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Showing posts from 2017

Happy weekend, merry Christmas, and safe & prosperous new year ahead.

@safetitude: A couple of days after we all would add one more year to our age and experiences. Someone will remember 2017 as a year of joy, someone as sorrow and many will not be there to say anything. Gone are past, left only memory with everyone of us. What coming ahead only is  worth capture and something worth for.  Let us welcome 2018 with renewed resolve to make globe a better place  worth living on. Each one of us irrespective of our position and status can do something for better tomorrow. You alone can not change world but certainly yourself  for better cause for the society we are a part of.  Happy weekend, merry Christmas,  and safe & prosperous new year ahead.

"No ZERO accident" to take as a goal is gaining acceptance

@safetitude: A couple of years back having influenced from a book on Safety, when I shared "ZERO Accident" may not anyway help in improving safety performance has great opposition from the audiences. People used to resist by saying - is it worth to plan for accident rather zero if I go by your thought? Anyway, through these years talking same in almost all occasions I got, today safety professionals are increasingly started believing  my share. I think, I am able to break this myth for the good of safety. So lets start taking achievement-oriented goals for safety to reach and sustain lower injury cases in our respective organisation.

Where are we fundamentally wrong in our efforts to improve safety?

The annual figure that 2.2 m work related deaths, 160 m work related diseases, and 250 m work related absenteeism globally supports that safety still finds no place in main agenda of the business. Almost every organisation has to realise that Health and Safety is a basic aspects of managing an organisation as it impacts on all the functions within the organisation.
There is certain prerequisite before we expect any improvement in safety and that is mind-set of those who can influence organisation for safety. There has to be structured approach (POPEAA) for safety which nowhere is seen in complete existence. The onus of safety improvement left on the shoulders of one or a few safety pros is nothing than giving it a back seat. Sole commitment of Safety pros is something that is keeping the profession alive but is not a sustainable solution to the problem.
If we want to see safety flourish and unlock the menace, we need safety to be approached with newer thoughts that strike balance betw…

Safetitude:Does higher risk mean higher investment?

Risk management is now gaining a more focus to scientifically manage an organisation from safety point of view. Risk is now a tool to have investment decisions in order to reduce it to a reasonably practicable level. Therefore, an understanding of a relevant risk and correct estimation of it pertaining to various independent functional departments is very essential. One such relevant risk is “Risk Ranking” which is different from general risk. Risk Ranking is a measure of degree of hazards due to factors that include inherent process, inventory of hazardous materials and hazardous operations. Risk ranking estimation takes into account of the composite risk due to property value, downtime (including production loss), and personal exposure and is calculated as multiplication of ‘composite exposure value’ and ‘percentage risk index’. This way, the different department is ranked 1, 2, 3.. and based on this, risk mitigation investment is prioritize accordingly.
For further details, you may …

Inside-out of Safety Culture.

In the present article, attempted to put a perspective out of what has been earned over the long years of working in Safety.
Culture is a very commonly spoken word and has been in usage in different perspective since long.
In safety world, this is most differently interpreted and is being shown as something like a tool to improve safety in an organisation overnight. As I have opined many times that a certain behavior followed and demonstrated by majority in a group is called a Culture. E.g. dining (an observable behavior) generally before sunset is a culture in Jainism. So it never mean that this single customary behavior as a culture is alone enough to describe this religion. Most important here is to understand that this is neither good nor bad to be followed by others unless you choose it for the sake of increasing or decreasing based on your objective.
Now, let’s take an example in the context of safety. We heard many saying “safety culture is not here at and I want to run this prog…

Kind Attention-All CEOs

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@safetitude: Kind Attention- All CEOs
The accident in an Indian nation run Thermal Power Plant (32 deaths and 100 injured) is one of the deadliest industrial occurrences that took society a back as how an industry meant to provide livelihood can snatch lives of many. Questions like why safety aspects are being ignored and is given a back seat are hounding everyone. As usual, this wave I am sure will vanish in a further couple of days and by the time inquiry report will come, everything will get settled. But the question of safety will remain where it was till we again see a bigger one next time.  Reasons that end into such accidents are multiple however, the prime cause is apathy of the person who has ultimate authority/influence over the day today activities in the organisation. I wont jump into conclusions by guess on the situations leading to this incident before the govt. make available the inquiry report.  However, I have been campaigning through posts /articles highlighting the…

Is goal of ZERO accident a counter to safety improvement?

