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Work Health & SafetyThink Tank Initiatives 2013Today I want to talk about some of the recent initiatives that arose from a Think Tank that was held in April this year. That was when we first heard from Programmed about their recent safety journey. It prompted a lot of discussion and further meetings which resulted in a to-do list of improvements that my team has worked on and will continue to work on during 13/14.
There will be a few new ideas, some of which well discuss today and well go over some old stuff too. Mainly, the importance of identifying the root cause of hazards.1Todays TopicsSafety PledgeInvestigationsHazard ReportingCompliance Calendar2Work Health & SafetyThink Tank Initiatives 2013SAFETY PLEDGEAs youve heard, Programmed had all their managers make a written commitment to safety.
The idea of the pledge has been discussed by an Operational working party and all managers, - ELT, GLT, LLT and GMT are expected to make their own personal pledge to safety.
3Safety PledgePersonal Safety CommitmentI will always act to ensure the safety of our employees, our customers, the public, contractors, my family, my friends and myself.I will do everything I can to promote a safety culture throughout IRT.I will proactively strive to improve safety performance.I will do everything I can to ensure that IRT has systems, processes and opportunity for employees to actively speak about safety issues.I will listen to advice on safety by employees.I will contribute to wider company safety initiatives.
Craig HamerChief Operating OfficerThis is the personal pledge of our Chief Operating Officer. It will be prominently displayed and he will be accountable for it.
As you can see, it doesnt have to be long; you dont have to promise to do everything, but the words you use should be how YOU plan to help create and maintain a positive safety culture in your workplace.
Programmed has kindly shared their story with us and theyve also shared a few of their personal pledges. The pledges are to be displayed. They will help us all be accountable for our actions.
It takes leading by example to a higher level by putting down in writing exactly what sort of example you will set.4Employee Safety Pledge ExampleI will work safely to look after my residents and fellow workersI will look for and report hazardsI will cooperate with IRT to reduce risksI will share my safety concerns and ideas for fixing themWhat about the rest of IRT? We will create a safety pledge for all IRT employees that will be printed on the back of the new employee ID cards.
We are working with Corporate Affairs to run a campaign to involve all IRT employees in the creation of a safety pledge. As with your words it is important that the employees have a say and hopefully feel a connection to the words.
5Work Health & SafetyThink Tank Initiatives 2013HAZARD REPORTINGAnother opportunity we saw, after seeing the Programmed presentation was an opportunity to improve the way we report hazards. We know that hazards are everywhere but employees may be reluctant to complete paperwork.
We also felt that while injuries were being well reported, there is no central place for the collection of identified hazards. Most sites keep their hazard logs on site for review by their safety committees.6Hazard Reporting1800 number for reporting hazardsEither ring or complete Hazard Report FormEliminate paperworkNumber will operate during business hours and will be answered by HWS TeamHR Database (Preceda) will generate email to relevant manager
We are in the process of setting up a 1800 number so that employees can either ring the number, which will go through to the HWS team, or complete a hazard report using a form.
If its phoned through, we will add it to our Preceda system which can automatically generate an email to the manager.
The emails and collection of data will take a while to properly set up but once we are up and running all hazards can be tracked across the whole organisation.7Hazard Reporting Flowchart
Outside working hours, there will be a voicemail service requesting that details be given so that we can contact the employee on the next working day.
This process wont take away from the managers responsibility to ensure that the risks are minimised but we will be able to follow up better and get a better idea of the risks across IRT.
The original idea was to test this across a few sites and iron out the bugs before we implement it more broadly.
Stay tuned for updates!8
We are also hoping to add the number to the back of employee ID cards9Work Health & SafetyThink Tank Initiatives 2013INVESTIGATIONSWe also agreed that we need to look a bit deeper into our injuries to find the underlying causes, or what us boring safety types call ROOT CAUSES. Basically were looking for the thing that we can fix that gives the most protection to the most people.
The problem with this of course, is that those things are usually difficult to fix.
Before we get too detailed with the investigation process, lets have a look at some actual incident reports that we see.
