haute tension
©Eiffage Energie

Prevention measures on a par with our ambitions 

The protection of employee health and physical safety remains a fundamental goal for the Group, expressed in the "zero accidents" objective. 

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nvolving all levels in the organisation and valuing any initiative bringing real change in behaviours, the divisions devote managerial and operational resources to meet the goals in their safety action plans: training programmes at all hierarchical levels, multifactor accident analyses, risk prevention tours by supervisors, operational audits, sharing of best practices and investments in equipment providing the best level of safety. Every division has a risk prevention network, largely consisting of professional risk prevention coordinators in each region.

usine metal
©Patrick Babou

The Group has consistently reduced its frequency and severity rates over the past three years. In 2016, the Group posted a frequency rate of 9.88 and a statutory severity rate of 0.87.

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Evolving communication initiatives 

Everyday employee awareness remains a crucial success factor for risk prevention. All the divisions implement strong communication initiatives, namely campaigns to keep their teams consistently motivated and united.

At APRR-AREA, the "All safety players" took a break in 2015 to prepare for rollout of the Safestart method. At the same time, the entities continued to disseminate the "Fil direct accident" for both workplace accidents with and without lost time and near accidents, since information helps to avoid a similar incident.

 prevention brancheAccording to ASFA, about a hundred accidents endanger personnel working on motorways each year, inattentive drivers being one of the main causes. To respond to increasing high-risk behaviour and slackening discipline highlighted by recent accidentology statistics, APRR and AREA have rolled out new prevention and safety communication for users in association with employees. Under the slogan "Make motorways safer", the aim is to draw attention to the behaviour-safety connection by encouraging and acknowledging careful drivers who show respect for safety rules.

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Consistent renewal of communication means

NICTs and their new uses are an opportunity to broadcast messages more directly to employees. An initiative launched by the Belgian teams from Collignon (Eiffage Energie) illustrates this change: employees can ask to receive safety news reports by text message sent to their company mobile, containing information such as the number of days accident-free or news about a reported work-site accident.

On work sites in the West region, Eiffage Energie has taken another initiative for better safety-related communication. A removable, flexible canvas displays statutory information and offers additional space for employees on site to communicate about safety in their own way.

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The Infrastructures division continues to implement daily accident prevention tools that highlight 20 fundamental requirements. Every month one of the twenty situations (pedestrians, using manual tools, getting in and out of vehicles, etc.) is spotlighted to raise employees' awareness of safe movements and attitudes. As a result, the division noted that in 2015, 47% of establishments achieved "zero accidents". Following on from the "Silence Kills – Words Save" campaign organised in 2014, the 2015 operation, "Indifference Kills", sought to emphasize the danger induced by lack of concern for safety. The Live Life Safely operation launched in 2016 focuses on team spirit and solidarity for greater safety.

Tools created to reinforce communication campaigns will continue to be deployed in 2016:

- upstream safety performance indicators are now tracked in real time using the Safety Force© mobile application designed by the company;

- via the StandART Prévention knowledge sharing platform, employees can report on and discuss the effectiveness of safety procedures.

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Instructional videos 

In addition to "traditional" communication kits and to support the 15-minute safety sessions, in 2015 the Energy division screened the "Shared Safety and Vigilance" video to all employees throughout France. The video sequences acted out by Group employees present the risk situations encountered on work sites and naturally aim to maintain a precautionary attitude, raise awareness among new employees and support supervisory staff in their daily prevention efforts.

© Eiffage

Eiffage Construction always encourages regional initiatives such as Prevention Forums and the multi-accident programme. Instruction documents, information memos, processes and procedures are now compiled in an Eiffage Construction "Risk Prevention Database, online since the end of 2015. It provides access to all applicable company data and instructions and can also be used for work site monitoring and preparing data for the single risks assessment document.

Safety days are organised each year by the Energy division's regional departments. On 17 October 2015, Clemessy Méditerranée and Secauto organised a special one-day "Health & Safety" event for all their employees. Workshops focused on seven topics: noise, vibration, first aid, handling, working at height, fire and risks inherent in physical exertion.

Training to sustainably change behaviours  

Dedicated training processes specific to each core business are implemented in all the divisions, using different tools to highlight instructions and the importance of ongoing vigilance.

Tools energie guideto raise awareness and improve practices and behaviours are also widely disseminated in the form of guides or in interactive electronic formats. They are completed by VigiAttitude –the awareness and sharing tool developed in 2009 for certain activities to check what employees have learnt and their ability to detect risky situations.

