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Senior Health, Safety, and Environmental Specialist

US Operations · Seattle, Washington

First Mode is a creative engineering company solving the toughest problems on and off the planet, with the goal of having an outsized impact on the world around us. We build the barely possible.  

From our state-of-the-art manufacturing and production facilities in Seattle and Perth, we design and deliver resilient, reliable solutions for the most demanding and constrained frontiers in existence. In the last year our engineers built a 2MW hydrogen fuel cell and battery powerplant to retrofit a three-story, 300-metric-ton-capacity diesel haul truck; designed the power source and refueling system for the world’s first endurance race vehicle to be powered by liquid hydrogen; and delivered spaceflight hardware headed 370 million kilometers from Earth to asteroid 16 Psyche. 

While each project is unique, we typically meld together robotics, automation, systems engineering, modeling and simulation, and advanced fabrication to create a new future across many industries. If you have exceptional talent and a vision for the future, we want to talk. 

As the Sr. HSE Specialist you will work with multiple disciplines and collaborate across the organization to integrate HSE programs at our R&D facility in Centralia, WA. As we develop new products you will lead job hazard analysis to reduce operational risks, develop and integrate HSE trainings for R&D operations, and be the site point of contact to engage state/government regulators. The successful candidate will have a self-starting attitude and desire to learn everything about the systems under development.

Position Responsibilities

  • Coordinate the implementation of First Mode HSE programs to ensure compliance with relevant Federal, State, and Local laws and regulations.
  • Develop relationships with internal teams (e.g., engineering, operations) and contractors to ensure all safety policies and procedures are followed.
  • Perform job hazard analysis and work with internal teams to reduce risks while executing R&D operations.
  • Develop, administer, and track completion of site safety trainings for internal teams and contractors.
  • Manage construction safety operations during site development.
  • Define safety requirements for vehicle operation across various onsite testing locations.
  • Develop HSE programs and policies specific to R&D operation.
  • Create site emergency response procedures to respond to hydrogen, battery, or truck events.
  • Serves as incident commander during an evacuation when necessary.
  • Assist with investigations of occupational incidents and injuries
  • Ensure company safety records/MSDS/documentation are correct and up to date.
  • Manage the PPE inventory and assisting in custom PPE purchasing.
  • Ensure hazardous waste collection, storage, and disposal is performed in compliance with EPA, DOT, and OSHA regulation. 
  • Coordinate industrial hygiene studies and implement measures to prevent or reduce occupational exposures to permissible levels.
  • Perform other related duties as assigned.

 Basic Qualifications

  • Strong written and verbal communications skills and the ability to clearly articulate complex concepts to a broad and diverse audience.
  • Well-developed influence skills, including the ability to engage people and generate support towards HSE programs.
  • Proficient in MS Office, Teams, Confluence, JIRA 

Preferred Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in Occupational Health & Safety, Engineering, or equivalent work experience.
  • 5+ years of experience in Environmental, Health, and Safety or related field working with chemical processing, stationary storage battery systems, mining or other high hazard environments.
  • Experience performing job hazard analysis and implementing risk reduction measures in an R&D environment.
  • Strong working knowledge of MSHA, OSHA, EPA, and state and local regulatory requirements, as they pertain to mining operations.
  • Experience developing and implementing HSE programs
  • Experience developing and administering training
  • Experience operating at active mine sites.

Additional Requirements

  • Ability to operate safely in a field environment; this may include, but is not limited to potentially lifting up to 50 lbs., standing for extended periods of time bending, crouching, stooping, rotating, climbing stairs, or any combination of the aforementioned, etc.

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


  • This position will be located at First Mode’s facility in Centralia, WA.


  • To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) you must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State. Learn more about the ITAR

Benefits & Perks

  • Competitive compensation and bonus structure
  • 100% employer-paid health insurance (medical, dental, vision)
  • Flexible PTO with 12-week supplementary paid parental leave and winter shutdown
  • 401(k) retirement account with a discretionary employer match
  • Commuter benefits (parking and public transportation)
  • A culture that encourages professional growth with learning and development reimbursements
  • Open and collaborative workspaces with free office snacks and lunches
  • Hybrid work model

 Notice to First Mode job applicants: First Mode will never ask you to pay money or provide sensitive personal data to process a job application. If someone representing themselves as being associated with First Mode asks for any personal information as part of an application process, please report this immediately to


First Mode is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with First Mode is governed on the basis of merit, competence, and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.