High quality standards, inducing an equally high safety, for manufactured parts is a self-evident aspect of the aerospace business. Just as essential is the safety for all employees within the company!
To raise an awareness of all conceivable risks, and to find which actions that should be taken to eliminate or mitigate these, GKN plc. uses a concept known as thinkSAFE!. This concept comprises everything from machinery in motion and how to perform heavy lifts safely, via chemical-, energy- and environment policies to ergonomics and social wellbeing. The information is spread on message boards and posters within the workshops as well as the offices, by e-brochures and educational videos and directly at unit meetings. Ultimately, the goal is to establish a behavior which leads us on the way to the vision of zero incidents at our workplace. Within the concept of thinkSAFE! there is a sub concept named don´t WALK BY! which encourages all co-workers to report so called near misses, which is an unplanned event that did not result in injury, illness or damage but had the potential to do so. Capturing these near misses is very important in order to take actions to proactively prevent injuries, which also is emphasized by a pay bonus given if a certain number of risks are reported at our site during this year.
Another important instrument to raise the safety awareness within the company are the many internal courses that we employees are educated by. As an example, it is a formal requirement for all staff working within production to, among many other courses, attend sessions in Safe machine stops and Safe heavy lifts. As I study to become a certified manufacturing engineer these courses are mandatory for me as well. Last week I took part in the Safe machine stops and next week I will attend Safe heavy lifts, which includes a practical section where we get to maneuver powered pallet trucks and stackers. Let´s just hope that I´ve got an at least slightly better safety awareness than poor Klaus does in this quite laughable German education movie!