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Worker health and safety

For A2A the prevention of accidents and professional illnesses is a more than essential objective of its business activities. The Group’s commitment in this sense, also by making human, instrumental and economic resources available, may be analysed into the following areas that make up its Worker health and safety policy:

  • to pursue objectives to improve worker health and safety as an integral part of activities and as a strategic factor with respect to the Group’s more general ends;

  • to consider safety aspects essential right from the start in setting up new activities or in making changes to existing activities;

  • to ensure that all workers are trained, informed and made aware of the matters required to perform their duties safely and to assume their responsibilities in terms of work process health and safety;

  • to involve the whole of the Group (managers, supervisors, designers and planners, plant engineers, purchase and maintenance services, plant workers, etc.), depending on their specific responsibilities and skills, in achieving the safety objectives allocated to them, with particular regard to:

    • designing machines, plant and equipment, workplaces, operating methods and organisational aspects so that they are built in such a way as to safeguard workers’ health, the Group’s assets, third parties and the community where the Group works;

    • ensuring that everyone carries out their tasks with the aim amongst others of preventing accidents, injuries and professional illnesses, and that therefore planning, performance and maintenance are geared to this purpose, including the cleaning of work places, machines and plant;

    • information and training about business risks regarding all employees and collaborators, with specific reference to the actual job performed;

    • the need to carry out every job effectively and diligently, without negligence, malpractice or a lack of prudence;

    • seeking the maximum cooperation among the Group’s staff and between staff and external business organisations;

    • complying with current laws and regulations as well as the Group’s standards and procedures;

    • ensuring that total costs for health and safety at work are gradually reduced, including those arising from accidents, injuries and related illnesses at work, by minimising the risks to which employees or third parties (customers, suppliers, visitors, etc.) may be exposed.

     

A2A has established framework lines common to all Group companies to promote a Safety Management System that responds to the criteria of standard OHSAS 18001, such as: a business policy on safety interfunctional procedures and guidelines for drawing up the Risk Assessment Document (using appropriate ESI software).
Each company has carried out specific measures on the basis of these guidelines, such as:

  • establishing the main roles and responsibilities for safety;

  • carrying out investigation campaigns for specific risks, such as: exposure to noise, exposure to vibrations, exposure to chemical agents;

  • performing risk assessments;

  • preparing Risk Assessment Documents;

  • preparing operating procedures and instructions;

  • establishing individual protection devices for staff involved in the various activities;

  • identifying training for personnel;

  • carrying out analyses for possible improvements.

In order to constantly improve workplace health and safety levels the Environment and Safety Observatory on work has been set up, whose duties include the following: accident prevention with a check on the most frequent and/or most serious cases, work-related stress analysis and the monitoring of forms of dependence on alcohol and psychotropic substances.

New accident management software

A2A has developed a project to create software to support the health and safety management system, designed to ensure compliance with legislation on reporting or communicating events to the responsible bodies. The form regarding an event is completed by office/department heads and, where required, by the persons dealing with the administrative aspects. The application has a dual purpose: to improve and speed up the use of the reporting for analysis and processing purposes and to automate the activities connected with legal formalities to the greatest extent possible by integrating the software with the computer archives used.
Thanks to this software the employer can always have at his disposal an updated and complete picture of the situation, on the basis of which effective preventive plans can be developed.

Analysis of the accident sector

Companies with a similar risk profile have been combined to form two macro-sectors in order to make Group data on accidents at work more easily understandable and comparable.
The following two sectors have been identified:

  • Environment Sector (which includes Amsa, Aprica, Ecodeco and subsidiaries and Partenope Ambiente, companies which work in the waste cycle)

  •  Energy Sector (which includes the other companies of the A2A Group, where activities basically relate to energy generation and distribution and to the water cycle.

This subdivision also makes it possible to carry out benchmarking with other companies, to create a historical series of data comparable over time and to encourage corrective action to be taken and improvements to be made which are geared to the sector.

For consistency with historical data, the number of accidents in all companies corresponds to these totals, namely those recognised by the accident agency INAIL plus those included as an excess allowance.