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It is true that GOAL gives direction to our efforts and keeps a team focused and streamlined for it. When a goal is achievement-oriented (SMART), people align themselves to it and work with greater commitment. When they achieve the goal, a sense of pride for achievement makes them work harder with multiplied conviction at next occasion. Contrary to this, a goal like ZERO Accident is failure-oriented-sorts of a bizarre wish, not a strategic plan to achieve. As a matter of fact, ZERO Accident is an imaginary goal of an overzealous organisation in order to show that it has high commitment to safety. Interestingly, it is a start point of manoeuvre. The culture of workers participation-a key to safety improvement, gets a heavy blow.  Workers who are expected to share even near miss, started hiding injury for no matter how it is serious in fear that they would be reprimanded.  Line function stops recording the case of accident lest it will cause slippage of the target. The definition of acc…

@safetitude: Are managers immune to Safety?

I would like to narrate something that you may call right attitude of manager towards safety. I was first full time safety officer in erstwhile Cadbury India Limited in year 2000. I was reporting to factory manager (revered Jaiboy Phillips) who used to call me “Father of Safety”. I don’t know at that time how much I knew about safety but his understanding of value to safety made me a complete safety man of today. I remember his words saying that there are many in the Company who would tell him of all good things but he wanted me to inform if there was any bad thing needed attention. It was clear instruction that I must inform him anything that affected wellbeing of any person or any deviation that would lead to an accident.  

When I have become professionally more mature, I think why do most mangers not perceive safety a value for the organisation? Why do they expect a safety officer to be goody-goody to them? Is it not pertinent to pay heed to small safety issues that become a reason …

How LMRA benefits you?

@safetitude: How LMRA benefits you? Even if a detailed Risk Assessment of an activity has been done, yet before you begin a work, you must ensure that all risks related to the work is under control. Using a checklist to identify the risk will help you avoid meeting an accident. This is called Last Minute Risk Assessment which is very effective tool to prevent accident.

Are children vulnerable in schools?

@safetitude: Are children vulnerable in schools?
Recent unfortunate couple of reported and many times more unreported incidents in India necessitate the need that school safety should not be undermined. The commercialization of education system increasingly has rendered these children on mercy of god. Poor infrastructure, unhygienic arrangement and unsafe facilities of school have become a concerned place for parents. It is more deplorable that in the run of getting good education, parents are leaving their wards in hands of school management and they in turn are not going beyond their profit mindset. 
Should local govt. not force schools to ensure yearly audit  and certification process so that safety, hygiene and healthy atmosphere are not compromised.

Safety - investment or Expense?

@safetitude: Safety - investment or Expense?
At times, budget allocation to safety is seen from return on investment (ROI) point of view. But the fact money spared for safety do not yield  direct benefit, makes many wary.  Unfortunately, the visible cost to accident or loss appears like the tip of iceberg. The literature says that direct cost is 4 times of the indirect cost but since later is hidden,  seriousness in ensuring good safety against economics weakened. As everybody understands the language of  money, so should we practitioners not put rigor to estimate the total cost of losses resulted from an accident and present it to business manager. The ultimate aim is to make management aware that " Safety is an investment and is not an expense.

Should your Safety Procedure not be a decorative piece?

@safetitude: Should your Safety Procedure not be a decorative piece? More often, emphasis is laid on preparation of Safe Procedure for various activities in an organisation however  it is seldom referred or adhered to in real situation.   According to me, it may be because of mismatch of the contents with actual practice in vogue.  Sometimes, the contents copied from external source is so ideal and hi-fi that  organisation's safety maturity does not fit into it and therefore, procedure becomes  redundant. In other situation, a certain laid procedure is ignored in the name of ease, comfort and economy.   But it does not mean that an organisation should not have it. My opinion is, an organisation should prepare a procedure in consultation with all functions so that it suits to the current maturity, commitment and most importantly the resources available. Further more,it must be reviewed and upgraded regularly to make it relevant in changing circumstances.

