Tomago employees rewarded for innovation and excellence

A SIMPLE recycling coup that will save one of Australia’s largest aluminium smelters at least $200,000 a year has taken out the top prize at the annual Tomago Aluminium Innovation and Excellence Awards ceremony in Newcastle.

Tomago Casthouse Operator Allan Cranney took the time to devise a recycling process that sends aluminium waste, known as swarf bricks, back into the Tomago furnaces for re-use rather than sending them off-site with other waste material for processing.

Mr Cranney’s recycling plan is set to save the company around $200,000 annually, both in reduced waste processing fees and the value added by putting the material back through the Tomago furnaces.

For his efforts Mr Cranney was named overall winner of Tomago Aluminium’s Innovation and Excellence Awards at a gala night in the Starlight Room at Wests New Lambton and was presented with a unique trophy by Tomago Aluminium chief executive Matt Howell. He also won international flights and accommodation for two to a destination of his choice.

“I couldn’t believe it when they called out my name because there were so many other departments with so many good ideas. I take my hat off to (Casthouse Metal Scheduler) Robbie Cox who did all the calculations on the various aluminium grades to make sure it would work. There are a lot of very clever people at Tomago Aluminium.”

Allan Cranney

The annual Tomago Aluminium Innovation and Excellence Awards recognise the efforts of individuals and teams employed by the company in improving operations at the smelter.

Tomago chief executive, Matt Howell, said the company encouraged staff to strive for continuous improvement and to never be afraid of suggesting new or different ways of doing their jobs.

Other winners on the night were:
Excellence in Health, Safety and Environment
Individual winner: Dave Miller 
Team winner: (Critical Process VDC Casting team) Chase Bennett and Brodie Fairhall

Excellence in Cost and Waste Reduction:
Individual winner: Danny Oakley
Team winner: (Fixed Retainers team) Dallas Edwards and Chad Moremon

Excellence in Process Stability and Quality:
Individual winner: Ricky Dent
Team Winner: (Stem Brush Implementation team) Andrew Withers, Greg Wall, Zac Trigg, Harrison Spruce, Brendan Corr, Marshal Holden and Jamie Schreiber

Apprentice of the Year:
Luke Johns