Friday, July 8, 2011

OSH Practisioner: It is a noble job

I believed, there is not such job post where he puts his effort to ensure the workplace is safe and healthy for people to work... like OSH Practisioner. I thought that I'm not good in writing, but I believed I can contribute something in OSH. But, it purely depends on you what you can contribute to OSH... I'm trying my best to sell safety from different point of view... not really focus on management system, technical safety, OSH leadership etc... I will sell it from human point of view....

For me, awareness is very important for each of us to know that on how important is our life... We only live ONCE in this world. BUT, as a human, you can't see the importance of our life once you lost it...
- you don't know how valuable of your eyes once you can't see
- you don't know the important of your hand once it amputated
- you don't know how important is your leg once you can't walk normally etc
this is common for us as a human...

We must remember, to educate people is not an easy task... human has different types of background in terms of
1. cultures
2. education
3. religion
4. races etc
So, to make a safe & healthy workplace, it is not a "destination". It's journey, never ended journey. That's why, I believed that this type of job is a preach ("dakwah, tarbiyah") type of job. If this principle is cemented among OSH Practisioners, trust me we do this is not purely because our job nature. Because we want it, we treasure every single people's life.

Our Prophet, Muhammad SAW said "tidak sempurna iman seseorang itu jika dia tidak mencintai saudaranya sebagai mana dia mencintai dirinya sendiri".

Friday, January 28, 2011

OPS Sikap-23: Is it effective?

1. Today is the first day of Ops Sikap-23 for 12 days. This is because Chinese New Year festival will be next week and there will be a heavy traffic starting tomorrow for holiday.

2. I just wondering whether Ops Sikap can really change the Malaysian's "sikap" (attitude) while driving on the road? Last year statistics (2010) as mentioned by PDRM (Utusan, 27-Jan-2011), the total deaths are 6872!! 19 fatalities accident/day...

3. To change "sikap" (attidude), it is a long and continual process. We can't change driver's attitude during the OPS only. We must do it everyday. The enforcement bodies play an important role, discipline our drivers!! No other way... If they make an offense, issue a ticket. No compromise (whether you are VIP, somebody's friend or son), no discount, follow the rules & lead by example.

4. Improve our enforcement system, link it to JPJ database system. Use merit/demerit system, penalize the drivers (and also their employer if it involved any industries or companies).

5. Improve driving schools syllabus if necessary if the root cause of the accident is from the driver's competency.

6. Educate the kids & public about road safety. Hopefully all of us can play our role to become a behave society on road.

7. IMPROVE Public Transport System, inculcate Malaysian to use public transport (if our public transport system is efficient then!).

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Time to re-energize my writing

It's time for to start blogging again... my last post was 6 months ago, and I think there are lots of ideas & observations that I can share with people who has passion in HSE.

After I gave few trainings for the past 1 month, I believe there are people in our society are not aware on the importance of HSE in their life. They know about HSE, BUT they ignore it... insya allah, I will try my best to share my ideas and observation.

Your inputs & comments are highly appreciated.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Toolbox Meeting

Toolbox meeting, normal people just wondering what this "toolbox" meeting all about? Talking about toolbox, meeting about arising matters or tasks.... for Safety & Health Practitioners, it is a common "pep talk" with the employees... my opinion, toolbox meeting should meet criteria below
a. a talk about OSH topic of course
b. an OSH topic related to the job that the worker wants to deliver
c. KISS (Keep It Simple, Short) principle applied

So, where, when, how to deliver the toolbox meeting, it depends on us then. For me, the best time is before the worker start the work. Toolbox meeting works as a friendly reminder to our beloved worker to be careful & follow all the Safety & Health DOs & DON'Ts during the work... that is all, I can say...

What about the topic? Tonnes of topic you can discuss... here are some links that you can used to select the topic...

Last but not least, try to be creative to make the toolbox meeting is the best & enjoyable session with your workers!! Goodluck

Thursday, June 3, 2010

How to Use Safety's Magic Metre

another good article that I received from SafetyXChange...

