Steve Howe

Steve Howe

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Workplace Accident Survivor, Safety Expert, Inspirational Speaker

With over 18 years in the construction industry, Steve Howe understands the hazards faced by workers daily and why safety is often viewed as an impedance.

In the spring of 2006, while working as a young tree faller on the Sea to Sky Highway project in British Columbia, Steve suffered an unimaginable injury.  Despite the feeling that something wasn’t right that morning, Steve pushed forward – as many would – to get the job done. Unfortunately for Steve, this decision – to ignore his gut – resulted in being struck by an excavator bucket through his abdomen and being dragged for several feet.  It was the beginning of a drastically altered life.

He was told he would never walk again and it almost broke him. However, throughout his many days in the hospital Steve had a chance to reflect on his journey and muster the courage and strength to challenge his projected outcome. Steve believes fiercely that we control our destiny.

We have the choice to speak up when things don’t feel right. We have the choice to stop someone from engaging in unsafe acts. We have the choice to do the safe thing every time. Not only at work but in our day-to-day lives. So he decided to chose a different path and after years of dedicated work, he is now able to walk again.

Steve shares how at 22 years old, he felt invincible. Sure, he had heard stories of workplace injuries, but it would never happen to HIM. Sadly, this belief, shared by so many workers, is what ultimately led to his accident.  By reflecting on his injury and drawing on his experiences working in the field of safety, Steve has found what he considers to be the keys to success in preventing all workplace injuries. A goal that he has believes to be 100% obtainable.

Living through 83 surgeries, 90 Days in a Coma and over 500 days in a hospital allowed Steve the opportunity to reflect on his accident and he developed a passion to share his story with others. His message of survival, emphasizing the importance of working safety not just for yourself but others around you, has been heard all around the world from Vancouver to Australia.

As a safety consultant, Steve travels across the country sharing his story and inspiring audiences to trust their gut.  And reminding them that he used to live to work but now he works to live.  This keeps what’s important – his family, his health, his life – at the forefront of every safety decision he makes today.

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Speaking topics

Keeping Workplace Safety Simple

This keynote tells the story of Steve Howe’s early career in the construction industry when he thought the rules and best practices to be safe did not apply to him. Like many workers, he never imagined he would fall victim to a workplace accident that would almost cost him his life.

Steve’s story of the tragic accident, his long recovery, and his return to work will inspire audiences to learn the reasons WHY Steve now works safely. Steve shares how he uses a combination of his experience as a Safety Director and the story of his avoidable accident to inspire his own team to work safely and how he achieves his number one professional goal; creating ZERO accident workplaces.

With 15 years on construction sites since his accident, Steve knows the safety challenges facing construction projects and the people working on them. His keynote not only inspires audiences to think about WHY they should work safely but he also shares how to establish a culture of safety by keeping it simple and making every word count.

Video clips

Steve Howe - Keynote

Speaker testimonials

Steve’s presentation went over very well with our audience. His story kept everyone engaged and he did a good job getting the audience involved. He met our expectations for sure, he did a great job telling his story and the affects that it not only had on him, but the affects on his family, friends, social life…… We told him that we wanted to push the “WHY” we do things, and I believe he did a great job tailoring his presentation towards the message that we were trying to convey to our people.

SUNDT Health and Safety Director

Steve was great! Very motivating and genuine. He was able to engage the entire room and he delivered a very solid message that aligns with our safety program. Thank you so much for your excellent coordination as well. “Best safety meeting ever!”

Municipal District of Bonnyville No. 87

It is not hard to see, based off your presentation that you are passionate about keeping the people of our industry safe. I am truly grateful that you have taken your story/accident and turned it into an opportunity to share with the people throughout our industry. You are definitely doing your part to help others avoid future accidents. It is truly a miracle that you made it through your accident and now have a life second to none! I think goes without saying you are guy with an “attitude of gratitude”!

J.B. Henderson Construction Company Inc

I’ve been in auditoriums, events, churches and I’ve never looked around the room and seen everyone engaged like they were last week. Today was one week from the day of seeing your presentation and our day started off on the jobsite at 6:30 with a veteran in the company doing the daily safety share. He asked everyone to raise their hand if they had gone home and told their families, friends or crews about Steve Howe. Everyone raised their hand. Everyone on our jobsite now knows the name Steve Howe and your story.

Sundt Construction, Inc.

We have seen a significant increase in safety idea cards and reporting of near misses since you have visited the facility. I consider this a significant advancement in our culture because people are looking at their work and the risks differently. We are seeing our work differently and are less willing to accept things that might be a risk, even if it isn’t an urgent risk at the moment. When we are out on the shop floor discussing our risks/opportunities, your visit or something you said comes up in the conversation frequently.

Caterpillar, Inc.

Meeting you has motivated me to be a better leader and create a better safety culture at Aldridge. I have been told repeatedly by our employees, that by far this was the best safety meeting they have ever been to. I believe you saved some lives in our company and we are grateful. We are really looking forward to a couple more talks and want to get the rest of the company to hear your story


Steve’s presentation was a home run. It exceeded our expectation. He was clear concise and captivating. Jim and I both commented you could have heard a pin drop in the room everyone was so engaged! Thank you so much for the recommendations. I would highly recommend Steve to all our colleagues. He was very personable and even attended our meet and greet that evening to interact with our guests. His story was very compelling and left a lasting impression on all in attendance. I can’t say enough great things about your service and his presentation. Thanks so much and we look forward to working together in the future

UA Local 496

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