Track Leading Safety Indicators with Safesite
BY AsphaltPro Staff
Tracking near misses, such as walking between a backing haul truck and the paver or performing maintenance before properly locking out/tagging out a piece of machinery, can be a challenge in the field.
Safety managers can’t be on every job site. The foreman may be unaware of events happening elsewhere on the paving train. The pace of the job offers employees little time to report these events, and that’s assuming they know they should report these events, how to file a report, and that they won’t be punished for their part in a near miss.
“If only one in 100 near misses result in an injury, you may not realize how dangerous the job site really is,” said Peter Grant, CEO of Safesite, San Francisco. Safesite is a safety management system and app that assists companies with tracking safety data. “You don’t build a safety culture through minimum compliance activities. You have to look at leading indicators.”
Leading indicators, such as safety observations, identification of hazards, and near miss reports, are a key part of the Safesite framework. For example, Grant continued, imagine a worker trips on the job site, but doesn’t get injured.
“Maybe that worker didn’t get enough sleep the night before, maybe there’s low light or debris in their way,” Grant said. “Undergoing a root cause analysis and implementing rectification measures for near misses could prevent an incident from happening in the future.”
That relies on empowering all employees to track events.
Safety Leaders Look at Leading Indicators
The Safesite app is a robust platform offering a variety of features, including paperless safety inspections, audits and checklists. The app also houses hundreds of safety meeting and toolbox talk topics and allows users to track meetings and attendees. However, this article covers the app’s incident reporting features.
Safesite’s one-click reporting feature for injuries, near misses, theft, property damage and equipment damage aims to make tracking observations simple. Recording an incident might be as quick as the foreman snapping a photo within the app when he or she notices an issue.
During the next break, they can elevate a negative observation to a hazard or a near miss, set a resolution timeframe and notify and follow up with responsible parties. According to Safesite, setting a resolution timeframe has decreased the average time to resolve a recorded hazard by 62 percent.
Images are automatically geo-tagged, but users can also markup the images and add text descriptions. The app can also be used to record witness statements and log medical treatment details in the event of an accident or injury.
Safesite can also be used to track positive safety observations, so safety-oriented employees can get the kudos they deserve and good ideas can more easily spread throughout the company.
Save Lives–and Money–With Safety
Safesite also aims to make it easier to track safety performance over time. Safesite runs all the information a company shares with the platform, including engagement levels, injury reports and more, through its proprietary algorithm to produce a Safesite Safety Score. Safesite also offers suggestions for improvement and tracks scores over time.
“We don’t just look at whether or not an incident occurred, but whether or not actions were taken to prevent a similar incident from happening in the future,” Grant said. Incidents only negatively affect a company’s score if they do not complete the follow-up workflow after each incident. “We know incidents will happen. What’s more important is that we learn from them and resolve the root cause. At Safesite, we share these learnings, anonymously, with all of our customers so everyone can benefit from the data collected.”
Utilizing Safesite to record leading indicators, such as near misses, does not impact workers compensation insurance premiums, Grant said. However, it could one day save money for safety-minded companies under performance-driven insurance pricing models.
According to Grant, Safesite is currently working with insurance partners to educate them on how the score is calculated and how it should be interpreted. “We hope to announce partnerships soon where Safesite scores could be used to reduce insurance premiums,” Grant added. Under this structure, if a company did not accomplish the tasks suggested to improve their Safesite score, their insurance pricing would return to the market rate.
“By actively identifying opportunities to improve safety, you can stay ahead of injuries and incidents,” Grant said, “so everyone on the crew feels safe in their work environment and goes home safely at the end of the day.”
Safesite is used by more than 4,000 companies in the U.S. Roughly 80 percent of users are in construction-related trades or sub trades. The free Safesite app is available for Apple and Android devices, in English, Spanish, Portuguese and French.
Create Safety Champions On Your Crew
In addition to Safesite’s incident reporting features, the platform can also be used for paperless safety inspections, audits and checklists, and improving safety meetings.
Safesite hosts inspection, audit and checklist templates for general purposes, as well as for specific industries. For example, the app includes an aggregate plant daily inspection checklist, a crack sealing pre-start inspection checklist and maintenance templates for asphalt-related equipment.
Users can also upload their own forms and share them across a team or a company. Safesite will also build custom forms for Safesite Premium customers.
Inspections, audits and checklists can be assigned to specific team members, scheduled, and tracked within the app, either as a one-off or a recurring task.
The app also houses hundreds of safety meeting and toolbox talk topics and allows users to track meetings and attendees.
This can also save supervisors time. Instead of filing reports and inspections at the end of the week, the foreman or supervisor can export one PDF containing all documents for each project (or groups of projects) from a selected date range to selected recipients.
“That can be really useful when OSHA shows up and requests your inspection register or lists of hazardous materials,” Grant said. “You can go through the app, select relevant reports, and send them directly to the OSHA inspector right then and there.”
Additionally, in the event of an incident, Safesite Premium users can export serious injury incident reports automatically as an OSHA 300 log.
Premium Safety Performance
Safesite Premium costs $16 per user per month, paid annually, with enterprise solution for teams of more than 30 users.
The free version of Safesite is designed for individuals and small teams who “don’t need to do the onerous reporting and tracking of safety performance or engagement,” said Safesite CEO Peter Grant. “They can start using Safesite immediately for free without issues or restraints.”
Safesite Premium offers a more tailored, hands-on experience, as well as more advanced features.
When a premium customer comes on board, Safesite staff will audit the company’s current systems and procedures, identify its strengths and weaknesses, and walk through the company’s safety goals to develop an individualized safety success plan. The plan is divided into four quarters, with each quarter presenting new employee engagement goals and actions.
“We want to be sure that employee engagement levels meet the company’s goals by the end of the first year,” Grant said. “You can’t improve your company’s safety culture if you don’t have buy-in from everyone.”
Grant recommends setting an expectation that employees file one or two observations per week to get a company started. “It takes less than 15 seconds to take a photo and make an observation,” he said. “We want a low entry point to make it easy to improve safety engagement.”
Safesite also assists premium customers with migrating projects and equipment information to the platform, instructs premium customers’ staff on how to use the app and trains the safety management team to track performance over time.
Another premium feature is Safesite’s computer vision model, which scans images saved within Safesite to identify hazards, such as employees not wearing proper PPE.
“My philosophy is that to shift safety performance, you have to improve safety culture,” Grant said. That’s why Safesite aims to make every crew member a champion of safety. “You can’t change the culture if you don’t have buy-in from everyone.”