Achieving Safety Goals
Achieving Safety Goals
Any company that focuses on improving workplace safety aims to get their employees home in the same health or better than they came into work every single day. For many companies there is often a larger expressed goal attached to this effort. Often the goal for many worksites or companies is to make it an entire year without any injuries. For other companies, it may just be no lost time injuries in a year. Despite what the goal is or the duration set, one thing is for certain - it takes focused effort every single day to achieve it.
If we look at safety goals set by companies, safety records are tracked and there are counters for days since the last injury that can loom over employees’ heads. Safety gatherings are sometimes held weekly, monthly or quarterly to celebrate employee efforts in working safely. While these tools may be good reminders for a workforce that there is a goal set and there is progress being made, the honest truth is that it takes dedication by every single person on that team over a long period of time to achieve the larger goal. The enormity of these safety related goals can overwhelm even the most optimistic employee.
In my opinion, the only way to achieve a big safety goal is one task at a time. After huge goals are set by companies regarding workplace safety, it is up to everyone’s willingness to embrace that it is possible and to take action towards meeting the goal. The thought alone of making it a whole year without injury automatically shuts down many individuals from even wanting to put a care towards attempting to achieve it. To reduce the enormity of the goal, concrete actions need to be lined out every day to focus on preventing injuries one task at a time.
The best way to achieve a huge goal is to take small steps towards it every single day. For safety goals, it means doing one step, one work task, one safeguard, the right way each time it needs completed. Effort cannot be applied directly to the overall abstract goal that may be a year or two away. Effort can be applied by each individual to take action in the task they are doing that minute to complete it in the safe and correct manner.
Goals are good. Goals for safety in a workplace should be embraced by all employees. After all, it is ultimately about making sure everyone goes home in the same health or better than they arrived in. More important than the goal itself is the action needed in a given moment to make your work task or workplace safe. While it takes a lot of effort by every single member of a workforce to achieve what seems to be a hard-to-reach safety goal, it is truly possible when you just focus your efforts on the task at hand.
As we move forward with the COVID-19 outbreak and following the CDC contact tracking protocol to determine exposure risks, we are encouraging you as a CIS employee to consider how you are tracking the co-workers around you in the event that you would become ill with COVID-19. We recommend documenting the other employees and contractors that you would need to identify as working in the area you have been in contact with in your daily logbook or tally book.
July Near Misses
While removing mats out of a bell hole, one of them came close to hitting a worker. Work was stopped for a safety orientation about proper spotter training. We talked about the distance workers should be from a piece of equipment and the importance of a spotter.
An operator was climbing back on to a track hoe, not using 3 points of contact. He nearly slipped and fell but didn’t cause any injury or fall completely. He was able to regain control and enter the cab. A safety stand-down was conducted with the operator making sure to always have 3 points of stable contact especially in wet conditions.
A mini track hoe was excavating for a light pole concrete form, next to an open trench. The dirt gave way and the tracks slid down in the trench. The track stopped 3 inches from a live 2-inch gas line. Stop work authority was used and safety was contacted to do a near miss report. A decision was made for a more qualified operator to maneuver the excavator out of the area.
The current work location has a bicycle trail near entrance. A cyclist did not stop at the stop sign and rode into the path of an exiting truck. The following morning, we discussed making sure to be extra cautious when entering or exiting and never assume the cyclists will stop.
The contractor was starting up blast pots. On the morning of 7/10/2020 around 8:45AM, a bull hose connected to the blast pot blew off, striking a crew member in the lower arm/wrist area. It scratched his arm and they were able to treat it onsite with disinfectant and a Band-Aid. Their safety department was contacted, and the incident was discussed. We shut the job down, discussed the incident with everyone onsite, removed the hose from service and checked all other connections for safe use. The bull hose was connected properly with tie wire and whip check. The crew member was also wearing all his PPE.
The operator was not paying attention to his spotter. Work was stopped and a discussion was had with the operator about the importance of watching the spotter because he had a better view of the situation.
100 – Todd Bothe
50 – Terry Miles
25 – Jimmy Thomas