MANAGEMENT OF OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH AT UNIT LEVEL

 


This Chapter deals with the management of occupational safety and health at the unit level, i.e. manufacturing units. The State has about 1063 number of manufacturing units, the breakup of which according to factories registered under Section 2(m), Section 85 of The Factories Act, 1948, is given in Chapter -3.

 

The Uttaranchal Government has adopted the U.P. Factory Rules. In order to have a fair idea, about the safety and health status in these units, the following specific provisions on safety and health have been covered under this Chapter: - 

 

·        Safety Policy

·        Appointment of Safety Officers

·        Safety Committee

·        Occupational health centers (FMO, Ambulance)

·        Welfare (WO, Canteen, crèche, lunch room, shelter etc.)

·        On-site emergency plans

·        Safety reports

·        Safety audits

·        HAZOP studies

 

         

There are certain statutory requirements as provided under The Factories Act, 1948 , and Rules framed there under, for each of the aspects stated above. Items 6.6 to 6.9 are additional requirement exclusively applicable to MAH installations, which are covered by separate set of rules.  Each of the aspect with its status has been discussed in the following paragraphs. 

 

 SAFETY POLICY  

The provision for the preparation of Health & Safety Policy is mandatory for factories covered under section 2(cb), section-87 of The Factories Act, 1948, 2m(i) employing more than 50 workers and 2m(iii) employing more than 100  workers.. The rule in this regard has been incorporated by the  Government in Rule-63-B of the U.P. factories Rules,1950 vide Notification No. 3417/xxxvi-3-1-(F)-88 dated 06-10-1999 under section 7-A(3) , section 41-B(2) and section 112 of The Factories Act, 1948. All MAH installations in the State of Uttaranchal have formulated their Health & Safety Policy on priority basis.

 

APPOINTMENT OF SAFETY OFFICERS

 

Under section 40-B of The Factories Act, 1948 ( Amended 1987 ), State Government has framed The U.P. Factories (Safety Officers) Rules, 1984 vide notification dated 5th Sept. 1984,this rule is also applicable in the State of Uttanchal wherein the qualifications, duties and other service conditions of the safety officers to be appointed in the factories are stipulated.  The State Government by subsequent notification required the occupiers of the factories employing 1000 or more workers to appoint requisite number of safety officers. Furthermore the State Government vide Notification no. 1928/3-3-2000-20001(F)/84 dated 03-06-2000, required the occupiers of factories covered under Uttar Pradesh        ( Control of Industrial Accident hazard) rules,1996  & plants manufacturing Sulfuric acid employing less than 1000 workers and wherein involvement of risk of bodily injury, poisoning or disease or any hazard to health may occur, to employ one safety officer.

 

The information regarding requirement of safety officers in various factories and the degree of compliance level in the State is not available .

SAFETY COMMITTEE  

Rule 81-I of the  U P Factories Rules, 1950 framed under the provisions of Section 41 and 41-G of The Factories Act, 1948,require constitution of Safety Committee in the factories meeting the following criteria:-

a)         Factories employing 250 or more workers

b)         Factories covered under Section 87 of The Factories Act,1948 ( Amended 1987), and employing more than 50 workers

c)          Factories covered under Section 2(cb) of The Factories Act, 1948 ( Amended 1987 ), and employing more than 50 workers

 

All the MAH installations in the State of Uttaranchal have constituted their Safety Committees.

 

OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH CENTERS

 

As per the Rule 63-J of the  Uttar Pradesh Factory Rules, 1950 prescribed under the Section 41-C of The Factories Act, 1948 ( Amended 1987 ), 1948 Occupational Health Centers are required to be set up in the Factories carrying and ‘hazardous process’ as described under Section 2(cb) of the Act.  The Industries have been divided into 3 categories.  i.e. the industries employing up to 50 workers, employing 51 – 100 workers and employing more than 200 workers.   No information is available regarding requirement and establishment of Occupational Health Centers in factories. 


WELFARE

This part of the Chapter deals with the Welfare facilities e.g. appointment of Welfare officer, crèche facilities, canteen facilities, shelters, rest room and lunchroom. 

 

The provisions of Section 49 of The Factories Act, 1948 (Amended 1987 ), stipulates that any factory employing more than 500 workers is required to employ a Welfare Officer.

 

The degree of compliance level concerning requirement and appointment of welfare officers in the State is not available.  

 

MAJOR ACCIDENT HAZARD CELL

There is no such cell formed but the enforcement officers are looking into the activities of such cell. In order to control the major accidents in the State, factories prone to major accident hazards have been identified on the basis of the U.P. Factories ( Control of Industrial Major Accident Hazard) Rules, 1996 under section 41-B  of The Factories Act, 1948 ( Amended 1987 ) and Manufacture Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemicals Rules,1989(amended 2000), wherein specified industrial activities are categorized as potentially hazardous and prone to major hazard, in the form of storage & use of potentially hazardous substances in five groups exceeding the threshold quantities specified for them in schedule-3 of the above said rules. On the basis of the criteria laid down in the above mentioned, so far 14 factories have been identified as Major Hazard installations in the State.

 

The identified MAH installations are required to comply with specific provisions of the above mentioned rules, such as submission of Notification of Site/Safety Report; Preparation of On-Site Emergency Plan; Material safety Data Sheet; Notification of Major Accidents; and carrying out Safety Audit etc, in the respective schedules specified in the above rules.

 

The on site emergency plans received in the Factory Directorate are subject to scrutiny by a multidisciplinary cell constituted at the head quarter of the Factory Directorate. There after these on site plans are sent; back to the Occupiers of the concerned factories with directions for further; improvement and; rehearsal.

