SAFETY first is a golden rule on an industrial base on Teesside.

A group of companies operating on the Wilton International site, near Redcar, have proved that with a gold award for an accident-free year.

Four firms - Tolent, Hortech, Ferguson and Hertel - shared the award for 87,000 hours of safe working for energy supplier Enron Teesside Operations. The award was made by Enron.

Neil McDermott, of Enron, said: "We appreciate the considerable efforts that are required in achieving this excellent safety performance.

"Continuous safety improvement is an essential requirement if we are to maintain long-term relationships with our suppliers."