From the improvement of working procedures to technological innovations and a cultural change for each individual. This is how Enel Green Power aspires to become a company with “Zero Accidents”. For the World Day for Safety and Health at Work, we retraced a year of projects and focus on a theme that is central to the Group’s policies and choices, together with Maria Galainena, Head of HSEQ for Enel Green Power.
“Real change happens when every one of us, managers, employees, workers and contractors, considers safety and health as a value, a lifestyle, and not just a legal obligation”. For Maria Galainena, Head of Health Safety, Environment and Quality (HSEQ) for Enel Green Power, health and safety at work stem from a shared mentality and culture, day after day and in every situation.
For World Day for Safety and Health at Work, Galainena retraced a year of projects and attention to a theme that is central to the policies and choices of EGP and of the Enel Group, focused on the goal of “Zero accidents”.
28 April is World Day for Safety and Health at Work. How is this seen at Enel Green Power?
The protection of Health and Safety at work has always been, and will continue to be, at the centre of our policies and choices of our company, every day. We are aware that any other type of success, economic or in production, can never be celebrated if it is not achieved together with safety, a key factor for the sustainability of our success.
Dealing with safety in the workplace correctly and completely is not only a legal obligation for the company, but an ethical and moral duty towards all the people that work for us and with us. Ensuring that all of them can go home to their families and loved ones is our duty and our responsibility.
Looking back at 2017, what were the main achievements?
In 2017, we managed to reduce our accident rate by 20%, and we are proud to say that, since 2009, it has decreased by 90%. Alongside these important achievements, however, we continue to see accidents. In 2017, despite our efforts, an employee of a contractor lost his life while working at one of our construction sites.
So we recognise that we can in no way accept these tragedies or any kind of accident, and that we have to work even harder to achieve the ambitious goal that we, starting from our CEO and with the involvement of all the management, set many years ago: becoming a company with “Zero Accidents”.
To achieve such an ambitious goal, we need to work hard and constantly on numerous aspects. How to we move forward?
We need to build a work environment that is strong in cooperation and awareness. Over the years, we’ve worked hard to improve our working procedures, worked on risk analysis and prevention, on synergy and cooperation with contractors and on the integration of safety standards in all our organisational processes, ensuring that we have the involvement and commitment of all our management.
What are the main challenges for the future?
We will continue to work on these topics in 2018 by emphasising and increasing the research and implementation of more innovative and technological solutions, to improve working conditions and consequently the safety and health of workers. And we’ve already started! Drones, remote-controlled machinery, virtual reality and much more is already being used at our plants and worksites. A concrete example is MySafety, the smartphone and tablet app developed by EGP and launched in January, which allows people to report accidents and other events at our sites, easily and in real time.
Are technical and regulatory aspects enough to guarantee safety?
None of the actions we take at the organisational level can be fully effective if they aren’t accompanied by individual effort. This is why EGP is increasing its efforts to spread a strong culture of safety within the company. Training and communication play a crucial role, which are aimed at increasing workers’ awareness of the implementation of correct behaviours, the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), respect for procedures and regulations and much more. All this in order to make everyone feel responsible for their own safety and that of others with a proactive attitude, creating an environment of cooperation and trust.
Going back to the World Day for Safety and Health, is there a message that you want to give to highlight again the importance of this event?
I believe that real change happens when every one of us, managers, employees, workers and contractors, considers safety and health as a value, a lifestyle, and not just a legal obligation. When each one of us has a commitment to and passion for safety, both at work and in everyday life, learning to take care of each other, always.