10What we see ...IncidentRiskActionI was bending down to put coffee pot on trolley and felt something pop in my backInsignificantEducation to staff member on correct manual handling proceduresLifting bucket of water onto trolleyModerateAdvised staff to use proper manual handling techniques while liftingWas pushing a water chair with a resident in it, turned around the corner and my back twisted??Co-worker and I used the slide sheet to manoeuver resident up the bedSignificantInformed staff to use correct equipment and use proper manual handling techniqueThese are hand-picked.
Theyre not meant to be funny but they are meant to make a point.
The actions are superficial, they dont look beyond the person and their injury and what THEY were doing at that time.11Continued ...IncidentRiskActionJust doing normal duties, but then my back started to ache. Turning and bending are just painful.LowEmployee advised to pace themselves and change workload if possible. Correct manual handling techniques reinforced.Pain in lower back / left leg during and after cleaning toilets.ModerateManual handling trainingWas cleaning bathrooms, bent down to clean behind toilet bowl, on standing felt severe pain in lower back, getting worse by the end of shiftModerateManager to review manual handling technique and provide further education if requiredHere are some more. See a pattern?
Theres nothing really wrong with the actions but we need to look beyond that and think about SYSTEM issues.
If we train people after theyve been injured, how do we know that everyone else really understands manual handling risks?
Are they just really lucky or naturally careful?
How can we ENSURE that they know what theyre doing?12Why Investigate?Find causesPrevent recurrencesMinimise riskLegal DutyKEEP PEOPLE SAFEWhy do we report hazards in the first place?
WHS act places responsibility on employers to have systems in place to ensure that hazards are identified and controlled. All employees also have a legal duty under the legislation as well as a duty under code of conduct to comply with policies and procedures.
So, whos responsible for doing this?
ALL employees have this responsibility under the legislation. But also we have a moral duty to report unsafe conditions. What if you were to walk past a fridge that had a pool of water under the door. Should you report it? What if you dont and someone slips? Who is at fault? We are responsible for ACTS and OMISSIONS when it comes to matters of safety.13When to Investigate?Low risk no injury, Risk Rating of 1, 2 or 3Find Primary Cause
High risk - LTI / MTO / Risk Rating of 4 or 5Find Root CauseUse WHS Incident Investigation Report form14Incident Investigation (#087d)
15How to InvestigateGather the factsTalk to peoplePhotographs / diagramsDocument other conditions (e.g. Weather)Other factors (start / end of shift, busy period, short-staffed)Look beyond the immediate causeDont blame the individualLook for System ErrorsLook for System errors
What does IRT need to do to fix it?More / better training?Competent people?Lack of maintenance?Incorrect equipment?Unable to supervise effectively?
16What to Look ForPersonal FactorsSupervisionPlant and EquipmentSafe Work PracticesEnvironmentOther factors?
There is likely to be more than one cause!171. Personal FactorsLack of trainingLack of competenceFailure to observe Safe Work ProceduresFail to follow policy / procedure / trainingInappropriate behaviour / poor judgementPeer pressures
182. SupervisionFailure to orient or coachSupervisor failed to tell whySupervisor failed to listenHonest error. Action or inaction turned out to be wrongDisorder of confusion in the work areaPractice out of step with training193. Plant and EquipmentInsufficient, unavailable, deficient, inoperative equipmentPoor designDeficient inspection, reporting or maintenanceInadequate training?204. Safe Work ProceduresNon existentContradictory instructionsViolation by individual - I knew I was doing the wrong thing but ...Violation by group No-one does it that way or thats the way we were shown215. EnvironmentClutterLack of things neededPoor designInadequate repair / wear and tearHeat / noise / lighting / vibration / dust / fumes / chemicalFlooring / unstable ground226. Other?Conflicting directions / prioritiesTraining need not foreseenPrevious controls not properly communicatedPoor team moraleUnclear directions / confusion in work area
There are many other factors that could be at play, which may have contributed to an injury. Many of these things may be out of your control, but perhaps if we see patterns start to emerge we can figure out a way around these problems.