How to Use Safety’s Magic Metre

June 1, 2010

I’ve been teaching safety to young workers for 20 years, and I’d like to share with you one of the more successful tips I’ve developed: The Magic Metre.

The “Magic Metre” (or “Magic Yardstick”) is a visual image new workers can use to protect themselves from all kinds of hazards. A “Magic Metre” is the distance from your nose to your fingertips. It’s almost like a 360 degree bubble all around you, including up and down.

Eleven Ways to Apply the Magic Metre

When delivering high school safety talks and new worker orientations, here are some ways I suggest they apply the Magic Metre.

1. Noise: If you have to raise your voice above a normal talking level to be heard one Magic Metre away, you are likely exposed to over 85 Dba and require hearing protection.

2. Moving Equipment: When working around moving equipment such as chain drives, conveyors, etc., if you maintain a Magic Metre from your outstretched fingertips, you are unlikely to fall into the equipment or pinch point. The same concept works for hot pipes, electrical hazards etc.

3. Biohazards: If you maintain a Magic Metre from a fellow worker with a cough or cold you are likely beyond the “sneeze spray zone.” Maintain the same Magic Metre from blood and body fluids and products unless protected.

4. Tools: Protect yourself and others by maintaining a Magic Metre or “safety bubble” around you when using power tools, hammers, axes, etc.

5. Chemicals: From the MSDS, determine how many Magic Metres are required between you and chemicals you may be exposed to.

6. Workplace Violence: Maintain a Magic Metre between you and an angry customer or co-worker. Position yourself to minimize your exposure as a target, and protect vital areas.

7. Eye Protection: Wear your safety glasses or goggles within a Magic Metre of any process that could result in flying objects.

8. Fall Protection: A worker can be seriously hurt from a fall or poorly planned jump of even less than a Magic Metre. You require fall arrest protection if your feet are two Magic Metres above the next level.

9. Lifting and carrying: The safest zone for carrying loads is within the Magic Metre from your knees to your shoulders.

10. Call Before You Dig: Don’t dig (including hand dig) within a Magic Metre either side of a utility locate marker (hydro, gas, telephone, etc.).

11. Falling Objects: Almost anything that falls a Magic Metre onto you will hurt!


Feel free to use any of these suggestions in your new and young worker training. And if you think of any to add, I’d love to hear them.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Something to ponder "The Day I Became Committed to Safety"

This article is taken from Safety Xchange at ""

The Day I Became Committed to Safety

May 18, 2010

Editor’s Note: A couple of weeks, Art Fettig described the day he became committed to safety. We invited SafetyXChange members to share their defining moments. Last week, we ran Jim’s story. Here are Bill and Steve’s.

My Defining Moment

I worked for many years in the meat packing industry. (There’s an industry with a history of “accidents are inevitable...” culture.) I spent many years working in the role of shop steward trying to make my workplace better for the workers.

A number of years ago, I was standing at my job station when I felt a steel tank full of meat nudge up against me. I thought the pallet truck operator was trying to be funny. Quickly, I was pinned up against the table with the pallet truck driving the tank into me from behind, crushing my pelvis then upper legs against the steel frame of the conveyor table. I heard screaming and couldn’t believe the sounds were actually coming from me.

When I was lying on the ground waiting for the ambulance, the pallet truck operator told me that the emergency bump switch must have shorted out. He placed the load behind me and as he pulled away the drive wheel reversed direction and he couldn’t stop it. (The emergency bump switch is a safety device that causes the pallet truck to drive away from an object by reversing the drive for several seconds should the driver run into something with the steering mechanism. This is to ensure it doesn’t pin the driver.)

Not having much of a safety background at the time, I just thought I had been unlucky. Fortunately, I hadn’t broken any bones so I was able to return to work in a few weeks. After I got back to work, the Safety Manager brought me a copy of the completed accident report, in which one of the major conclusions was that the pallet truck was poorly maintained (a systemic problem at our plant). I never would have thought of looking that far into it at the time. I just assumed they would repair it and carry on. Several other items were identified and dealt with as well.

