OH&S Products

Cultural shift in safety means results

?We had the systems, processes and procedures in place, but we were running safety from a compliance perspective,? said Rowan Melrose, president of Sandvik Mining Asia Pacific.
?We recognised that to get to the next level and drive a zero-harm work environment, we had to achieve cultural, behavioural and attitudinal changes in all personnel.?
Melrose said that to achieve this the company shifted focus to developing a safety culture rather than simply complying with minimum safety requirements.
?We put in place a number of programs which provided leverage for the next stage of improvement. The combination of these programs and a strong focus across the entire company over the past 12 months has seen our safety performance continuing to rise ? to the point where we have now achieved one year LTI-free,? he said.
This result covers not only Australia but also the entire market area including New Zealand, China, India, South East Asia, Mongolia and Indonesia and encompasses more than 2881 employees.
Many of these employees work directly in the mining industry across a range of sites and working conditions.
?It is an outstanding result for Sandvik Mining and Sandvik AB ? and for the mining industry as a whole, and results like these raise the bar in terms of our commitment to social responsibility and being an employer of choice and help to deliver against ever-increasing community expectations,? said Melrose.  
Sandvik Mining?s achievement has not been without its challenges.
When Melrose took on the role of president of Sandvik Mining?s Australian operations in 2007, its Total Recordable Injury Frequency Rate (TRIFR) was 46, while its Lost Time Injury Frequency Rate (LTIFR) was around 15.
?At this time our systems and processes, as well as our understanding of safety and safety systems, were relatively immature,? he said.
?Because of this, during the next 12-18 months, we undertook a real drive to raise awareness, improve our learnings and generally improve our standards with regard to safety in our business.?
Sources: Sandvik Mining Asia Pacific

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