The Risk Management Tool Box Blog

Safety Communications

Graham Marshall - Thursday, June 30, 2011
Today I'm posting a request to all you readers of the Risk Tool Box blog. 

In the first week when I began this HSE blog earlier this year I had five visitors in the whole week.

I'm now getting 300-350 visitors a day reading the blog.

I reckon that's pretty good.

However, I'm not getting much feedback.  You'll see that each post has a comments section for you to add your thoughts.

I'd really appreciate it if you could take the time to add a few comments each time you visit the site.  Particularly so if you're making use of any of the free resources I'm posting here.  That's the only quid pro quo I ask of you.

Let's get some discussion happening.  Cheers, Graham

How Mature is your Safety Culture?

Graham Marshall - Thursday, June 30, 2011
When you're walking around your workplace, you can do a quick measure of your safety culture by thinking about the following HSE characteristics you see.  Which ones most closely mirror your culture?

Characteristic of an immature safety culture                                                    Characteristic of a mature safety culture
People do not know or follow HSE rules                                                                       Everyone is following the HSE rules
People don't intervene even if they see a problem                                                      Everyone will intervene in problems
There is no follow up on reported HSE problems                                                       HSE problems get followed up
There is no recognition for good practices                                                                   Good practices are celebrated
There are no consequences for breaches of rules                                                    There are clear & certain consequences
Management don't do what they say                                                                              Management do what they say
There are few safety role-models                                                                                   There are lots of positive role-models
There are no safety conversations                                                                                 Safety is talked about a lot
Safety isn't mentioned in team meetings                                                                      Safety is in every meeting agenda
Management is invisible to the workers                                                                        Managers are visible and well known
Safety has no visible presence on site                                                                         Safety is highly visible
No one knows the organizations HSE objectives                                                       HSE objectives are known

What kind of culture exists in your work place? 

What tools are you using to get better?       

At the Risk Tool Box, over the years we've assisted organizations like Shell Development Australia, Eni, Ngarda Civil and Mining, Teekay Shipping, WMC Resources, Sandvik and Woodside to better understand their existing HSE culture and to develop HSE plans to move to more mature forms of HSE culture.

Contact me if you'd like to know more about our services in this area.             


Reasons why people fail to report incidents

Graham Marshall - Wednesday, June 29, 2011
There are numerous reasons why people fail to adequately report hazards, incidents or near-miss incidents.  Some common excuses are listed below:

  1. I may be punished for reporting;


  • I'll be branded as a trouble-maker;


  • People will think I'm a liability;


  • It will spoil our record of incident-free days and we'll lose out on the bonus scheme;


  • I'll have to take time off work to visit the Doctor or clinic;


  • I'll have to complete loads of paperwork;


  • My colleagues will think I've dobbed them in to the boss;


  • The boss won't do anything to investigate in any case; or


  • Reporting stuff is just a waste of time.


Which of those excuses are common on your work site?

What are you doing to develop a reporting culture?


Using Cranes on Unstable Ground

Graham Marshall - Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A significant triggering factor that needs to be considered when using the Think 6, Look 6 hazard management process for crane lifts relates to ground conditions. 

The following pictures illustrate why careful consideration needs to be paid to ground conditions if crane operators are to avoid  the potential for disaster.

Here's what a nice new shiny crane should look like.

Here's what it will look like if you don't consider the ground conditions in your lift plan.

If the flooring under the crane is not sufficiently strong, it will always end badly...

This is a very bad day at the office.

Try explaining this to the boss who's only just bought the new multi-million dollar crane...

I think you might be looking for a new job...

Hazard Awareness is Poor

Graham Marshall - Monday, June 27, 2011
Other the years, we at the risk tool box have argued that one of the main reasons why accidents continue to occur is because hazard awareness is so poor.  Enclosed here are some results from training courses we've run in several companies.

They show "pre-training" results on a  20-item survey of knowledge about hazards followed by "post-training" results for the same group.

As can be seen, pre-training hazard awareness is quite low.

On conclusion of our hazard awareness training, however, knowledge about hazards has improved significantly.

To check out the results for yourself, simply click here.

Over the years, our training has been employed by companies like Woodside, Shell, BHP Billiton, Santos, Fremantle Ports, Sandvik, British Gas, Eni, TK Shipping, Nautronix, Transfield Worley and Hess Corp.

Professor Andrew Hopkins

Graham Marshall - Sunday, June 26, 2011
I'd encourage you to read and review the excellent paper on the Deepwater Horizon disaster prepared by Professor Andrew Hopkins and available on-line here.

We all need to learn the lessons from the BP disaster.

Safety Institute of Australia

Graham Marshall - Saturday, June 25, 2011
The Safety Institute of Australia is the body representing OHS professionals in Australia.

It can be contacted at:

Unit 2
217-219 Mickleham Rd
Gladstone Park
Victoria 3043

+ 61 3 8336 1995

Website here.


Graham Marshall - Friday, June 24, 2011
APPEA can be contacted at:

Level 1, 190 St Georges Terrace
WA 6000 

+ 61 8 9321 9775

Website here.

JSA for Tools with Abrasive Wheels

Graham Marshall - Thursday, June 23, 2011

There are a variety of types of abrasive wheeled tools in both portable and fixed format and using wet and dry systems.

All require appropriate controls to ensure the safety of operators and near-by persons. 

Review this Job Safety Analysis and start  getting your workers thinking about the hazards they face and how they can control the risk.


Risk Management of Respirable Crystalline Silica

Graham Marshall - Thursday, June 23, 2011
Enclosed here is a very interesting article on the risk management issues surrounding respirable crystalline silica and occupational health prepared by the Australian Institute of Occupational Hygienists.

To read the position paper, simply click here.

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