19 March 2018
The Cook Compression Ellesmere Port, U.K., facility is proud to celebrate 1,075 consecutive days without a recordable incident, and 1,353 consecutive days without a lost time accident. Over the course of 151,431 exposure hours in 2017, the facility also went without any first aid cases.
Phil Avis, HSE and CI Manager for the facility, attributes this safety record to the development of a robust safety culture that combines acute awareness of risks and hazards with continued training and investment in the proper protections.
Safety awareness has been cultivated among employees with the use of qualitative risk assessments and safety behavioural observation (SBO) audits. A preventive tool that identifies risks and engages the workforce, SBO audits have produced greater understanding and discussion of safety matters since their introduction at the facility in 2016. One hundred twenty-seven audits were recorded in 2017, highlighting training gaps, identifying work area concerns, and presenting opportunities for safety coaching and reflection. Steps are in place to ensure that identified improvements are implemented in a timely fashion.
Areas of focus in 2017 also included manual handling, review and consultation with employees on the glove policy, and re-evaluation of all machine guarding. Risk assessments of work area layouts, repetitive work, and work related upper limb disorders were reviewed. Outcomes of the assessments included the introduction of newer lifting equipment, rotation of work involving repetitive motion (among related areas), and ergonomic improvements for staff using any form of computer.
An exercise was also undertaken to review all machines that fell under Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER), with remedial actions noted and implemented. All machinery is compliant with machine guarding regulations, greatly reducing risk to personnel.
New employees have a safety induction of up to two days, which includes presentations, videos and hazard interaction activities. In 2017, with the inclusion of external and on-site trainings, the facility logged a total 450 hours in safety training.
Through these measures, and reinforcement by Cook Compression leadership, every employee knows that safety is paramount and that it requires a proactive approach. Each individual is encouraged to perform a 30-second risk assessment before starting any task and to come forward with safety ideas. “They know we’re looking out for them,” says Phil Avis, “and they’re looking out for each other. Everyone is focused on safety. I’m proud to work here, and proud of every individual.”