Safety culture is the term used to describe a workplace’s attitudes, beliefs, perceptions and values relating to safety. Here are seven statistics surrounding this important topic:
Four factors present in a good workplace safety culture are senior management commitment toward safety; realistic and flexible customs and practices for handling both well-defined and ill-defined hazards; continuous organizational learning through practices such as feedback systems, monitoring and analysis; and care and concern for hazards shared across the workforce. (Pidgeon and O’Leary—Man-made disasters: Why technologies and organizations sometimes fail)
One vital element of a solid workplace safety culture is the identification of areas in which safety improvements are necessary before a serious incident occurs.
There are two widely divergent answers to the question: Do your workers feel comfortable coming to you if they have a safety issue? If the answer is no, for fear of being ignored or punished, your workplace has a poor safety culture. If the answer is yes, your safety culture is likely good.
Five benefits of a strong workplace safety culture are: few at-risk behaviors; low incident rates; low worker turnover; low absenteeism; and high productivity. (US Department of Labor)
The term “safety culture” first appeared in 1987, the year after the deadly Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster. (Organisation for Co-operation and Development, Paris, France)
Three challenges to every workplace are: determining the level at which its safety culture currently functions; deciding where it wishes to take the safety culture; and navigating the path from here to there. (Center for Chemical Process Safety)
Here are three key symptoms of a poor safety culture: widespread and routine procedural violations; failure to comply with your company or organization’s safety management system; and management decisions that appear consistently to put production or cost before safety. (UK Health and Safety Executive)