As the UKs pallet networks come under close scrutiny by the Health & Safety Executive in line with the Moving Goods Safely 3 initiative, Palletline Plc closed out 2007 by successfully achieving accreditation to OHSAS 18001:2007 for its central hub in Birmingham the first pallet network in the country to attain this internationally recognised specification for occupational health and safety management systems.
Developed by a selection of leading trade bodies, international standards and certification bodies, implementation of this OHSAS management programme underlines Palletlines commitment to the introduction and maintenance of professional quality systems designed to address changing legislation, protect the workforce and promote excellence in operation in all areas of the business.
Commenting for Palletline, Managing Director Kevin Buchanan explained the importance of the achievement. Working towards accreditation to OHSAS 18001:2007 has enabled us to promote an intrinsically safe working environment, operating within a clearly defined framework where we identify and control risks to health and safety. The initiative matches closely with our existing drive to consistently reduce the potential for accidents and improve our performance across the board, he stated.
Importantly, the criteria for OHSAS 18001 accreditation relies not just on production of the correct paperwork but also on showing evidence that the objectives of the standard are understood by the entire workforce. This called for the development of a step by step guide for all tasks, involving detailed consultation at all stages and total buy-in of the concept by all Palletline employees.
Health & Safety Manager Ken Bell explains the impact this work has had across the entire operation. Preparation for OHSAS 18001 was all about defining our processes in a more rigorous way, and has resulted in the creation of a safety culture throughout the organisation, he said. We have demonstrated that you can take an existing facility and make it better and safer by applying documented management systems to plan for hazard identification, risk assessment and risk control with the structure and responsibility in place for real accountability.
OHSAS 18001 is also expected to impact at a commercial level. Palletline has already achieved accreditation to ISO 9001 to define operational quality standards. This latest achievement plays a key part in Palletlines drive to demonstrate to customers that the business is innovative and forward thinking, managed efficiently and able to maintain a reliable, effective and compliant service and at times.
Palletlines two regional hubs are now working towards OHSAS 18001 accreditation.