Hindsight with Ken Woodward by Alan Hardy

26 November 2014

After several weeks of arrangements we were very excited about meeting and hearing from Ken Woodward, this is the account of the evening from one of our members Alan Hardy; the evening was attended by 50 members and non-members, held at the YMCA Singapore – along with a great buffet and it was good to catch up with members after three of our executive committee returned from IOSH Network conference in UK.

Hindsight event

Hindsight with Ken Woodward by Alan Hardy

Friday 7th November 2014

Ken’s presentation made me look at safety culture in a new way. His presentation was very educational and moving as the effects of the accident not only affected his life but the lives of many involved on that day and beyond. Something as simple as not wearing the correct PPE, in this case a pair of safety glasses, and not following procedures had such a profound effect that caused traumatic injury to him and traumatised his work colleagues.

The two things I will take away from the evening will be:

•       there were a number of warning signs that went unreported prior to the incident. If any of these had of been reported through the correct reporting procedure, this accident would not had happened. I now see the importance of a good reporting culture within the workplace. Staff, regardless of hierarchy, should feel comfortable with reporting to the right person and have the confidence that it will be acted upon.

•      The accident happened at the end of a shift whilst the workers were finishing up their tasks prior to going home. There were many contributing factors but I see one key factor that is present in almost every work site.  No matter how rushed or fatigued your workforce is, safety procedures must be followed at all times (no cutting corners) and the correct PPE must be worn without exception at all times.

It was a most rewarding evening. As I said to Ken, “I had recently bought an oven cleaning aerosol spray to clean my BBQ at home.  After his presentation I will always wear PPE when using such harsh chemicals as accidents know no difference between the workplace and home”