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    Balfour Beatty's Northern California Division Logs One Million Man Hours with Zero Lost-Time Injuries

    July 23, 2014

    The Northern California division reached a safety milestone earlier this year, logging an impressive one million man ours with zero lost-time injuries.

    “A prolonged period of time without a lost-time injury in our industry shows a committed, diligent, and consistent approach towards safety by all our teams,” said Shaun Burke, safety manager for the Northern California division. “Zero Harm starts with what you believe, because what you truly believe in is what you’ll commit to. Commitment is shown by what you do, not what you say, and that’s what inspires people.”
    “From the short time I have been with Balfour Beatty, I have been able to see the passion the team members have for safety and the pre-planning that goes into the projects before boots hit the ground,” observes Bryan Bishop, site safety representative. “Practices such as reviewing contractors’ safety records, our contractual language about BBC’s safety expectation of our subs, team effort of working through problems, and empowering our workers to stand up for safety are just a few examples of how we achieve Zero Harm.”

    Although the division successfully avoided a lost-time injury for an impressive amount of time, the safety managers acknowledged a need for continued “buy in” and whole-hearted participation on the part of everyone in the company.

    “The Biggest hurdles to Zero Harm is complacence and communication,” said Bishop, who is currently assigned to the One South Market residential high-rise in San Jose, CA. “My goals are to achieve an open line of communication onsite where workers feel they are part of the safety program.”

    According to Burke, this is how we reached one million man hours:
    • “Setting expectations; SH&E expectations must be set at a preconstruction level for everyone involved. Setting expectations for our people, with Zero Harm as the goal, makes it much more meaningful and real.”
    • “It’s an all-in attitude. Everyone must be committed and a participant from all levels of BBC, including subcontractor management to the worker. Everyone has to be looking out for one another and commit to never walking by an unsafe act or condition in order to achieve Zero Harm.”
    • “Follow through; once you’ve set those expectations you must address and assist those who are not meeting the expectations, and recognize and applaud those who are meeting them in order to achieve Zero Harm.”