our people
 
health & safety of alcoans – our top priority
Alcoa of Australia has one of the lowest lost workday injury rates in the country.  Our performance is better than the mining, construction, agriculture, forestry and fishing, and even retail trade industries. 
 
However, one of our biggest challenges, which is not unique to Alcoa, is our aging workforce – this is a challenge faced by many industries and is consistent with an aging Australian population.  As such, most of our recordable injuries relate to sprains and strains. 
 
To combat this, we are actively working to educate employees about protecting their bodies at work and at home, through a new program called SafeSpine which is currently being rolled out across our Western Australian operations and forms part of our Ergonomics Program for 2009.
 
SafeSpine is a musculoskeletal health and wellbeing education program specialising in injury prevention on worksites Australia-wide. 
With the help of the company Onsite Health Solutions, Alcoa has implemented a program which creates and sustains a workplace culture that supports positive health behaviours throughout the working day and when employees are on a break.
 
Kwinana Ergonomist Sue Bannerman said the program encourages employees to stretch every 20 to 30 minutes using personalised stretching designed for the tasks they’re performing.  
 
“Workshops are available to employees which teach them the importance of regular stretching on the prevention of musculoskeletal injury,” she said.
 
“Feedback from employees shows that 94% of those who have been through the SafeSpine program have increased their intension to perform prevention exercises at work.”
 
Employee feedback has included:
 
  • “It has opened my eyes”
  • “An excellent workshop”
  • “Long term life changing”
  • “Informative and enjoyable”
  • “My understanding of stretching exercises has improved highly”
  • “Very interesting, I will try to use these exercises as much as possible”
  • “Relevant to work and home”

The SafeSpine program is in addition to Alcoa’s existing behavioural safety programs which are critical in order to engage our people in safety awareness.   All our programs help to identify and eliminate unsafe work practices, heighten employee awareness and directly involve workers in identifying and addressing unsafe behaviours.
 
We also implement initiatives to achieve the goal where employees go home healthier than when they came to work.  Healthy workforce initiatives include medical screenings, health-risk reduction programs, health education and employee assistance.
 
Alcoa’s lost work day (LWD) rate reduced last year, with all locations except two having recorded more than 100 days since their last LWD.  Alcoa Anglesea had an impressive 1800 days without a LWD, while WA Farmlands has run even longer at over 2000 days since the last lost work day injury.
 
At Alcoa, we are confident that what we’re doing in relation to people management and health & safety is successful, because 60 per cent of our employees have worked with us for more than 10 years.


return to front page
go



Click image to enlarge.




Click image to enlarge.




Click image to enlarge.




Click image to enlarge.




Click image to enlarge.




Click image to enlarge.