Is finding root cause of an accident is actually root cause of poor safety?

@safetitude: It is common approach to find out root cause of accident in order to avoid repetition, and for this we do accident investigation (instead of accident analysis). One should agree accident is 2nd last link in accident causation chain and is result of unique combination of factors (many a time unknown otherwise). We also acknowledge an accident result of failure of all safety barriers.Therefore, is it possible that we can avoid  repetition addressing a single cause? According to me, never.  So what to do? As a matter of fact, we should analyse situations (factors in four groups which I developed as safety quadrants) and find the combination responsible for. This way we would be able to effectively reduce number of accidents for better safety performance!

Poor planning for safety leads to safety compromise!!

@safetitude: Poor planning for safety in any planned activity leads to  compromise on safety. During execution, therefore  short cuts are explored, poor quality safety items are used or inadequate PPEs are available for use or procedure is bypassed in name of loss of downtime, production, and target.  Safety to be made  integrated and adoptable, it should be part of all business planning.

Safety Officer is for compliance or for business gains??

@safetitude: Can somebody guess as how many industries would recruit safety officer for their organisation if there would have not been legal compliance need? Your guess figure is exactly the percentage who  in fact looks this profession worth for the business.

How to form safety attitude that is safetitude?

@safetitude: "Safety is everybody's responsibility" led us to a situation where nobody feels it is his/her. will it not be appropriate to own it as "my responsibility".  Such is a situation wherein safety is adopted as core value and is integrated with each business activity undertaken in the organisation.

Similarity between profession of a Doctor and a Safety Officer

@safetitude: The profession of  a Doctor and a Safety Officer  is alike. Both professions require a through diagnosis of the  problem (cause of illness in a patient and safety issues in the organisation respectively) before arriving to a remedy. One can imagine the effect of a wrong prescription and a wrong safety program of improperly chosen medicine and Safety program. Therefore, success and failure of both professions lie across a very thin line.

Safety is everybody's job - means nobody is responsible!

Normal meaning from management point of view for responsibility is ‘duty to accomplish the task’. However, when it comes to workplace safety & health, responsibility acquires a greater and larger scope and extends beyond to mere completion of task. To improve safety, employee at all levels need to extend responsibility beyond normal meaning of it. Every person should demonstrate visible commitment for safety as his/her responsibility and must ensure that it is integrated with each activity being performed. Working to reduce injury or occupational illness should not be seen as responsibility of safety person employed with an organisation but it is applicable to all employee who execute the work or who get the work executed. It is fairly a challenge at the end of safety professionals and corporate leaders to build the kind of work culture that enables or facilitates responsibility for safety. Safety within the organisation will improve if a worker does an activity with a self-direc…

Who does learn from accident with others?

It is age-old saying that learning from others mistakes and doing own course correction is a million dollars wisdom. However, this does not seem fits to safety fields. The reason, the accident we hear about or witness it happening at home, at workplace, at roads or anywhere else leaves us prudent for time being only.  The scene of accident remains very short-lived in our memory and very soon we started committing similar mistakes or accepting someone under our influence doing same.  I would like to mention a real case. It is case of a factory, where I had started my career in Safety section as Safety Officer. As my routine responsibility, I used to capture unsafe condition and unsafe act and put them into PPT for presentation in meeting at some next occasion. As any SO does, I used to show also non compliance in wearing helmet by a few workers and management people as well at work site. The Head of mechanical department had habit of not using helmet on regular basis while taking round …

Safetitude - Now a year’s Toddler

One year back on this day 6th July, a thought in the form of Safetitude (Attitude of safety) took birth. Since then, several campaigns to raise bar of Safety performance is on. In this journey, 51 articles and 106 posts as extracts of my experience of the HSE domain shared on e-media and are still counting on. Readers, mostly from the HSE fraternity have been kind enough in expressing with their “likes”, “comments”, ‘Query” and of course a few with “disagreement” too. The response from HSE practitioner is natural however; a few in numbers from other core business function is discouraging. The culture of good safety will never be flourishing unless this will become an integral part of values to all those (Sr. Executives) who are influential in their organisation. On this day, I would like to say couple of other things candidly.  At times, I have been harsh in expressing my views with writing unconventionally so that older ineffective approaches to safety get replaced. Angers also appeare…

Are we struggling with basics of safety ???