This might seem confusing and, let me tell you there are some root cause analysis tools that my team struggles to understand. Were trying to get a deeper look into why accidents happen and look at what improvements need to be made to the system and some of those decisions may need to be made by the ELT. We wont know where the improvements are needed unless we examine things a little closer.
23Controls How do we fix it?Develop safe work procedures?Is it one-off or across the team / site / organisation?Buy more suitable equipment?Design better facilities?Engage your employees!Talk to your colleaguesTalk to HWS TeamTry to think beyond the specific incident. What can stop this happening again? Sessions like this will help with employee attitudes towards safety, if you embrace it. If you dont Walk the talk then we wont affect the safety culture of the organisation.
Theres an old safety saying that I quite like. The best safety person for the job is the person doing the job. Its not always true but dont discount it. The people who perform the risky tasks might have the best ideas for controlling the risks. You need to ask them and be open to their ideas.
There is a wealth of experience in this room! Look around and think of the combined knowledge that we have, both in aged are and other industries. Fresh people bring fresh ideas. Just because you are at a dead end with a problem, doesnt mean someone else in this room hasnt figured out the answer. Ask them!
My team is always happy to help and do some of the legwork for you. We have contacts too and we know how to guide you through the process. Call us.24Work Health & SafetyThink Tank Initiatives 2013COMPLIANCE CALENDAR25Compliance Calendar11 topics over 12 months (Dec Jan combined)Covers major risk areasTargeted activitiesHow-to guidesChecklistsPromotional material for noticeboardsInformation for employees about the risksThis is something that we started working on before the Think Tank meetings and when we pitched it, it was an idea that was supported quite quickly.
We felt that WHS committees were committed and keen but we needed to provide additional focus.
Other organisations use a similar calendar or topic of the month to assist with compliance.
We developed a list of 11 things ... We could have come up with more but we decided that Dec-Jan is a bad time to cram too much into.
Each month will have a package of information to go to sites with some guidance material, checklists, noticeboard posters and information for employees.26ActivitiesTopicsEquipmentElectricalHousekeepingHandwashingHeat / Cold EquipmentFirst AidSlips, Trips & FallsChemicalsManual HandlingHot Conditions / High TemperaturesWHS NoticeboardThese are the monthly topics.
We recently had an intern from the UOW work on this project for us and come up with material for each of these topics. The material may need a little refinement and well work together with the corporate affairs team to come up with some professional looking material27Example ActivityHousekeepingList storeroom, pantry, office, cleaners roomCheck each area Neat and tidyTrip hazards removedRubbish removedThings stored properlyCheck it off the listWell use housekeeping as an example.
The material for employees will have information about why this is important. Many injuries can be blamed, at least partly on poor housekeeping, that is an untidy or cluttered work area.
The steps will involve making a list, checking the areas, tidying, throwing out rubbish, making sure things are stored properly, seeing if things can be organised better and then signing off.
12 months can seem like a long time but think about how long its been since someone went into a storeroom with the sole purpose of giving it a tidy?28Improvement IdeasLet us know!Do your homeworkCostRisk ReductionConsider alternativesSubmit to HWSOperations Working Party ReviewCOO Approval for fundingQuite often I see examples of people at sites coming up with good strategies for resolving issues.
Craig Hamer has indicated that sites will now be able to make a funding submission for worthy WHS initiatives.
The theme of the month is a good opportunity to target peoples thinking around a particular risk.
If you can get good ideas from your employees but dont have the funds or resources to implement them, then you can submit your ideas to the HWS team.
We will then discuss the merits of these ideas with the Operations working party who will make a recommendation to Craig who is able to authorise release of funds.29Implement your ideasIf funding is approved, make your changesRecognition in IRT newsletterProblemSolutionsCost and benefitsLearn from each otherSpread the word!
Theres no specific amount up for grabs. An idea that costs $500 may have more merit than an idea that costs $50,000.
We ask that you do your homework. Identify the problem, look for root causes. Look for possible solutions and weigh up the costs, benefits and risks of each option. Then put forward your preferred option and ideally how it will be implemented.
Ideas will be j...