When did Safety become important to me? Thankfully, it wasn’t as a result of a tragedy, in fact it was the opposite. It occurred during the planning for the prevention of an accident. The year was 1999, and I was Maintenance Electrical Supervisor for one of the largest hospitals in London. The big Hazard identified was the potential of the Millennium Bug to cause major power disruption to the hospital.
As a precautionary measure, the NHS Trust had decided to upgrade its electrical systems notably in our case it meant replace 6no. generators. It was during the planning, and subsequent installation works, that I realised hundreds of lives depended on the decisions and actions we chose to take. This meant that I had to ensure that my team fully understood the challenge and also, that we all played our part in achieving a safe outcome.
Due to enrolment of all workers and a shared commitment, we were able to achieve a positive outcome. As a result of this experience that I stepped further into the Safety world, and went onto have a 20 year Safety career (EHS manager for over 12 years and a Senior Safety Consultant for 5 years).
I still love the “Light Bulb” moment that you witness when someone you are working with / training suddenly gets it!