; Safety – (PDF)
Learning Center
Plans & pricing Sign in
Sign Out
Your Federal Quarterly Tax Payments are due April 15th Get Help Now >>

Safety – (PDF)

VIEWS: 530 PAGES: 12

  • pg 1

JULY - SEPT 2003

Visit us at www.siso.org.sg

“We Make the Difference in Safety!”


MITA(P) 138/07/2003

Safety – Beyond Workplace Report on Annual Registered Safety Officers’ Conference Safety Committee Training Course Record of Appreciation – Ho Siong Hin Overview of CP98:2003 Preparation and Use of Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) What’s Supposed to Happen in Workplaces Chemicals Management Healthy Hospitality Membership @ SISO
About Us Code of Ethics An Invitation to Join Us An Open Invitation Advertising With Us



5 10 13

Safety –
Beyond Workplace
see page 2


Welcome New Members Membership Benefits Behavioural Based Safety – Sharing Best Practices SISO @ ASPA 16 15

OUR ADVERTISERS PDS International Pte Ltd Industrial Scientific Corporation 3M Technologies (S) Pte Ltd Lee Seng Heng QMT Industrial & Safety Pte Ltd 4 6 8 9 11

We are now located at 1010 Dover Rd #03-01, Singapore 139658


Safety – Beyond Workplace
Life is beyond the workplace. We live in homes, come to workplace either by public or personal transport, and go back home through the same mode of transport. During other times, we also go shopping and have entertainment. This is required for our better living. Safety of persons working in industry is adequately covered, quite well defined and closely monitored through one or more means of corporate policies, Factories Act, internationally acceptable guidelines like OHSAS 18001, Responsible Care, insurance like Workmen’s Compensation Act, labor unions and many more. In Singapore, Ministry of Manpower (MOM) through Factories Act (FA) clearly identifies the roles of the occupier of the industry to safeguard the safety and welfare of the workers working in the workplace. The Thirteenth Schedule of the Factories Act stipulates that certain industries are to implement the Safety Management System (SMS). Fourteen elements of safety are provided in the Schedule, which include safe work practices, incident investigation, hazard analysis, emergency preparedness and occupational health programs. SAFETY is a loosely-used word. However, it is one of the most commonly used word. NASA, USA defines safety as “issues involving accidental hazards or conditions which could cause harm or loss” and defines health as “issues involving conditions which could affect the physical and/or mental well-being of employees” Some define safety as “a device (as on a weapon or a machine) designed to prevent inadvertent or hazardous operation”. Most of us take insurances to cover our life against accidents or health problems. This is nothing but safety. Personal occupational health programs are widely covered under the Factories Act and much publicity and awareness has been given for personal health programs by many other government agencies like Ministry of Health. Safety of persons is largely dependant on individual knowledge and to some extent the local regulations and quality standards of equipment. This paper reviews the similarities and the inter-dependence of safety in the workplace or beyond, the mindset and the holistic approach that needs immediate attention for a safe living. Also this paper examines as how SMS can be applied to the workplace and beyond.

N Venkataraman Manager, Office of the Safety, Health and Environment, National University of Singapore

While on the move in the roads, there are enough administrative and engineering controls (safety precautions) guided by the government and followed by the public. Examples include the use of safety belts, signals at crossings, display signs, speed limit camera, braking system etc. These days there is talk of safe working environment for maids where the workplace employee becomes the employer of the house. So, let us treat home as our workplace. Let us take the few elements of SMS as stipulated in the 13th Schedule of Factories Act and examine their relevance for use in the home environment.

Element 2 - Safe Work Practices
As an employer in the house, we need to be more mindful of the various activities we do. We handle cleaning agents for dish washing, often toxic. We use microwave oven that emits high radiation when exposed. Under normal working conditions, they are safe. Do we know if the oven is working normally? Are we exposed to high levels of radiation due to a faulty microwave oven? We use piped-LPG gas for our cooking. Are the pipelines tested properly? Most of the times, we adopt safety precautions while using them. Do we have a verbal safe work practice that we inherit from our parents or we assume that we know everything. How do you PROTECT lives and property against fire? Because fires quickly generate into a black choking smoke, which is impossible to see through, fire drills and preparation are essential to survival. Other important guidelines include the safe use of collapsible ladders and practice using it in the right way. Adopt good hygiene habits to prevent communicable disease, ensure the house is neat and tidy, just like keeping the workplace clean and tidy.

Element 3 - Safety Training
We know that maids come from different backgrounds and speak different languages. We have also heard many employers abusing the maids for not following instructions on the use of household equipment like the steam iron. Some even fell through windows when hanging the laundry. Are these maids, children and even the employer himself/herself getting sufficient training on identifying the hazards and the required safety training. During a fire, we need to be prepared to handle them. Teach your kids to STOP, DROP and ROLL if their clothes catch fire. SCDF posters can be pasted at prominent locations like entrance door and kitchen area.

In countries like Singapore, most of the adult woman and men go to work. When they are at the workplace, they are employees (of course, some are occupiers or employers). With maids in the house, these same employees are as employers with respect to having maid. In the time between home and office they are neither employer nor employees. So, human beings are forced to wear different caps depending on the situation. While at the workplace, the employees are governed by Factories Act. Depending on the industrial sector, the employee’s safety and health is safeguarded by the effective implementation of Safety Management System (SMS).

Element 5 - Incident Investigations and Analysis
After any accident or injury has occurred, do we do any post-mortem? Let us learn lessons at least from others and try to promote a safety culture at home.

