Health and Safety
Health and Safety
We currently employ in the region of 400 people directly. Health and Safety has always been a priority for us, so much so in fact that we are regarded as an industry leader in this field. Our commitment to a safe and healthy working environment for both our staff and members of the public is well recognised.
Roadbridge is committed to accident reduction and this is reinforced by our Lost Time Accident Frequency Rate of 0.06 (accidents per 100,000 man hours worked) and this compares favourably to the most recent statistics for Irish Construction Industry average of approximately 0.8.
We have invested heavily in training for all our employees; from Management training through the IOSH accredited Managing Safely in Construction Course, to Safe Pass, CPCS and CSCS Training for all our operatives, We have also facilitated the training of subcontractor personnel while on our sites to ensure that all people working on our projects are equally aware and appreciative of our systems and standards.
Our Safety Management organisation structure consists of an experienced team of Safety Professionals coordinated through a dedicated Health and Safety Department. The team consists of a National Safety Manager, Regional Safety Managers and full time Safety Officers on large projects. There is a large team of Safety Representatives elected to underpin the commitment to safety on site. To maintain this high standard we have received certification to OHSAS 18001:2007, an internationally recognised Safety Management system through EQA (Ireland) Ltd since May 2004.
In 2005, Roadbridge became the first Construction company to win the National Irish Safety Organisation (NISO) Supreme Award and we have had continued success in these awards each subsequent year, as indicated below:
In health and safety management is generally accepted that there are three spheres of influence on the impact on people’s health and safety related behaviour: the individual, the job, and the organisation.
Our traditional controls have been well developed and improved over the years, particularly helped by our OHSAS 18001 certification. These include Safe Systems of Work Plans (SSWPs) / Method Statements, risk assessments, permits to work, inspections etc.
Personal behaviour is more difficult to identify, measure, influence and control as a person’s attitudes, skills, habit and personality can all influence behaviour in complex and significant ways. Their effects cannot always be sufficiently mitigated through job design and traditional controls.
In 2009 we realised that there was scope to improve our behavioural safety approach and we developed a Safety Conversations & Agreements (SCA) training course. After an initial rollout on an oil and gas project, we rolled it out across all our projects.
The course involves training a number of “Safety Champions” throughout each project structure: from project manager down to general operative level. The aim is to empower personnel to solve issues as they see them out on site. This encourages safety to be built-in to the project delivery instead of relying solely on trying to inspect it in e.g. through inspections and safety tours.
Part of the course involves role-play, with the use of a professional actor, to simulate various scenarios where worker behaviours can be addressed through non-confrontational communications. This allows our Safety Champions to practice these techniques and gives them confidence to go into the workplace and competently handle real-life situations.
In operation, this consists of a weekly walk through of the site by safety champions, where safety issues are discussed on an informal basis with site workers, with the aim of making it easier for potentially contentious issues to be addressed on site at the earliest stage.
Conversations are logged without naming individuals, which allows personnel the freedom to express themselves and encourages involvement and inclusion with the workforce, while raising awareness of how behaviour impacts on worker safety.
We have found this to be a very successful way of managing the normally difficult to control “human factors” and continue to develop this initiative.