 

 
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Special focus on service provider safety 

APRR introduced a new contractor management procedure on 1 January 2015 following a study conducted to reinforce safe working conditions of service providers. The procedure relies on reference documents drafted in 2014 and a specific and newly created Risk Prevention Plan certificate issued at the end of the corresponding training course.

Eiffage Construction and the OPPBTP signed a partnership agreement in 2015 to improve risk prevention among employees and subcontractors. Initiatives particularly focus on developing asbestos awareness and training modules, making recommendations for the working conditions of form setters and finishers, and implementing specific risk prevention measures with subcontracting companies. The two partners thus demonstrate their shared desire to actively collaborate in building a sustained risk prevention culture.

Physical strain and occupational pathologies  

Prevention of occupational pathologies is organised around specific training and adaptation of working conditions (procedures and equipment).

• The company agreements signed by APRR and AREA in December 2014 already integrated regulatory changes on working hours, including three factors of exposure applicable since 1 January 2015 and concerning the company: night work, shift work and repetitive work. In 2015, APRR and AREA also conducted audits of exposure to the factors of physical strain applicable as of 1 July 2016.

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Acrobatic construction workers on the Pas dans le vide project (Eiffage Métal) ©Robert Pratta - Reuters 

• At Eiffage Énergie, a physical strain master plan addresses three areas of work: reducing multiple exposure to occupational risk factors; developing skills and qualifications; and end-of-career adjustments. Since the beginning of 2015, Eiffage Energie has been active in the SERCE and FNTP task force with a view to drafting a division standard. At Clemessy, occupational diseases are specifically tracked by a computer tool shared by the Safety, Legal and Human Resources departments. The tool was updated in 2015 to improve monitoring of night work.

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Work on the EHV grid (Eiffage Énergie) – ©All rights reserved 

• The Infrastructures division, which signed a company agreement on physical strain in 2013, has prepared a national Physical Strain Prevention action plan for 2015-2016 on key topics of the division's businesses such as noise, vibration, handling, difficult working postures, chemical agents and climatic conditions. 

Several improvements were again made this year to procedures and equipment: conveyor equipment for protection against dust, evacuation ducts on asphalt application equipment, design of an offset form stripping wrench reducing strain and noise of operations, a mechanical geogrid uncoiler, etc...

 

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Les Chênes Quarry (Drôme) – ©Phototèque Eiffage Infrastructures division 
 

Psychosocial risks and addictions 

Various agreements and programmes developed in the divisions involve action against stress and psychosocial risks. APRR and AREA now organise psychosocial risk assessment by means of updating the single evaluation documents according to a specified method. The prevention officer's assessment is shared with the Quality of Work Life committee, in connection with the Health, Safety and Working Conditions committees. Eiffage Construction continues to roll out the BSS for Health (basic safety skills) which aim to improve well-being beyond the working context and address topics such as addictions, sleep, diet, cardiovascular disease, noise, ergonomics and climatic conditions. BSS training courses are adapted to cover all areas of activity and are also available for all Infrastructures division staff.

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APRR Rhône region fights addiction

In recent years, APRR and AREA have conducted extensive awareness and sharing campaigns on addictions with trade unions and managers. Quality of Work Life committee members have also been made aware of addictions in the work environment, and contact details of local organisations providing assistance for people in difficulty are now displayed at the workplace.

On top of multi-year deployment of employee training and awareness and information provided via various communication documents, the shared initiative to prevent addictions further aims to facilitate access to blood alcohol tests for preventive use and adoption of best practices when festivities are organised in the companies.

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©Eiffage Énergie 

The divisions have implemented dependency assistance schemes, as addiction is an aggravating factor in workplace risk, deteriorating work relationships and absenteeism. For example at AREA, the Addiction task force has developed awareness and information materials for managers and employees. ANPAA continues to give presentations in Eiffage Énergie establishments, and procedures to be applied in the event of risky behaviour induced by alcohol or drug use are in place at Clemessy and Eiffage Construction. Some subsidiaries of Eiffage Construction have introduced anonymous drug / alcohol screening (Elicole).

 

Hazardous products under control 

Whenever possible, the divisions prohibit the use of toxic products and look for products with a lower risk

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Decontamination in Oullins (Rhône) ©JPG 

Pooling information about these products is a key priority. The ACCES database, which contains products' health assessment and proposed substitutes when there is a high health impact, inventories 5,800 products and is now used by the Construction, Energy and Infrastructures divisions. In 2015, Clemessy drafted a number of local usage sheets. These are simplified information sheets for employees, derived from the material safety data sheets but only including information that is relevant to their daily activity. The simplicity and practicality of these sheets enable wider distribution to employees to enhance safety.