Element 8 - Selection of Contractors
Engaging renovation contractors is very common in Singapore. Often we have heard of falling concrete from the roof, broken tiles, leaking roof etc. Majority of these problems are due to either poor workmanship or poor understanding of the condition that exists and not adhering to safety instructions. Selection of the right contractor becomes very critical. Determine the training and background of those you choose to do your repair work. If you still have doubt, seek advice from the authorities.

People come to work from home. Also, they go for leisure. In the time between home and workplace they are also subjected to various hazards and risks. As an employee, most of us satisfy the roles and needs as a Safe Citizen. In the workplace, there is enough and sometimes exceeds the requirement for the safety and health of employees.

Element 9 - Safety Inspection
We normally clean the floor and inspect those equipment/tools and fixtures that we are aware of. However, frequent inspection on critical items like circuit breakers, damaged electrical cables, faulty switches are very important.
continued on page 9

Report on Annual Registered Safety Officers’ Conference
This year’s Annual Registered Safety Officers’ Conference was held on 4 July 2003 at the Le Meridien Singapore Hotel and it attracted 325 participants. This Conference is one of our Institution’s important events held specifically for Registered Safety Officers to exchange views and provide feedback, both to the Ministry of Manpower and among peers. This year, we had speakers from ExxonMobil, Ministry of Manpower (OSD and OHD) and FSSB (SCDF) who presented the following interesting topics: • • • • • Code of Practice on Preparation & Use of MSDS Code of Practice on Industrial Noise Control Update on Continuing Professional Development Scheme for RSOs Update on recent safety-related legislations Fire Emergency Preparedness for Buildings
Questions & Answers

Mohd Japa Bin Rusdi MSISO

Tea Break

Participants also had the opportunity to visit invited vendors who displayed their products ranging from SARS prevention equipment, monitoring equipment, code of practices, and safety, health and environment books. SISO also took the opportunity to conduct a membership drive at the event. Both the Conference and the membership drive were indeed very successful! The Conference was also accredited with 4 SDUs (Safety Development Units) by OSD, MOM for Registered Safety Officers who attended the event.
Souvenir for the speakers

It was also a very fruitful occasion where like-minded Safety Officers came together to hear and learn from each other. Some feedback was also received regarding the proposed Safety Co-ordinator Scheme during the Q&A Session which was chaired by the Chief Inspector of Factories.
Conference in progress

At the registration

SISO Conducts In-House... Safety Committee Training Course
Objectives • Learn about the relevant laws relating to safety & health at work, • Fulfill the roles and responsibilities of a safety committee member, • Identify common safety and health hazards in the workplace, • Implement preventive measures for hazard control, • Carry out safety inspections and accident investigations effectively. Executive Summary This course trains and adds value to your safety committee: • It caters to your committee’s needs • It focuses on the essentials • It cuts down on your downtime Course Format 2-day in-house training programme, includes a practical session on safety inspection. Medium of Instruction: English Participants who pass a written test will qualify for a certificate. Course Content • Safety & Health at the Workplace • Roles & Responsibilities of a Safety Committee • Accident Recognition & Control • Safety Inspections • Safety Promotion • Fire & Emergency Response • Work Injury Compensation • Industrial Health Specialist Trainers Experienced and Qualified MOM-Registered Safety Officers from the Singapore Institution of Safety Officers. Course Materials Participants will be provided with a set of notes with helpful resources to equip them in carrying out their responsibilities as safety committee members. Additional copies can be supplied at a nominal fee for classes exceeding 15 participants. Course Fees S$200 per participant (min 15 participants)

Record of Appreciation – Ho Siong Hin
Our Institution records its deepest appreciation to Mr Ho Siong Hin who has since left the Occupational Safety Department to head another Division within the Ministry of Manpower. We welcome Mr Chan Yew Kwong, Deputy Director (Engineering and Administration) as the new Ex-Officio of our Institution.

For more information, please email: priscilla@siso.org.sg or call 9183 3920

Overview of CP98 : 2003 Preparation and Use of

Richard Gillis Safety, Health and Environment (SHE) Advisor ExxonMobil Chemical Asia Pacific

Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)
Material Safety Data Sheets have a long history. Information about the health, safety and environmental properties of chemicals has been available for many years. However the information was not presented in a consistent format that was easy to use.
The American Longshoremans and Harbor Workers Act of 1958 was the first legal requirement to present hazard information about chemicals in a designated format. Other countries followed and had regulatory requirements about MSDS. In the Asian area this included Australia (NOHSC Guidelines), Japan (JCIA Guidelines) and Singapore (MOM Guidelines). However they were all different in content and presentation. The International Standards Organisation set an international standard -ISO 11014: 1994 Safety Data Sheet for Chemical Products, Parts 1 and 2 - to provide a consistent global MSDS format. This was an important step as chemicals are traded globally. A standardised method of presentation and content of information would enable everyone to be able to access information quickly and easily. The ISO standard formalised the 16 section MSDS. In Singapore, SPRING took the ISO standard and adopted it as a Singapore Code of Practice - CP 98 : 2003, Preparation and use of Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS). and then myself when Susanne was moved to the USA. Following our deliberations the standard was released for public comment. Any Singaporean can comment on a standard at this stage. The Working Group incorporated the comments in the standard and it was then officially published. The MSDS Working group amalgamated ISO 11014 Parts 1 and 2. Part 1 describes the layout and content of the MSDS and Part 2 provides examples. In the Singapore Code of Practice the Working Group added a section on the use of MSDS to assist in the use of MSDS in Singapore. In addition, the Working Group included annexes to assist employers and employees to determine if a product is hazardous, provided some criteria for classifying hazardous products, provided a summary of key information items as a template for drafting an MSDS and included the Risk and Safety Phrases in the official languages of Singapore. Why did the Working Group go to the bother of making a Code of Practice for MSDS for Singapore? As the survey at the Annual Registered Safety Officers Conference determined every RSO had chemicals in their sites. Consequently an MSDS not a nice to have, it is a must have, not only because it is exceedingly useful but it is also a requirement of the Factories Act. The Factories Act in Section 60A - Material Safety Data Sheet has 3 requirements, namely “ (1) Where any toxic, corrosive or inflammable substance is used, handled or stored in a factory, the occupier shall (a) obtain a material safety data sheet of the substance; (b) assess the information in the material safety data sheet and take precautionary measures to ensure the safe use of the substance; and (c) make available the material safety data sheet to all persons employed in the factory who are liable to be exposed to the substance. (2) Any person who sells, or any agent of the seller who causes or procures to be sold, for use in a factory any toxic, corrosive or inflammable substance shall provide a material safety data sheet for the substance, giving an accurate and adequate description of the identity of all hazardous ingredients, physical and chemical properties of the substance, safety and health hazard information, precautions to be taken and safe handling information. (3) Any such person who fails to provide such a material safety data sheet or who provides inaccurate, inadequate or misleading information in a material safety data sheet shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $5,000.”
continued on page 7

Consequently the MSDS is a powerful tool for communicating hazards and enabling you to design safe systems of work, develop contingency plans and be able to safely move the product to your customers.



The development of standards in Singapore is a consultative process and SISO is represented both officially and generally in its work. SPRING consists of a cascade of committees to develop standards for Singapore. The top committee is the Standards Council. The General Engineering and Safety Standards Committee (GESSC) is a standing committee, reporting to the Standards Council and in turn has several committees reporting to it. Mr Seet Choh San, SISO VP, is your representative on the GESSC. The Technical Committee on Personal Safety in the Workplace reports to the GESSC and had the Working Group on MSDS reporting to it. Professor Foo Swee Cheng was the chairman and Mr Edwin Yap Seng Wee represented SISO on the Working Group. The Singapore Chemical Industry Council was represented by Mrs. Susanne Dorff

continued from page 5

The Ministry of Manpower has enforced this section of the Act and successfully launched prosecutions under the third requirement. An MSDS is exceedingly useful as it provides the information an RSO needs to know on how to handle a chemical safely, in an environmentally friendly way and without harming the employee’s health. It also provides a lot of other information relating to the use, storage and distribution of a chemical.

The third section of an MSDS describes how you can prevent hazardous situations from occurring. 7. Handling and Storage - describes any special requirements to handle and store the chemical safely. For example it includes information on suitable and unsuitable materials of construction. 8. Exposure Controls and Personal Protection - describes the type of engineering required to handle the product, the types of personal protective clothing and the recommended occupational exposure standard. 9. Physical and Chemical Properties - this section contains the data needed to predict the behaviour of the product when you are using it in your factory. 10. Stability and Reactivity - describes if the product is stable or if it will react with itself or with air or with other chemicals.

“An MSDS is exceedingly useful as it provides the information an RSO needs to know on how to handle a chemical safely, in an environmentally friendly way and without harming the employee’s health.”
The fourth section of the MSDS provides other useful information about this material. Some of this information provides more in depth information described previously. 11. Toxicological Information - this describes what is known about the toxicological properties of the chemicals when animals or humans are exposed by the four routes of entry to the body (eyes, skin, ingestion and inhalation) as the health effects may be different. 12. Ecological Information - provides similar information about the impact of the chemical in the environment, its toxicity to animals and plants and its biodegradability. 13. Disposal Considerations - describe the environmentally correct method to dispose of the chemical at the end of its life. 14. Transport Information - describes the requirements to transport the product by land, sea and air to meet the United Dangerous Goods requirements and national requirements. 15. Regulatory Information - describes the regulations applying to the use of the chemical so that you may meet your regulatory obligations. 16. Other Information - is where any information you would need to know to handle the chemical properly but does not conveniently fit in the 15 sections above is located. Consequently the MSDS is a powerful tool for communicating hazards and enabling you to design safe systems of work, develop contingency plans and be able to safely move the product to your customers. The MSDS Code of Practice is not static. In the near future the Working Group will need to begin work to enable Singaporean MSDS to be harmonised with the Globally Harmonized System for the Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). GHS will exchange the positions of Section 2 and 3 of the MSDS. The MSDS will need to reflect the new global hazard classification system. APEC ministers have announced that APEC countries will adopt GHS by 2006, whilst globally GHS is expected to be implemented by 2008.

An MSDS is effectively in 4 parts containing 16 sections. The first section describes what is the product, and what do you need to know immediately in an emergency. 1. Chemical Product and Company Identification - identifies the product by name, identifies the supplier and provides their address and emergency telephone number. 2. Composition and Information on Ingredients - provides a list of hazardous chemicals present in the product that are above cutoff levels, e.g. 0.1% for a carcinogen and 1% for most other hazardous components. 3. Hazards Identification - provides the most significant risk, if any, in the safety, health and environmental areas. The second section describes what should you do if a hazardous situation occurs. 4. First Aid Measures - describes the appropriate first aid for exposure to the eyes, skin, by inhalation and by ingestion. Medical advice will be given here if special medical treatment is required. 5. Fire Fighting Measures - describes the types of fire extinguishants needed, the protective dress required to combat a fire and other information such as products of combustion. 6. Accidental Release Measures - describes what to do if the product is spilled on land or on water.

