Creating a Safe and Healthy Workplace Environment

Based on policies that place the highest priority on the safety and health of employees, the MMC Group makes concerted groupwide efforts to promote health and safety activities to develop a workplace environment that is comfortable both physically and mentally.

Basic Approach

In Chapter 2 of the MMC Group Code of Conduct, we vow to "We are committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for all our stakeholders." This is based on the notion that, if we can't keep our employees safe and healthy, they won't be able to provide secure and happy lives for their families, we won't be able to operate effectively, and we will never be able keep on expanding as a company.

MMC Group Basic Policy on Safety and Health Management

  1. We will carry out safety and health activities based on full participation from all employees, underpinned by leadership and initiative from the President and other managing personnel.
  2. We will ensure that all employees comply with the Industrial Safety and Health Act and other applicable legislation, manuals and operating procedures, and establish a workplace culture whereby everyone follows the rules and ensures that others do too.
  3. We will make every effort to create pleasant workplaces that are healthy for both body and mind, for all employees, through activities aimed at creating open workplaces and promoting health.
  4. We will take preventive measures in accordance with Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare guidelines on the prevention of work-related traffic accidents and improve road etiquette amongst all employees, in order to eliminate traffic accidents based on our commitment to promoting road safety activities as an example to society as a whole.

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Framework

In the wake of the fire and explosion at our Yokkaichi Plant in January 2014, we launched a new Zero Occupational Accident Project in April that same year, and set about strengthening the foundations of safety and health on a groupwide scale, with the aim of eliminating serious occupational accidents resulting in four or more lost days.
Our safety management framework revolves around the Mitsubishi Materials Safety & Environment Department. We also appoint Safety Coordinators at each in-house company, in order to share information regarding progress and issues with safety and health measures at plants / factories under their management, including group companies, with the Safety & Environment Department via monthly meetings, and to consult regarding solutions. We have an integrated groupwide promotion framework in place whereby Safety Coordinators take part in Zero Occupational Accident Working Group Meetings, to report on and discuss matters that extend beyond the confines of individual companies.
At the same time, Safety Managers, Safety Coordinators and Safety Instructors are assigned to individual plants / factories, where their role is to promote safety activities. We hold regular Groupwide Safety Manager meetings and meetings for Safety Coordinators and Safety Instructors, where we exchange openings on a wide range of occupational accident information and health and safety activities across the Group and the various business sectors in which it is involved, and endeavor to raise the level of health and safety.

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Management Priorities

To expand the joint labor-management initiative to achieve zero occupational accidents, we have identified issues at the MMC Group in light of occupational accidents, etc. that occurred last year, engaged in joint labor-management discussions on the particular items to be addressed to achieve solutions, and designated management priorities on that basis. In 2016, we set out the following management priorities, and rolled out occupational safety and health management systems at each of our plants / factories accordingly.

Companywide Safety and Health Management Priorities (2016)

1)Thorough efforts to make equipment safe (engineering measures) through risk assessments (RA)
  • By fostering the development of RA instructors at each plants/factories and implementing RA activities down to the perspective of workers, we will improve our ability to identify unsafe equipment states and accelerate efforts to fix them.
  • We will implement activities using tools specific to each facility (hazard prediction, near misses, review of operating procedures, the 5S's, TPM, etc.).
2)Strengthening health and safety education
  • We will set up an Occupational Safety and Health Education Center to provide basic information on safety (laws and regulations, the structure of equipment and facilities) and boost hazard sensitivity, and will work to develop an occupational safety and health training curriculum.
  • We will take measures and other steps to mitigate risks, and make use of outside expert instructors to hold workshops at various safety meetings and other events to gain the legal knowledge required to ensure safety and understand its significance.
3)Raising the levels of health awareness amongst employees
  • Based on our philosophy of health management, we promote guidance provided to employees by health management staff, and are working to swiftly respond to stress-check legislation and ensure that appropriate health programs are provided on a per-facility and per-employee basis.

Group occupational safety and health management system
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Expanding Safety and Health Activities

Thorough efforts to make equipment safe (engineering measures) through risk assessments (RA)

An analysis of the types of occupational accidents occurring at the MMC Group has revealed that many occupational accidents occur due to two factors: "flawed protective and safety measures" such as incomplete safety measures for machinery and equipment, and "proximity to dangerous areas," such as touching machinery or equipment while it is operating. To strengthen the physical measures in place by reviewing structures and mechanisms from the perspectives of the foolproof*1 and failsafe*2, we are employing thorough engineering-based action through risk assessments.
Further, with respect to occupational accidents caused by "flawed operating methods" such as the use of inappropriate tools and jigs or incorrect operating procedures, we will strive to make risk assessment-based improvements including the verification of operating methods, and revised operating procedures that reflect hazard prediction.
Risk assessment is an effective means of discovering, eliminating or mitigating potential danger or harm attributable to operating practices and other work performed at a manufacturing site. At the MMC Group, we implement risk assessment activities from the perspective of workers on the production floor at each facility. We have trained risk assessment instructors to improve the ability to identify unsafe equipment states and began offering training classes from October 2015. As of March 2017, 460 employees have undergone this training. Moving forward, we aim to have these instructors play a central role in helping to enhance and revitalize on-site activities.

