Occupational Health and Safety in the Manufacturing Business
Occupational Health and Safety in Domestic Manufacturing Business
Sumitomo Forestry Crest's Occupational Health and Safety Policy is to provide its employees and subcontractors with a workplace environment that aims for "Zero Accidents to Zero Hazards". To accomplish this, we are working to develop a system that allows all employees to make continuous improvements, and employees at each plant proactively report near-miss incidents (468 reports from 505 employees in fiscal 2022) to the Health and Safety Committee, as well as other small group activities (TPM activities) in the workplace to exchange opinions and implement the PDCA process. Management cycle of PDCA is used to improve the efficiency of manufacturing activities while reducing risk.
In FY2022, there was one occupational injury resulting in lost time from work. Based on the fundamental concept of "Safety First", the Sumitomo Forestry Group will continue to strive to create a thriving workplace by maintaining a healthy and safe workplace environment.
Safety and health activities to attain zero occupational accidents
Improvement of Risk prediction ability through continuous safety education, establishment and implementation of forklift safety standards, collection and implementation of near-misses and improvement suggestions, thorough risk assessment and risk reduction
- Maintain an appropriate working environment
Measurement of working environment, health checkups (Including special health checkups), and planning of measures against heat stroke or COVID-19
- Fire safety precautions
Inspection of fire-prevention facilities, as well as the preparation and implementation of such plans
- Consideration of issues based on internal and external demands and expectations
Reduction of long working hours, traffic safety training, etc.
Safety and Health Management System
Sumitomo Forestry Crest Co., Ltd. has acquired ISO 45001 certification in its operation of its Occupational Health and Safety Management System (OH&S-MS). The OH&S-MS promotion staff at each plant is in striving for meeting targets and tracking progress. To ensure workplace safety, the Safety & Environment Department, which serves as the secretariat, coordinates activities of each facility and communicates health and safety information with the Sumitomo Forestry Group overseas manufacturing enterprises.
Each plant appoints a general health and safety manager in compliance with the Occupational Health and Safety Law as part of our health and safety management system, and a Health and Safety Committee meeting is held once a month with these members playing a prominent role. Past workplace accident cases, near-miss reports, and traffic safety training are discussed in the Safety and Health Committee meetings.
Number of serious occupational injuries (four or more days of lost work time) occurring on domestic group manufacturing companies*1*2
*1The number of work-related accidents resulting in payment of compensation benefits for absence from work in accordance with the Industrial Accident Compensation Insurance Act is disclosed
*2The aggregation period for fiscal 2020 onwards is January to December of each year, and the aggregation period for fiscal 2019 and before is April of each year to March of the following year
Safety and Health Improvement Activities, etc.
Regular workplace safety patrols are conducted at each Sumitomo Forestry Crest plant to identify risks and make improvements. Near-misses and risk assessments are conducted on some of the identified risks, which are then horizontally distributed to other departments and basic safety measures are adopted to prevent accidents.
Risk assessments are conducted whenever new equipment is introduced or production lines are changed, with the aim of preventing employee hazards and health problems. We seek to ensure workplace safety by evaluating potential hazards in equipment and operations and implementing measures to reduce the risk level.
In analyzing the incidents of workplace accidents that have occurred, it is apparent that they were caused by a lack of safety precautions as a result of acts that were not expected in ordinary work, and were not identified as potential sources of danger. It is vital to identify hazard sources from various perspectives and increase sensitivity to hazards to recognize potential dangers.
We are focusing on improvement activities since there are many incidents of work-related accidents involving forklift operations that result in serious damage. We've been holding monthly review meetings to assess forklift safety measures since December 2020. We are assessing physical measures such as buzzer loudness and separating traffic lines from pedestrians, in addition to soft measures like safety training, which we have been implementing, in order to create a safer work environment.
Sumitomo Forestry Crest is engaged in TPM* activities. All factory employees, without exception, have a role to play and are involved in the activities through 3 basic activities—"All Member Participation", "Voluntary Conservation", and "Zero Loss". One of our main objectives is to achieve zero occupational injury by implementing safety activities such as "Hiyari-Hatto" prevention (Equiv. near miss) and safety patrols, etc., and we are working toward this goal on a daily basis.
*Abbreviation for Total Productive Maintenance. Production and conservation with all member participation. Management methods for raising productivity in the manufacturing industry
We conduct safety training when employees are assigned to a plant to enhance their awareness of safety by teaching them on the purpose of wearing protective equipment and the rules for safe work. We also provide external instructor training and safety simulation training when working with highly hazardous equipment such as forklifts, knives, and other rotating objects to educate staff of the dangers associated in routine work.