CP 98 is available from SPRING. For further Information on where to find MSDS on the internet I have found the website at http://www.ilpi.com/msds/index.html to be very useful. For further information on GHS see the website http://www.unece.org/trans/danger/publi/ghs/officialtext.html.

continued from page 2

Element 10 - Maintenance Regime
The cause of carbon monoxide poisoning is often due to faulty fuelburning furnace, oven, water heater, space heater, wood stove, or fireplace. The best way to reduce your risk is to maintain those appliances for its safe working conditions. Air-conditioning units are bound for various risks including giving away bad odour. One of the best ways to reduce health hazards arising from the airconditioner is to frequently service its filter and ventilate the room with natural light. patterns. Once this interferes with the other, accident will occur. There is a tendency for employees to behave differently at workplace and at home with regards to safety. A person having family problems tend to make mistakes in the office and so much is true for vice-versa. Fear of unemployment or retrenchment also leads to behavioral changes in both workplaces as well as at home. Near-miss incidents are sometimes not reported for fear of job safety. A safety conscious person who practices safety at home will possibly never commit an unsafe act at the workplace. If Behavioral-Based Safety model is just limited to workplace, then the model will be in existence only on paper. Dupont has successfully managed the onsite and offsite safety of its employees. It goes beyond and reaches as far as the upbringing of employees’ children.

Element 11 - Hazard Analysis
On average, fire kills approximately 5,500 Americans and injures over 300,000 each year. The major CAUSES of home fires are: Smoking (26%), Incendiary or Suspicious (16%), Heating (14%), Child Playing (10%), Electrical Distribution (10%), Cooking (8%), and All Other Causes (16%). The leading cause of death in a fire is asphyxiation. Fire consumes the oxygen in the air and increases the amount of deadly carbon monoxide, which causes a loss of consciousness or death within minutes. Fire victims rarely see the flames. Fires could easily start at home. Have we identified the hazards and taken precautions? The chemicals we use for cleaning utensils and floor contain hazardous chemicals. How often have we followed the instructions provided in the label for their safe use.

There is enough publicity, awareness and guidance on the need to protect the environment. International organizations give much thought to have one standard guideline. Many international agreements are made to protect our mother earth. But rarely are the links between “environment protection” and “safety and health” recognized. The ultimate goal to protect environment is to safeguard the future of our people in terms of safety and health and to protect the eco-system from being grossly abused. So, whenever environment is discussed there has to be a definite reference to safety and health.

Element 14 - Emergency Preparedness and Response
During an emergency, we should be prepared to handle the situation. We use LPG for cooking. If it leaks, what are the precautions and emergency actions that we need to take? Make sure that all family members have a planned escape route that they can travel with their EYES CLOSED! Practice staying low to the ground during an escape. If traveling, or home to be locked for a prolonged period, consider the purchase of a smoke protection HOOD. Train all the members of the house to know the number to call during an emergency (eg. Dial 995 for Singapore Civil Defence Force).

We must inculcate the habit of buying things that are certified safe either by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) or SPRING (previously known as Singapore Productivity and Standards Board - PSB). Otherwise, we might be taking some sort of risk that might potentially cause fatality. If we take the holistic approach of taking safety beyond workplace to home and at all places we go, it is very likely that these persons will take safety seriously at the workplace. Unless there is a complete and holistic approach to safety, the world would never see a year with no accidents.

Presently, the employees care much of safety at workplace and neglect safety at home. So, there are two different mindsets or behavioral

What’s Supposed to Happen in

Chris Winder, Associate Professor Head, School of Safety Science, University of New South Wales Sydney NSW 2052, Australia

Workplaces Chemicals Management
There were some interesting findings from the 167 questionnaires returned to the Australian Council of Trade Unions as part of their 2000 National Survey of Health and Safety Representatives (HSRs): • 88% say they use chemicals at work; • 33% say that people at their workplaces have suffered health effects from chemicals at work; • 75% have not had training about the safe use of chemicals at work; • 66% say they are aware of legislation and associated responsibilities; • 23% say that chemicals in their workplaces are not clearly labeled; • 15% say that the label is not easy to understand; • Most respondents do not know the difference between “poisons,” “hazardous substances” and “dangerous goods”; • Over 50% believe that they have not been given adequate information about the chemicals in their workplace; • 70% indicated that they would like more information; • 81% said that not enough is being done by employers, employees and/or governments to ensure chemical safety at work; • These problems were much worse in smaller businesses. The assertion that there is adequate control of chemicals in the workplace is not borne out by the experience. Of course, Singapore is not Australia. However, it is quite unlikely that these findings would be that different if a similar survey was carried out in Singapore. These days we talk about risk management as the accepted approach for controlling workplace health and safety hazards. Risk management can be all things to all people, but for health and safety, it is (at least) three things: identify, assess, control (IAC). IAC can be used to reduce the chemical risks in the workplace. available before or when they supply the chemical to their customers. If a chemical is going into a workplace, the customer is the employer. The Employer: Employers must aim to eliminate exposure to hazardous substances at work. Once any chemicals and their MSDS arrive in the workplace, they should be evaluated again for health and safety problems before use. The label and MSDS should be checked for likely hazards, and to ensure existing controls are adequate and suitable. MSDS must be placed in a hazardous substances register that is accessible to all workers with the potential for exposure. The Role of the Safety Officer in this Process: Read the label and MSDS for all chemicals to work out what needs to be done in your workplace. Question inadequate warnings on labels or MSDS that do not show health problems, especially if you are observing them in your workforce. Make sure all “downstream” containers are labeled properly. Check with your union if you are not satisfied with the information supplied by the employer.