The overall accident situation showed a general improvement in 2011 over the previous year, in particular as concerns the indices for the environment sector, which is characterised by having greater risks due to the high manual content of the work, the interaction with work equipment and the chaotic surrounding city environment.

ACCIDENT INDICES* - ENERGY SECTOR

ACCIDENT INDICES* - ENERGY SECTOR

ACCIDENT INDICES* - ENVIRONMENT SECTOR

ACCIDENT INDICES* - ENVIRONMENT SECTOR

* the method by which accident indices are calculated is described on page 170

HEALTH AND SAFETY TRAINING
Subject Hours
First aid 3,644
Fire prevention 6,848
Prevention 24,539
Equipment 9,467
Overall total 44,497

Driving safely and respecting the environment

Specific driving training for employees using company vehicles for waste collection is given by Amsa. With a view to providing constant training for drivers, a 6-hour training course was held in 2011 having the title “Constant training for drivers. Safe behaviour: communicate it and set an example”. In addition, two editions of the Safe Driving Course for drivers were held with ASC Quattroruote which involved 64 drivers and which took the total number of participants in this course to 567.

An eco-driving path was organised by the drivers-single operators of crushers. The course consisted of a theoretical and technical module on ecological driving techniques, followed by accompaniment in the field to test the extent that “soft” driving can reduce polluting emissions (environmental impact), minimise fuel consumption and improve driver safety by reducing accidents.

Worker health supervision

The health supervision service is intended for the use of the Group’s employees who are required by law to ensure that they are fit to carry out their jobs. The Group’s new “Health Supervision” provision was published in 2011. The service is provided by a group of 23 specialist doctors, 1 general doctor and 2 coordinating specialist doctors. In certain structures nursing staff are also available, who deal with the operational aspects of activities.
Health supervision is carried out at 27 company health centres, which are located at health centres operating within the national health service in order to be able to carry out medical examinations appropriate for the job, specialised tests, examinations involving equipment, haematochemical tests, etc.
For the areas where health supervision is decentralised, the same procedures and means are circulated to local operators so that operating processes may be unified.
The majority of the Group’s employees (around 70%) undergo health supervision. In the administrative sectors supervision is linked to the use of equipment with video screens and is carried out with the frequency envisaged in the regulations or on the basis of specialist doctors’ prescriptions. In the operating sectors the frequency and type of testing are determined by the relative health programmes on the basis of the specific job risks.

HEALTH SUPERVISION PROGRAMME
Activity Number of tests
Periodical tests established by the health protocol 4,948
Preventive tests on hiring 405
Testing requested by workers, after job changes, following an absence of > 60 days for health reasons , health promotion tests, etc. 734
Total tests 6,087
Haemochemical tests 2,995
Audiometries 898
Spirometries 2,023
Electrocardiograms 1,766
Tests using instruments (X-rays, eye screening, scans, etc.) 1,423
Specialist tests (ocular, cardio, orthopaedic, etc.) 850
Testing for drug dependence
1,490
Total additional testing 11,445

A total of 35 training courses were held during the year with the presence of specialist doctors and 102 inspections were carried out on working environments, aimed at allowing the specialist doctors to obtain direct knowledge of the risks connected with the activities and workplaces, as required by law.
The coordinator of the specialist doctors (with the exclusion of AMSA) issued 225 toxicological opinions on the chemical products used and/or about to be purchased. In addition, a further 11 toxicological opinions were issued by the specialist doctors of the Bergamo area.
Workgroup activity continued with an assessment of work-related stress: the assessment relating to the first phase is at its final stages.
Health promotion measures were also carried out in 2011 which involved workers on a voluntary basis; more specifically:

  • an investigation at the Monfalcone power station involving workers who although not exposed to risk had in the past obtained the confirmation that they had been exposed to asbestos; lung tests and X-rays were carried out on the 36 employees;

  • a seasonal anti-influenza vaccination campaign was carried out which involved 896 workers;

  • testing to measure the glucidic and lipid metabolism connected with lifestyles.

In 2011 over 103 thousand days were lost by employees due to illness (11.4 days per person). One report of professional illness was made by the specialist doctor in the Bergamo area in 2011.