Archive for the ‘Safety Jouorney’ Category

Look around – can you SPOT one thing that is not safe?    What if everybody could SPOT one thing that is not safe each and every day?    Wouldn’t we be so much better off?

I find that employees do SPOT things that are not safe but typically do not say anything.   Why?  First, they believe that nothing will be done about it.   Second, they feel it’s not their job, and third, they feel that somebody else will take care of it.    How do we change this going forward?

If we have leaders (managers, supervisors, leads, etc) that will do nothing about something that is not safe – it’s time to get new leaders!    Safety should be the first priority of any leader.   We have an obligation to provide a safe workplace.   Any safety issue – no matter how minor – needs to be addressed.    We need to ensure that every employee feels comfortable reporting any safety issue that they SPOT.

We need to change our culture.   We need every employee to understand that safety is their job.   We want every employee to go home in the same condition that they came to work.  We want every employee to understand that it’s their responsibility to report any safety issue that they SPOT, no matter how minor.  We need to create a culture where it is unacceptable to not report it.

This is  a really a simple concept – it just requires trust and accountability.   I am going to encourage every employee to SPOT one thing that is not safe each day – what about you?

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434

Someone recently asked me WHY BOTHER WITH SAFETY?    It hit a chord with me and I went on a rant….here we go:

1.   We, as employers, have an obligation and responsibility to provide a safe workplace

2.   It is unacceptable for anybody to be injured at work, no matter how minor it is

3.   Other than being tired, everyone should return home each day in the same condition that they came to work

4.   I can’t handle the sight of blood, broken bones, etc

5.   If you can get safety right, the rest of production and operations is easy

6.   Our employees should expect to be safe

7.   When we do safety right in the workplace, it carries over to employees personal lives

I am passionate about safety and truly feel that these items are the answer to WHY BOTHER WITH SAFETY?   I take safety very seriously and feel that it is a worthwhile cause.    It is unacceptable of any employee to be injured at work – regardless of the circumstances.   I think its pretty straight forward – what about you?

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434

How much do you value your LIFE?   Asking me to overlook a simple safety violation would be asking me to compromise my entire attitude toward the value of your LIFE.   I feel my LIFE is priceless – how do you feel about your LIFE?   Do you have the same feeling toward safety that you do toward your LIFE?

The challenge that we face everyday is to get everyone around us (our co-workers, leaders, subordinates, peers, family, friends, relatives) to think about safety differently.   We want everyone to value safety like they value their LIFE!  

I value safety just like I value my LIFE – what about you?

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434


Posted: May 8, 2013 in Communication, Safety Jouorney
Tags: , ,

By now, I assume that everybody has heard about the upcoming change from our traditional Hazard Communication Standard to the world recognized Global Harmonized System (GHS).  OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standard has been revised to align it with the United Nations’ Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). This update to the Hazard Communication Standard provides a common and coherent approach to classifying chemicals and communicating hazard information on labels and safety data sheets.

You might have heard about the change, but have you started doing anything about it?    By December, all employers with hazardous chemicals in the workplace must conduct new training for workers on the new label elements and the new safety data sheets format to facilitate recognition and understanding.   Chemical labels will now include a harmonized signal word, pictogram, and hazard statement for each hazard class and category. Precautionary statements must also be provided on the chemical label.    New Safety Data Sheets (SDS), that will replace old Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)  will now have a uniform 16-section format.

If you have not thought about your training plan and your conversion plan – you need to start.   The deadline for GHS is less than 6 months away!

I am going to make sure our conversion plan is set and our materials are ready to go – what about you?

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434

I recently came across the following HIERARCHY of safety that makes complete sense to me:


The most effective safety program is when safety becomes a value to the organization.  It’s easy to say that your organization values safety – it’s another to walk the talk and truly have safety as a core value of your organization.    The second level is when one becomes the owner of safety – it creates accountability.   A safety program with engaged employees is more effective than a program with involved employees.  A program with involved employees is more effective than a program with interested employees, etc.

In my experience – many organisations become complacent with their safety efforts.   Avoidance is another failed safety strategy that many companies have tried.   The wait and hope safety effort is a ticking time bomb.   It’s time for companies who operate with these ineffective safety efforts to wake up and climb the ladder.

We will continue to climb the ladder until safety becomes a core value of the organization.   Where is your organization in the HIERARCHY of safety?

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434

This week I reflected upon the first quarter of 2013 and reviewed our Q1 safety record and data – WE DEFINITELY HAVE SOMETHING SPECIAL GOING!    We have 34 facilities operating across the world in 6 countries.   When we started our safety journey our statistics were “average” as it relates to the data published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.    We created a program that focuses on compliance, awareness, accountability, and participation that was very easy to use.   We dropped our TCIR (Total Case Incident Rate) from the mid 5’s to 1.0 for the first quarter of 2013.   That is in the zone of “World Class” being measured with DuPont, Alcoa and others that are very respected in the safety community.   Further, our North American workers compensation claims were less than $12k (paid and incurred) for the first quarter.   Before we started our current journey, our workers compensation claims exceeded $1.7 million dollars on an annual basis!

