Working safely without workplace accidents resulting in absences ... Willems in Balen has made it happen for 1,000 consecutive days. Something to be proud of and the result of more than 10 years of collective investment in safety awareness at every level. Reaching this point has not always been easy.
Going for better safety figures
In 2008 still 24 accident were reported, 8 of which involved sick absence due to injury. In the years that followed, the safety figures improved steadily. The following efforts certainly have something to do with this. A few examples:
- Increased safety awareness thanks to the required safety level at project sites
- Investment in training and resources such as edge protection, own scaffolds, welding helmet with battery, etc.
- The use of toolboxes for points of interest and improvement actions
- The use of fault reports and MOS (unsafe situation) reports
- The increased (and much-needed) involvement of management
- Weekly inspections per department
- The presence of an HSE inspector on the work floor
- The positive cooperation with employee representatives
- An atmosphere of open communication to improve matters
Level 3 on the safety culture ladder
What else can we improve and how do we deal with this? This brings us to the safety culture ladder, a standard that provides insight into the safety awareness of the organisation. The audit to reach level 3 of the safety culture ladder will take place in August. The excellent performance of Willems is certainly helping to make us believe in it!