Fatigue is a hidden hazard that affects most mine sites. Here’s why it’s so dangerous.SEE MORE
Technology can solve many mine site problems and help us reach new heights of productivity and efficiency. However, technology by itself does not resolve all problems and is only one layer of protection.
Without a thoughtful, disciplined approach to change management, implementation of new technology can lead to a rift between operators and management that slows down production and disrupts future improvements. If a culture of distrust exists between management and employees, new technologies can be resisted or even sabotaged because operators view them as an attempt to “spy” rather than a way to increase safety.
Like any other technology solution, successful implementation of a fatigue risk management system is contingent upon a culture of trust in which employees recognize the system as part of leadership’s commitment to safety. If the time and effort is made to educate operators, supervisors and managers on the benefits of the technology and the protocols for managing fatigue events, the technology can lead to significant improvements in safety, performance and productivity. On the other hand, simply installing the technology can show less positive results and even lead to more problems.
A well-implemented solution can result in decreased absenteeism and turnover, as well as greater employee morale and satisfaction. This translates to greater productivity and safety throughout the operation. There is a lot of work to do in moving from dependence on the traditional rules that govern hours of service. Proper fatigue management requires a more active, flexible style of management that emphasizes a rigorously maintained health and safety management system.
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