Safety Stand down 2013 was an opportunity for management and EHS to deliver the message Zero Harm. How does a company reach Zero Harm to its workers, equipment, material and environment? Can Safety help a company reach Zero Harm? Stop and think about what safety actually means to you. The definition of safety is the prevention of incident loss. That means preventing loss of life, loss of equipment, material and environmental damage.
I would like to invite everyone to look at safety a little differently. Think about it as a system – a Health and Safety Management System. This system is made up of many elements requiring commitment from management, supervisors and employees in order to prevent incident loss. The elements in Enesco’s HSMS include:
As you can see there are a number of contributing factors in this system. In order to prevent incident loss in the future, I would like to focus specifically on two particular elements, Hazard Identification and Hazard Control.
The majority of our incidents last year had a break-down in the identification and control of hazards. Why is that? We have hazard IDs, JSA’s, journey management cards and safety meetings to identify hazards in the workplace. If you look closely at the system, all the administration tools like hazard ID’s and safety meetings fall under a separate category then hazard identification and hazard control. It is important not to confuse the administration tool with observing and controlling the hazards in real time. The workplace mentality needs to shift towards acknowledging that hazards are present, and understanding the consequences and potentials for loss before work begins, not after. The administration tools prompt workers to see hazards and control them.
A well written safety meeting and hazard ID means nothing if no action is taken to prevent the hazard from occurring. What are some types of control measures we can utilize when trying to prevent an incident? Eliminate the task or hazard all together; engineer out the potential for an incident with some kind of guard; place warning signs to help others identify the potential hazards; or wear appropriate personal perfective equipment when required.
As we move into 2013 Enseco’s goal is to have Zero Harm and it is the responsibility of all personnel to contribute to this system.