The Saras Group’s commitment to workplace safety, which began many years ago, includes, in addition to full compliance with the applicable legislation, the search for technical and operational solutions exceeding regulatory requirements and creating an overall ‘Health and Safety Management System’ (H&SMS). The result is an approach based on planned objectives and improvement targets.
The ‘Health and Safety Management System’ is today an integrated system, covering Health, Safety and the Environment, whose guidelines have been drawn up by Sarlux with the contribution of all Saras Group companies, which also take part actively in the audits verifying uniform application of the common parts of the Guidelines across the whole Group.
Following a similar process to that undertaken for certification of its Environmental Management System, in December 2007 the site obtained certification for its Occupational Health and Safety Management System under OHSAS 18001:2007 from certification body Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance Italy. OHSAS 18001 is a certification attesting to the voluntary commitment of an organisation to putting in place a system ensuring adequate control of occupational health and safety, in addition to complying with applicable legislation.
In 2015, the plant’s Occupational Health and Safety Management System (OHSMS) underwent a new audit, involving a detailed series of on-site audits conducted by certification body TÜV Austria. The auditors confirmed that the Site meets the BS OHSAS 18001:2007 standard and renewed the certification for a further three years.
OHSAS 18001 Certification
SAFETY IS OUR POWER
Sarlux promotes the culture of safety at all corporate levels through training, sharing and verification of the effectiveness of the activities carried out.
Spreading safety awareness among all Group staff means delivering continuing training to create working conditions aiming at preventing and reducing emergencies and accidents for all workers at the site. Much progress has already been made in achieving ongoing improvement of safety, but there is still room for further improvement which the Company sees as appropriate and achievable. In 2013, the site recorded the best ever result in its history in terms of accident figures. The comparison of these figures with European-level industry data (CONCAWE) demonstrates that our site has achieved and consolidated the best industry standards. PROGRAMMES AND PRACTICES The safety of our personnel and of the whole site is guaranteed by compliance with two key pieces of legislation: the Legislative Decree on workplace safety (no. 81/08) and that on sites at risk of major accidents (no. 334/99). Apart from complying with this legislation (safety plans, internal and external emergencies, continuing training, fire-fighting crews, use of personal protection equipment - PPE, etc.) companies may of their own initiative increase their level of prevention, control and monitoring. Safety at an industrial site can be guaranteed in two ways: by the use of equipment meeting BAT (Best Available Technologies) standards and through procedures (safety policies). This is why Sarlux has put in place measures that exceed legal requirements. The effort to spread ‘safety awareness’ involves a range of actions. In addition to ‘information’ courses and the issue of ‘Safety licences’ to ensure that all contractors’ staff members follow safe working practices, the company implements a number of other activities to strengthen worker safety. The most significant include:
Safety tours of operational areas for constant monitoring and control
Daily inspections and site safety inspections to monitor contractors’ work
Safety briefings to ensure workers’ engagement and to spread a safety culture
Audits of the Safety Management System (SMS) and of the Environmental Management System (EMS)
Job-related checklists to establish safety standards.
SAFETY AUDITS AND BRIEFINGS We have also made important changes to the performance of on-site audits We have modified radically the format of on-site inspections, reducing the number of inspectors (to streamline the inspection process), and selecting in a more targeted way the inspectors themselves (technical specialists), the areas/parties to be inspected and the purpose of inspections, with a focus on contractors. One major innovation is the introduction of ‘safety dialogues’. These are meetings between an operator and two suitably trained ‘communicators’, designed to improve the uptake of safe working practices and risk awareness and assessment. These meetings are also an opportunity to exchange opinions, improve on-site safety and involve and motivate personnel. Safety Licence To ensure that all contractor personnel also work in conditions of safety, Sarlux organises specific ‘information’ courses, which lead to the issue of ‘safety licences’, without which entry to the work sites is not permitted. This is a requirement established by Sarlux as an add-on to existing legal obligations. These ‘information’ hours are additional to the specific training contractors’ workers receive from their employer, and to the required compliance with all applicable legal obligations. Each year an average of 1,000 new licences are issued.
THE NEW BBS PROGRAMME
In the constant search for increasingly sophisticated safety systems and procedures, the company has recently introduced ‘Behaviour Based Safety’ (BBS), a process to identify and correct any behaviours likely to cause accidents. BBS is a protocol for the prevention of work accidents, widespread in the English-speaking world. It is based on observation of the behaviour of workers in performance of their assigned tasks, to detect any unsafe behaviours. A job-related checklist is prepared and, at the end of the workday, safety tests are performed. After the initial observation period, recommendations for improvement are issued, and the unsafe behaviour is addressed by a warning entered in a form (anonymous). There are no sanctions, rather recommendations on actions to be avoided and positive reinforcements, written or verbal (positive feedback and encouragement). The aim is to create a safety culture shared by all company staff and which is not perceived as a top-down rule but as added value and a resource shared by all. This is a prevention and accountability process to help each worker play an active role – through individual and group behaviours and attitudes – in improving the company’s safety culture with the aim of achieving zero accidents and incidents.