|Type of paper:||Critical thinking|
|Categories:||Human resources Problem solving Healthcare|
Accidents can occur at any time in the workplace. In light of this, companies should consistently seek to create a safe environment at the workplace (Martinez, Gamez, & Gibb, 2010). For instance, a company must ensure that tools and equipment are properly maintained to ensure the safety of the workers. The products delivered to the customers must also be safe. Moreover, the company has the responsibility to establish and update operating procedures and offer training to the employees to enhance their safety.
The incident at the Truss Construction Shop is an example of an accident that can occur at any time in the workplace. However, looking at the views and complaints of the workers, the incident might have occurred as a result of negligence on the side of the management. Before the accident, the employees had sought to know whether the engineering process was flawed as well as whether there was a possibility of trusses falling under the load. The accident has the potential to adversely hurt the reputation of the company, which would, in turn, hurt sales. The company must, therefore, thoroughly investigate the accident and come up with measures to prevent the occurrence of accidents in the future.
Explanation of the Issue
A hoist operator at the Truss Construction Shop sustained severe head injuries after a truss broke off and fell on him during a truss load test. The employee is still in an induced coma. A report filed by the safety officer, the Quality Assurance (QA) manager, and an engineer confirmed that the load being tested had exceeded the high threshold. They, however, did not expect that the extra load would cause the accident.
The production workers had been raising concerns over whether the manufacturing process was foolproof and whether the safety of trusses manufactured was assured. They, therefore, blame the improper manufacturing on the company. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), the rights of the injured employee were violated by the company (Jamil, Humaidi, Anis, & Saad, 2018). Faruch Habib, the production worker talked to the press regarding the press about the accident was suspended after two weeks. By firing him, in the pretense of poor performance, the company violated his rights (Calvasina, Calvasina, & Calvasina, 2016).
As evidenced in the case, the company memos have solely concentrated on more production and testing, albeit at a lower threshold. The management has ALSO encouraged the production employees to strive and meet the existing orders. However, the major concern for the company at the moment should be to investigate why the accident occurred and how similar occurrences can be prevented in the future. Regardless of the fact that the Public Relations department issued a statement claiming that the company had taken the necessary action to ensure similar accidents do not occur in the future, the company is visibly more concerned with meeting the production schedules.
Moreover, there seems to be a communication breakdown between the management and the employees. This can explain why the concerns raised by the employees before the accident occurred were not addressed. Since employees are usually on the front lines, they often see what the managers do not. They witness accidents as they occur and may also be aware of the cause. To support a safety culture, therefore, the employees must be encouraged to voice their concerns. The managers should take the concerns seriously and address them (Clarke, 2016). This was visibly not the case at the Truss Construction Shop.
Analysis of the Information
The company must thoroughly analyze and investigate the accident. The big question at this point is whether the failure of the truss was an accident that could have been avoided. Since the QA analysis report confirms that the higher threshold of the load was exceeded and the production employees had raised concerns regarding the engineering process and the testing of the truss at higher thresholds, it is clear that the accident could have been avoided. The blame, therefore, falls on the management.
Moreover, the fact the worker who talked to the press was sacked shows that the company is trying to cover up the accident. Though the Public Relations department claims that the matter has been investigated, the case reveals that little has been done to get to the root of the matter. Instead, the company is more concerned with meeting the production deadlines. However, it should be noted that such an occurrence can adversely hurt the reputation and standing of the company in the eyes of the clients. Genuine efforts, therefore, must be directed towards investigation of the accident and prevention of similar occurrences in future. The investigation may also reveal that poor material, improper behavior of the tester or wrong testing condition contributed to the accident too. Such factors should be carefully considered in future tests.
Consideration of Alternative Viewpoints
The accident occurred as a result of failure to adhere to the Safety Manual for carrying out various tasks. Therefore, the employees must always adhere to the Safety Manual. The management should also ensure that the standards are maintained at all times. The circumstances leading to the accident, in this case, should be used to prevent occurrence of workplace accidents. Therefore, deep scrutiny and investigation of the accident should be carried out. By doing so, the company can come up with measures to prevent such occurrences. The measures could include providing training courses for the production workers as well as offering adequate supervision for the workers when operating machinery and when carrying out truss testing (Grant & Hinze, 2014). Manuals should also be created to show how various operations should be carried out. The management should also identify potential risks at the workplace and come with strategies to eliminate them. This way, the production workers will be assured of efficiency in the manufacturing processes. The reputation, as well as client trust of the company, will also be restored.
Conclusions and Recommendations
Though accidents can happen at any time in the workplace, organizations must strive to create a safe environment. This case has shown that malfunctioning trusses are a potential cause of accidents at the workplace. The behavior of the company before and after the accident places the blame entirely on the management. Such occurrences are counteractive to the efforts being taken by the company to improve production and expand its markets. Therefore, it is important for the management to thoroughly investigate the accident and come up with strategies to prevent the occurrence of such in the future. This is particularly important since the details of the accident have already been leaked to the press. To prevent more damage to the company's reputation, the findings of the investigation should be made public, and the company should clearly outline strategies that will be taken to avoid accidents at the workplace. Training should be offered to the production workers to ensure that they know how to safely operate machines. Adequate supervision should also be provided during tests to ensure that all the safety procedures are adhered to. The company should also seek to enhance both horizontal and vertical communication so that complaints by the employees are presented on time and promptly acted on. By doing this, the company can effectively prevent accidents in the future and create a brand associated with safe and quality products.
Calvasina, G., Calvasina , R., & Calvasina, E. (2016). Responding to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Osha) Whistleblower Investigations: Policy and Practice Issues for Employers. Journal of Legal, Ethical & Regulatory Issues, 19(1). Retrieved from https://www.abacademies.org/articles/jlerivol19number1.pdf#page=60
Clarke, S. (2016). Managing the risk of workplace accidents. Risky business: Psychological, physical and financial costs of high risk behavior in organizations, 403-432. Retrieved from https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=r3cHDAAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PA403&dq=effective+communication+in+preventing+workplace+accidents&ots=urQBIY5py9&sig=p3a7QSDm7xkMbqOvOO8kjSPUgzs
Grant, A., & Hinze, J. (2014). Construction worker fatalities related to trusses: An analysis of the OSHA fatality and catastrophic incident database. Safety science, 65, 54-62. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0925753513003226
Jamil, N. A., Humaidi, N., Anis, A., & Saad, S. (2018). The Influences of Occupational Safety and Health Administrative (OSHA) Dimension Towards OSHA Awareness Among Employees. Advances in Transportation and Logistics Research, 1(1), 291-302. Retrieved from http://proceedings.itltrisakti.ac.id/index.php/ATLR/article/view/31
Martinez, M. D., Gamez, M. R., & Gibb, A. (2010). Prevention through design: The effect of European Directives on construction workplace accidents. Safety science, 48(2), 248-258. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0925753509001672
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