Holland Thompson, Mosaic’s Director, Health & Safety – North America, plays a critical role in ensuring we are prepared and ready to respond in the event of a hurricane or other emergency.

Holland Thompson first started as a Utility Engineer at Mosaic’s Bartow facility in 2007 after graduating college. Over the next 15 years, he gained experience working in Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) for Mosaic’s potash and phosphate operations in both the U.S. and Canada. Now, as Mosaic’s Director, Health & Safety – North America since 2020, he partners with operational leaders to continually improve Mosaic’s approach to safety and wellness; driving initiatives designed to promote safe behaviors and processes.

In this role, he also serves as Emergency Manager for Mosaic’s North America Incident Command System (ICS) – monitoring and reporting weather conditions, setting up ICS practice drills and meetings, tracking action items and preparing communications.

“Holland is a critical part of our emergency preparedness and response, and not just because of his responsibilities as Emergency Manager and extensive experience in the industry. It’s his personal commitment and dedication that makes him so effective in this role,” said Pat Kane, Vice President, Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS). “Holland works with others across our operations year-round to make sure we’re prepared and ready to respond to a hurricane or other potential emergency situation.”

Incident Command System: A Common Organizational Structure

The Incident Command System (ICS) is a management system that enables effective and efficient incident management by integrating facilities, equipment, personnel, procedures and communications within a common organizational structure. It is a component of the National Incident Management System and is used by all levels of government – including the military – as well as many non-governmental and private-sector organizations.

The Incident Command System (ICS) includes five major functional areas: Command, Operations, Planning, Logistics, and Finance/Administration.

Our facilities have this system in place to activate if needed to manage severe weather or other site-specific emergencies at the facility level. A North America-wide ICS is also in place and ready to activate if needed to guide business response and recovery for hurricanes and other potential emergency situations.

“Following the ICS provides consistency, which is especially critical in emergency situations because it means we’re all working off the same playbook – using the same terminology and following the same procedures,” said Pat.

The ICS is structured to facilitate activities in five major functional areas: command, operations, planning, logistics, and finance/administration. It enables incident managers to identify key concerns associated with an incident—often under urgent conditions—without sacrificing attention to any component of the command system.

Mosaic’s Priority Protocol: People, Property, Production

Mosaic has a comprehensive preparedness and response plan in place that establishes guidelines and requirements for monitoring and responding to severe weather. In addition, each site has a Hurricane/Severe Weather Plan that outlines specific actions to be taken before, during and after severe weather to ensure the safety of our people, reduce risks, secure our assets and guide recovery efforts.

Everything we do is guided by our priority protocol – protecting people first, then property, then production.

BEFORE: Preparations for hurricane season include reviewing lessons learned from the previous year, updating our preparedness and response plans, conducting Incident Command System drills, and completing inspections to ensure all test pumps, generators and other equipment needed in the event of severe weather are onsite and in proper working order.

The IBM Environmental Intelligence Suite (IBM Weather Dashboard) is a tool Holland and others at Mosaic use to help monitor and respond to critical weather events.

DURING: The severity of the weather and location/distance from the site determines the condition under which the site operates. Incident Command Systems for our North America Business and at our sites are in place and ready for activation as needed to guide and coordinate our response. Sites coordinate with local governmental Emergency Operations Centers’ personnel and other state and federal regulatory agencies throughout the weather event. We follow contingency plans for excessive rainfall and water inventory management for the continued protection of our communities and the environment.

AFTER: Following a severe weather event, an assessment is completed that guides our recovery strategy from any storm-related impacts and directs resources to help ensure continued safe, responsible operations or start up following the weather event at the sites. We also provide support to impacted employees and local communities.

“I believe safety is primarily about the decision-making that occurs continually throughout our daily life, at work and at home. Through our investigations, we often see that an incident could have been prevented by making a better decision or small behavioral change,” says Holland. “As Emergency Manager, it is important to me to provide the most accurate and up-to-date information for our key decision makers. This gives us the best chance of managing an emergency without incidents while protecting our people, property and production.”


Did You Know?

The 2024 Atlantic Hurricane Season is officially underway! Forecasters from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predict an “above-normal” 2024 Atlantic hurricane season this year, which began June 1 and runs through Nov 30. NOAA forecast a range of 17 to 25 total named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher). Of those, 8 to 13 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 4 to 7 major hurricanes (category 3, 4 or 5; with winds of 111 mph or higher).