Health and Safety
Pantex is committed to employee safety. The company has implemented several important programs and processes to reach its goal of zero accidents.
In FY12, Pantex had one of the lowest Total Recordable Case rate in Plant history at 0.37 and a Lost Time Case rate of 0.00.
Since 2001, the TRC Rate at Pantex has improved more than 88 percent. The Plant’s Lost Time Case Rate has improved 100 percent for the same time period. The TRC and LTC are two common ways industry measures safety success.
Pantex also surpassed 6.9 million hours worked without a lost-time injury in FY12.
Although these results are outstanding, Pantex continues to strive to improve the overall safety record.
In 2010, Pantex was awarded Star status in the Department of Energy’s Voluntary Protection Program, which is designed to recognize the outstanding performance of a DOE contractor’s safety program. In 2011, Pantex achieved Superior Star Status, followed by the Star of Excellence in 2012.
Pantex was named one of America’s Safest Companies by Occupational Hazards magazine. Pantex was one of 11 companies honored by the magazine for steadfast dedication to safety.
For its commitment to safety, Pantex also received three awards from the National Safety Council.
Integrated Safety Program Management
Another way Pantex accomplishes work safely is by using the Integrated Safety Management System framework.
ISM is the overarching system that provides a High Reliability Organization the assurance that high-consequence operations can be effectively performed while providing for the safety of workers, the public and the environment.
ISM guiding principles are the fundamental requirements that drive operations, from development of scope to performance of work. The system enables management to define the scope of the work, analyze hazards, identify and implement needed controls and provide continuous feedback for continuous improvement. By taking these steps, management is able to confirm readiness before work begins and incorporate improvements if needed.
Incident-Free Work Environment
Pantex implemented an Incident-Free Work Environment philosophy at the site. It is a philosophy that requires management, leadership, employee involvement, hazard prevention and control, as well as safety and health training.
The Pantex Industrial Safety Department developed a strategic business model to commit staff and resources toward effective balance of mission priorities, value determinations and objectives aimed at preventing, eliminating or mitigating unsafe acts and unsafe conditions. To ensure worker safety, the department provides compliance guidelines for safety related regulations, programs and initiatives that support this philosophy.
Industrial Safety assists the plant with implementation of safety program improvements and routine oversight of firearms safety, electrical safety, traffic safety, hazard analyses, incident investigations, facility inspections and other safety processes.
Behavior Based Safety
While plant management is ultimately responsible for protecting workers from hazards in the workplace, responsibility extends to all employees at Pantex. Behavior Based Safety is an employee-driven process that focuses attention on safe and at-risk behaviors. Employees are trained to conduct observations of their peers’ activities in their work areas and then provide specific feedback in a non-threatening manner. Employee steering committees trend information, develop action plans and communicate results.
Human Performance Improvement
HPI is intended to promote behaviors to accomplish specific results throughout Pantex that support safe and reliable operations. Progress towards HPI requires a work environment in which individuals and leaders routinely exhibit desired behaviors. Such behaviors must be clearly described, communicated and reinforced. Peer pressure, open communication and positive reinforcement can establish a culture in which individuals, leaders and organizational processes eliminate obstacles to achieve excellent human performance. This situation will reduce or eliminate error-likely situations, therefore reducing or even eliminating events due to human error. Excellent human performance leads to optimum plant performance.
Safety councils are a vital part of the safety programs used by Pantex. Currently, Pantex uses three different safety councils to promote open safety communications and solicit invaluable input from different organizations onsite. The President’s Safety Council, the Joint Company and Union Safety Council and the Subcontractor Safety Council are important tools that integrate several different groups and provide a forum for valuable safety discussions.
The President’s Safety Council has a monthly meeting that is made up of a diverse representation from across the plant and includes Department of Energy and union representatives. The Joint Company and Union Safety Council has a monthly meeting that brings together Pantex
senior managers and the leadership of each of the unions to address specific issues brought forward for discussion. The Subcontractor Safety Council is a quarterly meeting between Pantex and all contractors, as well as their project officers and responsible division managers.
This meeting is a forum to discuss concerns and ensure that all subcontractors are working within the high safety standards that are expected by Pantex.
Pantex fully embraces the safety commitment and values the rights of every worker.