Workplace Safety

Safety on the job has been a hot issue here in the Bay Area lately, especially since the recent rail accident that cost the lives of two BART employees. As I listen to the news, read the internet, and listen to people on the street, I get the impression that people feel that the BART establishment should be fully responsible for providing a 100% safe environment for their employees to work in. Believe it or not people, that is not possible.

What I find ironic is that when I was working for Chevron, the company believed that it was the employees’ responsibility to provide a completely safe environment to work in. So much so, that some employees were afraid to report safety incidents, for fear of losing their job.

Safety is very important, but it is not the sole responsibility of one person, or one group of people. Everyone has to work together to ensure the safety of everyone. The company must provide the right equipment, provide training, issue safety procedures (and update said procedures when needed), and be willing to listen to employee suggestions and complaints. Employees must be vigilant. They need to wear the proper safety gear, use their senses, and not only look out for themselves, but their coworkers as well.

When everyone works together to ensure the safety and efficiency of the entire company, everyone turns out better for it in the end.


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