The Risk Management Tool Box Blog

National Safety Symposium 2013

Graham Marshall - Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Here at the Risk Tool Box, we think it's quite neat that this year, the UKs National Safety Symposium is titled "Tools for your toolbox, skills for your future".

Taking place on Monday 8th September 2013, at the Nottingham Belfry, Mellors Way, Nottingham (NG8 6PY), this year's National Safety Symposium will provide practical sessions for the safety professional.

There wll be a focus on safety leadership, safety management and current health, safety and well-being issues.

The Symposium offers a wealth of networking opportunities, workshops, case studies, expert advice and debate.

So everyone in an EHS role should get something from the day..

Health and Safety Executive Chair, Judith Hackitt will open the conference with a keynote address.

A full programme and online booking form can be found on the IOSH National Safety Symposium website.

Alternatively, you can call the bookings team on 0116 257 3197.

Our Natural Advantage Campaign

Graham Marshall - Monday, July 29, 2013

According to the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA), Australia’s natural gas industry created an estimated 100,000 jobs in 2012.

The energy industry  is also investing more than $200 billion on projects across the Australia

Regardless of the economic benefits and the jobs for Australians, our industry is faced with a long running, organized, and well-resourced green smear campaign.

The aim of these anti-development critics is to stop nation-building resource projects across Australia.

Their campaign here in Australia is based upon misinformation; and worse still it is often unfounded and unchallenged to the point where eco-activism is determining Government policy.

It is putting the future of Australian natural gas development, jobs and local investment at risk.

As such APPEA launched "Our Natural Advantage" - an advertising and information campaign to increase public awareness of and public support for our industry’s natural gas activities.

At the Risk Management Tool Box Pty Ltd, we pledge 100per cent support to the "Our atural Advantage" Campaign.

We ask that you also show your support for our the Australian Energy industry by visiting

You can sign the petition and help APPEA top defend Australia's natural advantage and secure a brighter future for our country.

Natural gas is at the heart of our Australian way of life.

It heats our homes and powers our kitchens and industries.

We can't afford to lose it.

In support of APPEA.

Carcinogenic Diesel Fumes in Mines

Graham Marshall - Thursday, July 25, 2013

Diesel exhaust fumes were reclassified as a carcinogen to humans in June 2012.

That change has implications for the mining industry as many mines use diesel engines in some form or other.

The law in Australia requires that:

+  Mine operators ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health of workers;

+  Fumes from diesel plant in underground parts of a mine are minimized as far as reasonably practicable;

+  Management systems to control diesel pollutants in the underground parts of a coal operation are in place; and

+  All mines should have a documented strategy to control diesel emissions with the objective of minimizing people’s exposure to the lowest level reasonably practicable.

For full details and recommendations see SB13-03 Diesel Emissions in Mines and other safety bulletins published by the Resources Safety Department in NSW.

Most dangerous animal in Australia

Graham Marshall - Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Any guesses for what is the most dangerous animal in Australia?

Which one kills the most people each year?

You might be surprised that it is not the snake, spider, shark, crocodile, or jellyfish.

All wrong?

According to the British TV show "QI", the number one killer is the horse  with about 128 deaths attributed to horses.
Cows = 20
Dogs = 12
Sharks = 11
Snakes = 8
Crocodile = 4
Spiders = 3
A cat = 1

UK Fatalities 2013

Graham Marshall - Sunday, July 21, 2013

Shown below are the latest UK HSE statistics on fatalities reported in the UK for the first three months of the year.

UK North West Safety Conference

Graham Marshall - Saturday, July 20, 2013

Wednesday 18th September 2013 will mark the 56th North West Safety Conference and Exhibition in the UK.

Titled "Live and Not Die" – Towards a Healthier Working Environment, the conference will be held at the Barton Grange Hotel and Conference Centre outside Preston, Lancashire (PR3 5AA).

The conference targets OHS issues and subjects covered will include Health Surveillance, Skin, Breathing, Musculoskeletal issues, a General Physicians aspect and Legal Issues.

There will also be a concurrent  mini exhibition with the Conference attended by leading suppliers to the industry.

Dr David Sowerby will Chair the Conference and provide a Keynote address ‘The Challenges posed by Occupational Ill Health’

An ex HSE Inspector, Paul Beaumont, will provide details of the recently launched Health Surveillance section of the HSE website.

Further information and booking is available from Cathy Nixon (tel: 0161 485 8102).

Pyrolosis in Truck Tyres

Graham Marshall - Friday, July 19, 2013

Coming into contact with overhead power lines when driving can cause the tyres on trucks, cranes and other heavy vehicles to catch fire and explode.

