Safety is more than a top priority at Jefferson Lab - it is a core value and part of the Lab's culture.
Priorities can change if a budget is cut or a new leader takes over. But core values never change. They are ingrained in the way we think and do business; they are never compromised.
Safety is part of what we do and who we are. It is critical to the success of the Lab's mission, and it is critical to your health and well-being. You have embraced the importance of safety at the Lab in the way that you do your job and also by serving on various safety committees and completing additional training.
Achieving safety excellence isn't something we do once; it requires that we continually challenge ourselves - re-examine how we do things and find ways to make them better. Methods for doing this include evaluating our safety posture, ensuring that identified hazard controls are followed, identifying areas for improvement, and implementing these improvements. Now, a new opportunity exists.
Several years ago, Jefferson Lab embraced an Integrated Safety Management (ISM) approach as the best way to carry out our environmental, safety and health responsibilities. ISM is a way to ensure that we identify, eliminate or minimize any negative impacts our activities may have on JLab staff, the public, and the environment.
Now we are taking steps to strengthen the Integrated Safety Management System (ISMS), which is a compilation of policies, procedures and practices that will work together to meet the objective of safety excellence. In other words, ISMS is a "system of systems."
We are undertaking this effort as the Lab prepares to receive a visit from DOE's Office of Health, Safety and Security (HSS) in June. As they have done at several of our sister labs, such as Brookhaven and SLAC, HSS team members will inspect our processes to ensure that any activity conducted here is planned and executed with a focus on protecting our workers and users, the public, and the environment.
But we would be making these improvements to our ISMS program even if HSS were not visiting. In fact, many of our ISMS initiatives were begun before we knew the inspection team was coming. The visit, however, has put a spotlight on this group of activities.
Over the next five months you will notice (or participate in) more efforts to assess and improve how we identify and control safety and environmental hazards. You will receive more information via e-mail, posters, briefings and other forums. Please take the time to read and understand this material. You may be asked to take part in other efforts, such as participating in specific assessments, helping to revise procedures or writing new ones, or ensuring that you close out items in our Corrective Action Tracking System.
To start, please take a look at the new ISM webpage on INSIGHT. This site includes critical information regarding our ISM programs and our preparation efforts for the upcoming DOE inspection, including daily topics to think about and act on. The website also allows you to provide input, ask questions and request additional information.
As always, please don't hesitate to provide any ideas on how we can improve our performance.
Submitted: Friday, January 25, 2008 - 2:00pm