With statistics showing that between 10 and 15 per cent of all fatal workplace accidents in Europe are linked to maintenance operations, the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) has joined forces with the Belgian EU Presidency to host a conference in Brussels today which shows how safe maintenance can increase occupational health and safety standards.
The conference ‘Maintenance: Do It Safely’ coincides with the release of EU-OSHA’s report, Safe Maintenance in Practice, outlining key strategies businesses should adopt to prevent maintenance risks.
EU-OSHA Director Dr. Jukka Takala said, ‘these strategies include ensuring management is committed to a safety culture and the provision of clear working procedures, involving employees in safety, conducting a risk assessment and safety training, as well as implementing preventive measures’. The report details best practice examples of safe maintenance including that of the Air France engine maintenance workshops which now feature a simulation tool to help identify safety, ergonomic or production issues at the design stage.
The conference features not only a series of workshops, roundtable discussions and expert meetings, but will see Official partners of EU-OSHA’s Healthy Workplaces Campaign recognized for their commitment to safe maintenance. The partners include a wide range of corporations and associations from the private and public sector, including some of Europe’s most well known companies.
At the conference event, entrepreneurs and OSH experts from all across Europe will share best practice ideas aimed to make maintenance operations safer, whether they are from government, large corporations or SMEs. For example, one workshop ‘Safe Maintenance through Design’ will tackle the question how accidents can be reduced through better design and planning of work and workplaces as well as through the use of modern technologies.