Sagety Program tune-up

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    I am new on this.  We are trying to reduce the number of work related accidents for one our division.
    We work for a food manufacturing plant, our records indicate that we have accidents like sprain/strains, lacerations, lower back pulls, contusions,  etc.  All of them First Aid only.
    We do have a Safety Committee but lately the number of accidents have been increasing (FY07 = 32 / FY 08 = 41) Total of 160 employees.
    How do I start a program to investigate the root of the problem and how do I start a questionare?
    Any help will be greatly appreciated.


    Jered Horn

    Carlos,Boy, I sure don’t know how you ended up here. You are charged with implementing a safety program to improve the safety performance of your workplace…and you ended up on a discussion forum at…I would suggest starting with “5-why analysis”. Get a team together each time an incident occurs (cross-functional is most effective) and ask the group “Why?” five times and the fifth answer will most likely be your root cause. Then, put a control in place to prevent it from occurring again.That’s a start.Good luck.



    Before I go any further, I will let you know for the record that I teach root cause analysis and if you search previous posts you will see my perspective on safety and that I teach TapRooT r.  Also search posts from Chad Vader and Mike Carnell on recent discussions on safety and behavior based programs. Feel free to contact me at [email protected] or for additional info and contact with clients in the food industry that I work with….
    …. with the air cleared it does make sense why you asked the question on a six sigma site.  After all process improvement makes sense no matter whose process it effects. It also makes sense from past experience that many six sigma black belts have avoided pure six sigma projects because they only see a reduction of cost and not always an ROI which is needed by many to complete a project…. look at the reaction of the previous poster who wondered how you got here.
    So you want to investigate the root of the problem… the first step is to identify the problem. Start with you worst incident that could happen again today if not corrected and identify what happened. Don’t assume you know why it happened or brainstorm causes yet, just determine what happened. Feel free to contact me if this first step does not make sense.



    Thank you for your help.
    I do agree that this study will help to reduce the number of accidents.  Everytime we have an accident, our P&L gets hit of $ 3,000 per recordable accident.  I know, it is company money  moving from the left pocket to the right pocket, but ideally the objective is to finish the year with less accidents than the previous year and it does look good in the yearly performance review.



    Hello Carlos,
    Since accidents are growing (it’s an important signal that generally may be a sign of a more serious injuriy risk. I will suggest you to :
    1. Collect the injuries datas: hand, head, sprain/strains, lacerations, lower back pulls, contusions,
     2. See it by person, by activity, by machine, by site,…
    3. Analyse the causes (with the help of the 6M’s diagram for example due to the Machine, Method, Materials, Measurement, Man and Mother Nature (Environment) : workload (Production Objective, no pauses, overtime,…), defect in the machine, lack of protection in the hands, lack of protection on the feet, etc…)
    4. for the questionnaire: don’t hesitate to contact a specialized insurer (Worker Compensation Insurer) and try to exchange any information it may need for the disclosure of a work accident.
    5. Analyse the best practices of your competitors or similar other activities
    6. Define the major risks to solve by priority (OTOBOSOQ: on time, on budget, on scope and on quality). Mitigate the risks: prevention measures to be implemented, actions plan…
    7. Implement the solution(s) choosed
    8. Control: continue to measure the accidents and foresee an alarm signal in case of deviation
    at your service for more details…
    Riccardo Valenti



    It seems you are at the base point and need some minimal direction to get moving. My first suggestion is to perform a JSA/JHA (Job Safety Job Hazzard Analysis) internal. Use your safety team to perform individual job evaluations to determine possible opportunities which lead to incidents. Once you have identified these, rate them as you would in an FMEA system. Cross reference these back to the data which you already have from incident reports and begin the journey of change, and trust me it will be a journey. Many incidents happen in a plant due to short cuts or just not following procedure. In many cases you will find a procedure does not exist.
    Another avenue is to hire some JHA professionals to perform and on site inspection of your plant. Generally can be completed in 7-10 days. You will be amazed at the small things we overlook daily that will make a difference. If you are truly concerned this is money well spent.
    Chris Vallee is an excellent person to talk to as well. He really gets this stuff and truly trys to make a difference. If you want to talk off-line some more I can be reached at cstaylor74 at hotmail

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