it.

There is nothing more important to our success at Aquirus than keeping our employees living and healthy. Safety standards are of the highest importance to us, as you've probably gathered from our bi-weekly fire drills. After each on-the-job death, we investigate thoroughly to make certain that Aquirus is cleared of any liability and, just as importantly, that we do our utmost to prevent such tragedies from ever occuring again.

We have all been saddened by the unfortunate deaths of some of our co-workers and dear friends here. However, we must also recognize that in a corporation as large as Aquirus, as in life, these things will happen. And to believe, or even to consider, that there is some tragic, supernatural link between these tragic circumstances and our coveted Employee of the Month award is quite preposterous. Indeed, in the last 36 months Aquirus has had 32 different employees win this award and only 8 of them have passed away in that time, and only 5 of those while on the job.

However, perhaps instead of silly talk of curses, we can use these tragedies to honor those we have lost, by pledging ourselves to the highest standards of safety. Let's review some of the lessons we might take from recent events:

  1. Regardless of how well you may know electronics, please stay out of of the electrical closets and do not attempt repairs yourself.
  2. If a person appearing very unprofessional (unshaved, unkempt, sweaty, dirty, etc.) and acting strangely (shouting, spitting, etc.) enters the building, call 911 immediately. Do not comply with such a person's request to see specific managers or any other employee.
  3. If a snack machine does not deliver the item you paid for, contact the front desk and you will be compensated. Do not shake, punch, or overturn the machine.
  4. Forklifts and other heavy equipment are for business purposes only and are never to be used by untrained personnel.
  5. Never put a plastic bag over your head or the head of another employee, even in jest.
With a few sensible rules in mind, we can honor our fallen compatriots in the way I think they would have wanted most -- by improving the lives and productivity of all Aquirus employees.

Clinton W. Fesko
President, CNO
Aquirus Inc.