 

In the said rules, the rehearsal of such developed On-Site Emergency Plans has also been made essential for the factories to rehearse the plan once in every six months, so that State of preparedness; is ascertained; in terms of men and machines when a disaster strikes.  Practical exercises are, therefore, carried out be creating situations, as close as possible to actual conditions.  The occupiers are directed to plug the weaknesses and vulnerabilities which surface during such simulation drills.  The standard of performance is judged against a set of criteria fixed for this purpose through a check list assessment by the regional officers.

 

ON-SITE EMERGENCY PLANS

 

As per the provisions of the Rule 13 of U.P. Factories (Control of Industrial Major Accident Hazard) Rules, 1996, the occupier who has control of the Industrial activity as described under the Rule shall prepare an on-site emergency plan detailing how major accidents will be dealt with on the site on which industrial activity is carried on. The various elements of the plan are:

 

-          Preventive measures and plans effecting the factory's safety status currently enforced/practice and disclosure of information to workers and public and details of public awareness system; in existence or anticipated;

-          Development of scope and scenarios on the basis of previous histories and consequence analysis;

-          Material safety data sheet and important components of safety report;

-          Disaster control measures including mutual aid scheme;

-          Plan of coordination and interaction with various external agencies including administrative agencies in the event of major risk occurrence;

-          Action on site;

-          Plans of action for medical management fire fighting, rescue and relief operation currently available and to be pressed into service at short notice; and much other general information in respect of plant, manufacturing process, neighborhood, meteorological information etc.

 

In order to control the major accidents and mitigate the effects of any major consequence, out of 14 MAH Installations, the occupiers of all factories have submitted there on site emergency plans to the Factory Directorate.

 

NOTIFICATION OF SITE AND SAFETY REPORTS

 

Notification of Site

 

As per the provisions of the Rule 7 of U.P. Factories (Control of Industrial Major Accident Hazard) Rules,1996, it is mandatory for an occupier of the MAH Installation to submit the Notification of Site in Schedule-7 as specified in the rule.  As per the information available 14 factories were required to prepare notification of site in respect of the industrial activity being carried out on and all factories have complied with the same.. 

 

Safety Report

 

As per the provisions of the Rule-10 (1) of Manufacture Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemicals Rules,1989 ( Amended 2000), it is mandatory for an occupier to prepare and submit to the Chief Inspector before the commencement of an industrial activity the Safety Report of the Industrial activity to which these rules apply.  The Safety Report is to be submitted in the prescribed format. 

 

As per the information available 14 MAH units were required to prepare Safety Reports.  However, 13 units have prepared the Safety Report and submitted to the Director of Factories & Boilers.

 

SAFETY AUDIT

 

Safety audit is a statutory requirement under the Manufacture, Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemical, Rules (MSIHC) 1989 for upper layer of major accident hazard units. According to the provisions of the Rule-10 (4) of Manufacture Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemicals Rules,1989 ( Amended 2000), it is mandatory for an occupier to conduct the Safety Audit of industrial activity once in a year with the help of an expert not associated with such industrial activity. This will help the management to know the weak points in their system and to take suitable timely remedial measures.

 

The  objectives of  the  safety audit would  be  to review  &  critically  assess the existing safety  programmes  to prevent  & control  the hazards in  the   plant  with  a  view  to  suggest  improvement  . The benefit of safety audit is to evaluate the quality & effectiveness of the safety programme, rather than only  quantitative measures of its failure.

 

The  specific  objectives  of  the  safety  audit  would  be :-

 

·            To  study    existing  systems  procedures  plants &  programmes on safety & health;

·            To review  implementation  status  of  the existing  safety  systems , procedures, plans & programmes; and

·            To recommend the measures for improving   effectiveness for implementation of safety  systems, procedures, plans and programmes  and also  for improving the existing  procedures/setting  of  new  procedures if  required .

 

The  overall methodology of  safety audit  will consist  the following  stages :-

 

·            Collection of  preliminary information  regarding  manufacturing  process &  hazards etc. through  a  questionnaire developed  by  auditor  before undertaking actual field work.

·            Examination of documents pertaining to Safety procedures/systems.

·            Discussions with key personnel at various levels.

·            Physical inspection of the plant.

·            Preparation of report with recommendations.

 

The scope of the audit is to verify whether the Planned and Documented activities are performed in accordance with written procedures and to verify by examination and evaluation of objectives evidence that appropriate elements of a safety management systems have been developed, documented and implemented by units covered under The Manufacture Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemicals Rules,1989 ( Amended 2000), under The E.P.Act,1986 and The U.P.(Control of Industrial Major Accident Hazard) Rules,19996 under The Factories Act,1948.

 

As per IS-14489-1998 some of the relevant points observed during safety audit are being listed below:

 

1.          Health and Safety Policy

2.          Accident Reporting, Investigation and Analysis

3.          Safety Education and Training

4.          Work Permit System

5.          Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

6.          Emergency Preparedness ( On-Site and Off-Site both)

7.          Compliance with statutory

8.          New Equipments/Process review and inspection system

9.          Prevention of Occupational disease

10.     Safe operating procedure

11.     Fire prevention, protection and fire fighting system

   

 

During the year 2002, out of 14 MAH Installations more than 50 % units had conducted the safety audit. The reports of such audits are sent to Directorate of factories & boilers. Directorate complies with the recommendations pointed out by the auditor, by issuing the directions/guidelines from time to time within stipulated period.