  • *1: Foolproof: A function that prevents human error from resulting in an occupational incident or disaster
  • *2: Failsafe: A function ensuring that equipment will operate on the safe side in the event of mechanical malfunction, power outage or otherwise

Strengthening health and safety education

Monument for safety and health Monument for safety and health

Occupational Safety and Health Education Center - Occupational Safety and Health Education Center - "Midori-kan"

In March 2017, construction was completed on the "Occupational Safety and Health Education Center Midori-kan" on the grounds of the Saitama Property Management Office (Saitama, Saitama Prefecture). Equipped with a range of hazard simulation facilities, this comprehensive training facility is designed to improve hazard sensitivity and offer knowledge about health and safety.
The center is equipped with 45 types of hazard simulation equipment, classrooms designed specifically for health and safety education, and a monument to safety and health representing the MMC Group's strong commitment to safety.
By offering a simulated experience of the hazards latent in everyday operations in light of actual conditions at work sites, hazard simulation equipment seeks to boost trainees' sensitivity to hazards.
In the classrooms, we offer knowledge and training on occupational safety and health, special instruction required for various specialized operations, and safety training that uses CG video to a selection of from disasters and occupational accidents that have occurred across the MMC Group.
In response to June 2016 revisions to the Industrial Safety and Health Act requiring chemical substance risk assessments, we held workshops to develop and improve the skills of applicable employees. As of September 2016, 180 employees from 43 facilities had undergone the training.

Opening of the Occupational Safety and Health Education Center (Hazard Simulation Facility)

The Occupational Safety and Health Education Center Midori-kan, a comprehensive training facility, is equipped with 45 types of hazard simulation equipment offering simulated experiences of the hazard latent in everyday operations. Below are some of the subjects addressed in the simulation training program.

Simulation of getting caught in or between equipment Simulation of getting caught in or between equipment

Simulation of being pinched by the residual pressure of an air pneumatic cylinder Simulation of being pinched by the residual pressure of an air pneumatic cylinder

Sling hazard simulation Sling hazard simulation

Explosion and gas hazard simulation Explosion and gas hazard simulation

Chemical liquid and high-pressure water simulation Chemical liquid and high-pressure water simulation

Forklift hazard simulation Forklift hazard simulation
 

Electrical hazard simulation Electrical hazard simulation

Lifestyle-oriented accident hazard simulation Lifestyle-oriented accident hazard simulation

Raising employees' awareness of health and creating mentally and physically pleasant workplaces

Promoting measures to maintain and improve employee health, and improve working environments, in order to prevent work-related diseases

Our attitude to health management is that healthy employees are an essential resource for the company, and we are working to improve our health systems on a companywide basis.
Since FY2016, we have been giving employees health advice after their regular health checks, provided by public health nurse from Head Office. We continued this initiative in FY2017, and have also been offering advice on improving lifestyles, in the interests of detecting and treating illness as early as possible and preventing lifestyle-related diseases.
We are seeking to standardize the organizations providing health checks to our employees internally, and are making preparations to introduce a system that will digitize and centrally manage health management information such as the results of health checks. This will allow us to offer a uniform level of health management and improve the efficiency of the health management services provided. We will continually improve the company's health management by formulating and implementing highly efficiency measure to advance health based on the data.
Meanwhile, we are committed to continually improving workplace environments to prevent work-related diseases, including stepped-up efforts to manage hazardous substances (poisonous substances, toxic substances, chemicals) and prevent exposure.

Stepping up mental healthcare initiatives

We continually provide various mental healthcare training as a form of primary preventive care for mental health issues. As part of "line-care" training for management personnel, clinical psychologists from Head Office are scheduled to visit all of our sites every two years. In terms of "self-care" training, we select members of staff at each facility to undergo training, so that they can assume the role of instructors as we roll out training to all employees. We also provide mental health training as part of our global human resource and position-specific training programs. Since FY2017, in conjunction with visits to each facility as part of "line-care" training, we have been conducting interviews with all employees in their third-to-fourth year at the company in an effort to prevent employees from experiencing mental health issues.
By way of secondary and tertiary preventive mental healthcare, we continue to offer meetings and consultations with industrial healthcare staff at each of our sites, as well as using external back-to-work programs to enable employees to reintegrate smoothly into their jobs and prevent them from having to take further time off.
We operate a stress-check system required by law at all facilities and offer meetings with physicians as needed. In the future, we will further enhance our mental health measures by making use of group analysis results in workplace improvement activities and other initiatives.

