Dear Mr.Arun Singhal and Gurpreet singh
So many views and no response. I am ashamed. I regret that I could not write early because of busy schedules.
“Managing the safety function” starts with a written safety policy – a definition, if you will, of management’s desires concerning safety. Most executives agree that a policy is a fine thing to have, but a few agree on what a policy is. Policy is often confused with “rules,” established practices,” “procedures,” – not only in speech but also in action. But policy has certain unique implications. It implies scope for discretion, initiative, and judgment in deciding what ought to be done in specific situations. The most important thing is to communicate management’s interest.
From company to company what is included in the safety policy may differ. Most organizations will not write a “pure” policy. They will either intentionally or inadvertently include some procedures, some philosophy, and perhaps even some rules with their expression of management will. This is perfectly all right- whatever serves the company best is what should be included.
No one policy is right or wrong – we might best assume that each is right for the organization it serves. We can, however outline some of the things that should be included in most management policies on safety. As a minimum the following area ought to be touched on in a safety policy.
1. Management’s intent. What does management want?
2. The scope of activities covered. Does the policy pertain only to on-the job safety? Does it cover off-the job safety also? Fleet safety? Public safety? Property damage? Fire? Product safety?
3. Responsibilities. Who is to be responsible for what?
4. Accountability. Where and how is it fixed?
5. Staff safety assistance. If there is a staff safety, how does it fit into the organization? What should it do?
6. Safety committees. Will there be committees? What will they do? Why do they exist?
7. Authority. Who has it, and how much?
8. Standards. What rules the company abide by?
These questions will provide some insight to the one who is contemplating writing a safety policy. There is one more procedure to be followed. To be effective it may be conceived by the safety professional but must be published under the name of the executive who is responsible for all activities.
A well conceived written safety policy should do three things:
1. It should affirm long range purpose.
2. It should commit management at all levels to reaffirm and reinforce this purpose in
3. It should indicate the scope left for discretion and decision by lower level
I prefer you try to prepare a policy of your own if you can. If not mention it such that I can post a few sample policies from which you can have your pick.
3rd May 2010 From India, Kollam