iStock_000001799849LargeCROPPEDBy Jeff Hooper, Vice President of Workforce Development, Inland Pacific Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractors It was not long ago that I attended a safety forum at a military base. Several presenters discussed their safety programs, including successes and areas in need of improvement. One presentation really stood out in my mind when the presenter stated: “My goal is that safety on the jobsite becomes as innate as breathing. It becomes so ingrained in our DNA that we don’t have to think about it, we just do it.” Wow! I had never heard jobsite safety discussed like that before, “as innate as breathing.” The discussion at the forum prompted me to ask myself how contractors can develop a culture of safety that is as innate as breathing. To make this happen, I believe the following five steps must take place:
  • Company safety culture must start at the top.
  • Safety culture must be reinforced through safety officers and demanded by foremen and superintendents.
  • Safety policies and procedures must be updated and shared with all employees.
  • Each morning, the jobsite must start with a safety moment.
  • All jobsite workers must complete following safety training: OSHA 10/30, Competent Person Level Fall Protection, Confined Space and OSHA Focus Four.
Clearly, these steps are just the beginning, but they are readily achievable objectives that will make a significant difference in the way safety practices are applied at any jobsite. Zero fatalities should not just be a goal, but a passion of each employee. A culture of safety should be as innate as breathing.   NCCER 1505 Spring Summer-coverFor the rest of the story, read Jeff Hooper's Safety Pays article in the online issue of NCCER’s Cornerstone magazine.

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NCCER develops standardized construction and maintenance curricula and assessments with portable credentials. These credentials are tracked through NCCER’s National Registry which allows organizations and companies to track the qualifications of their craft professionals and/or check the qualifications of possible new hires. The National Registry also assists craft professionals by maintaining their records in a secure database.