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Strengthening Safety and Health Systems

Establishing a safety and health award scheme

We have established a scheme to award groups and individuals serving as an example to the MMC Group in outstanding safety and health improvement activities over the course of the year.
As the activities carried out by grand prize winners cannot be adequately described in writing, we hold guided visits of facilities open to Groupwide participation as an opportunity to observe the award-winning activities as well as exchange opinions and gain insight into overall safety and health improvement activities.
The second awards were presented in April 2017. The below table lists the facilities presented with awards in the group category. Moving forward, we will continue to actively roll out these outstanding activities within the Group in a bid to further raise the levels of safety and health.

The Second Safety and Health Activity Awards
Grand Prize
Kyushu Plant Operation of the Hazard Simulation Center
Outstanding Achievement Award
Kyushu Plant, Production Department Production Engineering Sec. Safety measures when entering and exiting raw material mill manholes

Safety and health instruction utilizing outside consultants

As the results of an analysis of past occupational accidents revealed issues in risk identification, we have been providing MMC Group facilities with safety and health guidance through outside consultants. Having an expert point out latent risks that are usually overlooked by on-site personnel and taking measures to mitigate the identified risks raises the on-site safety level and improves the hazard sensitivity of employees.

Promoting the rollout of information within the Group through consolidation and dissemination

In February 2017, the Safety & Environment Department launched a website on the company intranet for the purpose of disseminating, consolidating and viewing information related to safety, health, disaster prevention and security.
Safety data and safety chronology that had previously only been stored on head office servers along with occupational accidents case studies, materials used for safety and health training and information concerning health and mental health has been classified, organized and published to the intranet.
Computer graphics have been used to produce videos depicting cases of typical occupational accidents that have occurred in the MMC Group. The videos can be used to offer straightforward explanations of the conditions of an occupational accident, its cause, countermeasures taken and the lessons learned.
The website is designed to give each facility fast and accurate access to the information it needs, and is utilized as a way to help enhance the Group's safety infrastructure and foster a safety culture.

Disseminating examples of safety and health best practices

Since 2014, we have been compiling a collection of safety and health best practices on a yearly basis, highlighting unique and highly-effective initiatives implemented at each MMC Group facility to prevent occupational incidents. The best practices are published and promoted to coincide with National Safety Week as a shared asset for bolstering safety and health levels across the MMC Group.

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Safety Record

Although the total number of employees involved in occupational accidents has decreased over the past decade, the number has remained steady over the last six years. In 2016, two employees were involved in lost time injury (compared with three the previous year), with 24 employees involved in injuries without lost time (compared with 20 the previous year).
In terms of our safety record at group companies (22 major manufacturing companies) in 2016, 9 employees were involved in lost time injury (compared with 15 the previous year), with 55 employees involved in injuries without lost time (compared with 47 the previous year).
The lost-time injury frequency rate, which is used to assess the state of occupational accidents, was 0.18 at MMC and 0.46 for group companies.

Number of Occupational Accidents Involving Employees (Mitsubishi Materials)*Number of Occupational Accidents Involving Employees (Mitsubishi Materials)

* Figures are based on calendar years and do not include minor incidents

Having a safety culture spread and take root

Ryouji TakedaRyouji Takeda
Occupational Safety and Health Consultant

I read the Monthly Safety & Health Report distributed by the Safety & Environment Department each month, and this gives me a good idea of how information is shared across the entire company, including the group companies, and the efforts being made in the interest of safety and health. The report also analyzes and describes the causes of occupational accidents and the associated issues through the broad lens of identifying "unsafe conditions," "unsafe actions" and "flaws in safety and health management," and I hope that these regular efforts lead to recurrence prevention measures ensuring that similar occupational accidents never occur again.
A campaign to eliminate multiple accidents was cited as one of the Groupwide safety and health management priorities for 2017. Since the degree of thoroughness in safety and health initiatives is still inadequate, as illustrated by the occurrence of occupational accidents unique to each facility and of a similar type, the campaign marks an effort to build permanent mechanisms that do not relate on temporary management measures, such as having each facility select occupational accidents to be eliminated on its own and implement thorough initiatives to that end. Once an occupational accident occurs it cannot be undone. As a campaign involving autonomous and independent action, I hope that it yields results.

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