Occupational Health and Safety in Overseas Manufacturing Business
The Sumitomo Forestry Group's overseas manufacturing companies strive to create and maintain a safe and healthy workplace environment under the basic idea of "Safety First", and are united under the basic policy of "creating manufacturing sites with respect for human life and commitment to safety first". In particular, we are developing activities focusing on risk assessment and risk prediction training (KYT), as well as sharing examples and activities among plants to achieve a safe workplace environment for the entire company.
Overseas manufacturing companies have set a safety goal and are promoting safety and health activities with the goal of Elimination of serious work-related accidents (Absence from work for 4 or more days) as a safety target, among which "Eliminating forklift accidents" and "Eliminating accidents involving rotating objects like knives" are priority initiatives.
Safety and Health Management System
A safety and health officer is assigned to an overseas manufacturing company, and a safety and health committee is held every month to report on work-related accidents that have occurred, formulate countermeasures, analyze causes and formulate countermeasures for unsafe behaviors reported by safety patrols and Hiyari-Hatto (Equiv. near miss), as well as check the status of various safety improvement activities, risk prediction training (KYT), and risk assessment activities.
Sumitomo Forestry also conducts periodic safety audits to ensure that the safety and health management systems of each manufacturing company are in good order. We were unable to conduct on-site audits due to COVID-19, so we have been trying remote safety audits using a videoconferencing system since 2021. In FY2022, we audited five overseas factories, using audit checklists and videos taken on site, with interpreters in place to provide an environment that allows us to conduct full-scale safety audits remotely.
Number of serious occupational injuries (four or more days of lost work time) occurring on overseas group manufacturing companies (employees / contractors) *1*2
*1The number of work-related accidents resulting in payment of compensation benefits for absence from work (four or more days of lost worktime) in accordance with the Japanese Industrial Accident Compensation Insurance Act is disclosed
*2Total of 7 companies (consolidated companies) of Nelson Pine Industries (NPIL), Kutai Timber Indonesia (KTI), AST Indonesia (ASTI), Sinar Rimba Pasifik (SRP), Canyon Creek Cabinet (CCC), and Vina Eco Board (VECO). Pan Asia Packing (PAP) was added in fiscal 2022
Occupational Health and Safety Initiatives
The following are the details of the priority initiatives.
(1) Elimination of work-related accidents caused by forklifts
We promote physical measures, like maintenance of forklift workers (Running speed control, buzzer loudness, line mark display function when moving backward), separation of flow lines between forklifts and people, etc. As for educational measures, we provide abolition of collaborative work during cargo handling, safety education for workers around forklifts, and safety precautions for rotating objects like blades.
(2) Elimination of work-related accidents caused by rotating objects like blades
We are installing safety covers and improving measures for rotating parts (Such as the introduction of a braking function to prevent accidents during inertial rotation after halting), as well as the upkeep of safety work standards and training.
In addition, we conduct "Risk Assessment" to eliminate sources of danger and "Risk Prediction Training" (KYT 4-round approach) to prevent people from engaging in risky behaviors and share the details of these activities among manufacturing companies.
Occupational Health and Safety Education
Overseas manufacturing companies conduct Occupational Health and Safety Education based on an annual health and safety plan, and Sumitomo Forestry monitors the implementation status every month and follows up.
In addition, Sumitomo Forestry has established e-learning courses, providing education for Japanese employees working aboard or who are scheduled to work at overseas manufacturing companies, such as the Zero Accident Alliance Campaign, Risk prediction training, and Risk Assessment.
The Sumitomo Forestry Group Manufacturing Business Safety Meeting Held
Sumitomo Forestry and its domestic and overseas manufacturing companies held a safety conference in March 2022, with the goal of "stimulating activities to prevent occupational accidents" and "raising awareness of safety and health" connecting 133 participants at manufacturing sites in Japan, Indonesia, Vietnam, and other countries online.
The participants verified the activity policy for fiscal 2022, reviewed past work-related accidents and fires in the Group, shared case study for safety initiatives at each company, and presented awards for outstanding safety initiatives at the convention. In addition, we had a lecture from the Central Safety and work-related accident Prevention Association to raise awareness of safety and health.
This was the first time the event had been staged on such a large scale, and it was a significant stimulus to each company. In the future, we will continue the competition to reduce serious accidents and foster a safety culture inside the Group.