I am a firm believer that even one accident is too many.   Every employee should return home each and every day in the same condition in which they came to work.   We, as employers, have an obligation to provide a safe working environment.    I take this obligation very seriously.

I am very proud of where we have taken our safety program – WE DEFINITELY HAVE SOMETHING SPECIAL GOING! – what about you?

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434

This week  I was fortunate enough to sit in a two day hands-on workshop regarding RISK ASSESSMENT – I am glad that I had this opportunity.   We are always looking at ways to take our safety program up to the next level.   This session provided practical tools for us to implement and make our safety program better.

When you perform a RISK ASSESSMENT of any job or task,  you identify a multitude of potential hazards.   You mitigate the risk by controlling these hazards through administrative controls, engineering controls, or a combination of the two.   The main item that stood out for me was how much we rely on administrative controls.     When performing the RISK ASSESSMENT and looking at mitigating controls, the administrative controls provide some mitigation but engineering controls are always a better solution for protection.

The process that we learned in this workshop was to score a job or task.  The score was comprised of a severity factor (1 through 5) multiplied by a frequency factor (1 through 5) to come up with the RISK ASSESSMENT score for that particular task.   The team would then brainstorm various administrative controls (job rotation, procedures, etc) and engineering controls (tool modification, barrier guard, etc) and re-score the job after implementing these controls.    On the surface it seems very simple – why haven’t we done this before?

We have never dissected a task solely to evaluate risk and assign a score.    We implement some controls, guards, etc but never really evaluate the risk.   This RISK ASSESSMENT tool gives us the opportunity to review all jobs and prioritize where we spend our resources so we make the largest impact on the operation.

I am a firm believer in RISK ASSESSMENT – what about you?

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434

In 2013, we recently started a new program where we ask one facility to SHARE something that they have done in the past 6 months, that has not been done at their facility before, that positively changed the safety culture at their facility.    I was very proud how well this new idea was received.   We had volunteers line up to SHARE their items over the next few months.

What I have learned is that we need to continue to keep safety in the forefront of everyone’s mind.   We need to come up with new, creative ways to talk about safety.   We need to continue to be contemporary and creative.   We can not take our eye off of the ball or sit back and relax.    We need to SHARE ideas, incidents, thoughts, things that work, and things that didn’t work.

I am glad that our new SHARE program in 2013 is a success so far – it’s time to start thinking about what’s next.   What are you doing to keep safety on the forefront of everyone’s mind?   Please SHARE!

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434

I recently had a discussion with another safety individual over safety perceptions.   This individual cited an article which discussed the five most dangerous safety perceptions that an organization can have.  Here are these perceptions:

  • Zero accidents – It’s not possible
  • Safety excellence is “Not getting hurt”
  • Safety is not my job
  • It wont happen to me
  • We are already good

I am of the opinion that you must find the root cause of these perceptions in order to solve the perception problem.   In my opinion, these perceptions are caused by a lack of leadership, a lack of a proper safety culture, and a lack of a systematic approach to safety.

Every organization must have a ROBUST SAFETY PROGRAM in order to succeed.   A ROBUST SAFETY PROGRAM is not a well-written thick binder that sits on the shelf collecting dust.   It’s not a series of super technical documents that nobody can understand.   A ROBUST SAFETY PROGRAM is a fully supported system that incorporates rules, regulations and guidelines with training/education and creates a participatory ownership environment.   When you have this – you have created a ROBUST SAFETY PROGRAM.  This program has proper leadership, culture and a systematic approach to safety.

When you achieve the ROBUST SAFETY PROGRAM – employees will believe that zero accidents is possible.   They will believe that we can always improve and get better.  They will embrace safety and understand that safety is everybody’s job.  In a ROBUST SAFETY PROGRAM every employee knows that they are vulnerable and anybody can get hurt, they know that safety excellence is way beyond not getting hurt – it is creating a culture that eliminates hazards and employees are looking out for one another.

I will continue to create a ROBUST SAFETY PROGRAM that will eliminate the dangerous safety perceptions – what will you do ?

STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434

As 2012 draws to an end, I thought I would take this opportunity to REFLECT upon my posts from 2012.  I decided that the proper way to end 2012 is to create a list of  five key take-away’s from my postings throughout the year.   While I find it difficult to come up with only five, I wanted to create a list that sums up my feelings toward safety:


1.  Leadership is the key to safety success.

2.  We, as business leaders,  have an obligation to provide a safe workplace.

3.  Safety culture is behavioral and can not be changed with threats, empty promises, or bureaucracy.

4.  It is unacceptable for anybody to get injured, no matter how minor.

5.  Changing safety culture is a journey and you eat the elephant one bite at a time.


As you REFLECT upon this posting, I leave 2012 with one question:  What can you do to be safer in 2013?


STAY SAFE!     **  Jeff  **   214-215-2434