A few years later, I became involved as an OHS committee member, then eventually went to school and became a Safety Officer. One of the classes I took required me to interview three safety professionals. And one of the questions I asked was, “what was your defining moment?” It was only as I wrote my report that I realized what mine had been!

I would encourage everyone to go back and think about your defining moment or ‘moment of truth’ as a source of motivation when things seem tough.

I’m happy to report that we made major strides in improving the health and safety program and culture at my former place of employment.

Bill Bennett


How I “Got It”

I first entered the safety field on a part-time basis. As an Air Force officer, I had to take on “additional duties”. Someone asked if I was interested in being the squadron safety officer. It sounded OK to me. It was the beginning of a career that has lasted over 30 years (so far). It was rewarding work, but I didn’t really become truly committed until I had left the service.

I was working at a cement company as the safety director. An employee ran into my office and shouted that “Fred” fell out of ball mill #1. Ball mills crush cement and other materials. They are cylindrical in shape and are loaded with steel balls that do the crushing, as the mill rotates.

Periodically these mills require a “recharge.” Access panels are removed at the top and bottom of the mill. Employees enter and push the balls out of the bottom access hole. The balls would fall about 30 feet and land in a pile.

I caught several employees walking on top of the mill, climbing in, and pushing out balls with no fall protection. Needless to say, I shut down the operation immediately. I contacted the supervisor. We planned out the procedure, obtained the necessary equipment, and trained the employees how to use them.

One employee in particular (the aforementioned Fred) complained angrily, saying he had worked there for 30 years, had never used such equipment, and had never fallen. As far as he was concerned, it was a complete waste of time.

When the co-worker rushed into my office, saying Fred had fallen out of the mill, I pictured him lying on top of the pile of steel balls, 30 feet below the mill. I was sure I had a fatality on my hands. When I arrived, Fred was sitting in a chair, obviously very shaken, but alive. He just wanted to get back to work. He had worn the fall protection equipment, and it had saved his life, but he would never admit it. He was too embarrassed.

As for me, I finally “got it.” I understood how truly valuable my work was. I had actually saved someone’s life by stopping a potentially disastrous situation, planning a task, providing equipment, and training employees. In this business, we don’t often see the results of what we do. I began to wonder how many other lives I might have saved over the years.

I received no awards, no promotion, no raise, not even a “thank you” from the employee or his family, but I was truly rewarded, just knowing that he had lived.

I’ve thought about that incident over the years. It keeps me going at times when the day-to-day activities don’t seem to accomplish much. I guess I’ll never know, this side of Heaven, what I’ve accomplished, but at least now I have an idea.

Steve Hughes

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

SHO: Knowledgeable or Competence??

I like to highlight on this issue, & I did discuss this issue in the NRG-SHE mailing list. This is important so that SHO must aware that how important is knowledge in managing OSH & they must be competent.

Knowledgeable SHO can't really become a competent SHO BUT competent SHO should be knowledgeable. Few literature or study has been done on competency. The one that I can recall is competency consists of
1. Knowledge
2. Skills
3. Attitude

Competence SHO has a capability to apply their knowledge in the workplace. Not just that, he/she also has the capacity to share or teach their knowledge to other people. They know what they are talking & also they walk the talk... "the shift from knowing to showing (Burz, HL & Marshall, K)"

In Malaysia, currently it's a trend that there are graduates or employees interested to become SHO. This is a positive trend BUT it is also can cause negative impacts due to the "quality" of SHOs. To all SHOs, apply your knowledge at the workplace by learning & practising few critical skills such as communication, negotiation, presentation etc... Furthermore, don't think that we have a green book, that's the end of the learning journey as SHO...

"The more you know, the more you know that you don't know" - Steven R Covey