@safetitude: Sometimes I think what progress in safety has taken place so far? SOs are still struggling to make people understand correct use of industrial helmet in order to protect head from injury. Their most of the time spent in persuading employee and even senior management member to comply this basic safety norms. Many site safety reports still project deficiency like no use of helmet, no use of chin strip, improper head fit, broken /missing harness etc. Should we not apply newer approach to safety to pace with current challenges posed by ever increasing riskier processes and activities?


Is safety leadership in you??

6 Traits of a Safety Leader You may not be a safety leader because you are Manager, HOD, Director, Adviser or like by position in your organisation but you need to own certain traits for this. Some traits are described here by which one can influence safety for better result in an organisation: 1. Behaviour (who u r): demonstrate what you believe " SAFETY PAYS" 2. Relationship (who u know): demonstrate to workers that you care  3. Knowledge(what u know):dive deep to understand the safety issue rather than helicopter view of the situation 4. Intuition(what u feel): make people feel that u will be there where people need you to advise them for safety. 5.Experience (where u have been):the greater u past safety challenges, the more likely workers will be willing to follow u. 6. Ability(what u can do): your might should make worker feel you r capable of solving the safety issue affecting their health and safety. For more information visit www.safetitude.com and contact through th…

How to know-"Total Safety Culture"(TSC) exists??

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TSC is not a short-term easy to achieve mission. This situation in an organisation is result of a consistent effort with application of behavior based safety (BBS) that run over the years. Although many of us refer TSC for a situation when no accidents happen or manged for a few years. For an enduring safety in terms of TSC, following situations should be visible. Let check it your self and decide whether this exists in organisation of your concern. 1) Everyone feels responsible for safety and pursue it on daily basis even not under supervision. 2) Employee go beyond "the call of duty" to identify environmental hazards and "at-risk-behaviors (ARBs) 3) Workers intervene to correct these ARBs 4) Safe work practices are encouraged and suitably recognised 5) Safety is not shifted according to situation and is treated as value linked to all situational priority 6) Employee help others as "actively caring: 7) Employee are pen to discuss and resolve safety issues 8) Work…

80-20 Rules of Safety Management

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Effective Safety management is a “system approach” and is certainly not a “piecemeal activity”.   Like any other business function, it also requires careful planning, efficient organisation, adequate resource allocation and sound monitoring and evaluation process. Conventional approach and generic activities render safety function missing the objective of the organisation year after year. In every management it is said that efforts and resources applied to preventing the occurrence that lead to defects in quality, deteriorated environment or injury in due course of business is economical and effective. This is true to safety management too.
Unfortunately, most business focuses more for situations developed after business upsets. In the name of improving safety performance, an organisation runs many programs that address the problems surfaced after an accident (a potential business upset). The accident may be a situation related to release/spill of chemicals, fire/explosion, and collaps…

Balancing Safety-How much Important?

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With the increasing industrialisation with newest process technology, the challenge to safety to protect human being from dangers encountered in due course of employment is also increasing proportionately. In this situation, the approach to safety with yesterday’s tactics won’t yield good result. It is essential to consider each contributory cause of an accident while planning for good safety performance. To reach ultimately closer to ZERO accident - a long term vision, safety must compete with other business functions. In turn, safety management system needs to balance all elements of an accident causation model. Apart from other paradigm shifts in safety, one such important shift is a thought process to see safety as a “system approach” and not as “piecemeal activity”. We see many organisation claims to ZERO accident for a few years randomly and all of a sudden, they experience spurt of accidents following years. The reason behind this is many but also is because of lack of having a …