Chemical Risk Assessment
Remember: You cannot eliminate or reduce chemical risks properly unless you have assessed the hazards and worked out how to control any risks arising from use of the chemicals. Every chemical that is a hazardous substance must undergo a risk assessment, to be carried out by the employer in conjunction with workers.

So: Who’s responsible?
The Employer: There are different types of risk assessments, such as “tick and flick” assessments for chemicals not considered a risk (who decides? - the employer or more usually, the safety officer). More importantly, more formal assessments are required for chemicals that are known to be a risk and not under suitable control in the workplace. These risk assessments must be conducted by a competent person (this can include safety officers). These risk assessments must be recorded and authorised by a responsible person. These risk assessments must be accessible to workers. All workers must comply with any recommended controls stipulated in such risk assessments. The Role of the Safety Officer in this Process: Take part in risk assessments being conducted in your workplace. Insist on seeing the risk assessments that have been completed for hazardous substances in your workplace (don’t be surprised if none have been completed - in such cases, employers are erring on the side of convenience). Demand that risk assessments be carried out or revised whenever co-workers are showing signs and symptoms of chemical exposure. The 2000 ACTU survey noted that a third of HSRs reported that people at their workplaces have suffered health effects from chemicals at work. Ensure that co-workers comply with the recommendations made in risk assessments that have been finalised. As a benchmark, any foreseeable exposure that could lead to a potential injury that could lead to a lost time injury, should be part of a risk assessment.
continued on page 12

Chemical Hazard Identification
Remember: You cannot control hazardous substances properly unless you have concise, relevant, accurate and proper information.

So: Who’s responsible?
The Supplier: Even before a chemical arrives in a workplace, it is supposed to have undergone a hazard assessment by the person or company, that puts the chemical into its container, such as a manufacturer or importer (usually called the supplier). That hazard assessment includes classification of hazard (for example, danger properties, risk of death, long term health problems, environmental effects) to international standards. These may vary according to use or potential exposure. For example, the difference between 1000 mls of Xylene (a hazardous substance) will have a risk of harmful vapours in use, whereas 10,000 L of Xylene (a dangerous good) has a risk of flammability in storage. If this classification process finds that the chemical is hazardous and/or dangerous, the suppliers must then accurately label the container warning users of the hazards. Suppliers must also prepare a material safety data sheet (MSDS), and make the MSDS


continued from page 10

Chemical Risk Control
Remember: Hazardous substances are not defined as hazardous because they are safe. They will cause harm to the people who are exposed unless controlled properly. If anybody is showing symptoms, then by definition exposure is already too high - even if only a few people are showing symptoms, something has to be done to either eliminate or better control the offending chemical(s). Where any unacceptable risk from exposure to hazardous substances cannot be eliminated, it must be controlled. There are a range of controls that are available for controlling chemical risks. Some are better than others. General principles of risk control are outlined in the hierarchy of controls: • Substitution: This is the preferred way of dealing with toxic chemicals. For example, replacement of materials with less hazardous materials and/or processes, and/or re-organisation of tasks or processes to make them less risky; • Isolation: This is where hazards or risks are located away from everyday activities. Isolation may be by location (carrying out the activity at an isolated area) and/or by time (carrying out the risk activity at a time when few people are around); • Engineering controls: These are controls that rely on plant or equipment (such as machine guards, process enclosure, booths, fume cupboards) to prevent or reduce exposure to the chemicals • Administrative controls: These are controls that rely on safe systems of work to minimise risk. Examples include safe work procedures, tag and lock out procedures, job rotation, competency training and so on; • Personal protective equipment: These are the last line of defence, and should never be relied upon to prevent exposures, but it is the approach most often favoured or advocated by employers. PPE includes helmets, safety glasses, respirators and masks, ear muffs, impervious gloves, aprons, safety boots and harnesses for fall protection. PPE can introduce other hazards, such as fogging in safety glasses, thermal discomfort communication problems and so on, and unless scrupulously maintained - as is often the case - can cease to function properly. Where a risk assessment specifies that controls, such as isolation, engineering control, safe working procedures or PPE is recommended, they must be used, and must be used properly. The Role of the Safety Officer in this Process: Don’t just accept that the current controls for the hazardous substances in use in your workplace are good enough. This is especially true if workers are showing signs and symptoms of exposure to chemicals. Use risk assessments and the hierarchy of controls to improve health and safety at work.

