Safety is a professional skill

At all Metsä Group mills occupational safety comes first – understandably also for the blademen in the sawmills.

Occupational safety is about good leadership


​Friday 28 April, is World Day for Safety and Health at Work. At Metsä Group, safety is a professional skill and an integral part of each and every task. Every single day.

At Metsä Group, we are on the right track with safety at work: over the past five years we have halved our accident frequency rate to 7.3 (LTA1). The development has mostly been positive in all business areas. Metsä Wood has witnessed the most dramatic reduction – 69% compared to 2013. At the end of 2016 several mills celebrated accident free years: Metsä Fibre’s Joutseno mill and Metsä Board’s Tako mill their first years and Metsä Tissue’s Mänttä mill’s warehouse its second accident-free year.

Metsä Group has a set target for improving safety at work 10% annually the long-term goal being zero accidents. Where should we still improve to completely prevent accidents from occurring? The answer lies in professional skill, caring and taking responsibility.

Occupational safety is: skills

It is important that we have the system and tools for preventive occupational safety in place, such as safety discussions and talks, observations and risk assessment, and that everyone understands how significant they are. This, however, is not sufficient by itself. We also need uncompromising work safety thinking throughout our work community.

“Professional skill is both knowledge and skill, combined with a will to use your competences. Good results occur when work safety is a normal part of everyday work that is present in each and every task – and even when off work,” says Ismo Nousiainen, SVP, production at Metsä Fibre.

Occupational safety is: caring

We all have right to an accident-free workplace. This requires that we take care of not only our own occupational safety, but also the safety of our colleagues. Not even the slightest shortcoming in safety can be overlooked.
“Everyone must have the courage to intervene in situations where safety at work is not in order,” says Nousiainen.

At Metsä Group, occupational safety is daily management, and morning meetings always start with safety issues. Instructions for clothing and safety wear, for example, must be followed, and also observing shortcomings and eliminating hazards.

Occupational safety is: taking responsibility

Responsible profitability is one of our four values. This is exactly what safety at work is about: we take responsibility and actively respond to any shortcomings identified, and we commit to preventive work.
“To reach the target level of zero accidents throughout the Group, every single one of us must contribute to occupational safety. 99% is not enough,” says Nousiainen.

The theme for 2017 World Day for Safety and Health at Work is Knowledge increases safety, and we agree. At Metsä Group safety is managed and monitored at the Group level, and various occupational safety indicators encourage the development of operations. Important is also the induction of new employees and subcontractors – we are also responsible for the safety of our subcontractors.

Good safety and health at work has a significant impact on everyone’s well-being, as well as on the company’s performance and the quality of its operations. Safety at work communicates overall quality – also to our customers.

Have a safe working day!

Metsä Group's work safety development since 2012

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