As an employee-owned organization, it is imperative that our employees embrace a positive safety culture. Each employee knows and understands the importance of being safe while both in the field and in the office as well as being able to positively communicate observed hazards to fellow employees. The health and safety program at WEST is based on six fundamental aspects that work hand in hand to facilitate this well-rounded safety culture.
The health and safety committee is composed of WEST employees from all over the US who help to discuss safety initiatives and communicate a broad way of thinking to assist fellow employees on corrective actions for obstacles that may be faced in the work environment.
At WEST, we understand every client has different safety requirements for the various site-specific hazards employees may encounter. We thoroughly review all requirements before a project begins with each client. We document all known hazards on Field Safety Plans or Job Safety Analysis that each WEST employee working on client projects review with his or her Field Supervisor or Project Manager.
At the start of each week, field employees engage in a safety meeting to discuss safety programs and develop action plans for preparation of the planned week’s activities. These safety meetings allow for direct communication with project staff to reduce risk from possible environmental hazards as well as provide a platform to recognize the efforts observed by other project members.
Establishing a clear line of open communication between WEST employees at all levels alleviates any perception an employee will be negatively impacted if he or she has concerns or questions regarding his or her safety. WEST employees are our most valuable asset, and it is important that they all have a voice to communicate concerns without fear of retaliation.
While working on projects, all employees understand they have the right and the obligation to stop work if they feel the operation is elevating undue risk or may adversely impact the environment, themselves, or fellow co-workers. This stop work authority allows for clear communication and ensures that employees understand the components of the operation before proceeding.
WEST employs three full-time health and safety professionals to oversee the health and safety program, train all employees, and respond to incidents.