Sustainability – the term alone conjures up a concept that is itself “sustaining,” as gauged by the permeation of the term into diverse areas – from manufacturing, to the building industry, even to hospitality and the food industries – that one is seemingly inundated with sustainability in day-to-day activities.
This year I have attended two small, niche trade association meetings â€” the International Glove Association and the International Safety Equipment Association â€” and both lived up to their names in terms of their international focus.
We are all affected by socio-economic trends in our careers and personal lives. At the recent annual meeting in Savannah, GA, of the International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA), a group composed of major U.S. manufacturers of industrial safety products, economist Brian Beaulieu presented a 2.5-hour whirlwind tour of the forces shaping the world in which we live.
The hearing protection industry has invested millions of dollars in new technologies that significantly contribute to reducing the incidence of noise-induced hearing loss. This focus on “technologies” is in line with current thinking about personal protective equipment (PPE) in general, in which we are seeing a shift away from use of the term “equipment” to “personal protective technologies” (PPT), which more accurately portrays the breadth of innovation in worker protection products.
Fatalities happen for different reasons, and are not affected dramatically by management intervention in the same way as recordable accidents. Fatalities are quite often a confluence of many (or at least several) different causations, any one of which, had it not concurrently occurred, could have been a single contributor that instead of making it happen, made it not happen.
Motivation to under-report is certainly up in the last decades with bid conditions and owners and general contractors rewarding good records with job awards and penalizing poor reporting companies with removal. So you have “bid lusts.”
I am a safety professional, and in so much as I continue to be one, I bear as much guilt for these sins (being politically correct with safety) as anyonne else. That having been said, we must all redouble our efforts to recognize our collective role in the PC problem and work to solve these issues.