Case study: Glutaraldehyde
In the late 1980’s, the specialist applications of glutaraldehyde (electron microscope fixative, X-ray film developer and so on) meant it was a chemical with fairly narrow uses. The advent of HIV in the early 1980s demanded biocides that could destroy the virus. Claims that glutaraldehyde was an effective biocide meant that this chemical was more widely used, more people were using it and worker exposures were increased, in some cases excessively so. The number of workers exposed increased dramatically, and cases of ill health (including asthma and dermatitis) began to increase. Firstly, Glutaraldehyde had not been classified fully - an example of why we should always be wary of supplier classifications and use other sources. The label/MSDS did not mention the chemical was a sensitiser- that it could cause asthma and allergic dermatitis and other sensitivity problems. However, few (if any) employers had carried out proper risk assessments, users knew the chemical was irritating and if at all, exposures were poorly controlled. Here are examples at all levels of the Hierarchy of Controls when applied to Glutaraldehyde: • Elimination: Use as a surface biocide on walls and floors must cease. • Substitution: Bleach re-introduced as a biocide. More dilute solutions of Glutaraldehyde can be used where absolutely necessary. • Isolation: Fully enclosed systems using Glutaraldehyde (or other sterilants) must be used. • Engineering Controls: Ventilation/fume hoods must be used in places where exposures can be excessive, such as endoscopy units. • Safe Working Procedures: Written working procedures for effective hazard control where tasks involving glutaraldehyde exposure can be minimised to the lowest possible level. • Other Administrative Controls: Training of operators, job rotation and the like. • Personal Protection: Skin, eye and respiratory protection where (and if) necessary.

There are a few chemicals that can never be used safely and as a community, we should move to prohibit their use. We should not take everything that hazardous chemical suppliers tell us uncritically. We should not take everything that employers tell us uncritically. The priority they might give to worker safety is probably not the same priority that workers would give to worker safety. However, most chemicals can be used safely in the workplace, provided that: • Hazards are known and understood. • Chemicals are used correctly. • The correct equipment for processing chemicals is available, used and maintained. • Workers are informed about hazards and are trained in the correct procedures to control chemical risks (and they use them). • Any problems that do arise (spills, splashes and the like) are fixed quickly. Just make sure you can say this for all the chemicals you use at work. IAC for chemicals is not brain surgery. And, it is required implicitly in safety legislation, and explicitly in toxic substances regulation.


Healthy Hospitality
Safety and Health risks
Many of you may think that working in a hotel or restaurant is relatively safe as compared to working in a factory. Interestingly, statistics show that the accident rate in the hotel and restaurant industry (9.0 per 1,000 employed persons in 2001) is of the same order as that of the general manufacturing industry (9.6 per 1,000 employed persons). Of course, the severity rate is lower. Hotels employ a variety of staff including front desk personnel, room attendants, bell-men, chefs, waiters, banquet servers, laundry operators, and maintenance crew. They can be exposed to a wide range of safety and health hazards at work depending on the specific tasks they perform. For example, they may be exposed to the risk of musculoskeletal injuries, and to the traditional health hazards such as chemicals, heat and noise. There is also the risk of accidents such as slips, trips, falls, cuts, burns and scalds, electrocution, and fire and explosion. Such accidents and diseases can result in suffering, absenteeism, and productivity loss. Many of the accidents happen because people are not aware of the hazards involved and the precautionary measures to take.

Yoong Chi Meng Industrial Hygiene Engineer Ministry of Manpower

Key Features of the Guidelines Workplace Hazards and their Control
The Guidelines identify the following hazards in the hotel industry, the risk factors involved, the occupation at risk and the preventive measures. • Musculoskeletal injuries and disorders • Chemical hazard • Noise hazard • Thermal stress • Cuts • Burns and scalds • Trips and falls • Struck against or by objects • Electrocution • Fire and explosion One of the main occupational health concerns in the hotel industry is incorrect or awkward work posture or poor work practice, which can result in musculoskeletal disorders. These ergonomic problems are common among hotel staff such as room attendants, bellmen, chefs, waiters and laundry operators. They occur as a result of daily work activities involving manual lifting, repetitive movements and prolonged standing. The specific risk factors and preventive measures are presented in the form of fact sheets on good ergonomic work practices by occupation in the Guidelines.

The Safe and Healthy Way
To show hotel employees how they can work safely and prevent workplace injuries and illnesses, the Ministry of Manpower has recently developed a set of Occupational Safety and Health Guidelines for the Hotel Industry in collaboration with the Back Society of Singapore, the Singapore Association of Occupational Therapists, the Singapore Physiotherapy Association, and the Singapore Hotel Association. The Guidelines in CD format were launched at a recent Seminar on OSH in the Hotel Industry jointly organised by MOM, the above Associations, the Singapore National Employers Federation, and the Food, Drinks and Allied Workers’ Union.

Safety and Health Programme
The Guidelines encourage hotel management to set up and implement safety and health programmes to prevent workplace accidents and work-related illnesses. The Guidelines outline the key components in the programmes, which include the following: • Safety Policy and Organization • Hazard Analysis • Safe Work Procedures • Safety Training • Group Meetings • Accident, Incident and Disease Investigation and Analysis • In-house Safety Rules and Regulations • Safety Promotion • Evaluation, Selection and Control of Contractors • Safety Inspection • Maintenance Programme

The Guidelines are now available on the Ministry’s Occupational Health Department website at www.mom.gov.sg


membership @ siso
About Us
The Singapore Institution of Safety Officers (SISO) was founded in 1975 to provide opportunities for networking and interaction among occupational safety and health officers and practitioners.

An Invitation to Join Us
Make the Difference with SISO
If you are an aspiring Safety Professional, then the Singapore Institution of Safety Officers (SISO) is the place where We Unite and Strengthen Our Values.

Our Vision
To be the leading institution representing OS&H professionals in Singapore.

Value in ‘Identity’
Over the years, SISO has established the general ‘Identity’ of safety professionals, as credible, value-adding contributors towards safeguarding people, industrial businesses and influencing safety regulations, and safety management practices in Singapore. The challenge is to sustain and continue to grow, and safety professionals have to be united to achieve greater results together, to have a strong voice on issues and as such further strengthen the identity of Safety Professionals.

