The employees at the A.O. Smith plant in Acuna, Mexico, were honored for working more than 1 million hours without a lost-time accident.

The Productos Electricos Aplicados plant began its safety record Oct. 25, 2005, and surpassed the million-hour mark April 10. To date, the facility has worked more than 1.15 million consecutive hours without a lost-time accident. This is the first time in the plant's 22-year history that it has surpassed the 1 million milestone.

In a letter, A.O. Smith Chairman and CEO Paul W. Jones congratulated the 950 employees of the plant for working together to create a safe workplace.

"Achieving the 1 million-hour milestone is evidence that everyone associated with (the plant) is committed to working together to minimize accidents at your plant. In the spirit of continuous improvement, your leadership team, the facility's supervisors, and the safety committee have worked together to identify opportunities to make your plant a safer, more efficient operation," Jones wrote.

Herbert L. Pirkey, A.O. Smith's director of safety, health and environment, presented a plaque commemorating the achievement. Accepting the award on behalf of the employees was the plant's safety committee.

"People are trying to improve our safety performance each year," said Rene Torres, safety committee member and manager of human resources at the plant. "We have emphasized training and have published statistics so that employees can see our progress. They are very motivated to maintain our safety performance."