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EMERGENCY PROCEDURES So, when have you updated your Emergency

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					“YOU’RE IN SAFE HANDS” Po Box 51017 Musgrave 4062 Fax: 0865 101523 Cell: 083 777 1122 E-mail: nicholas@srmc.co.za 9 May 2007 Monthly News Letter

EMERGENCY PROCEDURES

So, when have you updated your Emergency Procedures? Remember the Titanic? It couldn’t happen yet it did. The Graf Zeppelin? Everyone knew the risks but didn’t plan for the worst. Flixborough? Did someone forget the hot work permit? Murphy’s Law? If anything can go wrong it will. Flanagan’s Law? Murphy is an optimist. If your emergency procedures haven’t been revised or updated during the last twelve months or if there have been changes, either with regard to personnel or perhaps building extensions and or new plant and machinery or processes , perhaps now would be a good time take a fresh look at them. It will be for many, a question of carrying coals to Newcastle but there are surely some operations who would enjoy or appreciate some guidance and for them, a simple step by step recipe.

EIM Safety Consultants c.c. – Trading as SRM (Safety Risk Management) CK 2006/089261/23 Member: Nicholas Graham

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• First of all, appoint an Emergency Coordinator or Controller. This person must hold a senior responsible position in the Company. Once he/she is appointed and has accepted the responsibility in writing, he/she becomes like the captain of a ship. In all matters regarding emergency procedures, this person’s word is law. • Next, establish an Emergency Committee. One senior person from each business area is probably a good idea but don’t make the committee too large or too busy. • The Emergency Committee should be selected on a voluntary basis. Don’t pressure anyone to do something that they don’t really want to do. Emergency Committee members must be appointed in writing and indicate their willingness to serve on the committee by signature on their letters of appointment. • Once the Emergency Committee is appointed, convene the first meeting as soon as possible. • The Emergency Committee should meet at least once a year and the meeting date should be communicated to members well in advance so that diaries can be accommodated. A proper agenda is indispensable. • Appoint a Media Spokesperson. Nobody else should be authorized to speak to anyone outside the business about any aspect of any incident or happening of whatever nature. • Establish an Emergency Control Centre. Preferably away from main risk areas and activities and if practicable select a second facility. Provide a ‘disaster box or kit’ in the Control Centre. • Appoint all other emergency personnel in writing. Call for volunteers. Assess the training needs for the particular plant/area and arrange for training. Please don’t forget annual refreshers. NB!! It is important that as many personal details as possible are obtained from emergency teams. (Blood types, allergies, next of kin, first name of next of kin etc.) • For sites with major hazard installations, liaison with the authorities and neighbours is strongly recommended.
EIM Safety Consultants c.c. – Trading as SRM (Safety Risk Management) CK 2006/089261/23 Member: Nicholas Graham

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• Allocate responsibility and duty for incident and time recording. A written diary of events can be of crucial importance for analysis and post incident enquiries. • An up to date detailed site plan is indispensable. This plan ‘B’ as it is referred to in the Standard, should be to scale (1:100 is usually the best) and should show all relevant information such as fire hydrants, hose reels and fire extinguishers. Gas and water mains should be indicated as well as electrical installations, flammable liquid and chemical storage areas. Main switches and shut-down valves, breathing apparatus and other fire fighting kit and PPE. The plan should have as much information as the Emergency Planning Committee feels is necessary and relevant. Plan ‘B’ should be kept confidential and secured in the Control Centre for use by the Emergency Controller or public emergency services during an incident. If the plan is used by say, the fire department, it must be retrieved afterwards. • Another plan ‘A’ is also required. This plan should show building outlines, emergency escape routes, assembly points, fire fighting equipment and first aid posts etc. This plan also should have a North point and a ‘you are here’ indicator to assist with orientation, especially for visitors or contractors who may be on site during an emergency. Plan ‘A’ should be posted on notice boards in the various departments. • A lot of pre-planning is required by the Emergency Committee. What are the real risks and what can go wrong. What if??? • Ideas that come to mind during the normal course of the day (or night) should be communicated to the Emergency Controller as soon as possible, in memo form lest they be forgotten. If necessary the Emergency Controller should call an extraordinary meeting or request comments on the idea from the Committee. • Once a clear and concise Emergency Plan is available, each Emergency Committee member should be issued with a numbered copy and he/she should acknowledge receipt thereof by signature on a register.
EIM Safety Consultants c.c. – Trading as SRM (Safety Risk Management) CK 2006/089261/23 Member: Nicholas Graham

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• A proof copy of the Emergency Plan should be secured in the Control Centre. • Whenever the plan is updated, the previous edition should be destroyed and the new version numbered and dated. If the ISO system is in use this will ensure that a controlled document is always current and that Committee members are in possession of the valid procedure.

NEWS Recently a racking array in a cold store in Johannesburg collapsed fatally injuring a worker and causing varying degrees of injury to fifteen others when 20 tons of frozen meat fell onto them. The business’ manager is to be prosecuted in terms of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Have your racking systems been load tested and/or certified?

EIM Safety Consultants c.c. – Trading as SRM (Safety Risk Management) CK 2006/089261/23 Member: Nicholas Graham

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