Reporting campaign lands agriculture firm health and safety gong
Monday 16th October 2017
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AB Agri Ltd scooped first place in the International Food and Drink Health and Safety Awards 2017.
The organisation introduced its 'Engagement Project', a scheme which saw the introduction of safety learning opportunities (SLOs) as a way of ensuring that issues were reported and acted on appropriately.
Following a trial at one of its Norfolk sites in January 2015, the scheme was rolled out across all sites, the last one being completed in April 2017. Since its inception, employees have completed more than 2,500 SLOs, which has coincided with a ten per cent reduction in its accident frequency rate.
The gong was awarded on Tuesday 10 October during the National Food and Drink Manufacturing Health and Safety Conference.
In the nomination, Jeff Marston, Group Safety and Environment Manager for AB Agri, said: "We have 1250 employees across the UK and Europe. Our workforce are our eyes and ears when it comes to reporting and correcting unsafe acts and conditions but without the right systems to support this we lose this valuable input.
"Our staff have progressed on their journey to make theirs and everybody else's life safer. It takes all of us to create a safe working culture and personal goals are our tool for thinking about how we can all play a part.
"By using the engagement method we have over 1,250 pairs of eyes targeting safety improvement and developing leaders regarding health and safety in this business."
The nomination added that the forms are "simple, bright and easy to use" which provide sufficient detail to act on the concerns raised. It also said it was a "proactive rather than reactive measure" in that it raises issues before near misses or accidents occur.
Two other organisations received accolades in the awards.
Allied Bakeries London, winner of the 2016 first prize, was rewarded for a project to reduce the risk of incidents involving vehicles and pedestrians in its warehouse.
The organisation created two new job roles which were specifically detailed to assess and reduce risk. The two employees in those roles have introduced a number of initiatives including amending the warehouse layout and adding more prominent reversing beacons and noises to vehicles.
Green Isle Foods meanwhile also received an award for a number of schemes: one reducing flour dust in one of its plants; and three others which helped to eliminate the risk of manual handling injuries.
The conference was held at the Oxford Belfry in Thame, Oxfordshire, on 10-11 October.
Representatives from three organisations were shown around key rail sites and businesses and met with experts from the UK’s rail network during their visit, arranged by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH). The trip, which took place from 2-6 October, was the second project arranged as part of a partnership between IOSH and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).
With increasing passenger numbers leading to greater investment and changes in management structures, the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health’s (IOSH) annual Rail Industry Conference will examine what these changes mean for its members and other senior leaders.Sessions will look at how safety is being addressed as part of the changes process and how risks are being assessed. The changes include the devolution of routes in Network Rail and new ways of working between significant industry bodies.
The panel came together in London to examine research which showed that there is a significant gap between company health and safety data and the experiences of the workers themselves.Several key questions arising out of the research were debated at the event, organised by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH). They included how incident reporting and investigations can be improved, how worker involvement can be increased and how the health and safety of sub-contracted workers can be better protected.
At IOSH 2017, Geoff McDonald will discuss how organisations can enhance the wellbeing of people who work for them and examine the positive impact this can have.Geoff has a wealth of experience working across the world and is a much sought-after speaker, providing practical insights for how businesses can addresses the taboo associated with wellbeing, particularly mental health. He will look at the huge business cost of mental health problems and detail research that has demonstrated how businesses with high levels of employee wellbeing outperform the market.
Six different topics are being covered by the courses, which are aimed to give members the skills and competencies they require.The topics are: conducting general risk assessments; modern COSHH management; noise measurement and management; board masterclass; legionella management and behavioural safety. Each topic will be covered three times during the pilot phase.Three courses were held last month, with more being held this month.Delegates who sat the modern COSHH management course on 11-12 October were impressed by the content.
The National Food and Drink Manufacturing Health and Safety Conference will focus on topics like the ageing workforce and sentencing guidelines, with case studies being used to bring the event to life.Meanwhile former England rugby international and RAF pilot Rory Underwood, who is now a development director at risk management services company Alcumus, will talk about his experiences, focusing on behavioural-based safety.