Nothing is more important than the safety of our employees, contractors and visitors.


“Our most important responsibility is to ensure everyone working for International Paper arrives home safely every day.”

Mark Sutton
Chairman & CEO

At International Paper, safety is a core value. All 55,000 employees share the same objective: ensuring that they and everyone around them arrive home safely at the end of each day. Nothing we do is worth the risk of an injury to an employee, contractor, or visitor.

Our safety mantra is clear: follow all of the rules, all of the time. All employees are expected to ensure that work conditions are safe and that they and everyone around them behave safely.

While we have significantly reduced the number of serious injuries, we have not yet achieved our goal of accident-free operations around the world. We believe that all accidents can be prevented, and we focus strongly on life-impacting injuries and fatalities (which we refer to as “LIFE” injuries). We continue to implement comprehensive health and safety programs to promote safety awareness, recognize and eliminate potential hazards, and ensure that all persons behave safely and follow all of the rules all of the time. We strive to instill a safety-first mindset among all employees, contractors and visitors.


Our Approach

Our approach to health and safety includes seven key elements:

  1. Annual Plans - We develop and implement plans for all businesses and facilities to address safety priorities. These plans are based on facility safety audits, behavior-based safety observations, and lessons learned from key indicators, such as near miss reports and safety incident trend analysis.
  2. Corporate Standards - We continue to develop and implement global safety regulations that specify standards and processes for identifying and eliminating health and safety hazards. Our philosophy is one company with one set of expectations, standards, and processes globally.
  3. Employee Involvement and Engagement - The success of our LIFE program depends on the full engagement of our employees, contractors, and visitors. Employee ownership of safe conditions and behaviors is the key to injury-free operations.
  4. Leadership - Our most senior leaders are actively engaged in our safety programs, ensuring adequate emphasis on LIFE and other high-profile safety initiatives. Leaders at all levels—from first line supervisors to elected officers—are responsible for ensuring safe operations.
  5. Metrics, Goal-Setting and Accountability - We drive safe operations by setting annual safety goals for all teams. We report safety incidents and near-misses promptly and consistently, and we share lessons learned and best practices globally.
  6. Risk Elimination - We use hazard risk assessments and safe-behavior audits to identify and eliminate unsafe conditions and behaviors. We engage our colleagues in these processes and use cross-functional teams to spot unsafe conditions and behaviors that need to be addressed.
  7. Training and Awareness - We conduct regular safety training to equip employees and contractors with the knowledge and skills needed to ensure that all work safely. And most importantly, we empower all employees and contractors to stop work if unsafe conditions or behaviors are observed.