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Page Title: Safety Philosophy
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CHAPTER 2 SAFETY PROGRAM PROMOTION AND ATTITUDES This  chapter  deals  with  promoting  your  safety program  and  helping  your  workers  develop  a  positive attitude toward safety. Sometimes people call this a “safety   philosophy.”   It  is  an  essential  part  of  any successful safety program. Some  safety  supervisors  believe  that  by  providing safety  training,  they  are  promoting  safety.  While safety training is a vital element, training alone cannot change  unsafe  attitudes  or  promote  safe  workman- ship. The advertising world calls promotional efforts marketing.”   A  command  must  “market”  its  safety program  and  sell  safety  to  the  worker. SAFETY  PHILOSOPHY We  often  hear  safety  described  as  the  use  of “common sense.” That is, safety should be obvious— anyone should be able to see a missing safety guard and realize it is a hazard. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Safety  is  learned  and  experienced. From  a  young  age,  other  people  warn  us  about dangerous  situations  and  how  to  identify  potential hazards. Without that training, you might receive injury from such hazards. If not seriously injured, you surely will learn from the experience. You  can  easily  recognize  some  safety  hazards. However,   hazards   involving   toxic   chemicals   and exposures  may  not  be  obvious.  Some  occupational illnesses,  such  as  asbestos  exposure,  do  not  show symptoms for 10 to 35 years. You need to be trained to recognize  these  hazards. Just as we cannot rely on common sense to prevent mishaps,  we  cannot  assume  that  everyone  has  a  good attitude toward safety. The following are some attitudes that can contribute to mishaps: The fatalist— The people who have this attitude are sure that when “their time is up, nothing can be done about it.” The risk-taker—  People  who  have  this  attitude feel certain risks are just part of the job and too often  take  unacceptable  risks. The  immortal—  Young  sailors  and  workers usually have this attitude. They feel immortal and cannot imagine that “it could happen to them.” The accident-prone—  People who have this attitude  seem  to  have  a  greater  number  of mishaps than their coworkers or shipmates. The  attitude  of  the  safety  supervisor,  safety manager,  or  safety  petty  officer  can  help  mold  the attitude of the workers. Supervisors must constantly seek to develop good attitudes in their people. Train your people  in  safe  workmanship  and  try  to  convince  them the command is sincerely interested in safety. Enforce all safety regulations to emphasize that the command “expects” safety to be a standard operating procedure. RISKS Risk taking is an inevitable part of our daily lives. Whether driving to work or getting under way, we face certain  risks.  However,  we  face  different  levels  of  risks. Some  risks  are  considered  acceptable  or  unavoidable. For example, we may have little choice but to drive to work, but we can reduce the hazard by using safety belts. An unacceptable risk would be to drive a motorcycle to work at a high speed without wearing a helmet. Good  risk  taking  can  actually  be  considered  a precaution against mishaps. In good risk taking, the person is trained to recognize the level of risk and choose whether the risk is worthwhile. A calculated risk based on the possible consequences of a hazard is safer than  a  haphazard  risk  based  on  poor  judgment  or ignorance. A lack of risk is not necessarily safer. A lack of risk sometimes means a person isn’t “aware” of the risks. Minimizing  risks  is  a  vital  element  of  mishap prevention. You may be aware that a machine part is badly worn, so running that machine involves a risk. Mishap prevention occurs when you reduce that risk by taking  interim  or  permanent  corrective  action. We can access the risk of any hazard. This assess- ment is based on the severity of that hazard should a mishap occur and on the  probability  that it will occur. 2-1

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