The Board is committed to minimising the health and safety risks that each Group employee is exposed to by promoting the effective use and management of business-specific policies and procedures.
The Group has a policy to ensure that the Directors are made aware of any serious health and safety incidents, wherever they occur in the world, without delay, to ensure that suitable investigations and corrective action can be organised. Current events and issues relating to health and safety matters are also discussed within the Group at quarterly Board meetings of the Company.
Each division is responsible for setting its own detailed arrangements concerning health and safety policies and procedures, in accordance with local health and safety legislation. As a general rule, they strive to achieve best practice in terms of what is suitable and practical for the size and nature of their operations. Defined and business-specific health and safety key performance indicators are also used. Reports detailing each division’s performance in relation to three health and safety KPIs (major accident frequency rate, accident frequency rate and accident severity rate) are presented to the Melrose Board and reviewed at each quarterly Board meeting.
The increase in the accident severity rate at Brush was the only item of concern for the Board during 2016, and it sought a detailed explanation from the business of both the root cause and its response. Although the incidents were very unfortunate for all involved, the Board was satisfied with Brush’s comprehensive response. It has also been a reminder of the necessity for constant diligence and striving to improve health and safety standards.
For more information on the Group’s health and safety KPIs, see the key performance indicators section on page 18 of the Strategic Report in the 2016 Annual Report.
A number of sites within the Group hold the ISO 18001 certification, the internationally recognised assessment standard for occupational health and safety management systems, including Brush’s manufacturing locations in the UK and the Czech Republic, AQH’s facilities in Italy and Poland and Ergotron’s APAC-region sites. The Air Management division’s Tualatin, Oregon facility earned its fourth year SHARP Award (Safety & Health Achievement Recognition Program). SHARP is an intensive, five-year safety program that will conclude with full certification at the end of 2017. The division is currently evaluating its Okarche, Oklahoma facility for SHARP readiness and plans to pursue first steps in 2017.
Within the Air Management division, employees are instructed to report all near misses and minor injuries, and if an incident occurs immediate notification is required to the Plant Manager, Group Health & Safety Manager and Group VP of Operations. Plant managers are accountable at monthly group strategy deployment meetings for the identification and evaluation of root causes and counter measures related to health and safety indicators. There is a significant commitment from management throughout the division, with safety performance criteria incorporated into operations managers’ annual objectives.
The Security & Smart Technology manufacturing facility has a health and safety manager responsible for co-ordinating its safety program on-site, together with a dedicated health and safety committee composed of heads of departments. The committee is responsible for providing assistance in the event of an incident, reporting any incidents to the local authority, meeting weekly to review health and safety indicators and conducting a comprehensive annual audit. Health and safety data is reported centrally within the division on a monthly basis. At GTO’s facility in Michigan, a dedicated safety team conducts bi-annual audits to identify any potential issues and take corrective action where necessary, while at its Tallahassee location, a safety committee holds quarterly meetings.
The Ergonomics division has implemented a continuous improvement program, driving safety standards across the business and actively seeking improvement suggestions from its employee base. A culture of promoting safety has been established across the business, with improved training programs being undertaken by the workforce and enhanced personal protective equipment implemented. Managers are provided with health and safety reports to ensure matters are given high visibility and any necessary improvements are authorised and implemented quickly.
At Brush, divisional managers are responsible for ensuring that health and safety remains a key focus and that active procedures and monitoring systems are in place which were reviewed and updated in response to the incidents leading to the increase in the accident severity rate in 2016. Detailed health and safety plans are set by Brush management each year to determine annual targets and improvement initiatives. Brush also has health and safety committees, which meet on a regular basis and are made up of representatives from both management and shop floor level personnel. Each of the committees has wide-ranging responsibilities which vary between operations and include the review of reported incidents and the monitoring of incident trends. These committees are also responsible for ensuring that corrective measures are implemented when accidents occur and that all incidents, whether or not they are deemed reportable under local legislation, are given due attention.