TOWARDS A POSITIVE IMPLEMENTATION OF TOTAL SAFETY SYSTEMS
Safety legislation has always been vague and words such as ‘reasonably practicable’ have meant that standards of safety are never set and organisations are not encouraged to raise their standards more than legally required.
The strategic relevance of TSS:
- Safety has to be appreciated at the corporate level for its productive contribution and not just as a support function whose role should just be confined to meeting legal requirements.
- With this in mind, the implications of poor safety standards have got to be fully weighed and the right balance of safety standards and economic competitiveness has to be implemented.
The development and implementation of a safety policy
- It is important that a safety policy has to be comprehensive, with its short term and long term objectives in relation to overall organisational objectives.
- The safety policy has to be developed by senior managers using the advice and guidance of the safety adviser. Its implementation should be steered by a committee of managers at the senior level, with employee representation and involvement in tactical/operational aspects.
- Finally safety has to be widely applied at the grass roots level with employees determining their own standards in conjunction with the wider objectives of achieving Zero Defects.
Utilisation of statistical tools and techniques
- A breakaway from the traditional approach to measuring safety performance is essential.
- A TSS strategy should be geared towards the identification and elimination of hazards before they develop into major disasters.
- The use of SPC techniques and safety control charts is compulsory in the form of managing behavioral aspects and technical aspects of processes.
Ensuring positive interface between social-technical processes
- Safety control systems have to eliminate risks from technical processes, protect humans against identifiable/known risks but more importantly develop positive interaction between people and technical systems through behaviour modification.
Aim for a Zero Risk goal
- Close involvement of people, the encouragement of continuous improvement programmes and team work should be oriented towards the achievement of standards of excellence.
- An integrated approach therefore with working safely, reliably and carefully towards producing what the customer wants, has to be instigated in people’s minds.