The Infrastructures division maintains stringent requirements to avoid emissions of dust or fumes, and recommends priority use of chemical products with the lowest impact on health and the environment

Finally, Eiffage Énergie actively partakes in the different working groups of the SERCE safety committee, particularly on topics related to asbestos and physical strain.

 

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The new Limas toll station ©APRR

Risk-mitigating material and equipment 

The divisions invest in new tools, new processes and improved infrastructure to reinforce work station safety while capitalising on their teams' creative initiative.

During the widening of the A46 Nord motorway, APRR installed a new, more manageable crash barrier that can be quickly installed for temporary operations to improve motorway worker safety and reduce user inconvenience. After testing rear-view cameras, APRR and AREA now equip all new vans with this feature. APRR has also modified the interior layout of truck cabs: a retractable salt spreader control box now means drivers can get out of their vehicles via the passenger door in case of a traffic risk.

Equipment for green space maintenance is constantly being trialled and deployed, like the articulated arm micro-tractor for clearing roadsides in restricted areas from the emergency lane without closing access roads, or the mower robot that slips behind noise-abatement walls, concrete crash barriers or along fences.

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Good practice at the Cestas solar farm work site

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©Eiffage

Eiffage Energie developed a good practice during work on the Cestas solar farm (Gironde, south-west France), which involved significant amounts of underground cables. Ordinarily, the teams only unwind one cable reel at a time, using a winch or unwinder. During work, a system was devised to simultaneously unwind cables from six reels, thus reducing physical strain on staff.

When making hold-down holes prior to pouring pylon supports, earth falls are a risk for the teams of Eiffage Energie. To make the employees' descent safer, the teams from Loiret designed a frame structure that can be adapted to all types of hole, consisting of four adjustable steel stays.

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Frame structure by Eiffage Energie ©Eiffage
  

Eiffage Construction has been working with the Methods, Equipment and Purchasing departments to secure use of scaffolding for several years. Many procedures are in place such as priority use of equipment selected by the division, assembly training, systematic design notes to validate choices, and production of detailed plans. Subcontractor compliance with these procedure is now a requirement, and they will therefore attend a preparatory meeting with the work site manager.

Eiffage Route has sought to promote use of protection systems against dust and fumes. Evacuation ducts will therefore be systematically installed on the entire fleet of asphalt application equipment by 2020.

Lastly, another good practice was implemented on the Nord Ester containment project (oil recycling industry): use of polystyrene formwork for concrete blocks reduces the physical strain involved in using "traditional" formwork.

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Awards

The Infrastructures division was honoured in the "Prévention Ensemble" awards organised by Usirf and OPPBTP, for partnership initiatives in prevention and safety:

- Eiffage Route Nord-Est in the "Partnerships" category for two agreements signed with GrDF and ErDF with a view to reducing damage to electricity and gas facilities by improving risk prevention communication, sharing best practices and feedback, and managing incidents.

- The division's Major Projects section received an OPPBTP award in November 2015 for work done to optimise the laying of uncovered rip-rap on the BPL LGV project. Their initiative was selected from among 500 as part of the technical intelligence programme to identify best practices concerning construction equipment, material or processes in the field.

- Eiffage Génie civil won the "Risk Prevention Initiatives" award with Vinci Autoroutes and ASF for an innovation development and sharing initiative implemented to improve work site personnel safety.

Lastly, out of more than 400 work sites inspected and 48 companies rated, Eiffage Énergie won third prize in Ile-de-France from Paris City Council for good work site management in 2015 on several dozen mobile trenchwork projects for GrDF and ErDF.

 

Improvement through capitalisation and sharing of best practices 

Best practices are shared, inter alia, via internal challenges, like the Risk Prevention Ribbons at APRR-AREA or the Eiffage Challenge of the Trades, a biennial event rolled out in all Group divisions. Prevention days and forums are regularly organised in divisions throughout the year and also help to disseminate safety expertise.

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Risk Prevention Ribbon winners in 2015 ©Eiffage 

This year, the Risk Prevention Ribbons particularly acknowledged managerial initiatives to integrate prevention into daily activities, equipment improvements and cross-business awareness actions (APRR). For example, the Sud Bourgogne-Ain branch won the Gold Ribbon for the SIP application: an interface developed internally to facilitate implementation of preventive practices and swiftly respond to problems detected.