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Human error and the forces of gravity can pose great risk to those who work at height. To mitigate these risks, workers and supervisors must take the appropriate precautionary measures to prevent ladder- and scaffold-related incidents.
The bigger and more complicated a safety management issue seems, the harder it is to simultaneously discipline away problems and improve safety performance.
I spend much of my time talking to organizational leaders who discuss in great detail the need for discipline and accountability. These leaders often begin this conversation by saying something like this: “This safety stuff is fine and good, but at what point does personal accountability kick in?”
Current research indicates that acute non-freezing cold exposure elicits various short-term performance problems with the human extremities; namely a reduction in blood flow (Abramson, Zazela & Marrus, 1939), hand sensitivity (Nelms & Soper, 1961), the level of upper extremity dexterity (Clark, 1961), and maximal grip strength (Barnes & Larson, 1985). The present body of scientific knowledge has yet to confirm that repeated/chronic cold exposure causes a more long-term or semi-permanent form of nervous system impairment in humans.
This booklet is designed to help management,
safety professionals, and hourly craft workers
learn more about important leading safety
indicators and ideas for strengthening jobsite
safety climate. The booklet includes a worksheet
for each of the following indicators:
1. Demonstrating management commitment; 2. Aligning and integrating safety as a value;
3. Ensuring accountability at all levels; 4. Improving site safety leadership; 5. Empowering and involving workers; 6. Improving communication; 7. Training at all levels; and 8. Encouraging owner/client involvement
Owners are uniquely positioned to promote safety as an organizational value. They have the authority to develop and issue project policies, shape bidding practices, and ultimately approve budgets – all of which, if done with a focus on safety, can drive a strong project safety climate.
All employees need to know and understand where and how they fit into the safety culture and climate. The best way to ensure this happens is to provide ongoing, effective training tailored to the specific roles and responsibilities at each level of the organization. Training should be provided by qualified trainers using adult learning principles; including active and interactive learning techniques.
Clear and consistent communication about the importance of safety and its alignment with production and other organizational goals and objectives is at the core of all other factors. How an organization formally and informally communicates about safety issues through words and actions can have a significant impact on the jobsite safety climate. Effective safety-related communication can create a strong positive climate, while ineffective or poor communications
can stifle it.
Involving workers in safety-related planning and decision making and empowering them to speak up when they identify hazards will help bridge the communication gap between workers and management, build mutual trust, and promote a shared belief that a positive safety climate is integral to getting
the job done.
Supervisors have the authority and ability to make changes and correct hazards on the jobsite. Therefore, how they lead, act as role models, and communicate are probably the most important factors in determining the degree to which a strong positive project safety climate is achieved.
Everyone involved in a construction project should be held accountable for safety, including owners, management, safety personnel, supervisors, and workers.
The Body of Knowledge project is dedicated to creating a living reference that represents the collective knowledge of the Safety, Health and Environmental profession. While the preliminary work has begun, there is still more to do. The purpose of this website is to introduce subject areas that will eventually be part of the Body of Knowledge, and to gather feedback on the future direction, and ongoing assessment of what needs to be completed.
Contribute your knowledge and be a part of something big.