Safety, health and wellbeing
A key performance indicator for safety is lost time injury frequency rates (LTIFR). At 30 June our performance against this indicator was 2.8, an improvement on last year but still higher than our target of 2. The severity rate was double due to two protracted injuries. See figure 17.
Manual handling incidents were the greatest single contributor to this rate during the year, and we found the biggest underlying cause was taking shortcuts with procedures.
Our overall safety performance is presented in table 12. Improving our safety performance is a key challenge for Hydro Tasmania.
We believe the current performance reflects a poor understanding of the desired safety culture and our safety procedures in general among our employees. We intend to improve this understanding as a high priority within the 2009/10 Safety Improvement Plan. A program for education about manual handling will begin early in 2009/10.
The Safety Improvement Plan ensures that the top six priority safety risks in the business become the focus of improving safety performance. We identify these priority risks in consultation with employees across the business.
During 2008/09, we made progress on addressing driving, contractor safety management and asset maintenance risks. We provided advanced driver training, implemented safety procedures by training sessions for contractors (and published them on our web site with access for registered contractors), and trained production managers to audit site and operation safety risks. Improvements by the end of the year were such that these issues were downgraded to a watching brief for the 2009/10 plan.
We also addressed issues related to stress, fatigue and emergency response by testing and implementing revised systems and procedures. However, these issues require longer-term attention and remain among the top six priorities of the 2009/10 plan. An education program on managing fatigue will focus on health and wellbeing issues. The other top priorities for the coming year include safety risks for overseas assignments, improving safety training and, as mentioned above, improving understanding of safety procedures, including manual handling.
The latest electricity industry benchmark for safety was released by the esaa with 2007/08 data. This shows Hydro Tasmania’s lost time injury frequency rate was near the average for generators.
We aim to improve this performance as already explained, and continue to pursue our safety vision of ‘no harm to anyone at any time’.
The Healthy Hydro Program won the 2008 Workcover Safety Award. Pictured are, from left, Claire Stonehouse,
Verity Coulter (Rehab Consultant), Manny Lynch, Peter Kapeller, Cynthia Nixon, Claire Vermey, Mick Cuppari,
Bruce Hill, Grant Bender and Toni Rowley