Building a work environment: Siemens' approach

By D K Gupta
Published: Sunday 15 June 1997

Building a work environment: Siemens' approach

SIEMENS, a world leader in electronic products, has a firin belief that a safe and healthy working environment is as essential as quality control, production and marketing. It has, therefore, taken steps to prevent accidents, to take care of the health of its employees and to protect the environment.

Safety and environment protection is an integral part of every job, process and decision involved at the workplace. The approach to enhance safety is based on a three-prolonged strategy of education, engineering and enforcement. Educating the personnel is an important element of enhancing industrial safety. Siemens organises safety programmes with posters displays and distribution of pocket calendars with the theme of safety and environment protection culture.

On the engineering front, corrective action is taken after identifying potential hazards, including the introduction of nylon-reinforced gloves to prevent injuries while handling sheet metal, use of crawling ladders, ear plugs and safety goggles. Air quality is also monitored by means of sampling ports.

The educational and engineering activities are reinforced with the active participation of the management and the safety committees. Each unit has a safety committee which identifies potential hazards and recommends remedial measures, Contests are organised to enhance safety awareness.

The increased awareness has generated a sense of pride and achievement with recognition from various external agencies. Siemens has received many awards in recent years. It got the Gold Award for Occupational Safety from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, UK, in 1995 and 1996. It also got the best safety week celebration award from the Directorate of Industrial Safety & Health, Nashik, and the 1996 certificate for meritorious performance in industrial safety from the Council of Industrial Safet)@,. Siemens has been instrumental in maintaining a green environment, with trees of different types are planted around va4Qous units. Environmentally compatible technology introduced by the company includes water conservation in rinsing tanks at its Calcutta works. Rinsing, initially carried out in flowing water, consumption 6f 3,836 cubic metres per year. With the installation of an electrical gate valve, the volume of effluent generated was reduced and energy conserved. Recycling of liquid ammonia used in printing machi4i has also been introduced.

Si4ens' objective is to bring about an active participation in safety programmes through involvement of all employees, Prevent environmental pollution and conserve natural resources by adhering to regulations laid down for safety and environmental protection.

The author is Vice-President, Cotporate Communications, Siemens

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