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One in Three Companies Missing Risk Overview

Third of industrial and waste companies haven't had overview of risks

Every third industrial and waste company can not document that they have an overview of the risk of injury and accidents in their own business. It appeared during the authorities' joint supervisory action in April.

"In order to avoid accidents, illnesses and injuries at work, you must first have a good overview of what dangerous situations can occur and how to avoid them happening," says Trude Vollheim, Director of Labor Inspection.

Risk assessment is key to expand

"To map and assess risk is the cornerstone of HSE management. It will form the basis for taking action that reduces or eliminates dangers in the workplace, "says Vollheim.

During the three-week operation, the authorities carried out oversight in 420 industrial and waste companies. The operation showed that 35 percent of the companies did not have a good overview of the dangers in their own business. - This does not mean that the companies stand with blank sheets. Most people have done something , but the work is not systematic enough to provide an overview of the dangers the employees are exposed to through the work.

Must document own risk conditions

- It is the employer who is responsible for assessing and documenting own risk situations. Then there is not enough talk about what the workers need to take care of, "emphasizes Vollheim.

- All work on mapping, assessment of hazardous conditions and action plans must take place regularly and systematically, and everything must be documented. This is important in order to have a conscious relationship with the dangers of own business and that the knowledge and measures do not depend on individuals.

High risk and high accident rates

Every year around 3000 employees in the industry are exposed to injuries and accidents. From 2011 to 2017, the industry industry has had 26 deaths.


Employees in industry and waste management are particularly vulnerable to acute accidents associated with the use and maintenance of machinery and equipment. They are also prone to damage and diseases caused by chemicals, biological hazards, noise and vibration.

The biggest ones are most at stake

It was the businesses with the most employees who had the most at stake; while almost half of the smallest companies (1-9 employees) had mapped, assessed and documented workplace hazards, 86 percent of the largest businesses (over 50 employees) had done so.

"To carry out a risk assessment need not be difficult, but it must be adapted to business - both in scope and in detail. The important thing is to think completely about people, materials and the environment, "says Vollheim.

Many will be better

A survey conducted after the audit shows that nine out of ten employers were positive that the supervisory authorities were jointly supervised. It also shows that two out of three companies plan to improve the work of mapping and assessing hazards as a result of the audit and the guidance the inspectors gave.

"It is positive that many employers see the challenges and have concrete plans to protect employees against accidents, illnesses and injuries. This work can be vital, says the director.

Such was the results

Here are the questions that were asked (checkpoints) and the answers that appeared in the surveys:

  1. Has the company identified hazards and problems? Yes: 66%. No: 34%.
  2. Has the company assessed risk based on the survey? Yes: 65%. No: 35%.
  3. Has the company prepared plans and measures to reduce risk? Yes: 66% No: 34%.
  4. Does the business have procedures for even uncovering and correcting errors and violations of HSE requirements? Yes: 75%. No: 25%.
  5. Are paragraphs 1-4 documented in writing? Yes: 66%. No: 34%.

The companies that were checked were invited to evaluate the audit in an anonymized survey. Half responded to the survey:

  • 92 per cent said they were very or fairly positive at the same time from several authorities.
  • 73 percent replied that the audit contributed to increased insight into the regulatory framework.
  • 87 per cent believed that the audit was a useful experience and knowledge exchange.

The operation was a collaboration between the Directorate for Civil Protection and Preparedness (DSB), Norway's Security Organization (NSO), the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority, the local fire department, the local electricity supervision (DLE), the Environment Directorate, the County Governor's Environmental Department and the Labor Inspectorate.

Good to show that we have things in order

"It's about culture and mindset," says Managing Director Hilde Svenning in the metal molding Manoda. She experienced the Fellowship Authority as a confirmation of good and systematic HSE work.

Technical Sales Manager Kenneth Leiknes and Managing Director Hilde Svenning in Manoda.

"Creating a system for HSE is not difficult on paper. The challenge lies in building a security culture that involves the entire business and all employees, says Svenning. When inspectors from the Labor Inspectorate and the Local Electricity Supervision (DLE) were in charge, the 70-year-old company had everything on its way.

Systematic safety work

In November last year, the company's latest ISO certification was in place. Then the Harstad company with nine employees worked systematically with procedures, certification and internal control for a long time. Therefore, she and the employees saw the audit as an excellent opportunity to be considered outside.

"It was good to be seen and get a confirmation that what we do is right. For us, the work on health, safety and the environment is about taking a profitable position in new markets with strict requirements. But it's about as much about establishing a safe, predictable and efficient working culture for the employees.

Everyone must be involved!

"Such a lift is not possible without all employees from the start," says Svenning. Today, monthly HSE meetings and guardians are a matter of course.

- A living safety culture requires exercise and reminder. It is a continuous work that benefits everyone, "says Svenning.

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