On April 28, the International Labor Organization celebrated its International Safety Day. This date was also chosen by worldsteel, in 2014, to celebrate its Steel Safety Day.
Steel Safety Day aims to focus on the five most common causes of accidents in the steel industry, and to create a safer work environment. Therefore, on April 28, a comprehensive operations safety audit is performed on every company that takes part in this initiative. The purpose is to prevent and avoid injuries and accidents caused by: Moving machinery, falling from heights, falling objects, gassing and asphyxiation, and cranes. Procedure review involves the employees and suppliers of the global steel industry as a whole.
Results obtained in 2014 were very good, but there’s still room for improvement. The first year report concluded that 75% of the 373 companies participating globally in the Steel Safety Day had prevention plans, and that, in 10 years, the accident frequency rate by lost days had a 65% improvement. In this context, Worldsteel Association awarded Ternium with a Safety and Health Recognition for its Logistics Safety Preventive Action Plan.
Ternium and worldsteel understand that what is most important is guarding the safety and health of employees, and that every work-related injury and illness can and must be prevented. This is a fundamental concept in the company’s industrial culture. For that reason, several programs are carried out and collaborators are constantly trained.
“The safety day established by worldsteel finds us working intensively on this subject,” explains Jorge Von Bergen, Ternium’s Industrial Safety Director. Currently, the consolidation process of the Security System under OHSAS 18001 is moving forward. On the other hand, prevention tools are being redesigned and the Safe Hour is being redefined in order to take a more effective advantage of it. Also, Von Bergen reinforced that “we are focusing on our mining activities, working as a team with global steel industry experts.”
Various activities were carried out in all of Ternium’s operations throughout the week of April 28, focused on the following critical safety issues: moving machinery, confined spaces, operation and maintenance of overhead cranes, work on heights and falling objects. In addition, the main referents of Ternium made the Safe Hour journey to monitor the safety compliance in the plant. Martin Berardi, General Director of Ternium Siderar, Máximo Vedoya, General Director of Ternium in Mexico, Miguel Homes, Director of Ternium in the Andean Region and Jorge Von Bergen toured the plant and talked to the workers about the actions that are taking place and the opportunities for improvement.
Lastly, Ternium’s Industrial Safety Director reflected: “There is still a lot of work to do, our chain of command’s enthusiasm, commitment and leadership will be the driving force. Consistency in our operational discipline and the improvement on the perception and risk control of the risks found at the plant are the two key factors to continue moving forward.”