Safety and Health Strategy
A strategic safety review of Zinifex operations conducted in late 2007 found that the company had many different processes and measures in place for managing safety and health within the business. A small steering committee was formed with representatives from management, the workforce and our contractors to develop a new safety strategy. The committee had the following guiding themes:
- Getting back to basics
- There were too many initiatives - do less, but better
- Quality, implementation and consistency with all safety processes
- Timely review and communication with our people
The strategy was developed with six key goals identified:
- Communication - More effective internal communication on safety
- Leadership - that actively supports safety and health
- Contractor Management - Contractors and partners are integrated into safety and health processes
- Risk Management - Everyone understands and manages risk
- Safety Management Systems - Organisational structures and processes support and sustain safety and health outcomes
- Health and Wellbeing - A healthy workplace where we actively enhance our people’s wellbeing
The strategy was endorsed by management and the Zinifex Board prior to be being included in the operating plans for the Zinifex operations. Subsequently the strategy has been adopted throughout OZ Minerals.
Five Key Safety Actions Plan
Following the poor safety performance experienced in the second part of 2008, operational General Managers and the Chief Operating Officer held an extensive safety workshop during October. In addition to reviewing the Safety and Health Strategy for each operation, the team committed to implementing a series of additional actions at each of their operations. These additional actions were termed the Five Key Safety Actions Plan. Implementation began immediately and will continue throughout 2009.
The key objective of the Five Key Safety Actions Plan is to generate a rapid step-change in safety performance. The five key actions include:
- Leadership team safety walk: All management teams agreed to conduct walks around different parts of each operation at least once each week in order to maintain direct contact with the workforce, to promote zero harm and to inspect all physical areas of the operations.
- Quarterly high-impact safety sessions: Individuals who had been injured in industrial/mining incidents were invited to share their experiences with our work teams. This provided a valuable opportunity for employees to really understand that the choices they make whilst at work can impact severely on their lives and the lives of their loved ones.
- Intervention: this program was designed to ensure that everyone at each operation understands clearly that they had both permission and an expectation on them to intervene upon observing at-risk behaviour by others, regardless of who they are.
- One-on-one safety discussions: each operation’s leaders are required to conduct one-on-one safety discussions with each and every employee to enable expectations and concerns related to safety to be discussed openly and frankly.
- Extreme safety focus campaigns: Company-wide campaigns focussing on one particular safety issue for a sustained period of time are to be run each quarter. The first of these campaigns was focussed on hand safety in response to an increasing number of hand injuries. The objective is to gain high visibility and frequent communications on a single aspect of safety each quarter.