LIBERTY Primary Steel on visible safety leadership

LIBERTY Primary Steel on visible safety leadership

Wednesday, April 28th is World Day for Health and Safety at Work. As we take a moment to reflect upon what we can do to make our workplace safer, we’ve got a great opportunity to see what other teams around the world are doing. This is Whyalla’s story, by Mick Anstey, Head of Health & Safety at LIBERTY Primary Steel:

Our focus on safety at LIBERTY Primary Steel is an important part of how we work as we believe that safety is integral to an operating discipline that sets our business up for success.

In this article I want to talk briefly about a couple of recent and important initiatives that underpin our focus on improving safety.

The first is the implementation and formalisation of lead metric reporting. The value of reporting near miss events, at-risk behaviours, and unsafe conditions lies in our ability to understand and pro-actively address latent behavioural and physical conditions that lead to increased risk and incidents. A pareto analysis of our unsafe conditions shows that there are certain basic causes that account for a significant proportion of our unsafe conditions. By addressing these basic causes we can systematically reduce our exposure to hazards that contribute to workplace injuries. We are currently evaluating intervention strategies that specifically address repeat unsafe conditions and at-risk behaviours.

We have also recently embarked on the rollout of our GFG Life Savers. This is an important initiative as it helps promote the behaviours that are important in preventing fatality events. Our implementation process involves leader-led conversations with small in-tact work groups to promote discussion and feedback. The feedback to date has been positive and we are now planning how best to consolidate and reinforce our employees understanding of the new GFG Life Savers.

Another important initiative involves how our leadership teams demonstrate commitment to safety. Our felt visible leadership now extends to Business Unit leadership teams spending time in field connecting with employees on safety and evaluating opportunities to improve the working environment. The LIBERTY Primary Steel Leadership Team also spend a minimum of two hours per week focused exclusively on the close-out and verification of controls associated with Critical Incidents and resolution of high priority actions. This time in field enables our key leaders to understand what support our Business Unit Managers may need to close out incidents in a timely manner.

As a learning organisation, it is important that we can benefit from incidents that have been reported from other GFG operations. Incidents reported from other businesses, coupled with our own experience at LIBERTY Primary Steel, has resulted in a campaign involving the structural remediation of our sub-standard walkways, handrails, and ladders. The work being undertaken is based on a risk assessment of major thoroughfares and other structures that are integral to our business and for our employees to be able to work safely.

For our Be GFG Safe resources, including our Life Savers, head to the Health and Safety section on the GFG intranet.

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