At TPI, safety is our number one Core Value. We strongly believe that all accidents are preventable and that every associate should return at the end of their shift to their families in the same healthy condition in which they showed up for work. To do so, we continue to implement and improve our global behavior-based safety program to eliminate unsafe behaviors.
Our 14 manufacturing facilities have safety management systems in place that cover their associates and activities. We currently have eight facilities ISO 45001 certified. We expect to have the remaining facilities certified as well by end of 2023. We aim to align safety practices across our global facilities and to have them all meet the higher of U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) health and safety standards or local laws and regulations. Facilities where local standards are less stringent than the OSHA minimums generally adhere to the more rigorous U.S. standards. To ensure continued compliance with our ISO45001 and ISO14001 certifications, our sites receive third party surveillance audits on an annual basis and a full management system audit every 3 years.
We ensure the safety of our associates to support our zero-harm culture in a variety of ways, starting with safety education. Safety education is the foundation for our other safety measures. Associates receive regular training on environmental, health and safety (EHS) related topics. This training includes but is not limited to:
- general awareness EHS training
- ergonomics training
- compliance training
- hazard-specific training as required for the job or task
- fire hazard and prevention training
- hazardous material training
- equipment-specific safety training
- safety incident and corrective action training
To ensure that safety behaviors are properly executed, multiple measures are implemented at each site by our leadership teams and health and safety professionals. These measures include:
- good-catch safety program
- safety committees
- weekly safety walks
- daily safety communication
A good-catch is the identification of a condition or behavior that has the potential to cause harm with timely intervention and corrective action before an incident occurs. In 2021, the number of good-catches submitted was more than 30,000 demonstrating an active commitment by our associates in preventing unsafe conditions and behaviors.
Each manufacturing facility has its own safety committee where associates participate in the improvement of their facility’s safety management, and meetings are typically held monthly. Committee responsibilities include the review of safety incidents, identification of safety hazards, follow-up on safety improvement action plans and more.
During the safety walks, members of the site leadership team walk the factory and observe operations to identify unsafe conditions and unsafe behaviors. During these walks, the leadership team engages with associates to verify their EHS knowledge and coaches them on observed behaviors.
Safety communication materials are provided to associates and discussed with leadership daily. Topics include recent safety hazards, issues, and training. Furthermore, associates can remove themselves from any situation they view to be hazardous to their health without fear of retaliation. Corrective action to perceived hazards would be taken as appropriate by TPI.
A standard global Behavior-Based Safety process was implemented in 2021 to ensure we provide coaching around at-risk behaviors and reinforce safe behaviors.
While we employ various preventative safety measures across our operations, we understand that accidents may happen and have processes in place to investigate and prevent future injuries. If an incident occurs, a root cause is identified, and corrective actions are implemented to address the hazard that led to the incident. All safety information is tracked and reviewed at each facility and with the leadership team. Incidents and corrective actions are then shared across facilities, along with significant good-catches, to ensure that best practices are implemented globally.
We exceeded our safety goals for recordable incident rate (RIR) and lost time incident rate (LTIR). The RIR and LTIR goals were to remain flat or decrease year over year. In 2021, we reduced our RIR by 38% to 0.23 compared to 0.37 in 2020, and we reduced our LTIR by 32% in 2021 to 0.13 compared to 0.19 in 2020. Our 2020 and 2021 RIR and LTIR were significantly below the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics industry rates.
All TPI facilities have chemical management policies and procedures in accordance with laws and regulations in their respective regions. Chemical management procedures detail the proper handling, storage, and disposal methods for chemical products at the facility. TPI’s chemical management programs include maintaining and updating safety data sheet inventories for all chemicals and implementing strict emergency response plans. All chemicals entering and exiting TPI facilities follow labeling requirements in accordance with strict regulations to properly identify chemical properties that pose major hazards including flammability, corrosiveness, and toxicity. For a new chemical to be approved to enter a TPI facility it must follow a chemical approval process which includes an in-depth review by EHS departments.
Management of hazardous chemical waste is also extremely important to TPI since our manufacturing process deals with these substances. At all TPI manufacturing sites, hazardous waste policies and procedures have also been implemented. These procedures include the identification, labeling, disposal, containment, and storage of hazardous wastes. In addition to strategic chemical programs, all employees that may encounter chemical or physical hazards and waste materials are trained on chemical labeling and handling, detecting hazards, and understanding safety data sheets, and emergency procedures. TPI’s commitment to associate safety goes beyond training as all our locations follow requirements for Industrial Hygiene by monitoring associate exposures when working with hazardous materials. A majority of our EHS teams utilize third-party organizations that help TPI identify hazards and set up action plans to reduce risks to chemical, noise, dust, and heat exposures.
Recordable and Lost Time Incident Rates1
1 Industry incident rates are according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses NAICS code 333611.