This year the overall theme of the annual Roads, Pipelines & Mining Services (RPM) business unit Safety Officers Conference was the “Founders Mentality”. In short, the sentiment is that we should approach the work we do for our company as though we own it, and consider the impact of all our decisions and actions as though they were impacting our own business.
Occupational Health and Safety as well as the Environment are a top priority at Stefanutti Stocks, as they directly impact on our people, one of our most valuable assets. The Safety Officers Conference provided the platform to communicate a number of key RPM-specific safety topics, including:
- New policies and procedures;
- RPM Occupational Health and Safety;
- RPM Environmental targets and objectives;
- New modules on S@S, an internal OHS and Environmental Software System designed to cater for the needs of all the business units within the Group. This system focuses in particular on building, construction and mining activities.
Systems @ Stefanutti Stocks (S@S)
As the S@S system is constantly under development these informal safety officer training days are scheduled, in order to introduce new modules and to explain the thinking behind their implementation. In the past these get-togethers have also resulted in the manifestation of a number of new concepts and strategies that support continual improvement across the group.
Discussions on setting site-specific targets and objectives are actively encouraged, as well strategising on how sites can meet the business unit’s targets and objectives, AND meet the Stefanutti Stocks group targets and objectives.
As the RPM business unit’s geographic footprint reaches far and wide, there are few opportunities for personal interaction between safety officers and their counterparts. To ensure that an ideal learning and sharing environment was provided the Riverside Lodge in Muldersdrift, a quiet and peaceful venue was selected for the conference.
The conference also presented a forum for safety officers and environmental representatives to share OHS and Environmental challenges with one another. New ideas were brought forward and resolutions to challenges previously experienced were discussed.
Furthermore, the conference facilitated interaction between divisional directors and safety officers, who were given the opportunity to discuss any achievements across their sites, and how they turned challenges into opportunities.
As not all of the business unit divisions are construction-oriented, this created the opportunity for broader knowledge sharing. For instance, the Mining Services division was able to share a wealth of knowledge in terms of codes of practice (COPs), new legislation, the Mining Health and Safety Act as well as various Safe Work Procedures, Planned Task Observations, Job Safety Analysis and Risk Assessment to name but a few.
The Roads & Earthworks division focused on the Occupational Health and Safety Act, Lifting and Temporary Works as well as the various legislative requirements that one would not generally be exposed to in a mining environment.
The Swaziland, Zambia and Nigerian divisions focused on the differences in the country-specific legislation and the complex issues that can arise when South Africa’s OHS Act is used (as a minimal company requirement and best practice) in countries whose Occupational Health and Safety legislation is not as comprehensive as South Africa’s.
After energetic discussions all conference delegates attended a braai where they got to know a little more about each other. After spending the night and enjoying a hearty breakfast, it was back to work as usual, with the intention of implementing with a ‘Founders Mentality.’