How much information should be contained in your written safety programs? There isn’t a right answer, but here are my suggestions and thoughts.

Have two “levels” of programs.

Corporate Safety Programs

  • This type should contain the general overview of the safety at the company. It should speak to the concern that the company has to the safety of the employees.  ie. “we don’t want you to get hurt, so…”
  • No details. For example,  an Asbestos Policy statement – “As a company we anticipate that we may encounter asbestos onsite. We train our employees in identifying suspected asbestos containing material (ACM) and subcontract any work where we may disturb potential ACM. “
  • Employees should be trained from the Corporate Safety Policies (initially, annually, or periodically thereafter).
  • Establishing these programs should take a lot of thought, consideration, and buy-in from management and leadership.
  • Do NOT make a policy that you do not plan on keeping. If you are going to occasionally do something which is a direct contradiction to your policy – don’t make it a policy. I know, simple in theory, but…

Site Specific Programs

  • These types of programs should contain the details. Who, what, when, where, how.
  • Only include the policies that you have at the jobsite- otherwise don’t have this policy on file in the trailer.
  • Cut and paste the policies you need for this specific job – from your corporate program list.
  • Another example, from the asbestos policy, “on XXX project we have identified asbestos in the blue and green 9×9″ floor tiles to contain 5%asbestos. ABC Abatement Company will abate and remove any asbestos found. If additional materials of this size, shape, color are found, please notify the superintendent immediately”.
  • Perform tool-box talks from your site specific programs. These programs should have enough detail that your Project Engineer could read it to the employees and have enough information.