Our Mission
We shall establish professional development opportunities to enhance the competence and status of our members. We seek to promote and uphold high standards of professional practice among our members.

Value in ‘Development’
Another core value of SISO is the development of safety professionals. The expected quality & standard of safety professionals is always rising, to keep pace with safety advances of the more developed countries and to meet the needs of advancing technological industries in Singapore. SISO has served as a key player in the development of safety professionals, especially in providing special programs and concessions to members. The bigger the membership base, the bigger the resource and talent pool; thus enabling more numbers of enriching developmental opportunities with lower cost.

Our Objectives
To enhance, and keep abreast of, the knowledge and skills of those engaged in the occupational safety, health and environment (OSH & E) profession. To promote occupational safety, health and environment for the protection of life, property and the environment. To uphold the integrity and professionalism of its members in relation to the practice of OSH & E. To facilitate training needs for the advancement of the safety profession. To foster co-operation or seek membership, recognition or affiliation with other national or international safety organizations so as to promote and advance the interests and objectives of the Institution.

Value in ‘Leveraging’
SISO is an avenue to broaden communication and leveraging among safety professionals, to tap the richness of tested knowledge and experiences in the field of Occupational Safety & Health. And SISO does it in ways that members can socialise and have fun. So be part of this value-adding relationship! Be a member of this special group of enlightened professionals who enjoy the following advantages and benefits: • • Professional standing and personal development through active participation in SISO’s programs and activities. Special rates when participating in activities & courses organized by SISO or with other organisations. Opportunities to network and interact with other safety professionals from a wide spectrum of industries. Opportunities to present your views on OSH issues through SISO to the appropriate agencies or organisations. Copies of the Institution’s quarterly publication Safety Matters, circulars, CDs and other publications published from time to time. Free personal accident insurance cover of $12,500.00 (for Ordinary and Associate Members). Other benefits & privileges that may be introduced from time to time.

Code of Ethics
All members of the Singapore Institution of Safety Officers shall be guided by this Code of Ethics in discharging their professional responsibility in the protection, property and the environment: 1. All members shall, at all times, uphold and advance the integrity, honour and dignity of the safety profession and the Institution. 2. No member shall conduct himself in such a manner as would prejudice his professional status or the reputation of the Institution. 3. A member shall always maintain high standards of honesty, impartiality and loyalty in serving or dealing with the public, employers, colleagues and clients. 4. A member shall not use for his personal advantage or gain, any confidential information acquired in the course of work for his employer or the Institution. 5. A member shall strive to increase his competence in, and the prestige of, the safety profession. 6. When speaking or writing publicly, a member shall do in a responsible, truthful, and objective manner and in accordance with the authority bestowed on him. 7. A member shall, at all times, exercise his professional role in accordance with applicable safety legislations.

• • • • •

You can visit our website, www.siso.org.sg, for more information. It is simple to be a member. Just make the decision to sign up! The return will be worth more than the 17 cents-a-day financial investment you put in. And the more active you are in SISO’s programs and activities, the greater will be your return or gain. You can download the membership application form from our website, or email info@siso.org.sg, should you require more information, and we will be more than happy to assist you. See you soon!

An Open Invitation
Members are invited to submit articles on safety, health and the environment to SAFETY MATTERS. While we try to publish your article in full, we reserve the right to edit and publish it where necessary. If you have any news, ideas, feedback or experiences that you wish to share, do write to us at communication@siso.org.sg You may also fax your contributions to us at Fax 6451 0945.

Advertising With Us...
We welcome advertisements to promote OSH products, services, or events in our quarterly newsletter, SAFETY MATTERS. The newsletter is distributed to all members, safety and health officers, manufacturers, construction companies, professional and statutory organizations, tertiary institutions, etc. Our current circulation for each issue is more than 1300 copies. Please write to communication@siso.org.sg for more details. Our Rates are as follows: Full Colour Full Page (A4 Size) Half Page Per Issue S$ 850.00 S$ 650.00 For 4 consecutive issues S$2,600.00 S$2,000.00

