Shane Gardner: Mr Safety - Wilson Transformer Company (wodonga)
Health and safety representative of the year - 2012 Awards
I have a strong passion and commitment to keeping my workplace safe. My decision to enter this award is purely to inspire others to become involved in their workplace OHS and to share my experiences. I work at Wilson Transformer Company (Wodonga). We are a leading Australian manufacturer of power and distribution transformers.
Who is your Designated Work Group (DWG) and when were you elected?
In 2010, my co-workers elected me as their OHS Representative. I work permanent nightshift representing a small group of workers in the Metal Prep department in the Fabrication Bay here at Wilson Transformer Company. Since my election I have stayed true to my beliefs that I would do everything within my power to ensure each and every worker goes home to their families safe and well. My willingness to represent my co-workers on issues of OHS today, goes unchanged and I am even more determined than ever to have a zero harm goal.
How do you represent your DWG?
I am always available to all shifts within my DWG and often start early or stay back to consult / deliver key safety communications. I protect my workplace by regular inspections and auditing of machinery and processes of production. Am always discussing face to face with co-workers their OHS issues and will make it my mission to get it resolved. I also endeavour to lead by example when it comes to working safely and will promptly pull anybody up who is not complying. As OHS Committee Secretary, I can update my DWG all OHS ongoing concerns.
What are the achievements you are most proud of in your role as HSR?
Being elected in the first place. Being elected as the OHS Committee Secretary. Improving the OHS Committees minute recording substantially. Introduction of monthly near miss and accident-incident reporting by means of statistical graphing within the OHS Committee minutes. Improved OHS Committee communications between management and employees. Improved communication and conflict resolution skills. When our department relocated from 1 site to another site down the road my involvement was crucial in assuring that setup of new machinery, layout, facilities such as canteen-first aid room-heating and cooling were all safe and complied with the OHS act. Gaining the respect from coworkers and having them know I get the job done.
What has been the most difficult part of your role?
Issuing PIN notices-you feel like you have failed because you have not been able to come to an agreement with management to resolve the issue and often management can become even more difficult to work with because you have issued a PIN notice.
The publishing of entries on the WorkSafe Awards website and or/the granting of an award does not constitute any endorsement by WorkSafe Victoria of a product, method or service, or the occupational health and safety performance of the workplace. Monthly Champions must undergo expert review to progress through to the stringent validation and judging process and can only progress to the next stage of entry once WorkSafe are satisfied that the entry/entrant has met the relevant award category criteria and terms and condition of entry.