• Golden Rules, Non-negotiables
    I'll message you separately rather than get into lots of detail here.
    My thoughts on rules in general -
  • Golden Rules, Non-negotiables
    Generally speaking I find them patronising, a huge over-simplification of issues and a convenient tool to blame the worker for incidents. We have removed ours and replaced them with a set of principles that talk about how we will work and also give some pointers to focusing on critical risk areas. It's been extremely well received by the field teams (especially as they were developed in conjunction with them).
  • Permit to Work standard
    The common permit system is still up and running in Taranaki. Not sure who is overseeing it these days with all the changes in field ownership etc over the last few years.
  • Educating your board
    Educating the Board is easy - include routine awareness slots in Board meetings (and outside them occasionally); get them out in the field to understand the hazards (not stage-managed and not en masse); include training and awareness information in routine written reports. We include both technical information and a general industry update - case law, relevant incidents elsewhere, what WorkSafe are doing etc.
    What is hard is getting a Board interested in receiving the information and learning from it. I'm fortunate to have a Board that is very receptive as well as having a good foundation of knowledge and awareness - this is not the case for everyone. For this you need influencing skills rather than informing skills - why they need to, why it's important, how safety is often a proxy for overall performance etc. Move away from the old fashioned 'because you must' towards a more holistic view that emphasises that safety and productivity and profitability are all inextricably linked and that providing a safe environment where teams feel valued is foundational to performance.
  • Road safety: fix the driver vs fix the driving environment
    As ever, nothing is black and white and the answer is probably a bit of both camps.
    However, while I'm not a fan of the absolutism of the strapline, the 'fix the road' side would be most successful. Seems to be a lot more straightforward to put a median barrier round a tricky corner than try to educate and retrain everyone of the thousands of drivers that may go round there at any point. We have a training and licensing regime now that strongly emphasizes the need to obey the speed limit, but people don't. Not sure why we think shouting it more loudly will help. Mass behaviour change can be achieved - it has been for reducing drink driving and seat belt use for example, but it's very hard, very uncertain, very slow and needs to consider much broader societal aspects than simply driving.
  • Fatigue Managment
    This video is interesting It nicelys outline the dangers of relying on a single limit as a fatigue management approach
  • New thinking in health & safety - community of practice
    Thanks to everyone who has replied - I will send out some initial information shortly.
  • New thinking in health & safety - community of practice
    HASANZ is just a register of accredited providers - there are no discussions or events apart from the conference (at least as far as I'm aware). Comparing to other organisations - see my reply to Jeff Mackrell
  • New thinking in health & safety - community of practice
    Fair point, but I would expect this to be pretty informal - no joining fees, no membership tiers, no getting involved just to get CPD points. Just a chance for people thinking in the same space to share ideas and experiences. Just like some of the other forums that are happening around the country on process safety, safety in design etc. I've also had several people from Australia interested in being involved somehow as well.
  • New thinking in health & safety - community of practice
    I have had some direct messaging from people, so it’s not entirely tumbleweeds.

    The LinkedIn post is simply a call for interest as well. The idea of a community of practice is a bit more involved than a simple forum, with options for workshops, meetings, definition of good practice etc, based on sharing of practical implementation of new ideas. It’s about turning good thinking into real practice and demonstrable results.

    I think there is a real appetite for change, but people are not necessarily sure how to go about it. I’m trying to avoid attaching labels to it, but whether people are thinking about safety II, safety differently, HOP, resilience engineering, systems and complexity theory or just having bright ideas that are worth sharing. The sort of disruption topics that the Safeguard conference theme is about in May.

    The next step is to engage with interested parties and work out what they would like to see – very user led – and then try to make that happen.
  • Mythbusters - NZ version
    I had exactly the same experience (and response) at an open home. The only 'control' on the JHA was to take care on the stairs. I suggested to the agent she go back to the office and challenge the requirement
  • taxonomy approach has proved a popular technique for the analysis of industrial injuries
    Taxonomy refers to a classification system. In safety there are several different ones (see Some of these are helpful, others less so. In terms of industrial injuries, the most common would simply be classification as first aid, medical treatment etc, but there are other industry specific ones (e.g. and certain legislative-based reporting requirements (
    As to the question - yes they have proved popular. Whether they have proved effective or not is a different, and more interesting, question. In theory, they should help us analyse data and improve. In practice - maybe not.
  • Definition of "high potential"?
    As a simple guide, look at the worst case reasonably foreseeable outcome for consequence assessment. Catastrophising every event defeats the purpose of risk management as everything becomes high potential, low likelihood.
    If you don't clearly define what is high potential, then you will not be properly prioritizing where to spend your limited resources.
  • Definition of "high potential"?
    It does depend on your risk context. I tend to use "potential for fatality" as a rough guide, but it may be that "potential for serious injury or fatality" works more effectively.
    It depends on what you are using the category for - be careful not to waste a lot of time arguing over category, rather than driving improvements. We report on all of our incidents by potential, rather than actual, so that the focus is on the degree of loss of control, rather than the outcome, which can vary according to good (or bad) luck. But we then add extra detail in the report for those deemed as 'high potential'
  • Price of AS/NZS Standards
    Even larger organisations balk at the cost of standards.
    It would be nice for them to be free but cost of development does have to be recouped somehow, though. Even via MBIE it still comes back in terms of taxation - some of the very expensive ones are pretty specialist and a user pays model probably appears appropriate.
    Perhaps there is a halfway house where generally applicable standards are free, including any that are referenced directly in legislation, and more specialist ones come with a fee?
  • Bunnings slips, trips and falls
    Apparently a Queensland farmer slipped on the onions at a Bunnings store (according to a news report I just heard) so it is in response to an event - which does raise a more general question. How many of us are prepared to say (and defend), "Yes an accident happened. No, we're not going to do anything in response to it, because it's not really necessary."
    There are systems out there that insist on an action being raised before an event can be closed. Does this drive unintended consequences?
  • Bunnings slips, trips and falls
    May I refer you to your earlier post about H&S strangling business :)
    This is it. Not real consideration of real risks.
  • Dodging LTIs
    @Sarah Bond Add to that list - because other people do it. It's the only reason I have found when I've asked "why" to your 1, 2 and 3. Some thoughts here
  • H&S is "strangling business": how best to respond?
    Difficult, because I can't honestly say that he's wrong. But I think it's more a case of misinformed people misinterpreting legal requirements and dodgy salespeople peddling fear of prosecution than it is H&Sper se doing the strangling.
    Well thought out, well implemented, pragmatic H&S is genuinely beneficial to businesses.
    Although, it is fair to say that a knee jerk response to a brand new issue prompting calls for regulation rather than a smart solution might be a part of the problem. Pot, kettle?
    I don't think a pithy response is going to elicit much more than a, "yeah, right!" We just need to do it sensibly and do it well and the tide will turn - although a few links to the UKHSE myth busting page wouldn't go amiss.