On-the-job safety is a major concern for any organization but in the shutdowns, turnarounds and outages world it is an essential focus. LyondellBasell’s Turnaround Project Manager and Mainstream Conference speaker, Joe Jackson, shares how their safety program uses a personal approach to eliminate injuries and the results yielded their best year ever for lowest recordable injuries.
LyondellBasell was looking to build an umbrella concept for their safety programs and GoalZERO was what was chosen and, you probably guessed it, the goal is zero injuries. Our current mantra is GoalZERO 100 which makes reference to the concept of 100% of the people, 100% of the time.
Every company has some sort of safety process, but what I find different about GoalZERO is how it brings safety to a personal level. I see it as my challenge to help people recognize the need to internalize safety messages and learn from other people versus from their own experience, since in general with safety people don’t really hear the message until they have their own event. It’s like when you were growing up and was told “don’t touch the stove it’s hot,” and what did you do? Touch the stove. So how do you switch this around where it becomes more natural for people to recognize and understand hazardous situations without actually experiencing them?
I like to think of myself as a Johnny Appleseed for safety. I plant seeds in people so when the light bulb does go off and someone realizes they might be in a dangerous situation, they have various examples they can relate to and utilize. Our training process is the first step to of putting this in practice. Anyone that comes onto our sites to do work goes through GoalZERO training. We do a couple hours of indoctrination training just in this process alone which is unusual for most sites. We also have safety kick-off meetings every morning, field audits and a multitude of other actives that provide a format for elevating safety consciousness.
However, the most important aspect of GoalZERO is the personal message. I share stories of events and relate it back to my audience and ask them “what do you need to be doing differently in relation to what you just heard?” I also remind people of the ripple effect e.g. how injuring your hand might impact your family and the people who depend on you. So people start thinking about all the potential effects which usually doesn’t naturally happen when listening to a safety presentation.
Lucky to Safe to Safety Conscious
The reality is accidents happen, but how you respond to those accidents is just as important as how you prepare for them. At LyondellBasell, we have follow-up incident investigations which can be anything from interviewing the people who were involved up through the more rigid investigation process of root cause failure analysis. We do whatever degree necessary in order to gain an understanding of all the variables at play in order to understand and communicate the learnings of the accident. This happens each and every time. We share our findings with other sites and learn from them to ensure we’re mitigating the risk as much as possible.
I’ve found that most incidents typically occur when people get into an auto pilot mode and are just going through the motions. So the key challenge of safety stewardship is keeping people’s minds engaged in what they’re currently doing. By continually embedding safety concepts into my team’s activities, I’m trying to ensure they recognize a hazard when it’s facing them even if they are in this auto pilot mode. It will become second nature and then hopefully they will move along the continuum from lucky to safe to safety conscious.
How it Worked
Every year at LyondellBasell we’re getting one step closer towards zero incidents. In fact, last year we had our best year ever for not only my site but any LyondellBasell site. We came very close to four million man hours without a recordable injury which is phenomenal especially with all the work exposure we’ve had during last year. Our R.I.R (Recordable Injury Rate) statistics for the last five years have been on a downward track, as well as the meantime between injuries increasing, so I think it’s safe to say that GoalZERO is successful and we’re making a difference.
Joe Jackson is LyondellBasell’s Turnaround Project Manager and has been an advocate for the GoalZERO safety process since he started at the company couple of years ago. Joe was also a speaker at Mainstream Conference in Texas.
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