Safety and operational risks at a selected chemical company
Unsafe incidents are a regular occurrence in the chemical industries, which have resulted, in some cases in the catastrophic destruction to the environment and loss of life. Major global organizations have shut down after experiencing fatal unsafe incidents as in the case of Union Carbide. This organization was closed after the Bhopal incident in India, in 1984, which claimed the lives of a-bout three thousand residents (see appendix d). In this study, the safety and operational risks at a selected chemical company in Durban are researched. This study looks at the huge number of unsafe incidents in a three year period, from (2003) to year (2005), that occurred at this organization. The objective of this study is to identify the variables that contribute to the high number of unsafe incidents within the organisation. The study will focus on the relationship between staff perceptions and management's assumptions of these contributory variables. The sub-objectives of the study are: o To ascertain staff perceptions of the contributors to the incidents and unsafe working conditions; o To determine if management is accurate in their assumptions of the causes for the incidents; and o To determine relationships between staff perceptions and actual causes of the incidents. The contributors were themed in the study in the following manner: o Behaviour and attitude; e Communications; e Plant and equipment; e Training and development; o Planning and workload; o Safety aspects; and e Other related aspects. Implementing the recommendations made will assist in reducing the number of unsafe incidents and make the organization a safer place for all stakeholders.