Huntsmans Quarries Ltd
- No. of employees: 40
- Business sector: Construction
- Business activities: Quarrying and processing of stone for construction and building
- Stakeholders: Owners, managers, employees, clients
- Location: Gloucestershire
Quarrying operates in a highly competitive market and carries significant health and safety risks. Huntsmans Quarries constantly try to improve productivity but refuse to compromise health and safety. Improvement initiatives led to a prestigious Quarry Products Association (QPA) Health and Safety award and yielded significant business benefits. Health and safety has become part of the company culture and they continue to work at reducing health and safety risk.
A simple assessment of health and safety risks identified a number of improvement opportunities. The managing director and the employees worked together on health and safety innovations covering manual handling, plant maintenance and slips, trips and falls.
What did the company do?
The managing director is keen to make health and safety management simple and is keen to avoid bureaucracy in a small business. His approach is to make health and safety part of the company culture by:
- Acting upon all comments that are put forward
- Fully involving the workforce in identifying innovations to reduce health and safety risk
- Initiating a safety committee and regular site safety walks
- Providing manual handling training
- Increased process plant availability providing a 5% increase in productivity
- Reduced time lost through accidents increases employee productivity
- QPA Health and Safety award has instilled a sense of employee pride and improved morale
- A high level of health and safety improves the public and customer perception of Huntsmans' quarrying operations
Health and safety benefits
- Total accident reports per employee halved in the last 18 months (0.18/employee compared with 0.38/employee)
- Zero RIDDOR reportable accidents in last 18 months compared with 4 for the previous 18 months
- Reduced health and safety risk associated with the maintenance of process plant and of injury from slips, trips and falls
- External audit and training cost around £4000 per year.
- The initiatives have contributed to an improved productivity in the manual grading of stone.
- Process plant availability has increased by 5%.
- Reduced employers and public liability insurance costs by 30%
'We were always positive about operating a safe business but since we started actively engaging with our staff on the issue and more importantly acting on their suggestions, we have reduced our accidents per employee by 50% and for the last 18 months eliminated any RIDDOR reportable accidents achieving a 100% improvement.'
David Glenn, Managing Director
The workforce is actively encouraged to identify health and safety risks and to implement improvements. The company acts upon all comments that are put forward. As an example, employees identified and implemented changes to the maintenance of the rock crusher in order to remove the need to enter the machine to perform regular maintenance.
'We are now encouraged to report all near misses – not just accidents. There is a no blame atmosphere and all employees can suggest ways to improve health and safety.'
Claire Smith, Admin Supervisor
'We were always aware that health and safety was important but it always seemed to be somebody else's responsibility. However following the recent changes you feel much more involved and it is important to know that our ideas count.'
Mr D Oliver, Walling Stone Foreman
'I am a passionate believer that a safe business is a happier and profitable one. When you can actively engage everyone in the process it is very gratifying what can be achieved. Our aim is to have zero accidents every year.'
David Glenn, Managing Director