Report of the Directors
Business Review

Safety

Safety Performance in 2011/12

Accidents and incidents are actively monitored and detailed statistics are compiled monthly at group level and used by the Chief Executive’s Committee and the board at their regular meetings to review safety performance. Any accident is thoroughly investigated to determine root causes and appropriate preventative and corrective actions are assigned. The group’s rate of occupational accidents involving lost time is shown in the table in the Health and Safety Performance Summary and its five year performance is presented in the graphs to the right. Details of our methodology for calculating accident statistics is described in Basis of Reporting – Non-Financial Data.

During 2011/12, despite increasing production levels, we have observed an improvement in safety performance and the group’s greater than three day lost time accident rate per 1,000 employees at 31st March 2012 is at its lowest year end level recorded. This good result has been achieved through raising awareness of the importance of health and safety which has led to the introduction of improved accident control measures. In addition, there has been particular focus at sites with higher than average accident rates with one facility piloting a culture improvement system which will be used more widely across the group in the coming year. Our EHS Learning Events programme has continued to deliver good results, particularly at facilities submitting a higher number of EHS Learning Event reports.

For Johnson Matthey any accident is unacceptable and our Sustainability 2017 target is to achieve zero accidents that result in more than three days’ lost time. In 2011/12, 83% of our facilities achieved zero greater than three day accidents and at a group level we completed 57 days without a greater than three day accident.

The health, safety and wellbeing of contractors who are working on our sites are of equal importance to those of our employees and the group has safety performance metrics specifically for contractors, similar to those for our employees. These temporary workers are engaged typically to cover periods of long term sickness absence or maternity leave, or to manage seasonal variations in workload. In 2011/12 there were eight lost time contractor accidents (three of which were greater than three days) compared to 12 lost time contractor accidents in 2010/11 (five of which were greater than three days). This is equivalent to an annual total lost time accident frequency rate of 0.27 accidents per 100,000 hours worked per year (2010/11 0.50 accidents per 100,000 hours worked per year).

During the year we strengthened our audit policy to include one day follow up reviews of audit recommendations to be conducted one year after the recommendations were made. A total of 19 one day reviews were undertaken this year in addition to 26 full audits across the group. Conducting these follow up reviews has significantly reduced repeat actions at subsequent audits.

The group’s EHS Learning Events programme has been reinvigorated and developed into a full environment, health and safety near miss reporting system. During the year all greater than three day lost time accidents were analysed and compared with the accident types reported locally through the EHS Learning Events programme. This has allowed us to determine the effectiveness of EHS Learning Events to help reduce accidents in the workplace and has highlighted further opportunities to improve the programme going forward.

This year we have continued to develop our process risk management (PRM) programmes to develop best practice and drive improvement in process safety systems across our operations. In 2011/12 two process safety audits (one in Europe and one in North America) were conducted and these identified a series of improvement actions. We have also established a European PRM working group of engineers from our facilities in the region. The group meets twice a year to discuss PRM related issues, review industry case studies and identify further improvement opportunities.

Safety Priorities for 2012/13

Our principal priority remains that of achieving the group’s target of zero greater than three day accidents and there is an overall trend of continued improvement. Wider implementation of the EHS culture improvement programme piloted in 2011/12 is seen to be critical in speeding up improvement in our performance towards this target.

The key activities for 2012/13 to address safety improvement through the group’s ten year EHS strategy are to:

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