How ISO 45001:2018 can Reduce Risk and Improve Safety for Workers

William A. Levinson

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Why should you attend?

Compliance with occupational health and safety (OH&S) is mandatory, but implementation of the ISO 45001:2018 standard for OH&S management systems can take the organization beyond mere compliance by proactively identifying and eliminating unsafe situations. Benefits go beyond worker safety to include assurance of continuity of operations, better experience modification ratings (EMRs) that affect workers' compensation premiums, and eligibility for OSHA's voluntary protection program (VPP) status. OSHA explains, "VPP participants are exempt from OSHA programmed inspections while they maintain their VPP status" and, in addition, "The average VPP worksite has a Days Away Restricted or Transferred (DART) case rate of 52% below the average for its industry." Workforce participation through safety committees also supports OSHA compliance and may also offer (e.g. in Pennsylvania) a discount on worker compensation premiums.

ISO 45001:2018 is an organized framework for an OH&S management system which is compatible with other ISO systems including the ISO 9001:2015 standard for quality management systems. It requires a set of processes to improve occupational safety, and is relatively unique among ISO standards in its requirement for workforce participation. Workers are often in the best position to identify potential hazards and initiate corrective and preventive action (CAPA) to mitigate or eliminate them.

The HEROES (Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions) Act, if enacted, will meanwhile require OSHA to develop and issue a standard for workplace protection against COVID-19. This is a strong argument for including this issue in an OH&S management system.

Areas Covered in the Session:

1.Benefits of an OH&S management system

·         Lower experience modification (EMR) rating for workers' compensation insurance. The safest workplaces have EMRs of 0.75 while the least safe have EMRs of 1.50, which mean the safest workplaces pay half as much.

·         OSHA's voluntary protection program (VPP) https://www.osha.gov/dcsp/vpp/ "VPP participants are exempt from OSHA programmed inspections while they maintain their VPP status." "The average VPP worksite has a Days Away Restricted or Transferred (DART) case rate of 52% below the average for its industry."

·         Accidents do more than injure workers, they interrupt operations. Prevention of incidents therefore helps ensure continuity of operations.

2. Key clauses and structure of ISO 45001

·         Clause 5.4, "Consultation and participation of workers" is relatively unique among ISO management system standards, and it supports OSHA requirements for empowerment of workers to identify hazards.

3. Safety committees play a central role in workforce participation. Requirements for effective safety committees will be described.

4.  Primary hazard sources as identified by Henry Ford almost 100 years ago are as valid today as they were then, and the Ford Motor Company had one of the most advanced safety programs on earth. All but one of these hazard sources can be removed with generally accepted and off the shelf resources.

·         5S (workplace organization)

·         ISO 9001:2015 clause 7.1.3 Infrastructure and ISO 9001:2015 clause 7.1.4, Environment for Operation of Processes

·         Ford's "Can't rather than don't" safety principle; use engineering controls so incidents can't happen, as opposed to telling workers to be careful ("Don't put your hand in the press when it closes"). Focus on "can't rather than don't" reduced incident rates at Ford to close to zero.

·         Partitions as countermeasures against COVID-19 exemplify engineering controls.

5.Job safety analysis (JSA) is synergistic with the job breakdown worksheet from Training Within Industry.

6. Hiyari hatto ("Experience of almost accident situation") is a worker-initiated incident or potential incident report.

7.Importance of HAZCOM (Hazard Communication)

8.Management of change (MOC) means that any change to operations, including changes in materials and methods, as well as shutdowns and startups, creates the opportunity for unforeseen and undesirable consequences.

9.Emergency preparedness and response; ensure that emergency responders are aware of potential on-site hazards.

Attendees will receive a handout of the slides and accompanying notes, along with an annotated copy of "How Henry Ford Saves Men and Money" by Louis Resnick. National Safety News, September 18, 1920. (The principles are equally applicable today.)  Disclaimer; no part of this presentation constitutes formal engineering or OH&S advice.

Who will benefit:

All people with responsibility for occupational health and safety

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Speaker: William A. Levinson,

William A. Levinson, P.E., is the principal of Levinson Productivity Systems, P.C. He is an ASQ Fellow, Certified Quality Engineer, Quality Auditor, Quality Manager, Reliability Engineer, and Six Sigma Black Belt. He is also the author of numerous books on quality, productivity, and management.


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