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  • Writer's pictureSafer Highways

Behavioural approach to safety

Amey’s award winning safety behavioural toolkit – ThinkSafe, has been used to develop a new survey to consider the wellbeing and mental health impacts of the pandemic in AmeyConsulting on its workforce.

ThinkSafe is a series of toolkits which provide high quality data, beyond traditional safety metrics and examine the psychological and human factor variables associated with safety; such as workload, job pressure and safety climate. The toolkits were developed following a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with Leeds Beckett University’s ‘Psychology Applied to Safety & Health’ research team.

It was developed by AmeyConsulting and Rail to focus on psychological and human factor conditions that may contribute to accidents or incidents, utilising a ‘bottom-up’ approach to understand the risk of everyday activities. The project came out of a need to address the pitfalls of using root cause analysis, audits and accident data to understand risk and reduce accidents. Although useful, these approaches are considered somewhat reactive, therefore potentially posing a safety risk.

The ThinkSafe toolkits have continually helped to provide insight into other contributory factors of safety. COVID-19 has presented a number of wellbeing challenges including the effects of long-term teleworking and in 2020 the ThinkSafe framework was used to create a bespoke survey (called Future Office) completed by over 1,500 employees in AmeyConsulting. The results gathered through this survey have helped to inform a range of follow up initiatives such as an AmeyConsulting virtual wellbeing event.

Speaking about the ThinkSafe initiative Robert Doyle, HSEQ Director, Consulting, Amey said: “ThinkSafe provides an innovative approach to support our ongoing zero harm philosophy - by focusing on human and psychological factors which can positively or negatively impact on the safety and wellbeing of our workforce. At Amey we are committed to pushing the boundaries and ongoing improvement against our health, safety and wellbeing agenda which is ever more prevalent during a pandemic.”

ThinkSafe has been rolled out to over 5,000 employees across the business since it first launched in AmeyConsulting and Rail and has been shortlisted for the Ferrovial Zuritanken internal awards. It was awarded the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) Initiative of the Year Award in 2020. The coveted prize benchmarked ‘fascinating, industry leading, innovative solutions to health and safety management.’

The effectiveness of the toolkit will be shared with other industries at this years’ RSSB Human Factors Conference.

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