SISO – Welcome New Members
Ordinary Membership
Abdul Gaffor S/o Manik Miah Abdul Gaffor S/o Manik Miah Ang Kok Chuan Au Tak Ming Chan Koon Seng Chan Pang Boon Cheng Eng Choon Chern Win Zee Chin Shueh Jin, John Chu Yat Tung, Larry Chua Chee Kiang Chua Chee Kwang Chua Peh Leng Chua Siak Leng Dharmaraj Ramanathan Ee Boon Tiong, Derek Er Song Hwee Govindaraj Shanmuganantham Kaliyaperumal Ganeshan Kee Chee Meng, Lawrence Koh Gee Seng Koh Kang Hock Lai Sin Lin, Johnny Leo Khong Gain Lim Ah Lang, Patrick Lim Chuan Quee Lim Eng Cheong Lui Peng Chai Md Jumadi Juki Mirza Laeeque Baig Mohamad Noor Bin Abdullah Mohamed Yazid Bin Mohamed Jelani Mohamed Zaini Bin Kamarudin Mohammad Munsur Ahmed Nachiappan Murugappan Ng Mun Kai Oh Koon Wee, Willie Ong Choon Wee Parthiban Srinivasan Pereira Joseph Clarison Png Mui Kee Soh Chong Seng, Jacob Tan Soon Lee, Spencer Tan Suan Chew Tay Sim Leong Teo Stephen Teo Wee Lip Thiagarajan Vijayakumar Toh Meng Yeu, Brandon Vanamamalai Sundara Vadivel Wong Kam Chew, Francis Yeo Jit Hwee Zaidi Bin Ahmad Safety Officer Safety Officer Facilities Engineer Senior Consultant Safety cum Security Officer Safety Officer Safety Officer Safety Officer Senior Engineer (Repair & Process) EHS Officer & FSM Registered Safety Officer Consultant Safety Manager Engineer Snr EHS Engineer Safety Officer Manufacturing Manager Safety Officer EHSS Manager Manager - Factory Operations Snr Project Engineer/Safety Officer Facility Maintenance Manager HS&E & Facility Officer Registered Safety Officer Asst Site Manager Project Manager RSO cum ECO Safety Officer/Manager EHS Consultant Training Manager Project EHS Manager Safety & Fire Officer Safety & Security Officer Safety Officer Site Safety Officer Senior Engineer (EHS/Facilities) Senior Technician Safety Officer Safety Officer Emerency Response Coordinator Faculty Safety Officer Lead Safety & Health Engineer Senior Engineer Safety Officer Deputy Production Manager Facility Operations Manager Safety Officer Snr Engineer - EHS Snr Safety Officer Senior EHS Engineer Engineer cum Safety Industrial Hygienist SH&E Officer Safelink Trainng & Consultancy Services Safelink Trainng & Consultancy Services Panduit Singapore Pte Ltd Aficion International Pte Ltd Venture Corporation Ltd CA Safety Technology Pte Ltd PSB Corporation Pte Ltd SembCorp Engineers & Constructors Pte Ltd ST Aerospace Engines Pte Ltd Merck Pte Ltd Systematic Safety Services Pte Ltd Novo Environmental Technology Services Pte Ltd Fu Yu Manufacturing Ltd Soon Poh Telecommunications Pte Ltd Agilent Technologies Spot Management Services ASJ Pte Ltd Systematic Safety Services Pte Ltd Samsung Corporation FRP Products Co Pte Ltd Hitachi Plant Engineering & Construction Co Ltd Armstrong Industrial Corporation Ltd Honeywell Avionics (S) Inc NMB (S) Ltd Alstom Transport (S) Pte Ltd Jetway Engineering Pte Ltd Tiong Aik Construction Pte ltd Sato Kogyo (S) Pte Ltd SMA Audits Management Pte Ltd Global Safety Management Services Adecco Engineering PowerSeraya Ltd F&N Coca-Cola (S) Pte Ltd Keppel SingMarine Pte Ltd Brilliant GBC Pte Ltd Rohr Aero Services - Asia Pte Ltd Honeywell Singapore Pte Ltd Citilink Safety Management ExxonMobil Asia Pacific Pte Ltd Chevron Texaco Corporation National University of Singapore, Faculty of Medicine Singapore Refining Company Adaptec Manufacturing (S) Pte Ltd Murata Electronics Singapore Pte Ltd Mitsui Phenol Singapore Pte Ltd Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing Ltd CA Safety Technology Pte Ltd Agilent Technologies SembCorp Engineers & Constructors Pte Ltd Agilent Technologies Singapore Pte Ltd Manufacturers’ Services Singapore Pte Ltd Merck Sharp & Dohme (S) Ltd DuPont Textiles & Interiors (S) Pte Ltd

Associate Membership
Pathangi Narasimhan Bindumadhavan Tong Yew Meng HSE & Quality Manager Dy Manager Dril-Quip Asia Pacific Pte Ltd SembCorp Cogen Pte Ltd

Membership Benefits
SISO has just taken up an office in the Singapore Polytechnic Graduates Guild (SPGG) Clubhouse at Dover Road. If you were at the recent RSO Conference held in July, you would have had the opportunity to see some of these beautiful pictures of the Clubhouse. As an individual member, you will have access to these facilities: • The Restaurant, Wine Bar & Poolside Cafe, throughout the week • The swimming pool on Sundays • Seminar & training rooms If you have not received any information concerning these benefits, please contact priscilla@siso.org.sg or call 9183 3920

Behavioural Based Safety
– Sharing Best Practices
Guest of Honour: Harry Wong Deputy Divisional Director, Occupational Safety and Health Division, MOM

5 Sep 2003, The York Hotel


Conference in progress... Tea Break and Lunch...

Panel Discussions...

SISO @ ASPA 24 Jul 2003, Suntec City

President Andrew H S Tan andrew@siso.org.sg Vice-President Seet Choh San seet@siso.org.sg Hon. Secretary secretary@siso.org.sg Roger Lim B C roger@siso.org.sg Hon. Treasurer Chan Kok Heng kokheng@siso.org.sg Asst. Secretary Seah Liang Bing liangbing@siso.org.sg Membership & Activities membership@siso.org.sg Niranjan Masurekar Publications communication@siso.org.sg Ong Pak Shoon pakshoon@siso.org.sg Professional Development training@siso.org.sg Edwin Yap edwin@siso.org.sg Lim Say Thiam saythiam@siso.org.sg Website/Publications communication@siso.org.sg Ong Wee Liang owl@siso.org.sg Ex-Officio Chan Yew Kwong Ministry of Manpower

Mailing Address 1010 Dover Road #03-01 Singapore 139658 info@siso.org.sg Fax: 6451 0945

Disclaimer : Opinions expressed in SAFETY MATTERS are not necessarily those of the Institution. Publication of an advertisement or a write-up does not imply that the 16 service or product is recommended by the Institution, unless so stated.

To top