Significant health and safety improvements over a decade

Apr 28, 2023

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In Valmet we have worked systematically for more than decade to continuously improve health and safety at work. It is one of our strategic must-win initiatives and a cornerstone of our sustainability agenda. At the end of 2012 our injury rate per million hours worked was 15.7 and today it is 3.1. This means we have eliminated more than 200 employee injuries each year from our operations.

‘We should all be very proud of how our long-term commitment to health and safety across the organization has resulted in real and lasting improvements’, comments Victoria Larsson, VP HSE. ‘I want to thank everyone for their efforts to develop our safety culture in Valmet, every action matters’. 

Valmet has systematically implemented actions to improve safety.

The work to be even better continues 

There is however more to do, still we have too many injuries and we do believe all injuries can be prevented and that our goal of zero harm is achievable. The key actions now are to eliminate serious injuries, improve customer site safety, support work-life balance actions and to continue developing safety leadership and mindset across the organization.  
A key initiative is our injury prevention program where a few of the minimum safety standards are selected each year for focus in our operations through inspections, training, awareness activities and procedural improvement. Below you can read about some of our recent campaigns.

Let’s focus on hand safety 

Since about 40 percent of all injuries involve hands, in February 2022, we started to raise awareness of the hand injury risks many Valmeteers face. The campaign included tool inspections, holding seminars about Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), as well as sharing information about hand safety.  
”Production managers appreciated being able to focus on one important topic and learning more about how to prevent hand injuries and raise hand safety awareness among the employees”, says HSE Specialist Johanna Jennvik from Karlstad, Sweden.

You don’t have wings – play safe at heights 

The second major focus of 2022 addressed working at heights. A primary focus was to promote the proper use of safety harnesses. We also emphasized the responsibility of managers in assessing and executing such work safely, as well as the key role employees play in identifying and suggesting improvements in our ways of working.  
”Working at heights is one of the safety risks we have at project sites and our workshops. There can also be work at height in the office and during our free time. It is important to stop and to think how we can avoid working at heights, what preventive actions are needed, and when working at heights what safety practices are used”, says Global HSE Manager Outi Suolahti.

Plan, Check, Secure - Life safely 

We recently launched the lift safely initiative. We lift and move thousands of pieces of heavy equipment and materials. The sheer volume of lifts we do, together with the huge weights of the loads, mean that lifting is one of the most significant safety risks in our activities.  
"We need to ensure the lifting safety practices are always followed, even in smaller liftings”, says Pasi Svinhufvud, HSE Director, Services business line from Tampere, Finland.  
Read more about health and safety in our Annual Report and Health and Safety pages.