Five workers have been killed by exploding tyres in Australia in recent years and many more injured as excessive heat developing in tyres has led to the unpredictable phenomenon known as pyrolysis.

Pyrolysis can occur when excess heat is applied to a tyre.

Often it is a result of electrical arcing and current flow when rubber tyred vehicles have been involved in high voltage electrical incidents.

The heat decomposes the rubber and other compounds used to manufacture the tyre, creating a ready fuel source.

The ratio of this fuel to the air used to inflate the tyres can then reach flammable or LEL (explosive) levels.

The explosive energy released during a tyre explosion can lead to serious injuries or fatalities and significant equipment damage.

Because of the amount of kinetic energy released, a danger area up to 300 metres away is typically required to be established.

Pyrolysis related explosions are unpredictable, sometimes happening immediately, sometimes up to 24 hours after the heat was applied to the tyres.

And the explosion can happen with no visible signs of a fire on the outside of the tyre before it explodes.

Besides electrical heat sources, other sources of heat that lead to pyrolysis in tyres include welding (e.g., on wheel rims), oxy/acetylene heating wheel nuts, overheating brakes and wheel motor fires.

Tyre explosions predominantly occur with split rim configurations, but can happen with all types of tyres.

Any pneumatic rubber tyred vehicle involved in an incident where an electrical fault results in discharges or arcing around or through the tyres should be considered a potential hazard.

Procedures to follow when there is a danger of a tyre explosion, such as when a rubber tyred vehicle has contacted overhead power lines include:

+ Parking the vehicle in an isolation zone, with a minimum 300 metre radius;

+ Removing everyone from the area, and not allowing anyone to re-enter the isolation zone for 24 hours; and

+ Alerting fire fighting services to the potential hazard.

It should be noted that if pneumatic tyres are filled with nitrogen instead of air, it reduces, if not eliminates the risk of pyrolyic tyre explosion.

Proposed Changes to ADG7

Graham Marshall - Thursday, July 18, 2013
Australian Truckies carrying dangerous goods will soon need to change the way they store thier transport documents. 

A proposal from the National Transport Commission (NTC) to bring the 7th edition of the Australian Dangerous Goods Code (ADG7) in line with international regulations makes changes to the storage of transport documents. 

The ADG7 is based in the United Nations’ model regulations. 

The NTC says its proposed amendments will adopt the latest UN regulations. ADG7 was published in 2007 to align with the 15th edition of the UN regulations. 

The UN regulations are now in their 17th edition. 

The main new requirement is for drivers to be made to store transport documents in Emergency Information Holders (EIHs). 

The ADG7 does not currently dictate how transport documents should be carried or where theyshould be located.

This has often made it difficult for enforcement or emergency response officers to locate them. 

The new provision from NTC imposes a clear requirement for drivers to carry transport documents in EIHs when moving placarded loads. 

The NTC’s proposal will also amend the code to make it a condition for supplying transport documents suitable for placing in EIHs.

It says the amendment is designed to address the problem of operators and drivers receiving documents that do not fit in the holders. 

The new provision will also prevent drivers being handed documentation in sealed envelopes from consignors.

The public has been given until September 2 to provide feedback on the NTC’s recommendation. 

Electric Shock from Galley Fridge

Graham Marshall - Sunday, July 07, 2013

The Safety Alert shown below highlights how there is a need to always perform hazard spotting ("stepback 5X5") before undertaking any routine task.

Some Problems for Safety Leadership

Graham Marshall - Saturday, July 06, 2013

Safety leadership is recognized as being one of the most important aspects of a successful safety culture in any business.

Safety leadership involves leading from the top.

It involves demonstrating a commitment through behaviours and actions that send a message to workers that the organization and its leaders are serious about managing risk.

But EHS audits commonly identify six issues leaders often overlook.

These problems include the following:

1. Insufficient training for persons in the following key areas:

• Lack of control of hazardous substances;

• lack of control over manual handling operations;

• Poor emergency response planning;

• Inadequate provision, use and re-enforcement of the requirement to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE); and

• Lack of, or poorly written Procedures (SOPs) for high risk tasks.

2. Inadequate Health and Safety Committee;

3. EHS Induction Manuals not updated to reflect the new legislative changes;

4. Lack of risk assessments across all areas of the workplace;
5. Workers not adhering to health and safety policies and procedures; and

6. Persons engaged in advising management on health and safety matters lack industry experience, expertise and qualifications.

Demonstrating leadership and commitment to EHS improvement ensures that everyone is clear about their EHS responsibilities.

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